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When Mother Nature Is Angry: 7 Ways Bad Weather Can Damage Your Truck

Maybe you can’t anything about taxes or the weather? But you can protect your truck from the threats and results of bad weather. Winter, spring, summer, and fall weather conditions can affect your truck’s finish, mechanics, and electronics.

There’s natural wear and tear, of course. But extremes can cost a lot and lower the vehicle’s value. Sun, rain, hail, snow, wind, sand, and humidity all impact a truck’s exterior and interior systems.

1. Bright Sun warms your days and urges you to vacation. But it also hurts any vehicle’s paint job. In time, unrelenting sun will crack, chip, and peel your finish away. Add some wind, and it’s like rubbing the truck with sandpaper.

If you cannot garage the truck, cover it with a tarp, or park it in deep shade, it will suffer in sunny dry climates. You can protect it with regular car, waxing, and compounding. But unless you can cover it in some shelter, it will suffer. State Farm recommends checking your cooling system. “The possibility of overheating greatly increases when fluid levels are below recommended levels. Regularly check motor oil, transmission fluid, power steering fluid, and brake fluid.”

2. Rain may bring spring flowers. But it also can damage your truck as it washes it “clean.”

Unfortunately, today’s rains pour through a polluted atmosphere bringing acids, granules, and other pollutants. As the acidic rain dries on paint surfaces, it scratches the finish. If you don’t deal with it immediately, you risk continuing damage.

As you know, water will find its way into wheel wells, engines, brake linings, and onto and under truck liners. That acidic content will cause rust and rot to metal and rubber. If it’s raining hard enough to stay indoors, you should keep your truck protected, too. Forcing a drive through deep water risks damage that reduces resale value for good.

Some water damage won’t appear until the odor gets to you. It seeps into insulation and apparently-sealed areas. Trapped into cavities behind headlights, tail lights, crankcases, air-conditioning, filters, and more. Cleaning won’t reach these places, so you must do what you can to reach and air dry those areas.

3. Hail is a frequent visitor to many regions. Locales will get hail even if they don’t get much snow. Hail is ice that often arrives in advance of severe storms. The hailstones will vary in size, but even the smallest can damage a vehicle’s paint finish. In areas with frequent hail storms, people will invest in hail damage insurance.

It can fall in the size of golf balls, large enough to damage windshields. The damage increases when strong winds power the storm. Such hail storms have damaged scores of vehicles in dealership lots. The larger hailstones will dent surfaces as well as scratch the finish. A truck or car cover will help, but only garaging will keep prevent the hail damage.

4. Snow is a way of life in many areas, and truck owners are happy to plow right through. But they should not underestimate the potential damage from snow. If you work or play in the snow, you still must take precautions.

Snow weighs a lot, so you should remove packed snow from the hood, roof, and truck bed before you take off. When you must remove snow, you should use warm gloves and a plastic scraper and shovel. Using metal equipment runs the risk of scratching the surface even if the equipment seems convenient.

Some storms will coat the vehicle with ice before the snow builds up. You might be tempted to slide the ice off, but you should carefully remove it by hand and cast it aside. The smarter way to handle things is to run the vehicle for a while with the heater on to warms the glass and metal surfaces. The latest vehicles allow you to turn the truck on remotely while you wait in the comfort of your home, office, or garage.

5. Sand is a nightmare in the state of the Southwest with some areas prone to frequent sandstorms. After a Dust Storm, you must check your truck inside and out. A sandstorm throws pebbles, stones, and other debris against the windshield causing scratches and pits requiring repair and replacement.

In such a storm or riding the beach, sand dunes, or construction sites, sand hits the truck from every direction. It can reach anywhere water does. But you must check the undercarriage, tires, radiator, grills, belts, and filters, and tires. If work requires using the truck in such conditions, you should have it checked thoroughly as often as once a month. Still, with an urethane or polyurethane sprayed in truck bed lining like the products shown on this website, you can assure yourself some peace of mind in the face of Mother Nature.

6. Humidity may not seem a major threat. But humidity is airborne water. Coupled with the heat of summer, it will make you run the engine hotter. That requires more frequent lubrication and oil changes.

Running hot puts demands on the air conditioning system, transmission, power-steering, and brake fluids. And, you must remember the antifreeze isn’t just for winter. It manages the engine temperature in all kinds of weather. In sweltering climates, high humidity can create condensation and rust on metal parts and mildew in padded or insulated areas. These are all concerns you should monitor.

When nature threatens

There are only two choices when weather threatens your truck. You either prepare for it or you don’t. You must take some of this to heart if you want to drive safely and retain the vehicle’s value.

Popular Mechanics, for instance, points out “If you live anywhere north of the Mason-Dixon line, it’s probably worthwhile to invest in winter tires.” But they go onto say you shouldn’t skimp on the expense.

Trucks don’t sell cheap. If you want to secure and retain the performance and resale value of yours. A truck can be a work vehicle, office, or pride and joy. So it takes preventive care and follow up service to withstand the forces of nature!

 

 

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