The exterior of your car takes a lot of abuse, daily use out on the road with debris flying up at it, rocks chipping the paint, the sun’s rays beating down on it and who-knows-what in the rain pouring down on it. It’s got a rough life. There are many things that you can do to protect your car’s exterior and keep it looking new a lot longer.
- Wash your car. I know it sounds obvious, but many people go for months without ever washing their car. If you don’t have time to do it yourself at home, you can find a good, quality car wash locally that will do it for you.
- When you do wash your car, wax it. Don’t cheap out on the wax either. Buy a good wax and hand wax it if you want it to look good longer. Always put an extra coat on the front surfaces of your car as these are the first areas for wax to wear away.
- When you wash your car, clean the wheels and tires. You don’t always have to use a tire protectant; just make sure you clean the tires well.
- Especially in the winter you should wash your car regularly. This will help prevent harmful road salt build-up from eating away at your finish.
- While you are washing your car, take note of any chips or scratches that you see. You want to repair these as soon as possible before rust sets in. You can buy a touch-up paint stick at any auto parts store. Also take a look at your headlight, taillight and turn signal lenses. Inspect them for cracks or hazing as this can become a safety issue if left unchecked. You can repair the cracks using a special tape sold at most parts stores and there are even polishing kits to repair the hazing that occurs on headlights.
- If you plan on loading anything in the trunk, cargo areas or even on the roof, make sure to secure it tightly with good rope or tie-downs. Also, using a blanket between the load and the car’s surface will help protect your finish.
- Make sure if you park your car in a cluttered garage that you keep tools, lawn equipment and children’s toys away from it. Any of these can cause harmful dents or scratches to your paint.
There are many things you can do to keep your car looking good inside and out and they don’t really take a lot of time or much effort on your part. Keeping your car’s finish in good condition will make it last longer and will also help the resale value.