Ford Focus II - Smeared Windscreen - willow

Help! for I am slowly going nuts. I can't stop my wipers leaving a smear on my windscreen, a smear which instantly disappears when the wipers are switch off.

I have tried various glass cleaners, even white vinegar - none work. Cleaning the blades, which have just been replaced to try and solve the problem leaves an black mark on kitchen towel, a black mark, that no matter how may times I clean the blade does not diminish. Am I rubbing something away on the blade that I should not?

Any suggestions other than more cleaning products would be gratefully received.

Edited by willow on 09/04/2010 at 18:09

Ford Focus II - Smeared Windscreen - Roly93

I have a suggestion for you.

Clean the windscreen really well in the normal way. With the screen slightly moist, get some newspaper screwed into a ball and give thge screen a good hard rub all over. If you look carefully, you will see the smears disappearing as you rub harder, changing for a fresh bit of newspaper as required.

Then remove the wiper blades. and give each blade a good wash with neat washing up liquid in the sink.

If this doesn't help significantly I'll be very surprised. You can also use a tiny amount of vinegar on the screen/paper also.

Most of the smears on the windscreen are a mixture of unburned diesel mist from lorries, and silicon wax residue from car polishing etc I think.

Ford Focus II - Smeared Windscreen - willow

Okay, thanks for the tips. The vinegar thing I have tried. I am beginning to suspect the screenwash, as everytime I use the stuff the blades leave a smear.

Ford Focus II - Smeared Windscreen - ex-Triumph man

Sometimes if the screenwash mixture is too strong, you will get the smearing situation you are complaining about.

Ford Focus II - Smeared Windscreen - Carl2

I use washing up liquid (it says it leaves glasses gleaming) then i jet wash the screen with a decent pressure (not to high). I then dry the screen with kitchen roll then a buff with news paper. I also wash the blades in washing up liquid then clean water. I wonder if car washes and cleaning the car leaves a residue that causes this smearing. Like you I tried loads of cleaning products and different types of blades before I settled for this method.

Ford Focus II - Smeared Windscreen - willow

Well everyone, I have done all you have suggested and STILL no luck. Even read one article on the interweb that seemed to suggest that wax on the windscreen will stick to it forever and there is no shifting it, the only solution is to replace the windscreen - bull! I find that hard to believe, as the makers of car polish products would long have gone out of business because of the amount of motorists suing for replacement windscreens.

So looks like I am stuck with a mystery that can't be solved :(

Ford Focus II - Smeared Windscreen - sandy56

Vinegar does work and will clean the windscreen -may need a few applications -little and often.

Replace the blades no need to replace the complete wipers.

Ford Focus II - Smeared Windscreen - willow

Hi sandy56

Wipers have just been replaced. Vinegar has been used several times. Now looking to replace windscreen, as it is unsafe to use the car at night in the rain.

Ford Focus II - Smeared Windscreen - focusman

hi

just a thought, go along to your local windscreen fitting place and ask their advice.

the stuff they use after fitting new screens may do the trick.

Ford Focus II - Smeared Windscreen - dimebar123

try and find a product called" rainx" it's very good for this problem m8

Ford Focus II - Smeared Windscreen - mickyh7

Hi sandy56

Wipers have just been replaced. Vinegar has been used several times. Now looking to replace windscreen, as it is unsafe to use the car at night in the rain.

And what if it is the wipers causing the problem ? (cross contamination)

You will not need another windscreen.If your really stuck,take it to a windscreen fitter and ask them for advice,and to clean it with their 'magic liquid'

There is somthing nasty on the glass,and it just has to come off !

Good Luck.

Ford Focus II - Smeared Windscreen - Ben 10

I have 2 Focus 2s at present and had Focuses for the last 10 years.

Never had as serious a problem as you have. Is your screenwash concentrate too strong?

What make of wipers did you put on?

Try Astonish glass cleaner and newspaper. Couple of times and wipe wiper blades with white vinegar solution.

If this doesn't do it, I'd be very surprised.

Ford Focus II - Smeared Windscreen - willow

Hi Cpt Flack

Valeo wipers have now been replaced with Bosh (both wipers are fitted with deflectors) as I thought the wipers were the problem - wrong!

Went to Autogalss in Swindon (strange place Swindon) they were not helpful I'm afraid, just sort of stood their scratching their heads - very helpful. No offer to use any kind of "magic liquid" as suggested by a previous post. They did say, that it was very unlikely that I should need to replace the windscreen, well that was a relief.

So back to square-one.

Just tried some Simonize windscreen cleaner, uesless!

