Warding Off Corrosion - Junk Car 101 Tips and Ideas
Rust most often forms around fenders, behind bumpers and around wheel wells, where road salt, mud and water accelerate corrosion. Other common locations area along trim and molding, around lights, side-view mirrors and the aerial and in the underbody. Although some ruse is inevitable, there is much that a vigilant car owner can do to minimize and prevent rust formation.
Rustproofing is applied by many service stations. Choose one with an excellent reputation; a shoddy rustproofing job can encourage more rust than it prevents. Rust-proofing techniques on a junk car you want to sell can vary, but essentially it is a process that coats the car to prevent contact with moisture. Some rustproofing is a chemical treatment; other types are oil-based, creating a protective shell that can crack and break off when it becomes brittle with age. The surest way to protect your car from rust is through regular maintenance. Hand wash the car regularly, and dry it quickly and thoroughly. Remove all traces of mud and asphalt. Repair small dents and dings before they become pockets in which rust can form.
Clean all drain holes and vent shafts and thoroughly hose off the underbelly of the car every 6 months. To make the surface of your car water-repellant, add rust protection that can last for months and apply wax.
Removing rust with steel wool: Touching up small scratches in the paint prevents rust from forming on the bare metal. If the spot is not yet rusty, clean it with enamel thinner and let dry. If the scratch has rusted, protect the area around it with masking tape. Brush away dust, then clean with enamel thinner and let dry. Peel off the masking tape.
Applying primer and touch-up paint: Use a rust-inhibiting, lacquer-based primer. Apply a thin coat of primer to the bare metal, being careful not to get it on the surrounding paint. Let the primer dry. Small bottles of touch up paint that match your car's original finish are available at both auto stores and from the dealer. Brush a thin coat over the dried primer and let the paint completely dry, then buff with a polishing compound.
Repairing burned carpet: With a small pair of scissors, snip away the charred and discolored carpet tuffs around the burn. From a less visible portion of the carpet, such as under the seat, cut enough loops of undamaged used car carpet to fill the burn hole. Apply clear-drying water proof glue to the hole. With a pair of tweezers, delicately add the cut carpet strands to the glued area. Hold the strands in place until the glue sets in a few minutes.
Repairing loose weather stripping: Re-secure loose weather stripping with silicone sealant. The sealant is available at auto parts stores in clear or black, to match the color of the weather stripping. Lift the edge of the loose weather stripping. Scrape off any old adhesive with a stiff bristle brush and wipe the area clean with a damp rag. Let dry. Grasp the edge of the weather stripping and apply a thin bead of silicone sealant to both the car body and the weather stripping. If one length of weather stripping has several leaking spots, apply a thin, even bead of sealant all around the car body and the entire length of the weather stripping. Carefully press the weather stripping back into place. Let the sealant dry for 15 minutes. If the weather stripping is cut or torn, fill the area with silicone paste.