Winter Maintenance

how To keep your doors from freezing in the cold weather

How To Keep Your Doors From Freezing in the Cold Weather

By | Winter Maintenance

how To keep your doors from freezing in the cold weatherTo keep your doors from freezing in the cold weather, Route 3 Car Wash recommends that you spray or smear silicone every fall and spring on all the gaskets between the door and the car’s body. If there is a gasket on each, then coat both. Additionally, it’s helpful to treat the gaskets on the trunk or hatch to prevent them from freezing

Stopping in regularly at Valley Car Wash is a great way to keep salt and grime off your vehicle in the winter, but washing your vehicle when it’s very cold outside can cause the door lock mechanisms to get wet, which may cause your locks to freeze. To prevent this from happening, it’s a great idea to spray graphite in the key slot or have a keyless entry system installed in your car. If you decide to spray graphite in your key slot, make sure to work your key into it several times to get the graphite deep in the slot.

Also, it can be helpful to keep a container of lock thawing chemicals handy in case the lock still freezes. The chemicals usually wash out the lubricant from the lock mechanism, so shoot more graphite into the lock after you get it open.

Car Care Steps to Take Before the First Snowfall

Car Care Steps to Take Before the First Snowfall

By | Car Maintenance, Winter Maintenance

Car Care Steps to Take Before the First SnowfallThe following winter car care steps should be taken before the first snowfall of the winter season:

  • Give your vehicle a good waxing in the fall to protect the finish. It will also help the snow slide off better for easier cleaning.
  • Visit your vehicle maintenance provider and have the belts and hoses checked. They should all fit snugly and should not be cracked, glazed or frayed. It may also be a good idea to change your oil to one made specifically for sub-zero temperatures, as this type of oil makes it easier to start-up the vehicle in the winter and typically causes less wear and tear on the engine in the first few minutes after starting it up.
  • Keep track of the wear on your tires. Most accidents in the winter are caused by driver error and worn tires. If you are due for new tires, don’t wait until the middle of winter; get them replaced before the snow falls. Make sure your tires are properly inflated and that your spare is in good condition.

Also, check to see if your spark plugs and battery need replacing. You don’t want to have a stalled car in the dead of winter. If your battery is more than two years old, take it to your maintenance provider to have the charging system completely checked. Keep in mind that older car batteries are less likely to start in winter temperatures than newer ones.

how to drive in the snow

Winterizing Your Car’s Exterior

By | Car Maintenance, Winter Maintenance

winterizing your car's exteriorSnow and ice, as well as the scraping it takes to remove them, can be as rough on your vehicle as they are on you. This article will walk you through a few products and procedures that will give your vehicle just what it needs to weather the winter storm.

The Paint

Because of how often cars get dirty in the winter months, car owners tend to wash their car less- the opposite of what your car needs! Thanks to all the grit, salt and slush on the roads, it’s even more important to keep your car clean during the winter.

But it’s not too late.. there is still a lot you can do to retain your car’s value. A quality wax or sealant combined with correct maintenance will get your paint finish through the winter.

The Wheels & Tires

Tire protection is two-fold. For starters, the rubber needs to be kept supple in freezing temperatures to prevent cracking. Secondly, make sure your tires are properly inflated. The air inside tires shrinks in cold temperatures. If they become under-inflated, the tread will not make enough contact with the road to maneuver on icy asphalt.

There are also protective waxes which acts as a snow and ice repellent. It does require regular reapplications to maintain a high level of protection but the results are well worth the effort.

The Windshield & Wipers

In preparation for winter, we recommend changing your windshield wiper fluid with one that has antifreeze added to it. That way, your windshield can stay clean and frost-free. Also, Fall’s a great time to inspect windshield wipers and replace them if they are worn or have become hardened.

If you have a garage, use it for sheltering your car. This will help protect your paint job, guard against ice on the windshield and guard against the fluids and/or water in your radiator from freezing. If you do not have shelter for your car, invest in a car cover. While it won’t save you from freezing fluids, it will keep snow and ice off the windshield and your paint, and help protect your car from salts that might be used on the streets in your community.

When Is It Too Cold For a Car Wash?

When Is It Too Cold for a Car Wash?

By | Car Maintenance, Winter Maintenance

When Is It Too Cold For a Car Wash?As we all know, water freezes at 32 degrees. Anytime the temperature falls below this you run the risk of things freezing.

In a Q&A held by the Chicago Tribune, Bob Weber answered one of the most frequently asked car wash questions: When Is It Too Cold for a Car Wash?

“Unless there is already a crack or chip in the windshield, and the weather is extraordinarily cold, this is really not an issue for carwashes,” said Eric Wulf, CEO.

“The issue of freezing locks is one that many people are worried about, but it almost never happens. The keyhole is covered, and unless water is poured into the door and/or air is blown straight into that keyhole, this is also not really a risk. Plus, most drivers hardly ever use their keys anymore, with the advent of keyless entry.”

But, there are a few simple things you can do to help prevent freezing when it’s cold:

  •  Park in a garage whenever possible.
  •  Leave your car running or drive for several minutes after going thru the carwash.
  •  Spray lock deicer in your locks after you exit the wash.
  •  Put your key in every lock and turn it back and forth a number of times. This helps to displace any water that might be present.
  •  Take the time to dry off your doorjambs.





Removing Salt From Your Vehicle

By | Car Maintenance, Salt Protection, Uncategorized, Winter Maintenance

Winter is always the harshest season for your vehicle, mostly due to the amount of road salt that clings to your car’s paint and undercarriage. Salt is corrosive, and after time, it can eat away the paint on your vehicle, lead to rusting problems on the frame, brake lines leaking, and even damage the undercarriage. Regularly removing salt from your vehicle can help prevent the devastating effects winter has on the interior and exterior of it.

Removing Salt From Your Vehicle

In order to remove the salt from your vehicle, take it to a car wash regularly. While you can choose to wash your can at home, professional car washes are more practical in the winter (when it’s chilly out) and they also offer steam cleaning, drying services and undercarriage cleaning to protect the most vulnerable areas of your car.

Removing Salt Stains From Carpet

So you’ve removed the salt from your vehicle’s exterior, but what about your floor mats and carpets? Carpet salt stains can be a pain to clean, but thankfully, there’s a remedy that’s inexpensive and easy to follow.

Read: How to Remove Salt Stains From Your Floor Mats

After enduring slush, salt, floods, ice and snow, give your vehicle a break. Visit one of our four locations today!

Wash Away Road Salt

By | Car Maintenance, Salt Protection, Winter Maintenance

I don’t know about you, but I personally HATE seeing my car coated in road salt and grime. That’s why I decided to use a special presoak with salt buster additive in all of our Valley Car Wash locations to help wash away road salt from your vehicles finish.

Winter is in full swing in the Midwest, East and even places in the South, and while I’m thankful for the salt spread on the highways and roads, I know personally the damage it can cause.

Salt is corrosive, and after time, it can eat away the paint on your vehicle, lead to rusting problems on the frame, brake lines leaking, and even damage the undercarriage.

Our suggestion? Run your vehicles through your local car wash every 1-3 weeks, depending on the weather. In the winter months, it’s important to consider washing your car as routine maintenance and set a budget for it. Doing so will benefit your car aesthetically as well as protect its value.

Just remember: Salt is activated by heat, so the corrosive effects speed up when the weather is warmer. “Once spring comes around, it is imperative to give the undercarriage of your car a thorough wash,” said AccuWeather.com Senior Meteorologist Jim Andrews. “Salt sucks up the moisture in humid air, which could lead to even more problems once the weather heats up.”