If you are reading this right now, then it might be safe to say that your car is one of your prized possessions. Aside from real estate, your own vehicle is one of the most significant investments you can make as an adult. Knowing this, it comes as no surprise that proper care for your car includes having good shelter for it.
The unfortunate reality, however, is that not everyone has the luxury of having a garage to keep their vehicle in whenever it is not in use. For these situations, you need to take a few extra steps to make sure that your car stays in peak condition, rain or shine.
Five Practices to Protect Your Car While Outside
These are some useful ways to extend your car’s lifespan even as it is parked outdoors.
1. Make sure your driveway has no obstacles or hazards.
Sometimes, the things that cause the biggest damage to your car are the ones that you suspect the least. Examine the driveway of your home to see if there are potential hazards that could compromise its quality.
One way is to see if your driveway is level or requires some lifting. A good concrete repair should prevent uneven ground from damaging the tires of your car.
You should also make sure not to park under trees. Falling branches and fruits can make dents and scratches on your car without you realizing it. Tree sap can also compromise your car paint.
2. Get a durable car cover.
Since your car sits outside all day, it has prolonged exposure to the sun. This can wear out your car paint, leather seats, dashboard, and even the engine.
A car cover protects from all foreign elements that could cause damage to it. In fact, car covers are just as important even if a vehicle is kept indoors via a garage.
Don’t skimp on the quality of your car cover. Go for custom-fit covers that protect your car with precision. On choosing the right material, take note of your local area’s weather conditions and choose accordingly. Be careful when installing and removing your car covers, too, as improper methods can scratch your paint.
3. Protect your car’s exterior and interior from the UV rays.
Aside from the damage the heat of the sun can do to your car, UV rays can also hurt both its exterior and interior. When you are unable to keep your car away from the sun, there are helpful fixes to prevent damage.
First, you should wax your car once a month to add a layer of protection and keep paint from drying out. Your headlights are also prone to wear, since sun exposure turns them yellow with time. A vinyl film keeps this discoloration from happening, but remember to replace it after a few years.
To protect your interior, install tints on your windows. You should also use a sun shield to reduce the temperature inside your car and prevent your upholstery from getting damaged.
4. Wash your car every week.
Cars that are regularly parked outside without covers need more frequent washing, since they are more exposed to elements and pollutants. Some seasons also make frequent washing more necessary.
Not washing out all the pollutants, such as tree sap, bird droppings, and even acid rain can do irreversible damage to your vehicle. Usually, one look at your car tells you if it badly needs a wash or if it can still go without one for today. As a rule of thumb, though, every two weeks should be enough.
5. Mind the security of your car.
Your car is more exposed to pollutants when it is parked outside. Aside from that, it is also less safe because of how exposed it can be to intruders and robbers. Thorough security measures are part of proper car care.
First and foremost, always keep your car locked to prevent anyone from easily accessing your car’s interior. Your car cover and sun shield come in handy for protection because they keep the contents of your car hidden from passersby. But note that the best practice is still not to leave valuables inside your car.
Additionally, make sure your driveway is well lit. Studies show that having outdoor lighting discourages crimes committed at night. Keep the lights on before you go to sleep to be reassured of your car’s safety as it stays outside.
These five practices are immensely helpful in keeping your car in peak condition while being parked outdoors. Still, remember that regular car maintenance remains a must in taking care of your treasured vehicle.