Highest pollen levels in years could lead to vehicle, property damage

Rinse pollen off vehicles several times a week to prevent long-term paint damage

ROANOKE, Va. – As warmer temperatures hang around, millions of Americans are experiencing what's being called an allergy explosion. And it's not just our bodies that are suffering-- pollen on the hood of our cars can lead to long-term damage as well.

We've seen a spike not only in the number of people suffering from seasonal allergies this spring, but in how long that pollen is expected to hang around as well. Experts say climate change may be to blame.

A video that's quickly gone viral over the last week shows just how problematic the pollen has been this year. When a backhoe taps a tree in New Jersey, the yellow pollen explodes into the air.

While the video was taken to our north, this is an issue we're seeing nationwide including here at home where Richmond has been named the 16th worst city for people with allergies nationwide.

Researchers say the ragweed pollen season has increased by as many as 27 days since 1995, with warmer temperatures caused by climate change leading to longer growing seasons and a more intense release of pollen.

Extra pollen can not only cause issues with sneezing, coughing and itchy eyes, but can lead to permanent damage to our property as well.

Ken Hash, a local paint expert and franchisee with Colors on Parade, says all of that extra pollen sitting on the hoods or roof of our cars can lead to lasting damage.

"The paint is made to protect your car, so when you've got a foreign matter on there, it's going to prohibit the paint from doing that," says Hash. "Pollen is bad and bird mess, that's really bad. You want to get that off almost immediately."