Home > Ask Gary > How can I get my vehicle’s finish looking good again after a winter of snow, sand and salt?

How can I get my vehicle’s finish looking good again after a winter of snow, sand and salt?

ToyotaWashA salt and sand mixture is frequently spread over roads before or after a snow or ice storm. Salt lowers water’s freezing point, causing any ice already formed to melt even though the air temperature remains well below freezing. The sand helps keep the salt in place, while it helps with traction on wet and slushy roads.

While road salting helps people travel safely, it has a few drawbacks. Salt is a corrosive material. Without proper maintenance, it can rust your vehicle. It can cause major body and undercarriage damage to your vehicle unless you take extra care and precaution.

These tips can help you prevent rust damage:

  • Take your vehicle to the car wash as often as possible. Many car washes in the “snow belt” offer steam cleaning and undercarriage cleaning as well as traditional car washing. Jaffarian Auto Spa is a great place for a professional wash and to accomplish all that is listed here for one low price. To make an appointment, call (888) 234-2854 or fill out a form online by clicking on the Jaffarian Auto Spa link.
  • Have your car re-waxed and sealed when you have it washed.
  • Carefully dry the edges of the doors inside and out, including the undersides of door handles, all hinges, plus the hood and trunk edges. This helps keep them from freezing shut. (But let’s hope the cold is nearly over!)
  • Use a good quality spray protectant on all exterior rubber or vinyl surfaces. It may be best to spray it on an applicator instead of spraying the product directly onto the surface. This will avoid any overspray onto the paint.
  • After a winter washing, apply an additional coat of wax to all exposed metal, using a hand-held hairdryer to warm the metal surface a bit before applying the wax. Warm your buffing rags to help the wax better adhere to the cold metal.
  • In washing salt off in cold temperatures, do so during the day so the vehicle has time to dry. You don’t want the water or soap to freeze on your finish after temperatures fall. The outside temperature should be 40°F or higher. To avoid having the locks freeze, open and close the doors after a wash.

For the chance to win a free Super Wash package for your vehicle at Jaffarian Auto Spa valued at $39.95, like us on Facebook!

Our Super Wash includes many of the above recommended services and more: exterior wash, interior vacuum and windows cleaned, door jambs, wheels and tires cleaned and a spray wax to complete this spa treatment. It is time to treat your car to the spa!

Hopefully this will be the last week of winter temperatures or snow! Spring weather really is just around the corner!

Drive safely,

Ask Gary Jaffarian

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