Summer’s right around the corner, and your car knows it. Even more so than winter months, summer presents a unique set of dangers for your vehicle. As drivers we may not be worried about what’s happening to the appearance of our cars as much as we’re concerned about how they run, but come summer every last flaw becomes more and more visible. Before they take over your car, we’ve put together this list of summer detailing tips to help you keep your car looking great all summer long…
1. Prevent UV Damage to Paintwork
As you know, the sun’s rays are what make the beautiful people of the world so tan. What it also does is penetrate and weaken your car’s clear coat layer. Over time, this can lead to complete degradation and harm the pigment layer of your paintwork, causing discoloration or fading. Either way, it’s not fun. Plus it’s easily preventable with a sealant or wax. Before summer hits, I recommend sealing with a long lasting paint sealant ASAP to stay ahead of the game. If you do so now, exterior UV damage simply wont happen.
2. Prepare For Interior UV Damage
Those of you with leather seats already know how hot the sun can get on a bright day. What you might not know is that not all car windows have UV protection – meaning your dashboard, seats, and other exposed surfaces are getting damaged by the sun. While it may not be visible right away, overtime the sun can discolor and crack softer interior surfaces such as plastic, vinyl, and leather. It looks terrible and fixing it means a costly and time consuming leather restoration process (gluing, respraying, etc.). Do your interior a favor and condition each surface before the heat shows up. Remember, don’t use a dressing, as these just coat the surface rather than providing nutrients.
3. Reverse Fading Exterior Plastic
Similar to UVs damaging your paintwork, your plastic trim can pay quite the price come summer time. If you haven’t noticed before, take a picture in spring time, then again in the fall – summer will have gradually lightened any dark plastic exterior surface that wasn’t protected. Fortunately, most of these effects are easily fixed with a conditioner. If you seal the surfaces with a plastic sealant before summer, you’ll have to do much less upkeep come August and September.
4. Stop Tires From Cracking
When left untreated, tires begin to fade and crack much like the other exterior surfaces of your vehicle. Unfortunately, tires are a deep black, attracting sunlight anyway they can. Also, being rubber, they’re much more susceptible to damage and discoloration. To prevent cracking and fading (which is reversible), use a tire conditioner (not a dressing) at least twice a month to keep the surface looking rich and natural. You may think it’s unnoticeable, but you’d be surprised how much the quality of your tires can be enhanced just by a quick 2 minute application.
5. Get Rid Of Mutilated Bug Carcases
Bugs and heat go together much like one of those annoying vuvuzelas at a game your favorite team happens to be losing. As if you weren’t upset enough, some goof has to go off piercing your ear drums? Well, not so similarly, bugs smash into your car while your driving and then the sun happens to cook them. Yum. In all seriousness, these bug splats can begin to etch the surface if heat is allowed to cake them on – and the longer they’re on, the harder they are to remove. The bottom line here is to provide a barrier of protection specifically against the little buggers, and when they do come in contact with your car, get them off sooner rather than later with a detail spray.
As you now know, these detailing tips are only suggestions based on common occurrences come summer. It’s important to know that any problems you run into are preventable with the right car care products, and at the end of the day the fact remains that we all experience unique issues that require equally unique detailing solutions. Because of this, we extend a helping hand whenever (and wherever) you need it… just leave a comment, get at us on facebook, or email myteam to get your specific detailing questions answered. Happy detailing!