Here's how to take the 'trick' out of Halloween pranks

PORTLAND, Ore. - Eggs in the morning make a good breakfast, but a lousy hood ornament.

On Halloween you want the treat, but sometimes you get the trick. And some of those supposedly "harmless pranks" can actually do damage to your car.

Yokes, whites and shells from those eggs splattered on your car can give it a post-Halloween costume of chips, cracks and scars.

"And every body shop has seen this, where an egg has hit a car - It'll leave a bulls-eye scratch pattern exactly where the shell hit," said Luke Regier, an estimator for Mackin's Auto Body in Northeast Portland.

He said the egg's insides corrode your paint, as well, if they stay on for a while. A paint repair after a bad egging can cost more than a thousand dollars. And that's just scratching the surface.

"A lot of these cars have - the center of the panel tends to be softer than the outer edges of panel. If it hits in the right spot, it can certainly leave a dent," Regier said.

Other enemies include shaving cream. Some of them have chemicals that can leave your paint looking faded or ghostly.

And silly string sprayed on your car can harden quickly, becoming less silly and more serious.

"The biggest thing is time," said Regier. "Time is the enemy with any of that stuff if it sits on your surface long enough."

Here's what you can do:

  • Wash and wax your car before Halloween to give it a protective coat.
  • Check your car as soon as you wake up so stuff has less time to dry and corrode.
  • Don't rub or pick away at the hard stuff, spreading pieces and scratching more. Instead, grab the hose and soak the goo, getting as much off as you can with the water itself.

"A lot of people, when the egg's dried on or anything that's been dried on to the car, will tend to over-scrub the surface or use an abrasive to try and get it off and potentially do damage to the paint," Regier said.

  • Try soap and water and a soft cloth or microfiber towel. Lather. Rinse. Repeat, if necessary, to treat the trick and get your car back to the way it was the day before Halloween.