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Car Sense

What to Know About Winter Car Washes

It’s hardly a secret that winter does a number on your car. One of the biggest culprits: road salt.

While road salt is effective for keeping the roads safe, it has the opposite effect on your car. Road salt creates chemical reactions that cause corrosion—with fuel lines and brakes being the most susceptible to damage.

Winter car washes

While you may skip them because it’s nearly impossible to keep a car looking clean in winter, weekly car washes really are a must if you live in a cold-weather climate. In addition to a simple spray down, it’s also worth investing in a wash that cleans the undercarriage of your car at least every few weeks.

There’s just one caveat: Skip the wash if the temperature is below 30 degrees. Water that hits your car when the air is too cold could lead door handles and locks to freeze shut. Also, even if the temperature is above freezing during winter, it’s a good idea to thoroughly dry your car before you drive off. Road salt will stick to a wet car, undoing the benefits of the car wash.

Winter car waxes

A protective layer of car wax can help protect your car from road salt. Ideally, you’ll want to get your car waxed before winter arrives. If you waited too long, you can still get a wax—just have the job done indoors or on a warm day of at least 50 degrees.

Spring cleaning

Spring is still a few months away. When it (finally) arrives, it’s a good idea to help your car recover from winter. Spring for an exterior detail that includes a high-pressure wash that hits your car’s undercarriage and a rust inspection which will restore your car’s luster.

Old Man Winter is no car’s friend. But with a little extra care, you can protect your car and the investment you have in it.

Are they worth it? If so, how often should you get them—and is it ever too cold to hose down? Find answers to these questions and more here. /blog/winter-car-washes Erie Insurance

ERIE® insurance products and services are provided by one or more of the following insurers: Erie Insurance Exchange, Erie Insurance Company, Erie Insurance Property & Casualty Company, Flagship City Insurance Company and Erie Family Life Insurance Company (home offices: Erie, Pennsylvania) or Erie Insurance Company of New York (home office: Rochester, New York).  The companies within the Erie Insurance Group are not licensed to operate in all states. Refer to the company licensure and states of operation information.

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