Most new vehicles have a rust warranty that lasts about six years, unfortunately when the warranty runs out is typically about the time that rust becomes a valid concern. You might repair rusted areas by covering or painting spots previously scratched, but this cannot usually return the metal that was lost during corrosion. The best solution is to prevent rust from forming.
As soon as rust starts forming on a car, it is almost impossible to make it stop. Rust forms when oxygen and water invade bare metal. It becomes more pronounced if activators like salt are present, which make Northern Michigan vehicles like those in the Traverse City region especially vulnerable.
You should look for rust inside the doors, lower fenders, and behind the wheel because these places hardly receive any waxing or washing and ice tends to build up in there as well. Other susceptible areas are the spring shackles and damper mountings.
The best way to prevent rust on your car is by properly maintaining it. Here are some simple rust prevention tips that will delay or eliminate the onset of rust and save you money on auto repair.
Auto Maintenance Tips for Preventing Rust
– Clean your car every two weeks including the undercarriage and wheel wells periodically. Many people forget about under the car, but this is especially important for Traverse City residents, since they are driving on salted roads all winter. You should make an effort to wash your vehicle more frequently if you are driving on salted roads or near the ocean.
– Wax your car at least three times a year.
– Don’t allow liquid spills or melted snow to sit on your car floor for long periods of time as this could start rust from the inside of the vehicle. If you live in a snowy area like Traverse City invest in floor mats to create an additional layer of protection.
– If you want an added layer of protection you can cover the especially susceptible areas of your vehicle with a rust preventing spray. You can also use undercoating as an auto maintenance method for preventing rust on newer cars. The rubberized coating seals the bottom of the car and prevents it from corrosion. However, undercoating does not work well for many older cars in which rust has already formed since it forms bubbles and comes off.
– If you are going to put your vehicle into storage for the season wash and wax it just before putting it away.
– Don’t tailgate other vehicles on the road, not only is it dangerous but it increases your chances of getting chips from rocks kicked up by the other vehicle.
– Fix minor problems quickly.
– Taking your car in for minor auto repairs can be much cheaper than waiting. If your car is dented, scratched, or chipped, make sure you perform those minor body auto repairs before rust sets in.
– At TC Public Service Garage, when doing hoist work for brake pads, break lines, tires, ball joint, wheel bearings, all front-end work etc., we typically inspect the undercarriage for rust and other safety issues at no cost. We will share our concerns if there are any and show you the areas so you can see them for yourself.