In communities of owners near the sea, vehicles suffer from moisture, saltpetre (seaspray), salt and sand. This article may even interest you if you don’t live near the sea but are going to leave your car parked near the beach.
Today, our colleagues at Securme, Mediterráneo’s insurance broker, share with us a selection of recommendations and care tips to keep our vehicles in the best possible condition against the adverse effects of the sea.
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Problems with cars and the beach
According to the dictionary, the word saltpetre comes from Latin: sal petrae or “salt of the rock”. It’s a saline mixture of potassium nitrate and sodium nitrate.
On our vehicles, saltpetre can cause paint and metal corrosion.
Moisture, wind, sand
The moisture in coastal areas, together with salt, saltpetre and wind, produces a cocktail harmful to the plastic and metal parts of your car and the upholstery.
Caring for your car if you live near the sea
Enclosed garage space
If your community of owners has an enclosed garage, you’re in luck. But if it doesn’t, consider renting a space in one nearby. Open-air parking spaces receive all the wind, saltpetre, sand and sun that come with living near the sea. If you really have to leave it outdoors, try parking your car so that the engine is not facing the sea.
You’ll need to wash your car more often than if you didn’t live near the sea. It’s not a major financial investment but you will have to spend more time on car maintenance.
Why such frequent washing? The water and soap will remove any saltpetre and sand that have attached themselves to different parts of the vehicle. Also pay attention to underneath the car and the wheels. We advise washing your car at least once a week.
Monitor the condition of the body
If you notice any scratches, bumps or imperfections, see a specialist because, although they may not seem important, your car can be affected by corrosion when it’s near the sea. Body wax is one option to help you with maintenance.
Clean your car’s interior
Remember to clean and dry the rubber seals on the doors. Vacuum the floor, floor mats and seats. If you find any saltpetre stains on the upholstery, you can use products such as dry foam to remove the stains.
Bikes and other vehicles near the sea
Bikes, motorbikes and any other type of vehicle also suffer the effects of moisture and saltpetre near the sea.
How do we keep them in the best condition possible? Try to follow the recommendations for cars we described above. Keeping bikes in an enclosed garage is the best option to keep the wind away from the paint and metal or plastic parts.
Wash your bike once a week and keep an eye on the main areas that need lubricating. The chain must stay well lubricated to improve the performance of the entire transmission system. You should also pay attention to the pedals. Lubricate the threaded areas. The cranks, the derailleur and the seat post also require care, especially if you live near the sea.
¿Grease, oil or wax? Each area needs a different product. If you have any questions about how to maintain your bike, you can contact a professional who will answer them, helping you keep your bike in perfect condition, safe from salt, sand and moisture.