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The Ultimate Guide To Maintaining Your Car

Protecting your vehicle against the elements

Our Gap Insurance Could Help You Protect Your Car's Value Against Depreciation - But there is always more you could do to help get the most if you ever sell your used car!

Buying a new car be it just a few miles on the clock or a used vehicle with 25 000 miles, there are always ways to help protect the value of your motor. Protecting your vehicle against the elements is one of the cheapest and easiest ways to keep your car looking great at re sale time. The resale value is more than simply a figure in the Glasses Guide! Overall condition, paint work, service history and even the colour can greatly increase or decrease the private resale value and similarly the dealer trade-in value is affected by these factors too. Many consumers also have some anxieties when considering the important factors that relate not just to making a good purchasing at the time of buying your car but also when it comes time to get a great asking price for your car when you decide to move on. 


Some things are simply out of your control

There are many things that can happen to your car that are outside of your control as the owner and driver. Car accidents can occur virtually any time your car is on the road due to no fault of your own. Here the best way to ensure that you receive back as much as possible from the vehicles true value is to purchase Gap Insurance. For more info on how GAP insurance works click on this link. 

Owners help prevent accidents by doing regular check ups on their vehicles, changing the oil regularly, and ensuring your vehicle is in proper working condition. Vehicles can get bumped or scratched simply while your in one of the supermarkets and your car is parked up. The good news for car owners is that they can have a positive impact on minimizing another category of elements that can often damage and wear on a vehicle. Natural elements including rain, sleet, snow and more can wear on a vehicle.

The climate in your region

Car owners have varying levels of interest in protecting their cars against the elements. Underbody seal, paint touch ups, waxing, polish, and other products are all vital to maintenance of a car when faced with the harsh conditions here in Britain. Properly treating a vehicle is especially necessary for people who live in climates wear hazardous and consistent weather conditions are the norm. It is a well known fact that the sun can damage your paint work if you do not regularly polish or wax your car. Sun fade is most evident on red cars! In fact all the red based colour's are quick to fade when left in the baking sun all day.

Your cars resale value

Some people do not pay proper attention to protecting against the elements because exterior wear does not generally affect car function. However, maintaining the overall condition of your vehicle is important in terms of maintaining resale value and in driving a vehicle that represents your character. A bad paint job is perhaps the first thing people see when they look at a car. Vehicles with chipping, scratches, wear or just worn paint, immediately put you off. To understand the importance of aesthetic appeal to a vehicle's value you simply need to consider how much time, money and attention dealerships pay to detailing and fine tuning the exterior look of cars that show on their lots.

Cleaning your car is no longer a chore, its a necessity

Long gone are the days when a middle-aged man waxing his well-maintained vehicle on a Saturday afternoon was the norm in suburbia. Today, you will find the majority of the UK's teenagers are also out on their front drives no matter what the weather polishing their motor vehicles on a weekend afternoon. At the prices they pay for car insurance every year, the car they drive is a significant investment to them. Many teenagers have spent a fortune on the latest radios, alloy wheels and many for an aftermarket exhaust which growls every time the car is started. the reason is simple economics. The more value you place in your transport the more you are prepared to maintain it properly.

Proper waxing and polishing can help preserve the shine of a vehicle, and as importantly, protect it from scratches, scrapes, and other finish defects caused by the elements. Is Washing up liquid a great way to get quick results when washing your car! NO, please do not wash your car with house hold detergents! The colour will fade very quickly, use specially formulated car wash shampoo's, their specially formulated polymers help shine and protect your cars paint. The same is true for the cloth you use when cleaning your car, an old t-shirt you were about to throw out may scratch your cars paint. Use a sponge or chamois if you can. There are many fantastic products on the market today.

Bird Droppings and Petrol

Pay particular attention to something we are all guilty of ignoring. When filling up at the petrol station we often spill some petrol while removing the nozzle. Petrol is corrosive and eats away at the paint around the filler cap. A swift wipe after topping up with petrol or diesel will go along way towards looking after your car.

Bird droppings can severely damage a cars paintwork! If you live near the coast, Sea Gulls and inland Bats can cause significant damage to your paint work. The droppings contain acids which destroy the lacquer and permanently dull the paint. Regular applications of high quality polish or wax can minimize and often prevent this from happening.

A vehicle's natural paint finish naturally deteriorates through rain and snow over time. Consistent and well applied wax and polish can cause rain to slide off the vehicle's finish and preserve a sleek look and minimize the chances of rust. This makes for a more confident and satisfied driver and draws a better value at trade-in or resale of the vehicle.

Beware of the Seasons

Protecting your vehicle against the elements is vital to maintaining the condition and potential resale or trade-in value of a vehicle. Though the elements are hard to predict and control in certain climates, providing effective treatment to a car's exterior is something a vehicle owner can control. Waxing, polishing and maintaining paint finishes on your car can reduce the negative wear and tear caused by rain, snow, sleet and other natural elements. 

Winter especially is a tough season on cars here in the UK and overseas. In colder countries the road authorities put down salt during winter to prevent ice from forming on the roads. Snow also melts faster when the roads have recently been salted. The amount of damage this salt causes to your car is phenomenal! Salt is so corrosive. During winter we recommended that you regularly hose down your car after motorway trips! In some climates winter season seems to go on forever. Along with the natural elements, sand, salt and other winterizing chemicals can wear on a car's exterior. Cleaning, sealing and polishing are necessary. This is why cars from warmer climates fetch more money than those from colder regions. 

Protecting the paint on your vehicle is a main factor in maintaining the car's look and value. Wash your car and then use a professional grade wax or polish. A thorough and effective car wash is needed to remove dirt and residue. Following a solid cleaning, a car wax is the security between your car's paint finish and the harsh conditions. 

As an added layer of protection, the truly proactive car owner uses a professional paint sealant on top of the wax. This presents an extra layer of protection for the car's paint in the same way people have layers of skin to protect our vulnerable internal components. 

It is also important to protect your car's windshield in order to maintain safe driving conditions during tough weather. A spotless glass cleaner should be used to clean all windows, windshields, mirrors and side glass. A new trick for windshield protection is a detail spray polish that helps deflect snow, rain, and dirt. Rain water simply beads up and is deflected by the polish. There are many such products on the market ranging from Autoglym to Meguiars Car, Marine & RV Care Products, Halfords and the specialist web sites such as Performance Motorcare which offer you a competitively priced range of top manufacturers car care products direct to your doorstep by buying online. Even the super markets now sell car detail products, but remember that you do get what you pay for, especially at a supermarket!! Click4Gap recommends you protect your car with professional products supplied by the professionals. 

Finally, protecting your vehicle's wheels and tires is crucial to safe driving and aesthetic appeal. Your wheels and tires maintain your vehicle's contact with the driving surface and prevent sliding and accidents. Tyre cleaners restore the rubber colour and protect against slime build- up. Most importantly, a professional tyre polish seals out harmful chemicals used to moderate snow and ice. 

It is obvious that vehicle protection and maintenance is not just about proud car ownership. There are many important safety factors that are affected by the use or lack of use of quality car cleaners, polishes and sealants. However, it is nice at the point of resale or trade-in to have a well-maintained vehicle. 

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The opinions expressed are those of the author and are not necessarily held by the Click4Group unless specifically stated. The material is for general information only. Always obtain independent, professional advice for your own particular situation.