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Old 03-30-2013, 02:51 AM   #1
PA452
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Default Undercoating

Used to always have this done on new vehicles, but is it still necessary? Do these cars come with any rust protection from the factory? I live in an area that sees a fair amount of salt usage.
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Old 03-30-2013, 08:51 AM   #2
aeoporta
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they do come with rust protection but every little bit helps. I will probably do this to my car when I move further north. weekly underbody washes are a must
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Old 03-30-2013, 09:52 AM   #3
Guzzi 1
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No doubt undercoating has improved over the years too, but for some time now, entire bodies have been dipped in a vat. (Not the final paint.) That has improved corrosion resistance greatly. I have scraped a lot of old undercoating off the bottom of older cars that solidified. Eventually, it pulls away allowing a pocket where moisture can be trapped. I have seen it. Back to my first sentence, I would hope things have improved. The key would be for undercoating to remain tacky. The last several vehicles I bothered with was to have them sprayed with used motor oil. (Used oil will creep more and find its way into small places.) You need to watch where you park for a few days after that. Probably can't find anyone to do it any more anyway because of EPA. You would just about have to DIY with a sprayer.

John
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Old 04-01-2013, 08:00 AM   #4
PA452
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Thanks for the responses guys. I think I'm maybe leaning away from it for now.
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Old 04-01-2013, 08:54 AM   #5
fistv
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One other comment about washing the underbody. We were talking this weekend about the car washing machines, both self service with a wand and the drive thru types. They both use recycled water and while they may re-filter it I have my doubts that those filters will remove the salt and sodium solutions that are used on most road salting operations. I know RO [Reverse Osmosis] will remove this while most other filtering systems won't otherwise DE-salizination plants would be a lot more common. I have one here in my 60,000 sq ft humidor that supplies the humidifiers and I know how much it cost as well as the costs to maintain it. Washing your under side with salt rich water at the car wash may not be such a good idea and I am wondering if this was the cause of the failure of my two Wranglers frames which I regularly blasted at the car wash so the mud, dirt and small rock clumps would not end up in my driveway Just some thoughts. I did thoroughly clean my sport this weekend including getting down on my side and spraying as much as I could reach, that is one seriously big plastic cover under that front end I must say. I did this at home using my own stuff.
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Old 04-01-2013, 10:00 AM   #6
sgoldste01
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^^ Your post made me curious, so I sent this question to the Customer Service email address for Delta Sonic, one of the popular car wash chains in Western NY, and also the car wash that I use several times/week on my Impreza (I have an Unlimited subscription that allows me to wash my car as often as 1x/day).

Here was my question:

I've read online that many car washes recycle the wash water, which then contains a lot of salt this time of year. Can you please comment on how fresh the water is that''s used at Delta Sonic car washes?

Here's the answer I received:

Almost all of our washes use 100% fresh water for our entire operation. We have been working on water reclaim systems at a couple of our locations, but even where we are doing that, we are only using the reclaimed water in the initial soap and power wash of the vehicles. The reclaim system does remove salt, but even so, the last 3/4 of the wash process use only clean fresh water to insure that there are no or unwanted substances in the water which could lead to anything other than a neutral surface PH insuring superior shine and protection.

I hope this has answered your questions.


So then I asked:

Thank you for your quick answer.

Can you please tell me if the undercarriage wash is in the part of the process that uses fresh water at all of your wash locations? I'm a member of your Unlimited wash program, and I typically wash my car several times/week. I'd like confirmation that the undercarriage wash isn't spraying reclaimed water, if possible.


And here's the answer:

The underspray does not use reclaimed water at any of our locations.

With that, I will continue to drive my Impreza through Delta Sonic several times/week.
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Old 04-01-2013, 11:10 AM   #7
fistv
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That is handy to know, makes me wonder about the wand washes that all seem to have 'we recycle our water' and how much they truly recycle. Ever since PA followed NY's lead in using that blue sodium spray on stuff we have gone though a lot more bridges so what it does to vehicles can't be good.
I wonder if the under body spray has any neutralizers. I have talked to people from Canada and they swear by spraying used motor oil on their frames and under body on a regular basis.
I took my new sport though a local drive thru brushless car wash and a few days later a 'hand washed' one inside a 80 foot long garage with a dozen people that hand washed it. Both looked good till I washed it myself on saturday where I discovered two ~18 inch scratches that ran from side to side on my rear hatch by the upper brake light. Don't know which one I got them from, probably the hand washed one based on direction of the scratch, but I think I'll stick to my driveway from now on.
I wonder now if zinc annodes would help any...
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Old 04-01-2013, 01:21 PM   #8
sgoldste01
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Coincidentally, I just read this in the 5/2013 issue of Consumer Reports ("Ask our experts" section on page 5):

Q: I recently purchased a new car, and the dealer offered undercoating, rustproofing, and a TST paint protection service for $500. I declined, but are any of those services actually worthwhile?

A: You chose wisely. Today's vehicles have good corrosion protection. In fact, according to Consumer Reports reliability surveys, rust problems have almost vanished in modern cars. Standard rust-through warranties for most cars run five years or more, and many will cover you for an unlimited number of miles during that period. As to paint sealant, it's little more than an overpriced wax. Just buy a good protectant from any auto-parts store.
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Old 04-01-2013, 02:19 PM   #9
G-Omaha
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Undercoating should be better described as "Sound Retardant". Last time I had it applied was to an 84 Ford and it did not prevent under-carriage rust and actually caused severe rusting on the lower parts of the doors (three to four inches) and this rust was not covered by their warranty (rusted from the inside out).
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Old 04-01-2013, 02:27 PM   #10
sgoldste01
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Yes, I've read in the past that aftermarket rust coating sprayed into the doors can clog the drain holes, which can actually cause the doors to rust. Just what I want from a rust prevention product.
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Old 04-01-2013, 08:44 PM   #11
sager
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G-Omaha got it right - I would be interested in this ONLY as a sound retarding solution. The inside of our Impreza is quite noisy...
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Old 04-01-2013, 10:29 PM   #12
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My dealer actually made a point of telling me that both they and Subaru of America recommend not adding additional undercoating to the new car. Like has been mentioned before there already is protection, and any additional coating could cause more harm then good.

That being said, I really could use some better sound deeding in my Impreza. Driving on sandy, or gravel roads is load as all get out. The quite ride is one of the few things I preferred on my 2002 Jetta to the 10 year newer Impreza.
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Old 04-02-2013, 06:31 AM   #13
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Another thing I have done is to spray WD-40 along the seams inside the doors and hood and trunk lid. Usually you can get through a drain hole and let it do its thing. Since WD stands for "water displacement" I figure if it gets into a small gap in a seam where two pieces were crimped together. Cheap, takes only a couple of minutes, and I figure it can't hurt. If moisture is going to get trapped, those are likely places.

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Old 04-02-2013, 09:33 PM   #14
PA452
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JohnNevets View Post
My dealer actually made a point of telling me that both they and Subaru of America recommend not adding additional undercoating to the new car. Like has been mentioned before there already is protection, and any additional coating could cause more harm then good.
Interesting. I asked someone at my dealer about it. They didn't recommend against it, but he pretty much said it wasn't needed. But then he pretty much admitted that he didn't know if it would be of benefit or not.
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