So no more night driving for me in the rain. Perfectly serviceable car now unusable. Grounded by a flippin' smear :(

Edited by willow on 17/04/2010 at 12:10

Ford Focus II - Smeared Windscreen - Ben 10

I have Valeos on both cars. No smears and silent in operation. Could be the screen wash if this is what you use to test. Otherwise try the Astonish glass cleaner from Wilkinsons. The Bosch blades could be the problem if you've tried all the glas cleaning advice on here. Does the same smearing occur if you put the Valeos back on after cleaning the screen?

Ford Focus II - Smeared Windscreen - mickyh7

This can happen if you squirt neat 'Fairy Liquid' into the wash bottle without mixing it first in a container.It sinks straight to the bottom and comes out neat. Leaves loads of smears.

I know you shouldnt use washing up liquid-but everyone does !

Other than that it could be oil/chemical thats come from a lorry.You could try lighter fluid on a clean cloth to see if anything is comming off,and then scrub with Fairy etc.

Ford Focus II - Smeared Windscreen - willow

Can't put the Valeos back on as they are now in a land fill somewhere.

I am not putting anymore screen wash in either, just water to see if I can flush anything that might be causing the problem out. I have noticed when using the screen wash that it leaves white streaks.

Bought some Auto Glym 'Fast Glass' - helped a little I think. Also bought some Auto Glym 'Intensive Tar Remover' which is supposed to lift off wax and silicone, but have not tried it on my windscreen yet, as there is no mention on the bottle that it is suitable for glass, although the chap at Halfords said it would be alright. I have emailed Auto Glym just to be on the safe side.

Oh! the smear is not confined to the windscreen, I have noticed it's on the back window too, which leads me to believe that the culprit is possibly my Simonize wash and wax - the yellow stuff. What the hell do they put in that stuff?

Edited by willow on 18/04/2010 at 15:01

Ford Focus II - Smeared Windscreen - mickyh7

you may have answered your own question !

the culprit is possibly my Simonize wash and wax - the yellow stuff.

Good Luck !

Ford Focus II - Smeared Windscreen - nottsruss

I drove through some road works and can you believe they were actually spraying diesel onto the tarmac , hence an airborne spray covered my screen with similar problems.New blades and intensive cleaning with auto glass plus leaving wipers on for long periods on fast whilst jetting water on. Travelling behind HGV's also puts film on screen..!!!

Ford Focus II - Smeared Windscreen - Coombs33

Hi sandy56

Wipers have just been replaced. Vinegar has been used several times. Now looking to replace windscreen, as it is unsafe to use the car at night in the rain.

Hi Sandy

As a temperary solution i have found that a spray called Demon Shine works wonders. Either spray it on and use wipers as necessary or spray on just before going on a trip and once you get to around 50mph the water wizzes straight off. It might only be a cheap temperary solution but £5 every 6 or so months works out alot cheaper than a new windscreen

Ford Focus II - Smeared Windscreen - Coombs33

Well everyone, I have done all you have suggested and STILL no luck. Even read one article on the interweb that seemed to suggest that wax on the windscreen will stick to it forever and there is no shifting it, the only solution is to replace the windscreen - bull! I find that hard to believe, as the makers of car polish products would long have gone out of business because of the amount of motorists suing for replacement windscreens.

So looks like I am stuck with a mystery that can't be solved :(

Hi i have found a tempery work around, i spray on Demon Shine which you can get from most supermarkets its pink in a clearish bottle. It lasts for about 4-6 days and i have still got my first bottle 8months in. Spray it on the screen and leave it when its raining when you get to a fast road over about 50mph the water blows straight off and leaves a clear screen. But remember this is just a work around until a perminant solution can be found

Ford Focus II - Smeared Windscreen - Roly93

I wonder if car washes and cleaning the car leaves a residue that causes this smearing. Like you I tried loads of cleaning products and different types of blades before I settled for this method.

I think almost all smearing on windscreens is due to unburnt diesel mist from car and lorry exhausts.. This is the nature of diesel engines. For example, almost all of my driving is on motorways, whilst the wifes Focus rarely ever goes on a motorway. Her car, which is washed by me in exactly the same way, always has a nice snear free screen, while mine is terrible despite regular newspaper and vinegar treatment.

Ford Focus II - Smeared Windscreen - Carl2

Now thats a coincidence. I also use the same wash wax (also a Focus with heated front screen). I don't wipe the screen with the same sponge. I follow the procedure I listed earlier. I know what you mean about it being really frustrating at night.

