How Road Salt Damages Your Car

How Road Salt Damages Your Car

In the midst of another New England winter, drivers should actively be protecting their car from road salt to avoid rust and corrosion. With sub-zero temperatures and another snow storm brewing, more salt will be accumulating on roadways. Salt that remains on your car for a long period of time can cause severe damage and eventually a lost in your investment. It may not be possible to completely avoid the corrosive effects of road salt, but with a little extra maintenance, you can help prevent rust much longer.

How Much Is Salt Used?

In 2015, Boston News stated in their article that 585,000 tons of road salt was used to combat icy road conditions in the winter. With that much salt, supply never runs out. Boston buys about 80 thousand tons of road salt each year that is stored in eight different facilities across the city that will be used for all regions in the state. The city replenishes what is used after a storm, and remaining salt can be stored for the next winter.

Is Road Salt Toxic?

This salt is mined from the earth, but not something you could put on your food. Road salt isn’t processed to remove inedible chemicals. It is also treated with anti-caking chemicals, so trucks can scoop up the road salt and go quickly. For now, it will continue to be used instead of biodegradable or compostable material because it is the cheapest and most effective method for battling ice.

Combat Salt Damage

Use these six tips to battle salt this winter and increase the longevity of your vehicle.

  1. Avoid driving through deep snow that can become packed into the undercarriage.
  2. Wash your car including the undercarriage every 10 days during the winter months or after every snow/ice storm.
  3. Avoid driving through puddles of standing water where salt accumulates.
  4. Repair paint chips that are larger than a pinpoint to prevent corrosion.
  5. Wax your car every 3 months to create a strong protective coating.
  6. Keep your distance when driving behind plows and salt trucks.

Road Salt and Undercarriage Damage

Adding salt to the roads is meant to be as helpful as it melts dangerous ice. When salt affects your car, many affected parts may not be visible in a casual inspection or cleaning. Listed below, these parts of your car are essential to the functionality. It’s imperative to watch for damage to the undercarriage and any warning signs that may appear on your dash.

  • Muffler
  • Subframe
  • Axel
  • Coil Springs
  • Hydraulic System Breaks
  • Exhaust System

These are essential parts to the functionality of your car. It’s imperative to watch for damage to the undercarriage and any warning signs that may appear on your dash.  Road salt probably has the worst effect on your car’s body and parts. Make sure to review our other article for additional tips, Prevent Salt Damage to Your Car. Not only do you need to protect your car from the harmful winter elements, but a comprehensive auto insurance policy can help protect you from other winter hazards. Contact TJ Woods for any additional questions and tips on automobile safety.