Why cars have been left covered in a yellow dust - and how to get rid of it

Motorists were left confused over the weekend after waking up to find their cars covered in yellow dust.

By The Newsroom
Tuesday, 24th April 2018, 12:52 pm
Updated Tuesday, 24th April 2018, 12:56 pm
Yellow dust on cars - Credit; Paige Parkin
Yellow dust on cars - Credit; Paige Parkin

Paige Parkin, of Sheffield, uploaded two pictures of her car covered in the mysterious dust before asking if other people had the same problem.

Many other motorists replied to Paige with the same issue; sharing pictures of their cars from a number of areas.

But, what has caused this strange phenomenon?

Yellow dust on cars - Credit; Paige Parkin

Sky News reported over the weekend reported that a 'pollen bomb' hit Britain over the weekend which will only begin to decline this week.

Warm winds have been pulled in from the equator were being displaced by Atlantic depressions, causing a temperature change.

As a result, a 'pollen bomb' was left behind, caused by simultaneous releases from millions of birch, plane and oak trees.

Guy Barter, chief horticulturist at the Royal Horticultural Society, said: "Tree species normally release pollen at different times in spring, starting with willow and alder in February and March.

Yellow dust on cars - Credit; Paige Parkin

"These are wind-pollinated species, which make vast amounts of pollen - one birch or hazel catkin makes 5m grains, and a tree has thousands of catkins. We are swimming in clouds of pollen - we just can't see it."

The greenish-yellow dust released from blooming trees will settle everywhere along house tops, the ground and everything in between.

What to do

According to experts, the pollen will stay on your car until the wind or rain removes it but motorists have been warned that this could damage the paint.

Sadly there is no way to escape this problem.

It doesn't matter how proactive you are at protecting your vehicle, it will fall victim to pollination and the pollen is everywhere.

Even if you wash your car to get rid of the pollen, it can take less than a few minutes for the car to get a new coating of yellow dust.

Experts have urged motorists to wash their car twice a week in the spring and possibly get a protective wax coating at a car wash.

Between these car washes, simply rinse off your car without drying it.

Take it for a quick spin or let it dry in the sun.

What not to do

Motorists have been told not to use dry rags, dusters, towels, blowers and hand wiping to get rid of the pollen.

This could scratch the car's surface if wiped across the paint.

Don't park under trees as saps, buds, pollen and new plant growth will fall onto the paint.

Once the new blooms are in and the dust has settled it is then safer to park under the trees.