Ford Focus II - Smeared Windscreen - John M20

Like Willow and others I have got the same problem but on a Peugeot 307. I thought it was the wiper rubbers at first but new ones made no difference. I have tried everythging mentioned so far in the other posts plus Isopropyl Alchohol and jewellers rouge made into a paste with meths. Absolutely no improvement.

It seems that for the first few wipes of the blade it is reasonably OK but then it starts to smear and then gets progressively worse. I would have expected an immediate smearing if the screen was contaminated but perhaps it is a chemical reaction with water and whatever is on the screen.

I've been to the local Autoglass depot who couldn't suggest anything else to try. They couldn't think what could be causing the problem. What I do know is that I'm not very happy going out in the rain at night.

In desparation I might try a very small area on the passenger side using either brasso or T-cut and see what happens. It can't get any worse. I'll keep you posted.

I'm pretty sure it can't be the screen weash or the shampoo that I use as I've been using both for some time on previous cars with no problems at all. My only thought was that the previous owner, who is not now contactable, used something on the screen. Another thought is has the whole car been treated with a paintwork preserver that was sprayed on and went on the glass as well. A wild thought but you never know.

Surely there must be a glass expert out there somewhere who can give us the solution, other than a new windscreen.

John M

Ford Focus II - Smeared Windscreen - Chris_4536

A simple fix to a simple problem, get some 'Barkeepers Friend' powder from a supermarket - apply liberally - and according to instructions!

Rinse off thoroughly - make sure to not rub paintwork with the cloth/mixture whilst cleaning the screen as it is a very light abrasive!

I would HIGHLY reccomend buying some Rain-X Glass Cleaner with Rain Repellant - otherwise known as 'Weatherbeater'. Avaliable from Halfords for around £6 - refundable of course if you are not 100% blown away by the 'hydro-phobic' effect it has!

Very simple to use and damn effective!

I would also recommend you try a different shampoo - one from Optimum perhaps - avaliable online. Or if you prefer to shop instore, one of Meguiars offerings.

Greasey smears are one of my absolute pet hates!!

Hope this helps,

Chris

Ford Focus II - Smeared Windscreen - starfield

I ahve a suggestion:

Try those windscreen scratch remover. It might remove the top layer of your windscreen. I will however recommend to try less aggressive methods first.

I should admit that I have not tried those windscreen scratch remover myself.

good luck

Ford Focus II - Smeared Windscreen - Aretas

Don't under any circumstances try Rainx. You will find it stupidly smeary at night, and never ger rid of it.

When I want to properly clean my windscreen I use Gunk. Awfull smell but does the job. Remember to clean the wiper blades at the same time.

Wash off with water and then use a normal window cleaner.

Don't make any washer additive too strong. Just enough so that you know it is there.

And if you wear glasses then degrease them properly as well. Makes a big difference to nightime glare.

Ford Focus II - Smeared Windscreen - lauraj

Hi

I just wanted to write to say I have a Ford Focus 2006 and am having exactly the same problem. No matter what i try to clear this problem nothing works. It will for a very short period of time but if it is raining a lot and am travelling the screen gets worse while driving it. I the same cannot drive the car at night in the rain, I thought it was my eyesight at first but not. I am very close to replacing the windscreen as I get pannicky now if I have a planned journey when it is raining.

It starts off as a lacey effect and eventually by using wipers it blends into one smear as if it is really foggy, and with motorway driving in rain with lorries etc, it is lethal.

I am going to contact a windscreen specialist NOT Autoglass to see what they have to say but unfortunately they cannot see it unless it is raining as otherwise screen looks really clear.

Lauraj

Ford Focus II - Smeared Windscreen - Ben 10

I have 2 Mk2 Focuses.

Get some Astonish glass cleaner. Spray onto screen and wipe off with some scrunched up daily newspaper. Repeat 2 maybe 3 times and see the result. Clean the wiper blade rubbers with a cloth and white spirit or white vinegar.

Ford Focus II - Smeared Windscreen - Bilboman
Something else has occurred to me from reading all the contributions: give the screenwash bottle a complete clean out and flush the tubes too. All sorts of gunk collects there, including legionella if you believe the reports. Then start from scratch with brand new screenwash fluid - I read somewhere on this forum that Porsche make the best in the business!
Ford Focus II - Smeared Windscreen - Chris_H

Hi

I just wanted to write to say I have a Ford Focus 2006 and am having exactly the same problem. No matter what i try to clear this problem nothing works. It will for a very short period of time but if it is raining a lot and am travelling the screen gets worse while driving it. I the same cannot drive the car at night in the rain, I thought it was my eyesight at first but not. I am very close to replacing the windscreen as I get pannicky now if I have a planned journey when it is raining.

