Tips For Protecting Vehicle Paint During Winter
Maybe you’ve had a car ownership experience that went something like this – You get yourself a car that looks perfect for quite a long time. It might not even be a new car – it could be a car that was taken care of by its previous owner. You have it for a few months, and then you notice a paint chip. Not long afterward, a paint chip becomes a few paint chips. You know that if you don’t take care of the issue soon, these paint chips are likely to become something much more dramatic and expensive to fix.
Repairing paint chips and repainting your car is one of the most expensive things you can do to your vehicle, and it can happen for several reasons. Most people do whatever they can to avoid a full-body repaint at all costs. It can be excruciating to prevent these things in the winter, when the salt, higher humidity levels, and other winter weather conditions wreak havoc on the relatively fragile paint of your car. But every car owner who lives in a place with snow and harsh winter weather should make their best efforts to protect their car’s paint. Kansas City car owners should pay particular attention.
Here Are Some Ways You Can Avoid The Paint Chip & Rust Blues During The Wintertime.
Park Your Car Inside as Often as You Can
Parking is a tough issue to argue. Not everyone has access to indoor parking, and even if there is a garage near your house, you often end up paying a fortune to use it. However, if you can park your car under a shelter, this is the best thing you can do to extend the life of your paint. It’s likely that during the summer, your car received some scratches and damage to the paint, even if it is invisible to the eye. This is normal and happens to everyone’s car. During the winter, when snow piles up on a vehicle, it can cause rust and other paint issues.
If you have neighbors with garages, offer to rent their garage space for the winter – this can provide you with relatively affordable garage space when you need it. When you can’t park your car inside, invest in a quality car cover. This will protect it from snow, sleet, and passing plows spraying debris. It also makes it easier to clean off after a snowstorm.
Wash Your Car More Often Than Usual
If you’re the type of person who waits for the rain to wash off the bird poo, bugs, and mud – you might want to rethink your car washing strategy. Leaving muck on your car can deteriorate the paint, and while the bugs of summer might be gone, you have sand and salt from snow plows to worry about.
Take your car to the wash at least once per month during the winter, especially after a big storm or when the roads are especially gross. This will help get rid of the dirt, salt, sand, and mud that can wear down and scratch your car’s paint.
Wax Your Car When You Can
Less-knowledgeable car owners sometimes avoid waxing their cars in the winter (or at all). Mistakenly, they think that wax is for looks alone, and it’s hard to keep your vehicle looking shiny in the winter when driving. In the city, the sludge created by frequent traffic and salt splashes up on the car, making it hard even to determine the color of a car sometimes. On back roads, mud builds up after periods of warmer weather and finds its way all over the interior and exterior of the vehicle. This can happen just after getting a car cleaned and waxed, which can make getting a wax even less appealing.
But even if you’re diligent about washing your car and removing the salt and dirt buildup on it, it is still susceptible to the elements. Car wax not only extends the life of your wash job and gives it a shinier appearance, but it also puts a protective barrier between your car and all the harmful impacts of winter weather.
Use a Soft-Bristle Car Brush to Remove Snow
Maybe your grandma used an old broom to brush off the tops and sides of her car, citing its soft bristles and practical quality. You, on the other hand, are fine using the cheap, plastic scraper brush you got at the gas station. When it comes to taking long-term care of your car, however, it is best to invest in something that shows a little love to your vehicle.
Just as your dentist would recommend you use a soft bristle brush to keep your gums healthy, auto mechanics recommend using a soft-bristle brush for your car. Using too hard a brush can cause tiny nicks and scratches on a car’s paint. Over time, this can invite moisture into the scratches and create rust.
Inspect Your Car Often and Do Touch-Ups When Needed
Every car owner should get into the habit of inspecting their car regularly. Even if you’re not mechanically-minded, a simple exterior check can tell you if your vehicle needs to be taken into a mechanic.
Pay special attention to the paint around the wheel wells, washing it off if necessary. If you notice any dings or scratches, take note of whether it broke through the paint. If it did, take your car to an auto detailer as soon as you can. It might seem like a gratuitous expense, but AAA recently exposed the results of a winter repair survey – and an estimated $3.4 billion is spent each year on rust damage. Being proactive and nipping issues in the bud is the best way to prevent paying a pretty penny.
Have the winter paint blues and need an expert to assess the damage? Zeck Ford in Leavenworth has an experienced team of mechanics and auto body specialists who can help you out. For more information or to schedule an appointment with our service center, click here.