Automobile Rust Prevention Methods for Frugal Doctors

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Getting the Most Beauty and Utility from your Car

By Dr. David Edward Marcinko MBA [Publisher]

via Nalley Lexus Georgia

Dr. MarcinkoCar manufacturers have invested heavily in the use of new and improved materials to help reduce the risk of damage to your car from rust. Where decades ago rust was a very common problem, modern cars are rather more resilient.

But, if you drive an older depreciated car like we recommend on this ME-P; or a vintage vehicle like my classic 2000 Jaguar XJ-V8-LWB touring sedan; or if you just want to keep your new car in great condition for as long as possible, then you should never ignore the threat of rust.

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The good news is that there are plenty of things [wash, clay-bar and wax] that you can do to prevent rust on your car; and care products abound. I use Meguir’s car care products on my favorite cat.

Here are five of them:

1. Protect your undercarriage

Your car’s undercarriage is very vulnerable to damage, and there are a number of critical mechanical components to protect. As the undercarriage is not something most drivers ever really look at, it is easy to neglect it. This could be a costly mistake. Invest in an undercarriage sealant to help protect mechanical parts from damage.

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There are a number of products that you can apply yourself, but working on the undercarriage is potentially dangerous if you are not properly equipped, so you may want to ask your mechanic or service department for help.

My Jaguar touring sedan 2000 XJ-V8-L

2. Inspect your paint work regularly

Rust is a problem that gets progressively worse and the longer you leave a rust problem, the harder and more expensive it will be to fix. Learn about the parts of your car that are the most vulnerable. Paint work is constantly exposed to the elements, and the early signs of rust appear as bumps and lumps under the paint work. Treat these areas promptly.

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There are a variety of ways to do this. Removing the affected metal is one possibility. Rust convertors halt the rusting process, but may not always be effective.

3. Use a rust preventative

There are a variety of rust preventative products available to consumers, many of which can easily be applied at home. A rust preventative can, for example, be sprayed onto or into a part of the car that is otherwise very difficult to access. This will help slow down the formation of any rust, and will also halt the spread of existing rust. Always follow the manufacturer’s instructions closely when using these products.

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4. Apply wax and sealant to your paint work

Look after your paint work to ensure that it stays in great condition. This is not just about cleaning and polishing the paint work. Over time, your paint work will wear and become more susceptible to rust if you are unable to protect the finish. A wax layer, with sealant, adds an additional physical barrier between the paint work and the elements. This prevents damage to the bodywork, which might otherwise expose the metal underneath the paint and allow rust to form. You can apply wax and sealant at home.

My Jaguar's engine after a steam

5. Keep your car clean

The simplest thing you can do to protect your car from rust is keep it clean. Deposits of mud, salt, and other dirt can all corrode your paint work surprisingly quickly. Regular car washing reduces the amount of time it takes to get the vehicle clean on an ongoing basis.

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Do not forget the undercarriage and other hard-to-reach places too, but do not use a jet spray underneath the car as this could damage vital parts. Again, it may be a good idea to ask your mechanic or service department to help if you are unsure.

And, don’t forget to steam clean that engine when needed, too!



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5 Responses

  1. Dr. Marcinko

    Great post! I am a jaguar enthusiast.

    For rust you should also check around the lower corners of both front and rear screens. Few other places would be around the lower trailing arms supports, the under rear valance and the lower rear part of front fenders. If these don’t line up perfectly with the rest of the body and instead stand proud, there is rust forming behind them forcing them out of alignment.

    Remember, mechanical work is so much cheaper to do than either body or interior work.



  2. Dr. Marcinko

    A tribute video to the Jaguar XJ (X300).

    A legendary luxury automobile.



  3. Get your car detailed, too

    Consider an annual trip to a professional auto detailer, who can buff up the paint, clean carpeting and upholstery and even remove dust and grime from dash knobs and vents before they calcify.

    If you’d rather do it yourself, lots of advice is available online.
    Just do it … for Father’s Day.



  4. Salty Winter Driving Tips

    Dr. Marcinko – When wintry weather starts to set in, many state authorities turn to road salt to try and keep the roads and highways moving.

    Why? Road salt actively melts snow and ice that may have formed on the surface of the highway. Once sprinkled, it can prevent snow and ice from settling in the first place, improving traction for road users and helping to keep the traffic flowing more safely. The main disadvantage of road salt is that it can potentially cause damage to your car.

    Prepare your car’s paint work for winter

    You should never leave protecting your car for winter until after the bad weather has set in. By then, it is almost too late, and it is far more difficult to prevent damage to the car. While the weather is still warm, thoroughly wash your car and then apply a coat of protective wax, followed by a coat of wax sealant. These products help protect the paint work from the corrosive effects of road salt. Prepare the undercarriage for winter It is not just the paint work that requires protection. Your car’s undercarriage is also very vulnerable, particularly your brake and fuel lines. These critical components are very susceptible to damage from corrosion, which in turn could make your car unsafe to drive. Buy a sealant for the undercarriage or, if you do not have the facilities to work safely on the undercarriage, talk to your local service department about doing the work for you.

    Remove salty deposits straight away

    When you have been driving on salted roads, it is important to remove salt deposits as soon as possible. Your local car wash may be a quick and simple way to do this, and in some areas, mechanical car washes feature steam cleaning and undercarriage cleaning for added convenience. At the very least, try to get into the habit of hosing the car down each night when you have been driving on salty roads, and then store the car inside a garage, if possible.

    Clean thoroughly and wax the car regularly

    During the winter months, when the roads are salty, you must make time to give your car a good clean. If you can afford it, pay to have the car professionally cleaned—otherwise, you will need to it by hand. Spray down the vehicle first, paying attention to areas like the bumpers and wheel wells. Scrub down with warm, soapy water, and try adding a few tablespoons of baking soda to remove stubborn salt deposits. When the car has been washed, dry thoroughly and then apply a replacement coat of wax for added protection.

    Prevention is Key

    Of course, if you have the choice, you might choose to avoid driving on salty roads. When driving conditions are this treacherous, there is always the risk of a collision, and if you can avoid exposing your car to road salt, you will avoid the risk of any corrosive damage.

    Source: Nalley Collision Center
    [Roswell, GA]


  5. Ways to Get Your Car to 200K Miles (or More)
    [Say No To Short Trips]

    If there’s one single thing you can do as a driver to get your car to last longer on its original parts, it’s to drive it less — specifically, on trips where the engine doesn’t have a chance to reach operating temperature.

    Here’s what happens: Water is a byproduct of engine combustion, and some of it gets into your car’s oil and exhaust system every time the engine runs. Also, when your car is first started, more fuel is mixed in to get it running.

    On a longer trip, your car’s engine gets hot, and the water and unburned fuel are boiled out of the oil, your engine and your exhaust– no worries there. But, a short trip won’t do that, allowing the water and oil to eventually turn into noxious sludge that eats away at your motor.

    So, how short is too short? It varies by temperature and how you drive, but AAA defines it as “trips of less than five miles in normal temperatures, or less than ten miles in freezing temperatures.”

    So, try to combine your short trips into a single run. And for Pete’s sake, don’t park in front of the garage and then pull the car in when you’re going to bed. That’s a short trip to the junkyard.



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