Tuesday, January 9, 2018
A salty Jeep is a sad Jeep, and my Jeep is extra sad this winter. She is looking forward to the rising mercury, which means she can have a bath.
The road salt poured on our roads each winter is extremely corrosive, and can cause extensive damage. The threat salt poses to your vehicle is rust, which is accelerates with repeated exposure.
This salt is also terribly bad for the Wrangler's soft tops. Keeping your Jeep salt free is not realistic, unless you park your Jeep in the garage all winter and stay off the roads. But there are several ways to avoid the salt.
Wash your vehicle as soon as possible after the snow.
Wash the underside of your Jeep often during the winter months.
Avoid driving through large puddles of standing water where road salt collects.
A power washer is the best to use because you can spray water into as many nooks and crannies as you can find because salt and road crud hides everywhere.
You should avoid washing when the temperature is below freezing because the water will immediately freeze. Door locks could freeze and your windows could be hard to de-ice.
If you can't take the nastiness of the salt, and you need to wash your Jeep, drive it around the block a few times to warm the hood. Turn the heater on high to warm the inside of the Jeep. This will help keep the water from freezing while you wash it.
Pay extra care to your soft top. Avoid an automatic car wash if you have a soft top. The brush type car wash can easily scratch the vinyl windows. Or the dirt left on the brushes from another vehicle can scratch the windows too.
A touchless car wash is unlikely to damage your top, but you could get some leakage due to the high pressure nozzles from various directions.
The harsh chemicals in the soaps are also bad for your soft tops. The best way to clean your soft top is by hand, or in a manual car wash.
I start by spraying with just water from the top down. I don't use the car wash soap or brush on my soft top.
I save that type of cleaning for home with the Bestop Cleaners. When you do clean your soft top use soft microsoft cloths that are clean and wet.
I will use the car wash soap to clean the rest of the Jeep. I also make sure I thoroughly spray the underside of the Jeep. Those scraped up parts are susceptible to the corrosion with the exposed metal from the rock scraping. Every Fall and Spring I make sure to sand down the scrapes and repaint.
Hopefully you will have a salt free winter.