How Do I Avoid Road Salt Damage?

December 31,2013

Most Michiganders are thankful for the stretches of salt that coat our icy roads in the winter. Salt trucks work overtime to ensure as many roads as possible are navigable. But we may not consider the harmful effects road salt can have on our vehicles throughout the season and beyond.

Road Salt Damage

For starters, road salt will eat away the paint on your car which. This leads to rusting on the frame and sometimes even the undercarriage. The effects of corrosive salt can take years to physically manifest, so you want to avoid buildup even in those areas that aren’t visible to the eye. The hidden salt buildups will eventually corrode metal and become visible on the exterior of your car. You can repair the damage, but it will be pricy. It pays to be proactive.

Check out our top tips for preventing road salt damage to your car this winter:

1) Wax your car in the fall

Thoroughly washing and waxing your car in the fall is a great way to avoid salt buildup in the winter because it provides a protective layer throughout the season and makes it easier to remove the salt that accumulates in a Michigan winter.

2) Seal your undercarriage

Sealing your undercarriage is also recommended.  Also check the bottoms of all doors and any edges – hood and trunk. Any nooks and crannies need to be regularly cleaned and dried. Your car will “thank” you by remaining attractive and structurally intact.

3) Get regular car washes

Car washes in the winter help prevent salt from building up, especially on hard-to-see spots. Frequent car washes will also prevent salt from getting into the engine and air filters which may cause bigger issues.

Road salt is essential for safe driving in Michigan winters. With regular cleaning and maintenance the salt will only help, not hurt, your car this winter.