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Hi all,

I've got a 2014 Accord w/ 6k miles on it.

My previous car got messed up kinda bad from rust here in the Chicago area: replaced exhaust at 100k miles since rust made a hole. At 170k miles, rust made another hole causing exhaust leak.

My new car will be outside all the time. Are frequent car washes (including undercarriage) a good way to prevent rust? How often is "frequent"?
 

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That's a part of life where you live not too much you can do. Years ago, I read that a warm garage is not good for rust prevention because it lets salty ice melt and works its way into all of the voids. Obviously the undercarriage has to be rinsed occasionally. Today, you should be able to get 10 years or so. Brake lines and exhaust are big problems. I find that once the OE exhaust goes the replacements last 2 years at best.
 

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HK Moderator
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Rust never sleeps. - Neil Young

You live in the Chicago area? (I checked under your username, but no location was listed....:()

Know that Chicago uses about twice the amount of road salt as does Milwaukee per mile of roadway. "Why" you ask? Because the suppliers of salt to the City of Chicago were two of the largest financial contributors to former Mayor Daley's campaigns. And you better believe that the Chicago Department of Streets and Sanitation magically decided that the City needed more salt per mile than what even New York City uses.

Then you go to Germany and they expect you to know how to drive in snow, and don't destroy their roads and vegetation by dumping caustic road salt on everything. Then again, as part of their driver's licensing- you are to demonstrate the changing of the tire.

Look at Denver, CO. They plow intersections down and use sand there....the arterial streets only get plowed down to an inch of snow.

The ancient armies of Rome used to spread salt on a vanquished opponent's land....this "salting OF the earth" ensured nothing grew there for about 10 years- enough to destroy a community's chance of re-grouping and fighting the Romans again.

Salt is a weapon.

Rant over....
 

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The ancient armies of Rome used to spread salt on a vanquished opponent's land....this "salting OF the earth" ensured nothing grew there for about 10 years- enough to destroy a community's chance of re-grouping and fighting the Romans again.

Salt is a weapon.

Rant over....

That's not entirely accurate. Genghis Khan and the Mongols were notorious for this, not the Romans.
 

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Beet juice here in Nebraska. (true.... don't laugh). The beet juice brine still has some salt in it... but not as much, and it apparently helps keep the salt working at very low temps. And.... western Nebraska is sugar beet country! An economic boon, I guess.

I heard once that they were using cheese brine in Wisconsin... ???
 

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I remember wuite a bit of this from roman history. Romans may not have done it first but they definitely did it.
Most of these "salting the earth" stories are legends which probably never actually happened. Salt was used for symbolic reasons but never as a deterrent for future settlement. Think about it, salt was a very expensive item in the ancient world b/c of its preservative capacity since there was no refrigeration back then. Would a country just waste it all on a defeated territory? And put enough on the land to prevent anything growing for 10 years? That's a lot of repeated salting and waste of a prized resource. Doesn't compute.

Plus, the Romans rarely engaged in scorched earth policies b/c it didn't benefit the Empire. They were smarter than that. Usually, after gaining victory they would impose a tax or tribute on a conquered population and appoint a Roman governor to oversee said territory (ie. Pontius Pilate).

Genghis Khan and the Mongols however didn't really care about all that. They annihilated city after city in their conquest of the west. And the legend is that they spread lime not salt on the lands they conquered to ensure that nothing could be cultivated.
 

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Hi all,

I've got a 2014 Accord w/ 6k miles on it.

My previous car got messed up kinda bad from rust here in the Chicago area: replaced exhaust at 100k miles since rust made a hole. At 170k miles, rust made another hole causing exhaust leak.

My new car will be outside all the time. Are frequent car washes (including undercarriage) a good way to prevent rust? How often is "frequent"?
In Chicago I'll take an exhaust @ 100k. Parking outside all the time can tough on a car. Keep-up with washes, and touch-up paint chips as you get them.
 

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Elvira - the car
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Beet juice here in Nebraska. (true.... don't laugh). The beet juice brine still has some salt in it... but not as much, and it apparently helps keep the salt working at very low temps. And.... western Nebraska is sugar beet country! An economic boon, I guess.

I heard once that they were using cheese brine in Wisconsin... ???
I've seen it used here in DuPage county on some roads to a lesser extent. You can always tell it's down prior to the impending snowfall by the multiple stripes layed down on the road surface. But lately they haven't down much when it snows. It's used extensively in CT too. When I'm there visiting I've noticed they tend to be more proactive. Hilly land and all that.

Yes you heard right that they were using the cheese brine and I heard also pickle brine.

But enough about the snow IT'S SUMMER. Don't wanna think about that four letter word until I need too.


