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What's your favorite way to get bugs off the front of the trailer, while traveling?


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I have a month long trip coming up, and know that bugs are a sure thing I'm going to have to deal with, especially in Florida. 

I'm not a full timer, and usually have access to a pressure washer and some good soap (bug and tar remover) at the end of my travels at home.

I've treated the front of the trailer with the 303 protectant which seems to help a lot when it comes to clean up.

BUT, in my experience on the road, most campgrounds frown upon trailer washing.  I've not heard of anyone using the automated semi-truck washes with a pick-up / travel trailer combination.

I'd like to try to stay ahead of the 3 day, caked on bug carcasses that may leave red or green ooze on the front of the trailer. Some seem to be more persistant than others.
I've searched these forums for ideas, but using terms like "rv washing" and "bugs off" or similar terms don't come up with any suggestions.

My wife said she read somewhere that using Hydrogen Peroxide on the trailer front, works for some folks, but have not tried it yet.
If you have any tricks or tips, you'd like to share, I'd sure appreciate it.

I did find this in the interweb and it has some ideas but still would like to hear what works for you. I'm sceptical about the dryer sheet suggestion.
https://www.rvtravel.com/buggywindshield1561/

As a side note, if you've used a product like a screen or extra grill to keep the bugs out of your radiator, I'd like to hear about that as well.
Thanks for your time replying,

FB

Edited by franco-bolli
added web link to other tips to get bugs off.
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You are right that many campgrounds will not allow washing your trailer. Before I head out I have the trailer waxed. When I arrive at my destination I pull  out my ladder, fill a bucket with clean water, sponge the bugs to soften them up, and use a "USED" Bounce sheet and lightly scrub off the bugs. Do not use a "new" Bounce sheet as it will leave a film on your trailer. And, I have never had a complaint from any campground host.

Edited by griffy
Misspelling may give wrong info
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Hmmmm, even though I've been RV'ing for more than 30 years, I keep forgetting to bring along a ladder. I'll need to add that to the "bring along" list this time! This month long trip will be the longest one we've done. It will start 25 days after I retire...

I admit that I'm not from the "show me" state, but I'll need to ask the wife to save a few bounce sheets to try this for myself.  
Do you use them soaked in water or something else, or just with the trailer wet, or ???

 

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6 minutes ago, Pat & Pete said:

If anyone says anything about washing the rig , just tell them you're simply helping to keep the image of the campground up . ;)

this is great!  Some of the camprounds I've stayed in, won't have their image improved by my washing the trailer though.

 

24 minutes ago, hatrack said:

We use Blue Beacon and other truck wash when we had a dually and 5th wheel, and we still use them with HDT and 5th wheel. We have also found some car washes that have a high enough bay to fit in.

Ken....

I've not heard of Blue Beacon. I see them on google for locations, but don't see the "how it's done" in the description. Is it and automated wash, like a car wash or is it just a huge building with a couple of well meaning kids using high pressure guns and soap?  Any ideas what they would charge for a pick-up with trailer?

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I've stayed in campgrounds and RV Parks for a single night and for many months.  I've encountered many which do not allow washing of your rig.  However, I've never been to one which wouldn't let me clean the day's bugs off of the front of my rig after I pulled in and set up.

I use a bath towel.  Get it good and wet and lay it on the area for a couple of minutes.  Then, move it to another spot and use a damp microfiber towel to wipe the bugs off of where I just had the wet towel.  Then, move the wet towel again and repeat until the front of the rig is free of bugs.  Usually took about ten minutes for my fifth wheel and less for my smaller trailers.  During love bug season might take twenty minutes.

I've tried a bunch of those chemicals and Pam and home remedies.  I found most of them just created a bigger mess to clean up.  Bugs just need a couple of minutes to dissolve in water and wiped off.

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You might want to look at a product named Superzilla (Amazon link here).  Or you might also want to look for some 100% pure biodiesel.   Amazing stuff but can discolor some vinyl graphics - as always, test in an inconspicuous place first. Use caution on soft enamel painted surfaces. Smaller bottles are available at a lower cost. Worked for me as a pre-treatment on gel coat and urethane clear-coat to keep bugs from sticking. A fantastic penetrating fluid for rusted hardware.  I did not believe the ad hype until I tested it.  As always, only a suggestion - NOT a product endorsement.

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We used a product called The Solution waterless wash to clean the whole motorhome as traveling full-timers.  No power washing. No hose washing.  After 8 yr. the motorhome looked new! Sometimes we did a section while just sitting around the campsite.  Day or two later maybe another section. So easy. Rain-X for the windshield. For the front in 'bug territory' we cleaned the windshield and front immediately after stopping for the day with a half bucket of water and a long squeegee. Bugs just slid off.  Driving to Alaska it was sometimes necessary to clean the front a couple times while driving during the day.  Have fun!

