When you buy your first truck, it’s an incredible feeling. You can hear that engine roar to life every day now. You can feel the power humming beneath the hood, waiting for your command. It’s a heady feeling and one that most folks wouldn’t trade for the world. It’s a milestone that people cross, and that you’ll always remember.
Whether it’s your first truck or your 21st truck, you probably want to keep it looking sharp for as long as possible. After all, your truck isn’t just a utilitarian vehicle, it’s an extension of yourself, and you wouldn’t let how you care for yourself to be misinterpreted, so why would you let someone misinterpret how much you care about tending to your truck? If you’re looking for ways to preserve and keep your vehicle looking sparkly and new for as long as possible, we’ve got a few options for you to help you extend how long your truck continues to look fresh off the lot.
For The Winter
Winter is one of the hardest times on cars and trucks of all kinds. Engines don’t much like the cold and nothing else about your car will either. It takes extra time and attention to detail and work on your vehicle to keep it in good shape throughout the winter, but that just means that when spring rolls around, it’ll look just as lean and mean as the day you drove it off the lot, and there won’t be any visible winter damage either. Keep these winter care tips in mind for your truck.
Fill Up On Washer Fluid
Not everything is about your car’s body, sometimes it’s about the inner workings of your vehicle too. Don’t use water instead of washer fluid. In the winter, it’ll freeze and could damage your system permanently. Plus, washer fluid is great for helping you thin that layer of windshield ice that gathers and crusts all around your truck during the winter. A quick spritz of washer fluid is way better than 30 minutes of scraping or watching from your house window as ice thaws.
Bring Your Truck To The Wash
You wouldn’t think it, but washing your truck in the winter is actually more important than in the summer. Sure, no one’s looking at how pretty it is when it’s covered with a thick layer of snow but, the sand grist slush and snow that gets all over the road, melts and then is thrown up onto the body of your truck has the power to break down the protective layer between the metal body and the layer of paint on top. This can cause corrosion and very noticeable long-term damage. You should rinse your car about once a week, or more often if you’re experiencing particularly stormy weather often. Rinse the undercarriage very carefully, as it’s the part that will take the beating from the road splash the hardest. Next, be sure to rinse out all the other hard to reach areas on the car, as those are the places where the debris and gunk will start to build up and cause corrosion. Bumpers and the inside of your wheel well are very susceptible to rust, so they should be the first place you pay attention to when rinsing your truck in the winter.
Make Sure You’re Waxing
The winter debris will be rough on the body of your car, so it’s important that you wax your powdered coating on the body regularly. This helps to keep your car looking new, but it also provides another layer for the salt and other chemicals that might get thrown up onto the car from the road from eating through to the coating and beyond to the body of the car itself. Car wax also works to slow oxidation and forms a barrier against acidic substances that might end up on your car, despite your best efforts, like bird poop, pollutants, and more.
The Rest of the Year
Regular hand washings of the car with a gentle sponge, a microfiber cloth and other materials like good old fashioned water, can go a long way in preserving the body of your car. But if you’re looking to make it even more protected, there are certainly a few things you can do on a year-round basis to protect your powder coating from things besides blunt force, which it’s more than equipped enough to handle.
Clean Debris Quickly
While mud isn’t really an issue, anything else that your car might’ve picked up from the street is. Be sure to clean anything that’s on your car’s body off quickly. Lots of different substances that might splash up onto the body of your car have acids and other compounds in them that could eat through the pigment on your car. A quick wash with some water or just a rinse with a weak detergent should be enough to strip it off and spare your truck any damage.
Be Careful Where You Park
There are lots of organic compounds that you’ll find in nature that can slowly corrode the protective layer you have on your car. It’s best to park your car in the garage, but not for the reason you’d think. While it prevents you from clearing off your windshield too much, it’ll also shield your paint from being exposed to the things found in nature that can harm the body of your car, and we’re not talking about the weather. Critter pee, whether it’s possums, squirrels, cats or dogs, corrodes paint like no other. It’s extremely acidic and can do damage even in a very short amount of time. The sun can cause your paint to fade and birds can poop on your car and ruin your paint that way too. Your paint and car body is hardly fragile, but if you’re hoping to keep your truck looking like new for as long as possible, you’ll need to keep these factors in mind, for they can cause damage to the paint and the overall aesthetic of the vehicle.