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Looking after your vehicles bodywork

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Letís face it, thereís more to the appeal of a car than a smooth running engine and a good set of wheels. The bodywork of the car is the first thing you see and itís the most striking element. Cars may come in all shapes and sizes, but they also come in different colours and shades. Itís important that car owners do everything they can to look after the bodywork of their vehicle, not just for aesthetic reasons, but also to ensure maximum lifetime of shell of the car. If road debris and dirt get an opportunity to develop on your car, then youíre looking at long term damage and a big repair cost, not to mention a diminished resale value. Hereís some advice on how to effectively look after your vehicles bodywork.

Spend some quality time

You car could be one of the most expensive items you are likely to ever buy. You should therefore take time to look after it. Firstly, as a potential preventative measure, spend some time regularly inspecting your car. Look for bumps, scrapes, scratches and cracks in the shell or the paintwork or cracks in the plastic or rubber elements. If youíre unfortunate enough to stumble across anything, itís important to act immediately, as any damage left for a period of time is likely to worsen as the bodywork weakens. For example, filling in a chip in the paint immediately will prevent further erosion. Also, if you discover bird droppings on your car, these must be removed with water immediately, as they contain acids which may permanently stain your bodywork.

Treat it well

Be sure to give your car a comprehensive and regular clean - perhaps once a month - using specialist car maintenance shampoos and give it a proper hose down afterwards. In order to avoid the build-up of rust and corrosion, ensure you clean the parts that are less visible, such as under the bonnet, between the door parts and in the carís boot. A pressure washer is a good gadget for this, although avoid spraying it directly at the paint as this could lead to weakening of the paint. Make sure you clean the underside of the vehicle too, especially during the winter, as road salt build up is a common cause of corrosion. Applying a rustproofing agent if your car regularly comes in contact with salt is a good idea too.

Go the extra mile

Regularly washing the carís bodywork isnít the only way you can ensure it is looked after. Polishing and waxing are seen by many as the next and essential steps towards a glimmering shine. These processes also go a long way to approach fixing those scratches you may have found during your inspection. Apply non-abrasive wax using a soft sponge to the paintwork and be sure to give it an hour to dry. However, avoid getting wax on the plastic parts of your car, as this could lead to unnecessary stains. Lubricating door hinges and locks will also help keep the carís value up.

If you treat your car well by remembering to address these points, you can ensure both its aesthetics and its value are kept for as long as possible.

Car Care Tips  26/09/2013 10:22:02

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