We all depend on the sun for vitamins, but too much of it can cause severe damage to your vehicle if you fail to take proper precautions. It does ruin not only the vehicle’s paint job but also the interior. The heat could cause the paint to peel or fade, or the windscreen could start cracking. You can avoid this by learning the tips on how to protect car from sunlight.
When you leave the vehicle in extreme sunlight or heat for a long time, the temperature inside could go as high as 145 degrees, while its exterior could go as high as 200 degrees. Getting in such a vehicle can be pretty annoying. Just like our skin needs protection from heat, we also need to protect our vehicles from harmful UV rays. Here are practical and easy ways how to protect a car that sits outside.
How to Protect Car from Sunlight
Extreme heat and sun can not only be damaging to the car’s paint but also pose a risk to the dashboard, seats, and also engine. Therefore, it is prudent to keep your car safe during summer. Here are different ways to protect the car’s exterior and interior:
Protecting the car exterior from Sunlight
The vehicle’s exterior is the first place the sun hits. UV rays are at their strongest during the summer season. Exposing the vehicle to UV rays for a long time oxidizes its exterior coating or leads to color fading. The sun may also cause your car’s coating to become brittle, thus changing its shape.
If you note some of these effects and wonder how to fix sun damage on car paint, the best solution is to visit your mechanic for a paint job. However, before this, here are effective ways that will help you to protect your car’s exterior:
1. Wash the Car’s Exterior Regularly
A vehicle’s painting acts as a protective skin to the metal frame. It prevents oil and water residue from getting into the metal structure, resulting in rust damage. Washing your car helps remove debris, dirt, and other minerals that can scratch its surface. For instance, if not removed, bird droppings have some uric acid that ruins the car’s paintwork.
If you fail to clean the debris and minerals soon, they react with the heat from UV rays, causing the paint to fade. Clean the surface of your car with car shampoo, rinse with clean water, and hand dry it with a soft microfiber cloth to remove any remaining grime.
2. Park in a Shade
Parking your vehicle under a shade protects not only its paintwork but also the interior. As we have seen above, rays from the sun cause a car’s exterior to fade and crack. It can be tedious to keep looking for a shady spot to park, but it is worth it. Also, remember that the sun’s movement will move the shade, and you must keep changing the car’s position.
Most people find this pretty challenging and are left wondering how to protect their car from sun and rain. Parking a car in a garage or a roofed drive is the best solution, especially if you will not be using it for a long time. A closed garage protects your car from cats and other animals. If you cannot access a garage, driveway, or shady area to park, consider investing in a good quality car cover to prevent the rays from hitting directly to its paintwork.
3. Wax the Car’s Surface
Waxing adds an additional protective layer to the paint, which prevents the sun’s rays from penetrating the surface. The wax acts like sunscreen for high UV rays, especially during summer. Waxing your vehicle helps maintain its factory finish paintwork by locking the paint’s natural oils. It also gives the vehicle an exceptionally polished look.
For maximum effectiveness, apply the wax after washing and drying your vehicle. When waxing, smooth out any dents and dints using a dent remover. Wax your vehicle every three months to get maximum protection. Check online reviews for the best car wax to prevent sun damage.
4. Use a Paint Protection Film
Another significant investment for a car’s exterior is a protection film or sun film. A protection film is an invisible film that shields your vehicle from ultraviolet damage. It acts as a sunscreen for your vehicle. It maintains your car’s external surface for an extended period. On top of this, it protects your vehicle from grime, small dents, dust, and minor scratches.
5. Regularly Check Your Tire Pressure
Leaving your car sitting in sun all day with under-inflated tires causes them to blow out due to the increased heat and temperatures. To prevent this damage, have regular tire checkups, especially in the summer. This way, you keep the tires at the pressure level recommended by the manufacturer, thus preventing sudden accidents and mishaps.
