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?
- 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.
- 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.
- 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?!
- 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.