It starts off as a lacey effect and eventually by using wipers it blends into one smear as if it is really foggy, and with motorway driving in rain with lorries etc, it is lethal.

I am going to contact a windscreen specialist NOT Autoglass to see what they have to say but unfortunately they cannot see it unless it is raining as otherwise screen looks really clear.

Lauraj

Hi

Did you manage to get anywhere speaking to a windscreen speciailist? I have a very similar problem with a car I bought a few weeks back and have tried absolutely everything to stop the smearing, it is driving me crazy!

I've read hours and hours of advice on forums similar to this and it seems there are quite a few other people out there with similar problems and they never really find a solution.

Getting very close to taking a hammer to my current windscreen just so I can have a replacement fitted as this seems like the only route left....but seems excessive as when it is not raining the windscreen looks crystal clear

Chris

Ford Focus II - Smeared Windscreen - Chris_H

Update - I got hold of some 'Halfords Intensive Glass Cutter' which was pretty much my last resort, and it worked, I finally have a smear free windscreen, even in heavy rain !!

I think that my problem might have been related to someone using rain-x on the windscreen at some point in the past, and as claimed this product shifted it. Either way I'm so relieved to have resolved the problem.

Chris

Ford Focus II - Smeared Windscreen - ka razy

Hi all,I drive an astra 07 sxi. I am having the same problem with my windscreen...nearly driven to despair..also lethal at night when raining..have cleaned it with meths/newspapers, and all of the things already mentioned...changed the wiper blades twice(tho I dont think they are at fault) back window is the same,so have drained the bottle flushed it out to no avail...so bad I am thinking of selling it ..

Ford Focus II - Smeared Windscreen - turbo11

After trying and failing with glass cleaner and Isopropyl Alcohol, I managed to remove a small but stubborn smear off my mates Renault windscreen by using whitening toothpaste(Mcleans- works on tooth enamel, so why not glass!).Using a soft cotton cloth and elbow grease it came off a treat. Also worked on a small scratch on my wifes car windscreen.

Ford Focus II - Smeared Windscreen - softopdriver

I finally found that good old de-ionised water and blue paper (the sort found in workshops/garage forecourts) works wonders.


Following on from various tips and advice, I've thoroughly cleaned the windscreen with mild cutting cleansers such as AG Glass Polish and even Halfords Intensive Glass Cutter, yet the following morning those nasty vertical streaks were all over the windscreen, and when the wipers sweep, the image remains for a good few seconds, leaving visibility impaired and the screen looking well below par. In constant rain this proved to be a real annoyance.

I have since replaced my washer fluid mix with deionised water rather than tap water, and the regular cleaning method now is to get some blue paper (the sort often found on a roll in factories/garages) and soak it in deionised water and vigourously rub the glass, making sure to use firm effort. No other chemicals are necessary, the slightly rough texture of the blue paper is enough to really cleanse the glass (I am told that kitchen roll is not suitable due to the chemicals in the paper which make it soft and pliable, and these leave a waxy film on the glass - having used that for years I can vouch for the extra effectiveness of the blue paper). After 1 sweep, use some fresh blue paper and go over it to dry it, then wait a few minutes until completely dry and buff the glass with a clean (preferably unused) microfibre cloth.

Deionised water costs about 50p/litre, microfibre cloths can be picked up cheaply from most places these days, and I now keep a kit in the car to do the windscreen as necessary. I understand the streaks that can be seen are often very fine deposits of minerals in tap water, or picked up from the road as grit salt residue and diesel/oil particles. They can also be caused by wash & wax products that do not get completely rinsed off the glass before starting to dry. I now never wash the windscreen when washing the car, I simply use the above method and occasionally use one of the glass polishes to maintain a crystal clear finish.

Edited by softopdriver on 12/01/2011 at 12:36

Ford Focus II - Smeared Windscreen - Waino

A couple of years ago, I couldn’t find my regular window cleaning spray so reached under the kitchen sink and pulled out a can of, what I now believe to be, a more general purpose furniture polish. IIRC, it said something like ‘with added silicone’. I used it on the car screens and, at first, it seemed fine – and it had the strange effect of repelling rain off the windscreen; in fact, it had to rain very heavily before I needed to use the wipers.

After a couple of weeks, this effect seemed to wear off and I was left with a dreadful smearing which was particularly annoying at night. I now realise that I had used ‘the wrong kind of cleaner’ and struggled and struggled to remove it using most of the suggestions listed above. Eventually, it shifted and I resolved only ever to use proper glass or screen cleaner again.

