How to Keep Rust Away from your Car

Rust is to metal as Lex Luthor is to Superman: an archenemy! Rust will eat away at every part of your car, and it can increase the severity of even minor body damage.

Have you noticed these signs?

  1. Bubbling beneath the vehicle’s paint job
  2. Paint flaking off around a scratch
  3. Dark, rusty particles falling from the underside of your car

If so, you may have a problem with rust!

What is the primary cause of rust? The oxygen in the air. Most vehicles are made with iron (an important element in steel), which has the opposite electrical charge of oxygen. When iron is exposed to oxygen, it loses electrons–a process known as oxidation, or rusting.

The car’s paint job is more than just a way to make it look pretty; it also protects the iron of the body from the oxygen in the air. If the paint is damaged, chipped, or scratched, it can expose the iron to the oxygen in the air. Add water (from rain and snow), dirt, and debris, and the rust process speeds up!

So what can you do to keep rust away from your car?

Repair minor damage — If your paint gets scratched, take your car to your auto collision repair center in Santa Clarita and get the damage repaired. The last thing you want is for your car’s body to rust as a result of minor damage.

Clean the vehicle — Dust and dirt can cover minor damage, preventing you from seeing the problem that needs to be fixed. Clean your car regularly, and it will be much easier to spot damage and rust.

Be wary of salt — If you live in a city with a lot of snow, your vehicle will come in contact with a lot of salt (used to prevent ice from forming). The same happens when you live beside the ocean (the salt from the sea water). Salt will speed up the rust process, so make sure to have your vehicle cleaned well if it comes in contact with salt.

Clean and protect your vehicle’s undercarriage — Water, dust, and dirt can easily be kicked up into the underside of your vehicle, speeding up any rusting already taking place. It’s important to clean your undercarriage, and apply a protective layer to prevent rust from being a problem.

Wax the car regularly — Wax will protect your car from rusting, even if the vehicle is scratched or dented. The layer of wax will prevent oxygen from coming in contact with any exposed steel or iron. Wax your vehicle at least once every month or two.

Keep a wary eye — Inspect your car for signs of rust once a month. Take the car to be washed and, once it’s clean, give it a thorough once-over to ensure that there is no damage.

Follow these tips, and you can keep rust well away from your vehicle!