There are few surer ways to destroy your car (and its value) than letting it rust. Sure you could ignore scheduled maintenance or run it head on into a wall, but once rust has gotten hold of your car, it’s like a disease. If left untreated, rust will spread and could pose a safety danger, besides being an eyesore.
The best way to beat rust is to stay ahead of it. Here are a few tips to stave off rusting and keep your vehicle looking happy and healthy.
- Wash your vehicle twice a month. Your vehicle’s paint job is its metal components’ main line of defense against rusting. The elements are working against it, though. Debris and deposits from rainwater will eventually eat through your paint, allowing the metal underneath to rust. By washing your vehicle, you’re cleansing your car of these abrasive materials. If it’s winter, washing your vehicle once a week may not be as excessive as it sounds. Salt from the roads will work quickly to eat through your paint and start the rusting process.
- Follow up with a wax. Waxing and detailing may have always seemed like a superfluous chore reserved for only the most devout of car enthusiasts, but it’s actually vital to protecting your vehicle’s surfaces. By giving your vehicle a wax, you’re adding an extra layer of protection that safeguards your paint job against rain, debris, and sunlight.
- Be careful of spills on the inside of your vehicle. Soda and coffee contain acid that can slowly eat through paint if ignored. Thus, spills that are ignored can do damage to your chassis. Consider getting some quality floor mats to protect against this.
- Don’t neglect the hard to get areas. Some areas that are the most susceptible are the most often ignored. Automatic car washes might not do a good job getting to these spots, so be sure that you give them some attention with the garden hose or a wet rag when you get home. These include your wheel wells, your vehicle’s underside, as well as the sills in your doors, trunk, and hood.
December 4, 2012 by Jamie Rettig