Protecting Cars Interiors from Sunlight
Most people are unaware that sunlight affects the interior, such as the upholstery, steering wheel, dashboard, and other components. Here are techniques to protect your car’s interior:
1. Use Windshield Protector
The dashboard and steering wheel are exposed to the sunlight, which can cause them to crack. Extreme heat also causes the dashboard to lose its shine. A windshield sun protector is the best solution for this. The windshield protector helps cut out the UV rays, drastically protecting the vehicle’s front interior. There are also windshield shades available to protect the rear interior.
2. Tinting the Car Windows
Tinted windows help reduce heat in the vehicle since it block thermal rays that pass heat from the sun. By blocking the wavelengths, the tint prevents 70% of solar heat from entering the car interior. Window tints, however, let the natural light pass. You, however, need to check your state laws on how much you can taint your car’s window.
3. Use Window Sunshades
Window sunshades are one of the most pocket-friendly ways to protect your car’s interior from the sun. The sunshades are put on the windows to prevent most sun rays from getting in through the window, thus reducing the heat in the car. Unlike the windshield sun protectors, you can use the window sunshades while driving.
4. Install Seat Covers
One significant effect of sunlight on cars is damaging the seats, especially those made of fabric and leather. Installing seat covers will improve your driving experience by keeping the car seats warm during winter and cool during the summer season. On top of this, the covers protect the seats from stains, thus keeping them clean.
How Do I Stop My Car from Sun Fade?
The most effective way to prevent your car from sun fade is by parking it under a shade. If you do not have a garage and cannot access a carport, you can cover your vehicle with a car cover, wax it during summer or use a paint protection film to protect its exterior.
Do Car Covers Protect Cars from the Sun?
Extreme heat from the sun is harmful not only to the car’s exterior but also to its interior. Car covers are a great way of protecting your car from harmful ultraviolet rays. A car cover is an excellent investment since it protects your vehicle from various harms, besides protecting the car from sunlight, dirt, and animal-caused damage. Therefore, when buying a car cover, consider a tick and high-quality one that will serve you in all seasons.
Does Wax Protect Car from Sun?
Most people wax their cars to give them an appealing look. Amazingly, the wax offers you more than just a beautiful shine. It adds an extra protection layer against ultraviolet rays, tree sap, bird droppings, salt, and other assorted cruds. The wax is a barrier on the car’s exterior and protects the paint from sun damage. For maximum protection, wax your vehicle after every three months.
Is It Bad Leaving Your Car in the Sun?
Ultraviolet rays pose serious risks to your car’s exterior and interior parts. Leaving your car in the sun causes the car’s paint to fade. If your car’s upholstery is made of leather or fabric, leaving it in the sun for too long will make it fade. To prevent this, ensure you park your vehicle under a shade. You can also use other techniques like waxing, window sunshades, Windshield protectors, or covering it with a high-quality car cover.
What Car Color Fades the Fastest in Sunlight?
As we all know, sun rays cause car paint to fade. However, some colors tend to fade faster than others colors. Red car color fades more than other paint colors. This is because the wavelengths in red feature the lowest energy of visible light. Therefore, red color paint absorbs a more energetic wavelength causing more aggressive degradation of its molecular bonds. Other colors that fade faster are black, navy blue, dark brown, and dark green.
What Car Color Is the Safest?
The safest car color is white. White-colored vehicles have a lesser chance of getting involved in accidents compared to black vehicles. This is because white contrasts the car and its surroundings, making it easy for other motorists to see.
Car paints will fade irrespective of the color. However, some colors will fade before others, especially if you live in a hot and sunny area. White color reflects the sun’s rays and does not absorb heat as dark colors do. This helps in keeping the temperatures down. You can also consider other light colors, such as silver.
As a car owner, you need to know how to protect your it during various weathers. Both hail and sunlight come with dangers that would cost a fortune to repair. The above How to protect your car from Sunlight article gives you simple and practical solutions to keep your vehicle safe during summer. Excess heat fades your car’s finished paintwork and risks the interior, like the dashboard and car seats.
We cannot conclude this article before we look at how long does it take for sun to damage car paint. The period it may take for car paint to damage will depend on how well you have maintained it. Some colors, such as red, fade faster than white. However, on average, it will take five to ten years for your car to fade due to the sun.