Go Back   Club Lexus Forums > Lexus Special Interest Forums > Maintenance
Sign in using an external account
Register Forgot Password?

How to keep the rust away

Thread Tools Search this Thread Display Modes
Old 02-23-12, 07:11 PM   #1
U.S. Army-Retired.
Trader Score: (0)
ArmyofOne's Avatar
Join Date: Sep 2004
Location: Van Alstyne, TX
Posts: 6,198
Send a message via AIM to ArmyofOne Send a message via MSN to ArmyofOne Send a message via Yahoo to ArmyofOne
Default How to keep the rust away

I hope this post contributes to the boards, and maybe saves a few of my fellow enthusiasts some preventable headaches...and maybe even some hard-to-come-by cash. I have been in the detailing scene for 10+ years now, and one of the questions I get asked alot is how to prevent rust. Until 2008, one of My biggest issues with Dodge trucks was the lack of "sealed" rear wheel wells.. Road salt/slush sits in the lips inside the fenders and rusts the truck from the inside out, I have seen quite a few, even a few 2007's (they didn't put fender liners in the rear fenders till 2008) that have only been in the salt a few years, and have holes, not spots, HOLES over the rear wheel arches. The addition of fender liners addresses this to a point, but there are really only a few ways to keep your car/truck from being eaten by rust caused by road salt. This isn't so much a problem on Lexus vehicles, but nevertheless, I feel it warrants a mention. Having lived in Northern NY (Tug hill Plateau) for 6 years, I became an EXPERT at what I like to call "Cancer Combat". So, here are some steps you can take to ensure your beloved Lexus stays rust free for years to come if you live in salt country.

1. Keep salt AWAY as much as possible. This means avoid carrying it in your trunk as weight too.

2. If you drive on salted roads, when you park your car, park it outside or in a non-heated, non insulated garage...yes, in the cold. Water activates salt, and the slush thats on the roads ends up on your car. Parking outside, that slush freezes, effectively stopping corrosion. If you park a snowy/salty truck in a heated garage, well...you get the idea. The slush melts and you end up with salt water eating away at your car/truck...but at least it isnt cold when you get in it to go to work in the morning, right?

3. Wash your car/truck as often as possible. In winter I use a touchless car wash with an under-body sprayer. I drive over jets of pressurized hot water and it blasts all the crap out from under the truck. I do this once a week. That's $40 a month. If $40 a month is gonna break your bank, you got bigger issues than rust on your car/truck...like maybe where your next tank of gas will come from LOL (no offense to anyone, just saying). You don't have to do it that often, I am just ****, but I would say no less than once a month at a BARE minimum. It doesn't matter what the weather is, wash the thing. I have come out of the car wash right back onto a wet/salty road, but I got 2 weeks worth of salt off the truck, now I drive for 2 more. If you drive in winter in the north (especially the northeast), your car/truck will not stay clean longer than a day, so do not even worry about it being clean, the purpose is to rinse off the salt. When it is dirty/salty, be sure not to touch ANY part of it except the door handles. Touching dirty paint, or sliding objects such as cardboard boxes across your hood/roof/trunk WILL scratch your paint. Also avoid rubbing/brushing against it with your body.

4. Get a good detailing in right before winter sets in. About the 1st week of October, I will get one final 18 hour detail in. Every INCH of the truck that's exposed (minus the underside, but including rocker panels) gets pressure washed/clayed/polished/glazed/waxed/sealed. I use mostly meguiar's products, which do the job just fine and are readily available at walmart or autozone. I buy in bulk from a supplier because I am a detailer when I am not a soldier . My way of making extra $$$ on the side.

5. During the summer, get a good undercoating, preferably when the truck is new. You can either DIY this (messy, but i find it fun) or you can have it done by a pro. Good, Professional jobs last 5+ years, and run on the order of $500-1500 dollars depending on vehicle size/age, etc... It can be DIY'ed for about $75, but it will need to be redone, or at least touched up, every year. If your car/truck isnt new, don't sweat it. Undercoating can still be applied even if rust has already taken hold. The shop will use a rust-reformer/inhibitor, which stops rust dead in its tracks. Reformer's use chemical reactions to create a strong metal surface again.

6. PROMPTLY repair ANY nicks/dings/dents or scrapes, ESPECIALLY those on the lower half and forward facing surfaces of the car/truck. Dont feel like shelling out money all the time for road rash on the hood or rocker panels? Simple solution, touch-up paint. Sure, it looks like hell, but rust looks worse. If you don't cover exposed metal with some kind of paint or clearcoat FAST, rust will occur in a matter of weeks, and in as little as one winter, you can be looking at HOLES in the side of your car/truck. Metal Chrome rusts faster than painted metal. If rust on your chrome becomes a problem, hot water with dawn dish soap and some crumpled up tin foil will fix you right up, without damaging your chrome. Follow that with a nice chrome polish and a wax and you are all set. With Lexus, most of the chrome trim will be plastics or composite, so this may not apply so much in that case.

