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Try This Homemade RV Black Streak Remover

homemade RV black streak remover in a clear bottle

Try This Homemade RV Black Streak Remover

Black streaks are stubborn and hard to get rid of. If you don’t keep a close eye on them, they can set in and become almost impossible to remove! That is why it’s a good idea to get an effective cleaning product or DIY solution. There are several products and mixtures that can be used as a homemade RV black streak remover.

RVers have used things like white vinegar, furniture polish, WD-40, and various mixtures of soap, water, and bleach to try to get rid of the black streaks on their RVs. Some of these solutions are more effective than others, and it often depends on how long the streaks have been there. If they have really sunk into the surface, you may need to use something a little stronger.

Below we’ll cover some homemade RV black streak removers and provide some tips on how to apply them for the best results.

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Homemade RV Black Streak Removers

Many people have tried to get rid of the black streaks on their RVs, but they are usually most effective if the RV has been cleaned as much as possible first. Before trying any of the homemade RV black streak remover ideas below, give your RV a thorough washing and drying.

Black streak removers always work better when they are applied directly to the stain. If they have to work through the outer dirt and grease first, they will be less effective.

Method 1: Hot water, powdered dishwashing detergent, and bleach

If you want a nice cleaning solution for your RV exterior, you can’t go wrong with a mix of hot water, dishwashing detergent, and bleach.

You may want to start with a small bucket to begin with because this will help you test the effectiveness of this mix on your black streaks. Some might require a more powerful mixture, while others can be cleaned away with this homemade RV black streak remover.

To begin, fill a 1-gallon bucket with hot water. Make sure it is still cool enough to handle because you don’t want to burn yourself while you clean. Then add about 1 cup of powdered dishwashing detergent (you can also use borax or baking soda). Finally, add about 5 tablespoons of bleach to the mixture. This blend is effective because it breaks down the grease, removes dirt, and sanitizes/bleaches the affected area.

Use a sponge or rag to rub this mixture onto the exterior of the RV. Start by cleaning a small area so you can test the effect. Let the mixture sit on the surface for a few minutes before rinsing it off and repeating. If it works for the black streaks on your vehicle, you can make a larger batch and move on to cleaning the rest!

Method 2: White vinegar

White vinegar is another common household essential that is used for cooking and cleaning. It can also be a good weapon against stubborn black streaks on your RV. If the black streaks have been around for awhile and have oxidized, vinegar can help them fade or disappear. This makes it a good homemade RV black streak remover.

Use 3/4 cups of vinegar for every 1 gallon of water. You can either use an RV pressure washer, or apply it with rags or sponges. Just make sure that you rinse it off after it has had a chance to sit for a few minutes! Vinegar can damage or fade siding if it’s left on the surface for too long. Throughly rinse and dry the RV once you’re satisfied with the results.

Method 3: WD-40

WD-40 is a powerful degreaser and a great all-purpose product. It may be surprising to learn that it can also serve as a homemade RV black streak remover! It may not be homemade per se, but it is a product that many people will already have in their homes or garages.

Once your RV has been washed and prepped for black streak removal, try applying a layer of WD-40 to the black streaks. Let it sit for a few minutes, then wash it off with soap and water. This method has worked for several RVers and it’s a good option to keep in mind.

If you’d like to buy WD40, check out this 12-pack option on Amazon. It’s a good idea to have a lot of WD-40 if you want to use it to remove black streaks from a large RV.

Store-Bought Black Streak Removers

If you need something a little stronger, you can also try out a store-bought black streak remover. These tend to be a bit harsher, but more effective. Some of the best options include:

Preventing Black Streaks

Black streaks can usually be removed as long as you are vigilant and have a regular care routine for your RV. However, it’s best if you can prevent them from forming in the first place! These streaks are usually a result of water running down a dirty RV roof and carrying dirt and debris with it. As it dries, it bakes into the surface of the vehicle, forming stubborn stains.

You can prevent black streaks from forming by regularly cleaning your RV and keeping it covered when it’s not in use. Make sure you clean off the roof every time you wash the vehicle because this is where the problem usually starts.

Regularly waxing your RV can also give it extra protection. It provides an outer layer for the rain and debris to hit first. If your RV is clean and protected by wax, black streaks can’t stick as firmly to the sides.

Finally, use a protective outer cover on your RV every time you store it or leave it outside for extended periods of time. A cover will prevent the majority of dust, rain, and other debris from coming into contact with the vehicle. Keeping an RV in a garage or carport will also prevent it from developing black streaks.

Luckily there is a homemade RV black streak remover, as well as various store-bought options. But it’s best if you never have to deal with this issue in the first place!


Make sure you keep track of all your RV maintenance and repairs with an online tool such as RV LIFE Maintenance from RV LIFE. Not only can you keep all of your documents in one place, but you’ll also receive timely reminders when maintenance is due to help you avoid costly repairs and potentially serious accidents.

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