Scratches, scuffs, dents and dings are more than just unsightly. They can significantly reduce your car’s resale value and lead to some major bodywork problems.
Your vehicle’s paint isn’t just there for decoration. It’s also a protective coating designed to stop the metal bodywork beneath from corroding. A serious scratch that exposes the metal beneath the paint can lead to rust and can be very expensive to fix.
So, protecting your car’s paint not only keeps it looking good, but it will save you significant money in terms of maintenance and repair costs.
While it’s impossible to protect your car from all scratches and damage, you can significantly reduce the risk by following this simple advice.
Be Careful where you Park
Parking lots and car parks are responsible for a majority of vehicle scratches and minor body damage. While you can never eliminate the risk of damage entirely, you can reduce the risk by choosing your parking spaces carefully. Try to park in the emptier areas of the car park. That may mean you have a bit further to walk, but it’s worth it to reduce the risk of damage.
You may also want to avoid areas near trolley bays or in tight, tricky parking spaces, as these are also high-risk areas.
If possible, you want to avoid parking your car out on the street when you’re at home. If you have a garage or carport, then use it. This will dramatically reduce the risk of accidents and vandalism. Parking your car undercover has the added benefit of protecting your paint from the elements. Over time, the sun’s rays can cause your paintwork to fade and bird droppings can lead to corrosion damage.
Parking undercover also protects your car from hail and other extreme weather related risks.
You should also avoid parking under trees where possible. Bird droppings, falling branches and tree sap can do significant damage to your paintwork.
Remove Deposits Immediately
Any tough deposits on your paintwork — like tree sap, bird droppings or road tar — should be removed immediately. If you leave them to set, they can solidify and be much harder to remove. They may need to be scrubbed and this can end up scratching the paint. If you leave them for long enough, they may even stain the paint permanently.
Wash and Polish Regularly
Regularly washing your car will remove any contaminants from the paint work and help to keep your car looking new for longer. Be sure to use a mild detergent, as heavy duty detergents can damage the top coat on your paintwork.
You should always dry your car after washing; don’t leave it to air dry. Use a good quality chamois, lay it flat across the surface and pull it across the panel to absorb maximum moisture.
Car polishing is also important for protecting your paintwork. Using a professional car polish or wax will also help to protect the paintwork. Use a premium brand and always follow the instructions for best results. Polishing your car once every six months should be enough to protect the paint work.
Consider a Ceramic Coating
A ceramic coating is the ultimate in vehicle paint protection. It creates a permanently bonded physical layer between your topcoat and the elements, protecting the paint from the elements and from minor physical damage. A ceramic coating can be expensive and tricky to apply, so you may want to leave this job to a professional car detailer.
Taking care of your vehicle’s paintwork will help to keep that showroom shine for as long as possible and save you money on repairs and maintenance down the road.