The rain-repellent effect sounded similar to that produced by Rain-X and, in a conversation with my brother in law, he told me that he was a confirmed user of Rain-X. When I told him about the smearing that I had seen, he emphatically added ‘Ah, but I only use it on the side windows – NEVER on the windscreen’

Ford Focus II - Smeared Windscreen - willow

Well hello folks, here I am several months down the line and yes, you've guessed it, still got me flippin' smear. Suffice to say I have now given up and resigned myself to a problem that has no cure, least of all on my car. At night, if it's raing I just take things very very carefully.

I spoke to a chap at Halfords a little while back, who said quite alarmingly I thought at the time, that is "a build up of wax from wash and wax products which you should NEVER use on your windsreen." Great! where does it say that on the flippin' bottles? He just shrugged his shoulders. He also said that hard water can contribute to smearing and suggested I use an ionised water mix or pre-mixed screen wash. Have yet to try it.

Blades have been replaced yet again, I lived in hope, but with no improvement. Interestingly, if the screen is a little wet the blades make a sound as if they are sweeping over loose sand or grit, this sound disappears when the rain gets heavier, doesn't stop the smearing mind.

Thanks again for all your tips, i hope its helped someone.

Ford Focus II - Smeared Windscreen - softopdriver

Willow - see my post of 12 January, it answers several of your points and confirms what you have heard about wash/wax products not to be used on windscreens, and the benefits of using de-ionised water in your washer tank.

Ford Focus II - Smeared Windscreen - willow

Thanks softopdriver; just re-read again your 12th Jan post. Do you know if pre-mixed screen wash uses de-ionised water as standard? The only reason I ask, is than I am thinking of switching from my own mix using tap water. I have noticed when using my washer jets the mixture is cloudy white colour in colour and when dry, can leave a white line at the edges of the screen.

Ford Focus II - Smeared Windscreen - softopdriver

I really don't know, sorry, but I do know that since using de-ionised water myself I also don't get that 'hard edge' where the wiper doesn't sweep. For what it costs, plus some half decent undiluted screenwash you're as well to mix it yourself.

Ford Focus II - Smeared Windscreen - turbo11

Buy yourself a Brita water filter jug. I have been using the water from ours for years in my washer bottle without any water marks left on the car. When the car has a light frost I can even pour it straight from the jug to clear the screen. It works well even though the water in the jug has been at room temp.

Ford Focus II - Smeared Windscreen - softopdriver

An update, with another method I have found that works. I've suffered smearing on my windscreen over the years, and its always worse in autumn/winter, and I think I've finally found something that works - Barkeepers Friend.

http://www.lakeland.co.uk/8868/Bar-Keepers-Friend?src=mpcle

Its a powder with a very very mild abrasive action, and is used to clean lots of different things. For your windscreen, first clean all debris/grit etc using just water and clean kitchen roll (you want no gritty particles left to scratch the glass during polishing). Now dampen either a clean microfibre cloth or blue paper or kitchen paper, sprinkle just a little powder onto it, then lightly polish your glass. When finished, rinse thoroughly to remove any white powdery deposits.

Personally, I find doing this job in the rain is best, as you've got a constant supply of soft water before, during and after polishing, and I have to say the results are amazing.

Before anyone asks, I will benefit in no way from this, I am simply passing on my conclusion to a problem that I've also suffered from for a long time. I shall also post this on the other 'windscreen smearing threads' in order to share the information.

Ford Focus II - Smeared Windscreen - Redbruce

I came across this thread after experiencing smears with the windscreen of my Ford Focus MK2 (2005-).

Essentially, after the wiperblade goes over the front windscreen it leaves a smear / lacey patten on the windscreen which reduces visibilty considerably (by maybe 30-70%).

I find that it is worse in cold weather, when just setting off in the morning. Turning on the heated windscreen helps, but then why should I need to whenever it rains? And it uses more fuel if I keep turning it on.

I suspected that this problem started after I accidently used Turtlewax/Car Shampoo on the windscreen (thought it was just shampoo when I grabbed it from the shelf in the garage), but the problem may have existed before then, I wasn't 100% sure.

So I started by trying to remove the wax from the windscreen. I tried various things; Meths, Vinegar, Holts screenwash (mentioned on this thread) and a green scouer, but none of them made any difference at all.

I also tested if it was due to the screenwash by placing a couple of pebbles on the bonnet to block the squirters, then pooring water on the screen and using the wipers, but the problem still ocurred.

