Acid Rain, Road Salt, and other Contaminants
According to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency and as quoted on their website (http://www.epa.gov/acidrain/effects/auto.html) “The popular term “acid rain” refers to both wet and dry deposition of acidic pollutants that may damage material surfaces, including auto finishes. These pollutants, which are released when coal and other fossil fuels are burned, react with water vapor and oxidants in the atmosphere and are chemically transformed into sulfuric and nitric acids. The acidic compounds then may fall to earth as rain, snow, fog, or may join dry particles and fall as dry deposition. All forms of acid rain, including dry deposition, especially when dry acidic deposition is mixed with dew or rain, may damage automotive coatings.” Left on paint, trim, and windows too long it can lead to permanent etching and corrosion. Once etching occurs the only way to correct the problem is with varied steps of polishing or repainting depending on the severity.
Road salt is another corrosive that can damage your car not only cosmetically but structurally as well. Most people don’t think to wash their cars on a regular basis during the winter months due to the frequency of bad weather. Washing is sometimes seen as more of a cosmetic procedure but that could not be more wrong. The longer a corrosive or contaminant sits on your vehicle the more damage it does. Salt can cause floor panels, body panels, frame structure, break lines and bumper mounts to corrode and become corrupt. Salt isn’t just a concern during the winter months though. If you live near an ocean or have had your car with you for an outing at the shore it has picked up salt there as well both from road dirt and the moisture in the air.
Other contaminants and corrosives can include tree sap, bug splatter, lime stains (created by water dripping though cement in garages and overpasses), and paint splatter. Once again, the longer these stay on your paint the more damage they do and the harder they are to remove. If left on too long the only option left may be to repaint the damaged area. Caught in time and there are various methods for removing each one such as polishing, clay compounds, and professional chemicals designed for removing contaminants. A fresh coat of wax should be applied after these procedures to help protect your paint.
The interior needs attention too
Usually when we think about cleaning the interior of a car the first thing that comes to mind is all the coffee, juice, and soda drips and stains. As well as all the bits of sand, dirt, lint, cookie crumbs, loose change, and other mystery bits that wind up in all the seat crevices and various nooks and crannies. Just like exterior contaminants the longer some of these things sit the more damage they can do and the harder it is to get the stains out. But there are a few other factors to take into consideration that are not as obvious. Sun, heat, oil from your skin and hair, perspiration, excessive humidity, excessive moisture, all can lead to more serious problems. Heat and sun can dry out your vinyl and leather which leads to cracking. Oil and perspiration from your skin can cause unprotected leather to rot. Excessive humidity and moisture can cause mildew to grow in cloth and carpeting. Another point to consider is when shampooing the interior it must be thoroughly dried to avoid the growth of mold, mildew, and prevent corrosion and carpet rot. It is vital to the well being of your interior to clean, condition, and protect the surfaces with quality products to extend the whole life of your vehicle.
What the Various Services Do
Washing removes harmful elements from your vehicle. It prolongs the life of your paint along with regular waxing.
Wax provides a barrier between your paint and outside contaminants protecting it from damage. We use 100% carnauba wax which is better at protecting against acidic conditions and repelling water. Its protection lasts about 1-3 months depending on exposure to weather and driving conditions.
Tire dressing helps to protect the side walls of the tire from drying out and cracking. It also gives them that “new tire” look again.
Shampooing removes interior contaminants from the soft surfaces that vacuuming and wiping cannot get. It can remove imbedded dirt and oils that can lead to odors and damage.
Vinyl conditioner moisturizes and protects the vinyl surfaces from heat, UV damage, and contaminants that can lead to cracking
Leather conditioner acts the same way skin moisturizer does. It protects the leather from drying out, cracking, or rotting. It also helps deter the leather from absorbing damaging elements.
Clay bar is a fine abrasive used to remove imperfections that lie on your paint’s surface but cannot be removed by washing alone. These imperfections include tree sap, bug splatter, bird droppings, environmental fall out, etc.
Polish is also a fine abrasive but one that is designed to tackle imperfections that lie slightly below the paint surface such as small swirls, scratches, and webbing caused by every day wear and tear on your paint.
Each consecutive step of polishing adds more shine and removes more imperfections. It is important to note that polish will remove any wax on your paint and so a fresh coat should be applied afterwards.
By the third polish step the car should be looking as close to brand new paint as possible with a nice high shine. Of course if your paint was already faded, chipped, deeply scratched, and worn from years of neglect you won’t get “new paint” results.
Compounding removes a variety of imperfections such as swirls, oxidation, lime stains, and can add life to very dull paint.
Paintless Dent Repair
Is a service we offer that utilizes special tools designed to remove small dents, dings, and dimples from your car without having to perform major body work and repainting.
Paint Touch Up
Paint touch up is good for small paint chips that have compromised the protective surface on your vehicle but may not require a full repaint. A small amount of paint is applied with a brush and then polished to halt corrosion.
Sometimes, due to wear from road abrasives and environmental elements, your headlight covers may start to look etched and foggy. This can be remedied by polishing the surfaces.