Long Indiana winters mean many months of snowy and icy road conditions. We rely on salt to keep us from slipping and sliding on roads and sidewalks. However, salt can build up and damage many parts of your car, including steel, aluminum, rubber, plastic, vinyl, and even the carpet. Fortunately, there are actions you can take to prevent salt damage.
Removing road salt from your car and keeping it from building up will keep your car functioning well and looking great. Here are five tips to prevent road salt from damaging your car:
1. Clean your car mats and carpets.
As you dash through the snow, your boots collect salt from roads and sidewalks. When you jump in the car for warmth, the salt melts right into your mats, causing stains and damage.
To remove the salt from your carpets:
- Mix equal parts warm water and white vinegar to create a cleaning solution.
- Spray or rub the solution on the salty area.
- Scrub the area softly with a brush to bring the salt to the surface.
- Press the area with a dry towel to absorb the salt.
- Repeat the process, using a vacuum if a towel isn’t enough.
- Be persistent to remove all of the salt.
If you have trouble getting the mats clean or simply don’t have time to do it yourself, winter detailing can easily fix this and leave your carpets clean.
2. Wash your car regularly through the winter.
While a cold-weather car wash isn’t as appealing as a summer one, it’s actually more important to consistently wash your car in winter than any other time of year. It’s recommended that you wash your car every two weeks, but it’s best to wash it about every ten days when salt is on the road, especially if you haven’t waxed your vehicle.
When you wash your car in winter, it’s especially important to:
- Begin by thoroughly rinsing your car.
- Focus on the wheel wells and undercarriage of the car.
- Dry locks and door, window, and trunk edges to avoid freezing.
Not interested in doing car washes yourself during the colder months? An expert can provide regular, thorough cleanings to get road salt buildup off your car.
3. Clean your car’s undercarriage.
The most common place for salt to build up is the undercarriage of your car, leading to rust and corrosion. An abundance of small spaces and hard-to-reach spots make it difficult to completely clean this area.
A cleaning service will get the job done best. If you insist on DIY washing in the winter, we recommend buying a detachable head for your garden hose to reach the undercarriage.
4. Wax your car to prevent salt buildup.
Before winter weather takes a toll, prepare for the harsh road conditions by waxing your car. This can protect the body of your car from the rust and corrosion caused by the buildup of road salt.
It’s best to wax before the weather becomes snowy and icy, but it’s never too late to bring your car to an expert for a thorough cleaning and waxing to protect it for the rest of the season!
5. Install all-weather mats.
While there are plenty of methods and services to clean your car’s carpet, make it easy on yourself by eliminating the need for it altogether.
Installing all-weather rubber mats is a simple solution to keep salt, melting snow, and dirt out of the carpet. You’ll save time, money, and stress in the long run!
Don’t let the winter weather make you salty! Whether you’re currently dealing with salt buildup or hoping to prevent it, these tips can help you prevent road salt from damaging your car. Taking action to protect your vehicle from harsh conditions will keep it looking like new and just might add some extra sparkle to the season!
At Premier, our mission is to create happiness through professional detailing and our purpose is to exhibit a philosophy of servanthood! If you have any questions, feel free to contact us or visit our website. Don’t forget to check us out on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram as well!