Logically, this just left the wipers as the only option... I inspected them and they looked fine, even so I cleaned them with vinager, but it made no difference. I was putting off replacing the wipers because of the cost, but in the end I had no option.

I purchased a pair of Bosch wipers from Kwik Fit and tested them straightaway, and it seemed to completely solve the problem, no more smears! I actually took the wipers back within 5 minutes of testing them because one was 1" too short, leaving a small triangle of the screen.

TIP: If purchasing Bosch wipers for your Focus II, get the twin aero pack designed for the Ford Focus, they are the correct lengths and are designed just like the original Ford wipers (the ones Kwik Fit fitted didn't look quite right). Code: A978S.

This was only half the story, as although things were a lot better with the new Bosch wipers, I noticed that on setting off in the morning, I had mist/fog on the exterior of the windscreen (!). It would apppear when the wiper blade goes across and disappear quickly (even in warm weather). The problem was that if you had the wiper blades on fast setting, the fog would still be there between wiper-blade cycles. This resulted in a reduced visibility of around 20-30%, so there was obviously still a problem.

This time I went back to the possibiliy of there being a problem with the surface of the windscreen that none of the methods used had resolved. My theory was that a layer of wax (or other contaminent) existed that altered the property of the glass, changing the way water vapour condensated on the window (and after the wiper blade passes), causing smaller droplets to form. Another idea I had was that water was getting trapped in the very fine scratches that have built-up over the years, then evaporating very quickly after the wiper passes.

I was going to just accept it and assume that eventually the layer of wax would come off with time.

But I was walking through LIDL the other day looking through the hardware section and came across an electric machine polisher, designed for cars/boats/caravans etc. Just £15, what a bargain! I bought it.

I also bought some triplewax glass Polish from Halfords, I chose this as it claims to contain a mild abrasive (and that it can remove light scratches, a dubious claim!).

As a test, I polished the drivers side of the screen using this polisher/polish for 30 minutes. It didn't remove any scratches, but I wasn't really expecting it to, just to remove the wax/residue from the surface of the screen.

Anyway.. on testing the results were impressive. I drove out and turned on the AC to cool down the screen to enourage condensation on the outside (as would happen on a cold morning).

The side that I had polished had virtually no condensation build-up (or if it was there it appeard as a thin transparent layer of water). But on the unplolished side small droplets of water quickly started to appear in a kind of smeared way, reducing visibility by around 80% (very dangerious!). Using the wipers cleared it brielfy, but it reappeared on the unpolished side.

I took photos where you can see the difference, but there doesn't appear to be anyway to attach them to this post. Once I work out a way I will put them up here.

In summary, the two causes of the smears in my case turned out to be:

  1. The wipers were wornout.
  2. A layer of wax (or other contaminent) existed on the surface on the windscreen (which was very hard to remove).

The only other possibility was that the wiper fluid became contaminated e.g. with, to be sure I have replaced this with fresh premixed washer fluid, just in case.

  1. LIDL Polishing machine £15
  2. Polish £5
  3. Wipers £40
  4. Windscreen wash (5L): £4
  5. TOTAL £64

Well worth the money, especially as it is a safety issue and winter is approaching.

I hope that my (somewhat detailed LOL) summary of how I solved the problem may be useful to other people reading this thread...

Thanks,

Bruce.

Edited by Redbruce on 28/10/2012 at 19:04

Ford Focus II - Smeared Windscreen - Redbruce

My last post seemed a bit on the long side, so if you can't be bothered to read it.

From my own experience, it appears that these issues are often caused by a layer of wax on the windscreen, which cannot be removed by chemicals alone, and removing it requires some form of mild abrasive.

Also, old wipers - it even when they don't look worm or damaged in any way. Bosch wipers are the best. If you have a Ford Focus II, buy the twin pack A978S (Halffords £40).

Polishing the screen with a mild abrasive and replacing the wipers completely resolved the problem in my case.

Thanks,

Bruce.

Ford Focus II - Smeared Windscreen - focussed

Cleaning the screen periodically with toothpaste on a rag with a drop of water is an old very effective screen cleaner.

Ford Focus II - Smeared Windscreen - Sir Lancelot

Try Decosol-Clearalex-Screen-Wash Before I retired I used to cover 1,000 miles a week, Monday to Friday. I tried everything on the market, some worked to a degree, but none could equal Decosol. Use it neat on the screen and blades to remove the crud, then add it to your washer bottle to maintain good vision.

