When you got your new vehicle you so loved the vibrant red, the sparkling blue or the imposing black of the paint. Unfortunately though, despite the advances in car paints, techniques and protection,the colour probably fades, over time into an uninspiring shade of its former self. Not to mention that, sometimes, through no fault of your own, your vehicle’s painting will also eventually be marked by scratches and scuffs.
The good news however is that there are certain steps and precautions you can take to keep that colour vibrant and shining for as long as possible. The first step is to be aware of the main culprits and to know how to combat and treat them before damage occurs.
NEGATIVE PAINT ELEMENTS
first consider of your vehicle’s paint as its skin. Just as you take steps against sun damage to your skin, the paint requires protection too. Much the same as your pores expand in the hot sun, so do the pores in your vehicle’s paint, making for dirt and moisture to be absorbed.
Parking your car in the shade of a beautiful tree might keep it against the harmful rays of the sun, but it however exposes it to a completely different threat. Bird droppings are very acidic and as such can erode the clear coat paint finish on your car.
An additional issue with parking under a tree is the possibility of sticky blotches of tree sap landing on your vehicle. Not only does this trap dirt and grime but tree sap can literally be baked into the paint surface by the sun and leave unsightly stains.
Dead insects can also leave a sticky residue that can be difficult to remove if left for too long. Likewise, ash especially when mixed with water – can make an alkali solution that will damage your vehicle’s paint.
Human skin is oily and oil traps dirt. Thus resist the temptation to run your fingers along your vehicle’s exterior to check for dirt. Also, running your fingers over an already dusty or dirty paint could cause unsightly scratches.
It’s a reality that the air we breathe contains airborne particles that are not just harmful to humans but to a vehicle’s paint finishing too. This includes by-products from construction, manufacturing and, of course, vehicle emissions.
Car wash soaps and waxes are specifically made to protect your vehicle’s paint job and keep it shiny for longer. Using other abrasive products to clean your car or remove stains could do exactly the opposite.
Now away from taking steps to avoid these hazards, what can you do to maintain that beautiful paint finish for longer?
CARING FOR YOUR PAINT
Wash or clean off dirt and other debris as quickly as possible. Use car soap rather not detergent, for example dish washing liquid, and ensure that the sponge and cloth you use are clean and soft.
Focus on one section of the vehicle at a time and use long, light strokes.
Where possible, use two buckets. Fill one bucket with soapy water and the other with clean water. Dip the sponge into the clean water first so as to get rid of grit and dirt and then dip in into the soapy water before washing each section of the vehicle.
When drying off the vehicle, blot rather than wipe this is in order to avoid scratching.
Next in the process is waxing, which not only protects the paint but also covers small stone chips and scratches. It might need some elbow grease, but in the long run waxing will be worth it as it keeps your vehicle looking cleaner for longer, creates a protective film against pollutants, and reduces the effects of the sun.
The fact is that automotive paint is not only there to enhance your vehicle’s looks. It has a much vital important function, namely to protect the metal body of the vehicle against corrosion, rust and deterioration. So keeping it clean and blemish-free keeps it looking sparkling, attractive and new for much longer but also prolongs the life of your car’s body.