The Washington Times-Herald

Local News

January 25, 2014

Things that mar an automotive paint job

Most people purchase a car for its looks and performance. However, unless the auto is kept in a garage and never driven, it is impossible to keep it in pristine condition. In many cases, damage to the clear coat or enamel paint on the car is something vehicle owners expect.

A car owner who decides he or she wants the car to remain in the best shape possible will have to take an active role in maintenance and damage prevention. One of the key things to remember is to never allow any substance to remain on the paint for too long; otherwise the risk for damage increases. Also, it may be very difficult to clean if the offender is allowed to sit on the paint. Here are some other factors to consider.

n UV light: Just as UV light can affect skin, hair and other parts of the body, it also can affect the paint on a car. UV rays oxidize the paint and cause a white, powdery film to form on the car. Washing the car frequently enough and applying the best quality wax will help keep UV rays from penetrating through the paint.

n Over sprays: Life does not stop to allow cars to drive through, particularly when it comes to construction zones. It’s possible for a car to be doused in paint spray, tar, concrete, and other chemicals that are routinely used in construction. Do not allow these substances to harden on the car. Rinse promptly with automotive soap. Try to avoid construction zones whenever possible.

n Rain: Both acid rain and regular rainwater (and other sources of water) can dissolve paint over time. The U.S. Geological Survey has said that water is a universal solvent because it can dissolve more substances than any other liquid.

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