Ford Focus II - Smeared Windscreen - Avant

I didn't know you could still get Clearalex.

I use the excellent screenwash additive you get from VW Group dealers; surprisingly from that source it's very cheap. It always keeps the screen free from smears: the other day, with no time to wash it myself I had the Octavia hand-washed, and some of the soapy stuff went on the screen - result, smears. But a good long shoosh with the screen wash cleared it.

Ford Focus II - Smeared Windscreen - sam.epic

If you still want some clearalex it is avalible the company that makes it also makes decosol concentrate screen wash it sould be avalible from all good inderpendent car accessory shops. I know all A1 motorstores can get it.

If you have wiper issues do not use the premixed screen wash use a good quality brand.

If you put some neat of the concentrated clearlex or decosol it will clean the screen.

Ford Focus II - Smeared Windscreen - KenC

I have tried several products/methods over 30 years ( some have been next to useless the best (and cheapest) so far is the old fashioned WINDOWLENE.

Sold in the light purple plastic containers for around £3. (wilco)

After washing & drying the car I use the windowlene (A little goes

a long way) and after a few minutes buff it off with an old clean cotton

t shirt,always delivers a crystal clear smear free finish.

Ford Focus II - Smeared Windscreen - johnaerial

I suffered for years with smearing windscreens. I used every glass cleaner under the sun but nothing would stop the smear until....I decided that perhaps it was a build up of limescale. I live in a very hard-water area and limescale builds up on everything to do with water.

So I soaked a towel in vinager and left it on the windscreen for an hour or so. Then I gave the screen a vigourous rubbing and hey presto, I now have a crystal-clear windscreen and NO MORE smear.

Edited by johnaerial on 17/12/2013 at 21:08

Ford Focus II - Smeared Windscreen - DanielUK

This is the top search result for this problem so i thought Id add the solution here.

Nothing in this thread worked.

The solution : Glass polish containing cerium oxide, used with a polishing mop on a standard household drill. I used the kit supplied on amazon marketplace 12.99.


I tried everything and that is the only thing that got rid of it.

Edited by DanielUK on 19/03/2015 at 01:25

Ford Focus II - Smeared Windscreen - galileo

This is the top search result for this problem so i thought Id add the solution here.

Nothing in this thread worked.

The solution : Glass polish containing cerium oxide, used with a polishing mop on a standard household drill. I used the kit supplied on amazon marketplace 12.99

I tried everything and that is the only thing that got rid of it.

This also removes "Rain-X" if you no longer want that coating or wish to have a really clean screen before applying it, which is my usual method.

Ford Focus II - Smeared Windscreen - dadbif
Put some ammonia in your screen wash, you don't need all the fancy additives
Ford Focus II - Smeared Windscreen - Fraggledweller
This is one of the most difficult things to solve - but I have cracked it. Here is the regime I used.

1- Clean the glass VERY CAREFULLY with HG Stove Glass Cleaner. This will remove a great deal of the ingrained dirt. Use a soft cloth to rub in, wearing gloves, then rinse copiously with gallons of water. This stuff must NOT get anywhere near your paint work.

2 - buy some TurtleWax Clearvue Glass Polish, and Provision Glass Scrub. Invest in a 150mm compound pad, and attach it to either a machine polisher or an orbital sander. Apply the Glass Scrub first to a wet screen as per the instructions, but utilising the compound pad and machine assistance. give it several passes, vertically, horizontally and diagonally. Then rinse copiously.

3- repeat, this time using the Clearvue Polish. Again, rinse copiously.

4- finish off with Nilglas glass cleaner, and blue paper towel roll.

5 - fit new wiper blades.

This has finally stopped the smearing which was beyond annoying. An hours work but well worth it.

Ford Focus II - Smeared Windscreen - carman

Hi all. Had same problem on a 2005 Passat. Smearing on widscreen where the nearside wiper stops and changes direction, leaving a band about an inch wide. Tried everything, including T-cut (gently) and MIR Clear Mist Glass Cleaner, nothing would shift it. Then found this thread and tried 'Barkeepers Friend' as advised here. Cleared it straight away - fantastic stuff!

This problem seemed to start when I switched to Michelin Stealth blades from Bosch Aero. Had something of a similar problem once with the Bosch blades but it turned out to be the screenwash that was the problem.

Ford Focus II - Smeared Windscreen - GregS2

I've been experiencing the same problem with BRAND NEW windscreens (yes, more than one, and more than one supplier/installer as well) recently, and have spent far FAR too much time trying to convince windscreen installers there is a problem, and trying to find a fix. Now, I've just bought a brand new car, and it has the same problem as well, on all exterior glass surfaces except for the side mirrors. (I didn't buy the new car because of the windscreen problems - I'll leave out all the history as it is not important).