7. If you have a pickup truck (I know there are some CL members who are also truck owners like myself), Remove lay-in bedliners. Go spray/roll in or nothing at all. Those plastic pan liners rub the paint in the bed, salt water from the road spray gets in between the liner and the bed, and before you know it, you have a rusty truck bed.

8. MUD FLAPS/bug guards/ClearBra's: Cant stress this one enough, mudflaps and bug guards (hood shields) and/or a ClearBra might singlehandedly save your paint...

9. Your interior needs protection too, get some good floor pan type mats to cover your carpet. If your carpet gets covered with salty snow/slush, it stays wet all winter. whats under your carpet? That's right, its metal...almost bare metal at that. There is very little paint under your carpet, and the metal, especially at welded seams is extremely vulnerable to corrosion, so kick your feet off (NOT on the side of the car/truck) before you get in and have a good set of floor mats that will collect the crud, so you can dump it back on the ground where it belongs.

10. Last but not least, STAY OUT OF THE PUDDLES OF "WATER" ON THE ROAD IN WINTER. You aren't rinsing off your car/truck by ripping through the puddle on the side of the road, you are, in fact, driving through salt water. Minimize the impact of salt on your car/truck, stay clear of the puddles. If the entire road is wet, its ok, keep driving, just remember to hit the car wash on friday.

Its very rare that you find a vehicle in the northeast US, that is more than 4 years old that isn't starting to fall apart. Its not because they are crappy vehicles...its because they weren't taken care of properly. Rest assured if you don't take precautions to protect your investment, rust WILL destroy it.
This ad is not displayed to registered members.
Register your free account today and become a member on Club Lexus!
Diesel Technician-Peterbilt/Kenworth
Cummins, PACCAR, CAT, International, Detroit, ASE Certified.
-2014 Mazda CX-5 Touring in Sky Blue Mica-2.5L of SkyActiv Awesomeness-20% tint all around, 5000k HID's w/ projector's--
2002 Ford Focus ZTW Limited Wagon-loaded, slammed, 6k HID's, LED DRL's, Projectors, CCFL Halo's tinted, tunes and commuting. 170k miles and counting...

Last edited by ArmyofOne; 02-24-12 at 08:31 AM..
ArmyofOne is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-11-12, 09:34 PM   #2
Driver School Candidate
Trader Score: (0)
Join Date: Feb 2012
Location: MN
Posts: 10

You sound about as **** as I am with my vehicles. I wish I didn't live in MN and have to battle these salty winter roads. Thanks for the great information.
385Camaro is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-01-12, 10:27 AM   #3
Lead Lap
Trader Score: (0)
Join Date: Feb 2012
Location: IL
Posts: 435

Idk why, but this sounded so ****, it reminded me when I yell at people about shutting my door to hard.
g4ebguy90 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-01-12, 11:17 AM   #4
Lexus Champion
Trader Score: (0)
02SDGS's Avatar
Join Date: Jul 2007
Location: ny
Posts: 4,632

I get all of or cars washed about 5 times a week in winter to flush all the salt out, it's helped so far
02SDGS is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-01-12, 11:55 AM   #5
Lexus Test Driver
Trader Score: (0)
Join Date: Sep 2010
Location: ON, Canada
Posts: 1,277

Thanks for the tips, going to start getting a little more proactive in helping my car fight this cancer.
1999 ES300 20% Tint, HID RTX 8K H7.
xsh0tya is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-28-12, 06:30 AM   #6
Driver School Candidate
Trader Score: (0)
Join Date: Oct 2012
Location: mp
Posts: 2

thanks for the information it was very useful..
have a good day
jackkyjack is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-19-13, 04:45 PM   #7
Driver School Candidate
Trader Score: (0)
Join Date: Sep 2013
Location: in
Posts: 4
Default Lots of good info

Lots of good, dependable information. Not so easy to follow the whole regime, but I guess doing the best you can is all you can do. Thanks
gypsyboots is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-09-13, 01:54 AM   #8
Driver School Candidate
Trader Score: (0)
welljamesh's Avatar
Join Date: Nov 2013
Location: USA
Posts: 2

yes lost of depends on information.
welljamesh is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-09-13, 01:54 AM

430, bed, center, clublexus, door, forum, lexus, ls, ls430, panels, rocker, rust, stop, truck, wheel

Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off

Forum Jump

Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
Fender lip rust prevention FishBike Automotive Care & Detailing 4 03-10-14 07:04 AM
Winter Is Coming, Get Your Vehicle Ready! ArmyofOne Maintenance 10 11-15-13 05:29 AM
Basic Road Salt removal tips / Audi Q7 TDI detailersdomain Automotive Care & Detailing 6 02-15-13 10:32 AM
Detailing New ISF RizOne Automotive Care & Detailing 7 10-17-12 03:47 PM
How "beat" is your beater . . . . Post up pics of your beater Aron9000 Car Chat 18 09-28-12 05:40 PM

All times are GMT -7. The time now is 09:42 AM.

Join ClubLexus

Copyright © 2000-2008 Internet Brands, Inc. All Rights Reserved
Privacy Policy | Disclaimer | Terms of Use | JOBS

Get all contact info