Preparing for a Dream, Road Trip

4 Steps You Can Take To Protect Your Car From Salt This Winter

If you happen to live in an area of the country that gets a lot of snow, that means that not only does your vehicle has to battle against the snow and the ice on the ground, it has to battle against the salt and chemicals that are used to clear the road. Here are four steps you can take to protect your vehicle from salt this winter. 

#1 Wax Your Vehicle

Before winter gets into full swing, you should wax your vehicle yourself or take it in and have it waxed. Apply a nice, thick paste wax before winter hits. This type of wax will provide your paint job with a nice, thick layer of protection against all the grime that will hit your vehicle and all the salt that will try to eat through to the paint job. Make sure that you apply wax to the wheel wells where snow and salt from the roads is most likely to accumulate. 

Every few weeks throughout the winter, you can touch up on your wax job with some spray-wax. Spray-wax is much quicker to apply and works great as a touch-up to a paste-based detailed waxing job.

#2 Treat The Undercarriage

Second, to protect the undercarriage of your vehicle. Take it to your mechanic and have them apply an anti-corrosive coat to the underside of your vehicle. Make sure that you have a oil drip-pan in place to protect the front undercarriage area. 

Take your vehicle through the car wash and have them wash off the undercarriage every week or so. 

#3 Wash Your Vehicle

It can be tempting to skip washing your vehicle during the winter months because it is so cold outside. However, it is even more vital to wash your vehicle during the winter due to the damage that salt can have on your vehicle.

If you wash your vehicle yourself, start off by spraying the salt off your car by rising your car off top to bottom. Then, scrub your car using car washing soap; avoid dish soap which can take off the wax you applied to your vehicle. Pay special attention to the wheels, wheel wells and bottom area of your vehicle where snow and salt will accumulate.  If any salt is stuck to your car, use some baking soda to get it off. Be sure to dry your vehicle and apply touch-up spray wax as necessary.

#4 Clean The Carpet

Finally, don't overlook the carpet inside your car. Salt can destroy the carpet and inside structure of your vehicle as well. Vacuum your carpet on a regular basis. Take the floor mats out every few weeks throughout the winter and apply a solution of warm water and vinegar to the floor mats and then scrub them to remove the salt and bring it the surface. Spot dry your floor mats with a towel to transfer the salt off of them, and vacuum again once they are dry. 

If you don't address salt stains inside of your car right away, you may have to replace your floor mats at the end of the winter.

Protect your vehicle from salt this winter by following the four steps outlined above, especially if you live in an area that gets a lot of snow during the winter months. For more information or assistance, contact a local auto body repair shop.