As a few others have said, jewellers rouge (cerium oxide) is working well. (thank God!). The stuff I am using comes as a powder, and it is mixed with water to form a paste. I use a thin piece of moistened cloth, and rub VERY firmly, with both hands pushing down on a small area of the cloth. (I sort of scrunch it up a bit to make it easier to hold on to).

I haven't tried "Barkeepers Friend" yet - from the sounds of it that would probably work too.

FWIW, I learnt about cerium oxide from a retired glass polishing professional that I used to fix the problem on one of the replacement windscreens. He said new glass comes with some kind of plastic coating on it. I'm not sure whether he''s correct about this, but with my brand new car, it certainly looked and felt like that could be the case. As I was rubbing on the cerium oxide paste, at first it was very smooth, but when clean, there was some resistance to the rubbing motion. It's as if the coating was very smooth plastic, but the clean glass tended to "grab" a bit.

Here's a video of a half done windscreen. (this is not from my new car - it's from another windscreen) that I took, looking into bright lights, and spraying water on the windscreen:
bit.ly/2lPm9BH
EDIT: The difference perhaps doesn't look quite as dramatic when I move the camera more to the centre - I probably ought to have tried to have the split right in the centre, so that one light was on the "before" half, and one light was on the "after" half.

This is quite a serious safety problem IMHO.

One other thing. One of the windscreen installers tried cerium oxide, but I don't think they used it effectively - I don't think they rubbed it in firmly enough. (I watched them do it). They just gently smeared it over the windscreen.

Edited by GregS2 on 27/02/2017 at 21:31

Ford Focus II - Smeared Windscreen - liammcl

could it be as simple as somthing lurking at the bottom of the washer bottle? , which recoats the windscreen in gunk after every spray..

Cheers
Liam

Ford Focus II - Smeared Windscreen - GregS2

Liam: in my case - absolutely not, and that's one of the excuses the windscreen guys tried on me. Once the problem has been removed, it STAYS removed - at least it has for me. If it were something in the wash bottle, it would come back.

Ford Focus II - Smeared Windscreen - dadbif
Ammonia, or, p*** in the washer bottle, ursine contains ammonia
Ford Focus II - Smeared Windscreen - John F

Interesting thread. But two things not mentioned so far (unless I've missed them). Firstly, if all the above fail, try wire wool 0000 - lots of USA U tube contributors seem to like it. Secondly, use rainwater, not tap water in the screenwash, especially those in hard water areas.

Ford Focus II - Smeared Windscreen - liammcl

sorry GregS2,
I meant the message for Willow.


I hit reply and it got tagged onto your post.
Cheers
Liam,

Edited by liammcl on 28/02/2017 at 17:47

Ford Focus II - Smeared Windscreen - Andrew-T

sorry GregS2, I meant the message for Willow.

--- but Willow's post was 7 years ago, Liam ..... :-(

Ford Focus II - Smeared Windscreen - liammcl

ah, I see !
not much gets past me, you know :D

Cheers
Liam

Edited by liammcl on 01/03/2017 at 04:04

Ford Focus II - Smeared Windscreen - GregS2

And...I've b*****ed my windscreen. (yes, on my brand new car) When I went for a drive, I noticed that I still hadn't got *all* the film off, on areas that I had done with the cerium oxide. To make my job easier, I decided to try a small and hard implement, to focus a lot of energy on to a small area. I did half of my windscreen using this "technique", and that half is now covered in very fine scratches, with a few deep ones as well. In no way do I blame the cerium oxide - I blame the ridiculous implement I used. I can't believe I did so much without checking my progress as I went. I should have tested it on a small area of the rear window first.

So don't get over confident like I did. The windscreen is not invincible.

I still maintain that using a thin cloth (I'm using a piece of thin T-shirt), just by hand, with the cerium oxide, does work well.

Ford Focus II - Smeared Windscreen - liammcl

b***** !

Very easily done....

Cheers
Liam

Ford Focus II - Smeared Windscreen - Cyd

Try my method here:

https://youtu.be/Ru0eyjGcI9c

Ford Focus II - Smeared Windscreen - liammcl

That is a great vid, Cyd !

You definitely put theth effort in there !

Cheers
Liam

Ford Focus II - Smeared Windscreen - Cyd

Thanks Liam, good of you to say.

Yes, it is a method that requires a lot of elbow grease, but well worth it IMO

 

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