Washing your car in the winter - KWWL - Eastern Iowa Breaking News, Weather, Closings

Washing your car in the winter

By Lauren Squires

DUBUQUE (KWWL) - Temperatures across Eastern Iowa Saturday left many streets running to with melting snow. When the snow's gone, there is a visible mess left behind on your car. Which means your car may need a wash more often then you think.

You may not realize is that the sand and salt building up in your car can cause more problems in the future. Snow, sand and salt; all a part of winter. Chances are they all wind up on your car.

"When you get a heavy build up of snow and salt, getting it off as soon as possible is really important," said Chuck Tonn of Miracle Wash in Dubuque.

If you're like most -- getting your car washed isn't high on your priority list, and you can tell by looking at it. But car experts say it should be.

"If you leave it on for an extended period of time it will start getting rushy and build on the vehicle and it's extremely hard on the paint," said Tonn.

And that could be hard on your wallet. Salt not only wears on the paint, but the fender wells and undercarriage, too. Which is why experts recommend washing your car at least every two weeks.

So we took our car to the cleaners. There, more than 900 pounds of water preasure washed away that corrosive salt and sand. Treating your car with wax can also protect it from the elements.

Even though money is tight -- washing your car often is worth it down the road.

"Because of the economy it's tough to purchase a car right now so you need to maintain the one you have and protect your investment," said Tonn.

An investment that won't wash out your wallet.

So getting your car washed is about more than a shiny finish. Consumer reports suggest checking your oil, tire pressure and, yes, getting your car washed through the winter.

Online reporter: Lauren Squires

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