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We all love going to the beach on a sunny day. There's just something about the smell of the ocean, the cool breezes and the sounds of the waves that make us all feel a little bit more alive. Maybe you love to surf, or paddle-board, or scuba dive or just lounge around, but your car may not love it as much as you do.
In fact, if your car had a choice, it would be hundreds of miles away from the ocean. Salt water is corrosive to your car’s exterior and interior. The salt moisture in the air, near the beach, along with oxygen do the dirty work and corrode the paint and exposed metal on your car 10 times faster than dryer air. Hang wet towels or a wetsuit directly on your car, and you’ll increase the affects. The salt buildup eats away at your wax, then the paint, and then the metal. Sunshine also has an effect by increasing the pours in the paint and allowing salt to get in deeper into your car’s finish.
We recommend that you wash the exterior of your car frequently and have a good coat of wax on it, if you live near the beach or are a frequent visitor. Additionally, you should never place towels, wetsuits, clothes or gear with salt water on them directly on your vehicle. Use a DryRack of other apparatus to dry your towels, wetsuits and gear when you are at the beach, or place in a waterproof duffle or bin until you get home. Drying racks promote air flow and will dry your gear faster and keep the salt water off your vehicle.
Salt water can also damage the inside of your car just as easily as the exterior. Every time you get back in your car after a beach session you are depositing a little bit of salt on your seats. If you’ve left your windows open or top down, a little more salt has found its way onto your seats. Most people try and place a towel on the seat to battle this, but end up losing. The towel is damp and transfers salt, or slips down and exposes the seat or never covered it fully in the first place. In addition, if you’re a surfer that undresses at home or drives wet between surf breaks, you’re really putting it to your seats. The darker the seat the more stains you’ll see and you’ll feel the roughness and stiffness of the leather. The stiffening is actually the drying out of the leather of its natural oils and will lead to cracks and rips.
We recommend cleaning your seats often with a leather cleaner/conditioner to keep them soft. Seat covers are also a great solution. You can get waterproof slip-on seat covers or fully fitted seat covers. Whatever your choice, make sure they are larger than your seat for full coverage, and are 100% waterproof. A little protection and some maintenance will go a long way.
Our cars are one of our largest investments and with the right tools, it will last a long time. A DryRack for beach use, waterproof seat covers for driving, a good wax job and frequent washes will keep your vehicle looking and feeling new, and keep you enjoying the beach!