DIY Fixes to Auto Body Damage Caused by Ocean Salts in the Air

Posted By: Main Auto Body, Inc. | October 24, 2019

Car On Coastal Highway At Dusk

Few things compare to the joys of living in an oceanside community in the Pacific Northwest or driving our coastal highways. With the sound of the waves and the cool sea breeze, it’s easy to see why people love the ocean. Unfortunately, those same ocean breezes can damage your vehicle. From exterior rust to unseen damage under the hood, your vehicle requires additional maintenance to look good and run great when salt is pervasive. Check out some easy fixes from Main Auto Body, Inc. to keep your car in good condition after exposure to salt air.

Take Time for Regular Car Washes

The salty air and humidity of the seaside atmosphere can eventually form deposits on your vehicle’s exterior that will cause rust and corrosion. Accordingly, regularly washing your vehicle is the first step you should take. Head to your nearest carwash, or simply grab a bucket filled with water and mild detergent. You may also use a formula specifically designed for vehicles to protect your car’s finish. Dip a cleaning cloth in this soapy mixture and wipe off any salt deposits on the car’s exterior. This will not only help prevent potential rust but also leave your car nice and clean. 

Touch Up the Paint

After a while, salt deposits may make a bigger impact, leaving chips and cracks in your vehicle’s paint. Fortunately, you can usually address minor damage with touch-up paint matched to your car. Repairing these blemishes helps make Mother Nature’s effects less noticeable and stops them from spreading. Keep in mind that if you’ve noticed dents or other damage to your vehicle, these areas may be more susceptible to finish damage caused by salt air. Main Auto Body, Inc. provides paintless dent repair to address this damage before it compromises your car’s finish and lets salt wreak havoc. Finally, consider a wax or EPDM rubber coating. When properly applied and regularly washed, these protective coatings offer added defense for up to a year.

Don’t Forget Internal Parts

Just because you don’t see the damage caused by salt doesn’t mean it doesn’t exist. A quick look can tell you what you need to know about your car’s exterior, but you need further inspection to make sure the ocean air hasn’t caused other problems.

Keeping your brakes clear of corrosion is important not only for increasing the life of your vehicle but for the safety of everyone on the road. Accumulating salt deposits around your brakes can render them less effective when you need them, so wipe them clean and use proper brake oils and lubricants as needed. You’ll also want to make sure your tires are free of the scrapes and scratches commonly associated with salty environments. Keeping an eye out for the effects of salty air is a simple way to keep your vehicle safe on the road.

Schedule Professional Auto Body Repairs

You rely on your vehicle every day, so at-home care is essential to keep it running and looking like new. But when you need more help than DIY salt damage repair and prevention can provide, turn to the pros at Main Auto Body, Inc. Our I-Car Gold Class Certified technicians have the advanced equipment needed to restore your vehicle after damage due to ocean air. Visit your nearest location in Bend or throughout Northwest Oregon today, or contact us online to learn more about the services we offer.