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How to prolong your cars paintwork

Summertime is here. You may not have realised it, but honestly it is. Despite the horrific summer we’re currently experiencing, here’s some vital tips to ensure you protect your cars paintwork against the sun and prolong its life.

Limit Sun Exposure

While today’s paints are far superior to the paints of 20 years ago, the sun’s UV rays can still fade a car’s paint over time - you’ve all seen it when you go on holiday, 80% of the cars look like they’re in need of a good polish right? Leaving your car in the sun for a day or two here and there probably won’t cause any noticeable or lasting damages but the trick is to limit your car’s exposure to direct sunlight as much as possible. Park in a garage or cover your car to ensure maximum protection.

Tree Sap

This may seem a little contradictory, but parking under a tree helps keep your car cooler on a hot day, but try to avoid parking under trees that produce sap, it can be damaging to your paintwork as the summer heat melts tree sap inside trees. This causes it to ooze out onto your car, then the sun bakes it on making it all but impossible to get off. If you are unfortunate enough to have tree sap deposited on your car, there are a few things you can do to remove it.

Fresh sap is fairly easy to remove with rubbing alcohol and a little hand buffing. Baked on sap is much more difficult. Use rubbing alcohol to soften the sap as much as possible   then use a  tar remover that you can get from your local mechanics store.

Washing 

It is important to keep your car clean of dirt and other debris it accumulates from dusty summer roads. Avoid using automatic car washes, as the aggressive brushes often contains dirt and stones which will damage your paintwork. If you’ve been victim to these scratches, try waxing them out, if they're too deep to wax out you may be looking at having the paint touched up.

Wash your car by hand; it’s easy, cheap and can be quite fun. But before you begin scrubbing away and further damaging your car with unwelcome scratches, rinse the car with water to remove all the excess and debris. Now it’s free from dirt, apply a small amount of car cleaner/detergent to a bucket of water and with a soft cloth or sponge clean the surface - be sure you use a different cloth for your wheels! Rinse the soap with water and chamois off the excess before the sun dries it.

Waxing

Once your car is completely clean and dry, it is time for wax. Waxing at the beginning of the summer will provide sufficient protection against the sun, depending on how often you wash your car. It is best to wax every painted surface of your car, but pay special attention to the boot, roof and bonnet, which are in direct sunlight.

Proactive approaches to the summer heat like waxing, limiting sun exposure and removing sap and bird droppings will save you a lot of time and money down the road. It takes time and effort to keep your car’s paint in pristine condition, but a little TLC will help your car’s paint triumph over the sun so you can get back to lounging in your garden chair sipping a cold drink.

Whether your car is stored indoors or out, Specialised Covers have the perfect cover for you. Have a look at their Prestige range, which gives your car the complete indoor protection that features a soft cotton fleecy liner. Or if you’re looking for something for the outdoors, then check out the best-selling Stormshield that protects against harsh climates, rust and mould.