Car Advice

How to keep spiders out of your car

Ever had a spider crawl across your dashboard, or out from behind your wing mirror? Here’s how to keep spiders out of your car.

SPIDERS IN CARS. They seem to be clogging up my Facebook newsfeed at the moment, and there’s a recurring question… how do you keep spiders out of cars? The short answer is, you can’t, but you can do things to reduce the chance of them making their home in your car.

And, there’s good reason for wanting to keep them out of your car beyond frightening you when you least expect it. Indeed, a huntsman falling onto a driver has been blamed for causing a multi-car collision in February the Blue Mountains. Apparently, the spider fell from the roof of the car and onto the driver’s head, causing him to swerve into oncoming traffic. Luckily, no-one was hurt.

More than the potential for causing a collision, spiders setting up camp inside your car can cause running-related problems, although that’s rarer here than it is in other countries. That didn’t stop Ford boffins from developing a special spider screen that sits inside fuel lines and prevents spiders from climbing inside and building a web. It was specifically intended to prevent the Yellow Sac spider from nesting inside fuel lines, as it’s cocoon-like web can easily cause blockages and potentially damage the engine. This filter was rolled out with the Focus RS.

In Australia, the issue isn’t so much with spiders building dense webs in cars, more that they crawl into out of the way places, build webs, have children who then go on to build other webs. And so on. That’s when you’re more likely to get a sudden appearance form an eight-legged free-loader. So, what can you do to keep spiders out of your car?

  1. Keep it clean: By keeping your car nice and clean, inside and out, then you’re reducing the opportunity for spiders to find a home and remain undisturbed for years to come.
  2. Look at where you’re parking your car: Parking your car under trees is a sure-fire way to see spiders make a home for themselves in the nooks and crannies of your car. Especially, if it’s raining. Far better hiding inside a car then under a leaf in a tree.
  3. A regular squirt with insect repellant: There are some very effective surface sprays that you can buy and squirt up under wheel arches, at the base of windscreens or inside wing mirrors. Just remember to wipe down the surface once you’ve sprayed it to ensure you don’t have any surface spray on the actual paintwork. Once you’ve done that, the Interweb suggests a cotton tip dipped in peppermint oil and wiped around the edge between the mirror and the housing will keep the spiders from coming back.
    Another tip, according to the Interweb is lemon. Peel the skin from a lemon and rub the pitchy part of the rind onto your air-con vents inside the car, apparently, spiders hate lemon. Who knew?!
  4. Keep leaf litter from building up: Check areas like the base of the windscreen (or at the base of the rear windscreen in a sedan, or the corners of the bumper on a hatchback) for leaf little build up, as this can provide a great little home for spiders to crawl into and hide. Beyond just being a great place for spiders to live, the rotting leaves if not regularly cleaned out can cause rust and rot in places you don’t want rust or rot to occur.

Question: Does anyone else have any good anti-spider tips, or creepy spider stories while driving? Share them in the comments, or become a contributor to Practical Motoring.

  • Spiderman

    I drive 400ks still spiderwebs on my rims at the end! Never seem the actual spider just the web 🐜🐜 time for a pet praying mantis 😉

  • Guest

    Also if you’re ok with squishing them, inspect the car at night when spider activity is higher.

  • PG

    Every year I get the same person that sprays my house for spiders / insects to do my car as well. They spray a mist around the mirrors, around the car and inside. A natural product and I never get any spider webs or spiders. They do it for free when they do your house, safe for cars, paint work etc.

  • 1250

    Spiders ???? What about bloody snakes ??? Just a thought !! LOL !!

    • That’s a great idea… Although I’m not so sure keeping snakes out of the car is as easy as keeping spiders out. Got any tips? – Isaac

      • 1250

        Yep don’t park on the grass in Australia !! LOL ?🤔🤔

  • 1250

    Yep don’t park on the grass in Australia ??? LOL

  • JaiNormosone

    I’ve had the occasional spider or gecko on the outside of the car and I usually stop to let them off.
    The wildest event was about 6 months ago when I was riding somewhere on the motorbike (open face helmet with visor up) and a male huntsman ran up my face and over the top of my helmet and I think it nestled down on the back of my neck for a bit.
    It gave me a fright but I knew it was a male huntsman (non-poisonous) which is easy to tell by the shape of the body as it went across in front of my left eye. Mates say that I knew it was a male because I could see his balls.
    Being on a motorcycle in traffic – the opportunity to do the “I’m on fire” dance was not an option :/

Isaac Bober

Isaac Bober

Isaac Bober was born in the shadow of Mount Panorama in Bathurst and, so, it was inevitable he’d fall into work as a motoring writer. He began his motoring career in 2000 reviewing commercial vehicles, before becoming editor of Caravan & Motorhome magazine. He then moved to MOTOR Magazine before going freelance and contributing to Overlander 4WD, 4×4 Australia, TopGear Australia, Men’s Health, Men’s Fitness, The Australian, CARSguide, and many more.