One thing I try to remind friends and coworkers that neglect their car is this; a vehicle is typically the second largest investment in your life, take care of it! This is true; the one physical investment in most of our lives that carries a price tag higher than a car is a house. So why do some of us choose to park a $40k car on the street and have $4,000 of junk take up the garage?
Now I know, having lived in several beach communities, a garage can be hard to come by. Many must utilize either “covered" parking or even worse, street parking. So what can one do to shield such an investment? Protection! When teaching different aspects of an automobile I often use the human body as a metaphor. Just like we use sun screen to protect ourselves from harmful UV rays, we can use wax to protect our cars. Like using lotion to keep our skin soft, we can use leather conditioner to keep our interiors soft.
My favorite leather conditioner
Much of what you see on a car are vulnerable surfaces, from the rubber in our tires to the leather on our seats. Such items need help in staying protected from heat, water, sea-air, smog and more. For those that live close to the sea in Ventura, do you ever notice small cracks in the sidewall or between the tread of your tires? This is where the rubber has dried out from the elements (often called dry rot). Using silicon or a basic tire protection spray will help save your tires. Now granted there are multiple layers on your sidewall and most cracks are superficial, this can get bad enough to question the integrity of the rubber.
Zymol, one of my favorite waxes
Paint likewise needs protection from the above mentioned threats. There are many great waxes on the shelf and some are easier to work with than others but the important part is using one! This simple task takes 1-2 hours tops and if practiced at least 3-4 times a year can save your paint for decades to come. Wax is also safe to use on chrome surfaces, wheels and even windows. One thing I always remind is to wax in the shade; direct sun is an enemy when doing this job.
Take care of your car and it will take care of you. I say it all the time but it's true. Think of how much your life and day to day activities would change without your auto?