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We used Blue Beacon with Class B, Class C, and Class A rigs. They were all welcome. They appeared to charge by the foot.  They charged $20 for vans and pickups when we were RVing but that's been a few years ago so it might have gone up by now. Yes, they are mostly kids with power wash hoses but they do get things clean. I have been known occasionally to ask for an extra rinse, though.

Linda Sand

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11 hours ago, griffy said:

I pull  out my ladder, fill a bucket with clean water, sponge the bugs to soften them up, and use a "USED" Bounce sheet and lightly scrub off the bugs. Do not used a "new" Bounce sheet as it will leave a film on your trailer. And, I have never had a complaint from any campground host.

This is also my method except that I prefer the unused dryer sheets and I in a "bug scrubber" sponge instead of a regular sponge. I wet the a section of the surface with  water and then rub that area with a dryer sheet. I then scrub the area with the bug scrubber. I found that the chemicals in the unused dryer sheet makes the bugs come off much more easily - it is a softening agent. After the bugs are clear I rinse the area with clear water and wipe with a wet cloth to remove the film griffy noted. Usually I talk to the CG staff at check in, about cleaning the front of the 5er. I stress that I am not washing the entire rig. No one has said no in four years.

Wayne & Jinx
2017 F-350 diesel, dually
2006 Carriage Carri-Lite 36KSQ

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Great ideas here ! Thanks for sharing your experiences.   
I'll investigate how the dryer sheets work on our trip. Thanks for the confirmation that using them wasn't just a tik tok bologna trend.

The waterless "the solution" has my interest too.

Has anyone heard of using Hydrogen peroxide on the bugs?  Depending on the % of peroxide it seems it would be more expensive per wash than almost anything else, if much of it was required. I'm not sure where my wife saw this mentioned.

For those that use a chemical product, do you recoat the front of the rig with anything right after? Wax?  303 protectant? A Rain-X product?   It would seem to me that a chemical bug remover would also remove the underlying protections as well.

Thanks again for the replies, they really help.

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As a motorcyclist, I've had the occasional bug guts on my face shield.  Doing as suggested above, wet towel and let it soak a few minutes, works pretty well, and requires no extra chemicals or equipment.

As for the camper, I just got a taller truck. 🙂

 

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23 hours ago, franco-bolli said:

I've not heard of Blue Beacon. I see them on google for locations, but don't see the "how it's done" in the description. Is it and automated wash, like a car wash or is it just a huge building with a couple of well meaning kids using high pressure guns and soap?  Any ideas what they would charge for a pick-up with trailer?

Blue Beacon is usually @ $55.00 for the truck (HDT) and @ $35.00 for a 45' trailer, Linda is right it is based on length. You pull into big building and usually about 5 people spay prewash, shop, brush it if you ask and rinse, you can also add RainX uv blocker to the wash.

Ken....

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While a lot of campgrounds will not allow you to use their water to wash your unit, they do allow outside vendors that carry their own water to wash your unit on site. Check with the campground that you are planning to go to and see what their policy is and if they allow outside vendors to wash they may have a recommendation that you can contact and make an appointment for the next day after you arrive.

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For our touring harley davidson I use Bug Slide applied to a clean surface. Spray on wipe off with clean microfiber. At the end of day a wipe with a dirty microfiber cloth to clean and another application of bug slide and good to go works on plastic or metal. Depending on swarming luv bugs might have to lay a wet towel to loosen first. We have custom chameleon paint job and 45 thousand miles with the product.

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On 2/22/2022 at 10:49 PM, sandsys said:

Try not to get in line behind a stock truck. They wash the insides of those and it's not pretty. :)

Linda

Well said!  I tend to speed up when I pass stock trucks, I've seen unmentionable things come out of the holes in the side.  😉

Edited by franco-bolli
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For a recap of what I've read in the replies:
(in no particular order of preference)
*  Dryer sheets (used and wet)
* wet towels on the surface for a bit to loosen the guts then water and a brush
* Blue Beacon truck wash ( but not following a stock truck:o !)
* Reliable 1 Spray All purpose cleaner
* Bug Slide Spray
* Superzilla Spray
* Slick Mist Spray
The Solution waterless wash
* Bug Scrubber Sponge
* Microfiber rags / towels
* Driving Backward or get a Taller Truck!

All but the last on the list, are possibilities.  Thanks for your contributions.
From the write ups I've seen on Amazon for a few of those sprays, I'm going to try one of them on the trip.


Thanks again for sharing.

FB

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