UV Ray Resistance: Protecting Your Vehicle’s Finish from Sun Damage

UV rays can be damaging to your skin, your furniture, and to your vehicle’s finish. Thankfully, just as there are steps you can take to protect your skin and furniture, so can you take steps to protect your vehicle.

When exposed to UV rays, your vehicle’s finish will start to fade and oxidize, making it look old and worn. The good news is that you don’t have to be a mechanic to mitigate the potential UV damage to your vehicle’s finish. Keep these simple tips in mind and your vehicle will age much more gracefully.

Don’t park in the sun

The easiest way to protect your vehicle’s finish from sun damage is to try your best not to park in the sun. As you go about your daily routine, seek out covered or at least shaded parking. This will physically stop UV rays from reaching your vehicle’s surface, and your car won’t be as uncomfortably hot when you return to it either.

Wash your vehicle regularly

Stop oxidation in its tracks by giving your vehicle a regular, thorough washing. First, make sure you park your car somewhere shaded. Give your vehicle an initial hosing and then wash the exterior using a cotton mitt and a gentle, high-quality automotive cleaner. Avoid scratching your finish by using an automotive clay bar to remove hard, stuck-on grime. Once you’re finished, give your vehicle a good rinse until no residue is left.

Dry your vehicle, and do it by hand

Don’t leave your vehicle to air dry once you’re done cleaning it. Instead, you’ll want to dry it by hand using a cotton cloth. This may be time consuming, but it is an important step. Letting your vehicle air dry is perilous because it leaves the finish susceptible to spot damage. Each tiny droplet of water you leave behind contains minerals, and those minerals will continue to cling and cause damage to your vehicle’s finish once the water evaporates.

Use a high-quality wax

Once your vehicle is completely dry, it’s time for a coat of wax. Wax not only provides a protective layer against the damaging effects of UV rays, but it also helps to prevent damage from any dirt and grime that may settle on your vehicle’s finish. Waxing your vehicle will really make all of your meticulous washing and drying efforts worth it.

Consider using a special paint protection film

Finally, if you’re very concerned about the damage that the sun could do to your vehicle’s finish, you can consider applying a paint protection film over your entire vehicle. The steps above will generally provide UV protection just fine, but those who drive luxury or antique vehicles will probably want to go the extra mile.

If you take some – or better yet, all – of these steps to protect your vehicle’s finish from sun damage, then your vehicle will keep looking its best for many years to come. With minimal effort you can keep your ride gleaming and protect its resale value at the same time.