How to Prevent Rusting on Cars  – Top Practical Tips & Tricks

In case you live along the oceanic coast, you should perform certain steps to protect your car from the salty air, ocean air, morning dew, and humidity. These occurrences will eat away exposed metal parts, causing them to rust and break quicker. Prevent these troubles by properly taking care of your car’s exterior and taking action when signs of rust start to appear. Professional auto detailer knows the safest and most effective products to prevent and protect the vehicle from such damage.  Early on, such proactive protection will keep your vehicle looking new and save you from investing in cosmetic repairs.

Since rust won’t sleep, this article will show how to prevent rusting on cars quickly and successfully.


One of the first things you have to do is conduct a comprehensive inspection of your vehicle.

Inspect Wheel Wells and Bumpers

The wheel wells are a common trouble spot for rust developing in a vehicle. Since they tend to be dirty and difficult to see clearly, people often avoid inspecting them. Most tire manufacturers recommend that you rotate the tires every 6,000 miles. So, as you remove the wheel from the car to rotate it to another wheel well, use a flashlight to inspect the well. Check the areas where the bumpers are attached to the vehicle each time you rotate the tires too.


  • If there is too much mud or dirt in the wheel well to check for rust, take a hose to spray the area out, then inspect again;
  • Use tire rotation as a reminder to check your bumpers for rust as well. Older vehicles with metal bumpers sometimes rust quicker than the body of the vehicle.

Check Body Components

Your car is most likely to rust where two pieces of metal meet, especially if there is the potential for them to rub. Rubbing will wear away the protection ensured by the paint, enabling rust to form. Walk around the vehicle and check the areas where components meet, like in the door frame, around the trunk, and where the hood meets the fenders.


  • Open the trunk, hood, and doors while you inspect the car for rust;
  • Look for indicators that the paint is bubbling since rust may be developing beneath bubbled up paint.

Inspect the Bottom of the Vehicle

Therefore, the car or truck’s underside often takes the most risk and is more likely to rust. If you live in a region that snows in the winter, salt and other chemicals used to treat ice and snow on the roads may increase the likelihood of rust developing beneath the vehicle. Check beneath the car during oil changes or as you rotate the tires for signs of rust developing.


  • Look beneath the vehicle for rust while changing the oil;
  • Never climb under the car without utilizing jack stands.

Don’t Allow Water to Sit

The vehicle is engineered to withstand most things regular weather can throw at it. Clear coats, paint, and plastic trim pieces are all planned to protect the metal on the car from rusting, but these means of protection can become compromised during time. If you notice an area of a car or truck that tends to hold water, such as a leaky trunk or truck bed, ensure to drain it or dry the water out of it.


  • If a trunk leaks and gathers water, there should be drains that let the water to pour out. If the water doesn’t drain, locate the drain holes by consulting the service manual and removing whatever blocks them from enabling the water to drain.

How to Prevent Rust on Car

Certain environmental factors, mostly present in coastal locations like San Diego, may cause or accelerate vehicle corrosion and damage. Therefore, it’s a Holy Grail for any sensible car owner to learn how to keep your car from rusting cars. Not only does this protect the longevity and structural integrity of the car. Preventing corrosion can also retain the aesthetic and overall value of the automobile. Below is how you can prevent a car from rusting in salty San Diego air.

Car Detailing

If the rust issue is light enough and in the right location, you might be able to take care of it. However, if you don’t have the knowledge and products, or if the rust is on more components of the car than just the bumper, it might be worth hiring an auto detailing service. The detailers use special tools in precise fashions’ to apply and remove high-quality removers. As a result, your vehicle will look as new as it possibly can.


Try to wax the vehicle at least twice a year. Wax does more than provide your car with a healthy shine, it also safeguards the paint from fading and damage. Applying a wax coat to the vehicle twice a year will fortify the paint with an extra level of protection and minimize the chances of rust forming.


  • Wax repels water and produces another layer of protection for the paint;
  • Wax will also save the paint from fading in direct sunlight.

Paint Sealant

Waxing the truck or car used to be the best way to reduce exterior damage, but now most auto experts recommend paint sealant as a more powerful, cost-effective solution. This product can be applied to the car’s paint. Its ceramic coating bonds with the paint and won’t break down even under severe conditions. Vehicles must be waxed every few months, but you won’t need to apply it again for up to 3 years with ceramic coating.

Apply Anti-Rust Spray

If you notice a little rust accumulating on the vehicle, the ideal solution is to treat it right away before it spreads. If caught in time, you won’t have to take the car to the shop or replace the rusted component. Any spot where the paint is bubbling is usually a sign of rust.


  • First, clean the area and allow it to air dry. Once the spot is free of any moisture, you can use anti-rust spray.

Scrape Rust off with Sandpaper or Razor Blade

If you locate a rust spot on the vehicle, taking action to prevent it from spreading is the best course of action. Begin by scraping the rust off using a fine-grit sandpaper or razor blade. Be careful not to ruin the paint surrounding the rusted area.


  • Only remove the rust, try to avoid damaging the paint;
  • In case the paint is flaking off, it means it’s no longer bonded to the metal in that spot and will likely fall off anyway. If it’s flaking off in a large area, you may need to have that portion of the car repainted completely.

Rust Prevention Car Tips

Follow these steps to keep your car rust-free.

  • For preventing rust, it’s advised to keep your car clean;
  • Apply a preventive finishing coating at all times;
  • Never ignore the underside of the vehicle. Clean it thoroughly if you reside in a coastal area where a lot of salt in the air is present;
  • Try to keep your tires, wheels, and hood as far as possible. By protecting all these parts from material that hold moisture such as leaves, you can save the vehicle from rust to some extent;
  • Check that no drainage holes in the frame, floor, or door bottom are blocked. It’ll help any moisture to get out.

Salt Air Corrosion Protection Tricks

If you are moving to a coastal area or have recently bought a new car that you want to safeguard from the coastal elements, there are measures you can take to help slow salt damage to the vehicle. If you are only a few blocks from the beach, we suggest the following practices to help you protect your car from corrosion.

  • Park in a garage or use a car cover, particularly in winter;
  • Don’t drive on sand or near the ocean water. If you do, rinse the vehicle’s underside with a hose after it has cooled off;
  • Get your car detailed regularly.