But as to the thread question,
wash as often as possible anytime it gets above freezing.
Don't park in a warm garage because the salt/snow melt and warm environment accelerate the formation of the oxide. I perform an environmental test that does exactly that. I can get some stainless steels to rust in a week of exposure.
Knock off the snow from the wheel wells to keep the kickback from sitting on the metal in the well.
Pour warm water down the windshield cowl to wash any salty water spray or snow melt out of the drains. Keep the drains free of the autumn leaves. That's usually where I see a lot of rust start and it's not from outside, it's from inside near the drains by the splash guards.

Install an anode rust system that acts as a sacrificial metal instead of the car body becoming the sacrificial metal. It acts as the galvanic action eats away at the anode and not the car. Never used one, have no experience but have read that it does work to some extent. Kinda similar to the one in the water heater.
 

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@bond: Salt was used as a weapon...the US Army Command and General Staff College in Kansas teaches this....

You are correct. The Mongols used salt far more than others. But did you know about this? About .5% of the entire world's male population is a descendant of Genghis Khan. They brought war, trade, slavery, and settlement. The old silk road and other trading routes saw people from Mongolia all the way to western Europe...while salt was valuable- it was not so valuable that it would not be used to teach a lesson. If they needed some, it could be bought- along the trade route.

A village of women allowed to live (but forced to flee their land) could be invaluable in spreading the message of terror that could do more harm than actual troops could do.

I spent some time at the Roman ruins of Baalbek, Lebanon....there are a couple of villages nearby that had their land salted by the Romans.

By the way- The Mongolians created the toll way and rest stop system....I forget the exact distance, but every 20 miles or so there was a replenished "store" with a few goods for sale, a place to feed animals, and to rest and camp. You had to pay, though.
 

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I too am in Illinois, but Man oh man, I couldn't imagine, living IN The city during the winter months with all the salt they use. I'll have to go back and check my service records, but I believe my catalytic converter heat shields were replaced before 70k due to rust. -not cheap!
 

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I too am in Illinois, but Man oh man, I couldn't imagine, living IN The city during the winter months with all the salt they use. I'll have to go back and check my service records, but I believe my catalytic converter heat shields were replaced before 70k due to rust. -not cheap!
When the heat shields start to rattle, (a sign that the welds have rusted) you can buy some dryer vent clamps and chain them together around the heat shield. No more rattles and the shield should stay together for a long, long time.
 

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Dsclmr:DIY @ YourOwnRisks
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I spray oil on where protection is needed. spray and rub it off with a latex glove so it won't drip. That is your best protect with cheap resources. a little bit of burning smell is not going eat the metal like salt will.
 

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You can apply all the product you want to the paint and wash it every day but it won’t do anything to stop rust. Rust forms from the inside out.

Something like this is what you want:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=C2Nd2LQWBaE

It coats the vulnerable “insides” of the car that never get washed but get exposed to salt/dirt/moisture and slowly promote rust.

As a minor active step, when you wash your car be sure to spray the hose under all the wheel wells and the underside of the car as much as possible. That is one accessible place where salt and dirt accumulate that you can keep clean. If you use your hands to removed dirt from under the wheel well lip, go slowly and watch out for anything sharp.

This may sound crazy, but driving through puddles SLOWLY is a convenient way to bath the bottom of your car - a little splash to get the salt off the hard to reach places of the undercarriage. Driving in a rain storm is good too.
 

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I try to stay on top of stuff if I can.

When I did the Magnaflow install Glenn E said paint your stuff and let it dry before you go for install, so I did.



Well that was 2 years ago and it needed redone. Now rust is ever present and never goes away. However I find every year or two, sand and spray, and you can keep it at bay. I use Ceramic header coating on both gray and black. It is high temp and does stick pretty well.



So I walked into Advanced Auto and looking around and they have 3M Undercoating/Sound Proofing on sale 7.50 a can, it is reg 15.00 a can so I pop for 2 cans. Wish I would have bought 10!



After using the 2 cans on the spare tire and trunk area I could have used 2 more there. Then after seeing the front today with the bumper off I could have used 3 or 4 cans there no issue. Seems the 3M stuff worked nice and it dried nice for me.

There is just a lot of masking to do to do a decent job. I will be sanding the same welds and such next year, but it does look nice for a time, and does slow it down a bit.
 

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yodachoda -

You don't say how long your commute is, but if it's fairly short, your exhaust probably rusted from the inside out. The water vapor in the exhaust is acidic from the exhaust gases and if the exhaust system doesn't get really warm, the water vapor condenses in the exhaust line and attacks the exhaust system. Stainless steel has decent corrosion resistance, but it will fail given enough time. Stainless, by the way, is much more susceptible to chloride attack than plain old carbon steel, which is also much cheaper. So if the primary failure mode were from the chlorides in the salt, most exhaust systems would be carbon steel. Because it's an inside job, carmakers use the more expensive stainless steel.

That being said, frequent washing and spraying of the undercarriage during the winter is a good practice. Here in the Albany area, one car wash chain offers an unlimited wash deal by the month. This is the type in which you get out of your car and it's pulled through the tunnel, after which attendants dry everything off. The monthly price is the same as about three or four washes.
 
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