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Pancake Caper


This is an issue that has been plaguing me since 4th of July weekend, 2010. While on a road trip to Murphys, CA (population 2,400), I left my car parked in the center of this safe, small town with the top down while we carpooled to a fireworks show at a vineyard. On the way back, after being regaled with stories about a zealous town cop who loves issuing DUIs, I decided not to get in my car, turn it on and put the top up for fear of being cited. On my morning run, however, I discovered that this careful decision led to some curious vandalism. Overnight, someone hurled 3 balloons filled with maple flavored syrup (I can?t imagine they?d use the real thing) INTO my car. It was everywhere; on the seats, the dash, in the creases around radio and climate control buttons, in my speakers, a pool of it gathered underneath my emergency brake and another atop the collapsed hood inside the trunk.

There were no auto detail shops open on the 4th of July in this small town, or in the next town over, or the town after that. So, we purchased some leather wipes and began sudsing up the car with dish soap and hot water. Needless to say, we had to ride home atop towels, lest we stuck to the seats, but we got the pools of syrup cleaned up. Unfortunately, the car was a sticky mess, overall. I got it detailed the following day, but still have issues with syrup seeping down from the roof on a hot day, pouring out of the speakers, and interfering with the buttons on my radio.

How can I clean this up once and for all? And where do I go for such a service? And is it going to cost me a small fortune? When will I be able to eat waffles again???

You’ll probably never get it all out without some major disassembly. I learned a long time ago not to leave a car unattended with the top down, if for no other reason than it’s too easy a target for birds.

It sounds like you didn’t contact your insurance company to have this covered (although they might be able to deny the claim considering that it’s fairly negligent to leave the car open like this). It’s probably too late to do that now, but it wouldn’t hurt to ask, I guess. I’d imagine the full cleanup job will cost more than your deductible.

You left your convertible top down overnight, on the Fourth of July, and you got away with just having the inside of your car covered in maple syrup?

Consider yourself lucky.

You are going to need to drop your car off at a detailing shop, inform them of every location that was syrupped (is that even a real adjective?), and pay them thousands of dollars to fix the issue.

Its too late at this point to involve your insurance company, as it has been 9 months since the incident. Why you didn’t get them involved from the get go, I’ll never understand.

As for your love of waffles, just use fruit toppings on the waffles instead of syrup.
You will regain your love soon enough.