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Fed up with wasting time every morning clearing your windscreen of overnight snow and ice come winter? Find out how to protect your car from snow without a garage, and learn one crucial tip which could avoid damage and save you thousands.
Winter is nearly here, the snow is coming, your car is an investment and you will need to protect it from the weather without a garage. Snow and ice can cause physical damage to your car, and you will need to put a few strategies in place to prepare your car for winter outdoors. As the temperature drops, it is even more important to care for your car as you are going to need it to get around. Read on below to find out what you will need to do to be ready for the snow.
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- How to Protect your Car from Snow without a Garage
- How to Store a Car Outside for the Winter
- How Can I Best Protect my Car from Salt Damage While Living in Snowy Areas?
- How Can I Remove Snow from My Car Without Scratching It?
- Protecting Your Car from Snow
How to Protect your Car from Snow without a Garage
- Keep cleaning your car throughout winter as grit and dirt can eat into the bodywork leading to corrosion.
- Cover the windscreen at night. Do this by purchasing a foil backed blind or even an old thick blanket will do.
- Spread shaving foam on the inside of your windscreen, once it has dried wipe it off with a damp cloth, then your screen will be fog-free when you go out.
- Make sure that your car battery is charged. If necessary buy a battery charger, winter puts more strain on batteries.
- Keep your windscreen washer topped up to help prevent pipes from freezing. Clean your windscreen with the washer at end of the day.
- Regularly use air conditioning to stop filters from clogging up and to keep the interior dry.
- Look after your seats, buy seat covers to protect them.
- Keep all maintenance up to date, check antifreeze, brakes, and oil levels, also check tires regularly.
- Test your antifreeze with a simple, under $10 tester.
- Towards the end of winter consider an upgrade, if you use your car a lot don’t keep it too long, you want it to look good.
- Buy a temporary carport (see our Buyers’ Guide).
Once the leaves start to fall you know that it is time to start to prepare your car for snow without a garage. Make sure that you clean the inside of your car well, and keep food scraps away. Watch out for vermin a mouse family may move in over winter, this happened to an elderly relative and unfortunately, the mice chewed through the wiring of the car rendering it unusable. You will also need to check the underbody as well before winter and decide whether or not to have rust proofing.
You could always think about investing in a car cover, a car tent or a carport – all of which will protect your car from snow.
If you do have a garage, check out our post on how to spot if you may have asbestos in your garage roof, here.
Make sure that your car tires are ready for winter, tires lose pressure for every temperature drop of 10 degrees Fahrenheit and underinflated tires will not be suitable for winter driving conditions.
How to Store a Car Outside for the Winter
Keep a space blanket in the car in case you get trapped in snowy conditions, this could happen if you slid off an embankment. The blanket will keep you warm and would help you to survive. Make sure you have your mobile with you fully charged whenever you leave the house.
To improve safety, wax the headlight lens and buff it up, this leaves it less likely to ice up and allows more light to flow.
Leaving snow on your car means that it can freeze as hard as cement, causing damage to your vehicle, so even when the weather is frightful and it is snowing you should still clean your car off.
How Can I Best Protect my Car from Salt Damage While Living in Snowy Areas?
Snow salt damage leads to corrosion and rust if the car is not properly maintained. Rust will begin forming and start to bubble up if you do not protect your car. The salt is added to the roadways to increase traction and has a lower melting point than water. The break lines under your car can become damaged by the salt, so we have to protect them. You don’t want any risk of rust under the car or anywhere on the car.
Make sure that you wash and wax the car every six weeks as this makes it harder for salt to cling to the car. You will need to use a handwash and undercarriage spray to protect the underneath of the car. Some car washes do specialize in this procedure and charge accordingly, but you may think that it is worth paying for in winter.
How Can I Remove Snow from My Car Without Scratching It?
If you are at home, use the family leaf blower, most people in the cooler climates have one and they are a good investment.
If you don’t have a leaf blower use a soft broom or brush. Don’t use a nylon brush as this will damage the paintwork.
It is important to get the snow off as if it is not removed heavy chunks may ice up and fly off damaging someone else or their vehicle. A foam brush is a good soft, nonabrasive way to remove snow and minimize scratching.
If you cover your car the night before with a proper car cover simply lift it off and shake the snow off the cover, that is the easiest way of removing snow, but the main thing is to remove it.
Protecting Your Car from Snow
If your car is outside all winter you will need a proper windshield snow cover. This will protect your windshield from cracking under the weight of the snow and ice. Below is a typical and highly rated windshield cover. Click on the image to get more detail.
A car cover for snow is also a good investment that will ultimately save time cleaning the car up every morning before work. Select a good brand and this way your car will stay protected and a bit warmer and won’t be difficult to start, starting can be a common problem in winter. Below is a protective snow cover. Click on the image to get more detail.
The cover will form a barrier between your car and the paintwork and will help it to stay looking new for longer.
In general, a good quality car cover would be an ideal solution to the question of how to protect your car from snow without a garage.
How to protect your car from snow without a garage is a commonly asked question and although there is no one method a snow-resistant car cover is a good start. If you have to leave your car outside in winter the car cover will protect the paint and help your car to stay in great condition for longer while saving you more time every morning. To achieve the best protection for your car, though, you’ll need a carport or a garage.
A car cover can serve as shelter from the elements when you have no garage. A car cover also acts as a barrier against dirt and debris that can cause scrapes and weak spots in your car's paint. Car covers can help save you time by eliminating the need to sweep off snow or scrape ice off the windows.What is the best way to cover your car from snow? ›
Buy a car cover
If you can't park under a roof, a water-resistant car cover is your best option. Water-resistant material is essential here if you don't want to trap moisture. Choose a cover that drapes over your entire vehicle from front to back.
Each night before you go to bed, spray your windshield down with a vinegar solution that is three parts vinegar and one part water. This vinegar solution will help prevent frost and ice from forming on your windshield and if you are in a hurry in the morning, the same mixture will melt the ice.Should I put a tarp on my car before snow? ›
No one likes digging out the car after a storm, so if you have a moment before the snow starts, put a tarp or car cover down over your car. When the snow stops, one pull will leave your ride clean and snow-free.Will cardboard freeze to your windshield? ›
Cardboard does not perform well when rain, freezing rain, or wet snow is expected.How can I protect my car from extreme cold? ›
- 1) Maintain Your Recommended Oil Change Schedule. ...
- 2) Watch Out For Your Battery. ...
- 3) Park in the Garage. ...
- 4) Keep an Eye on Tire Tire Pressure. ...
- 5) Check-in on Your Radiator, Belts, and Hoses. ...
- 6) Complete Tire Tread Checks. ...
- 7) Headlight Bulb Checks and Restoration Services.
- Thoroughly Clean Your Car Before Storing Outside: ...
- Fresh Oil: ...
- Fill Up Your Car's Gas Tank: ...
- Remove the Battery if Storing the Car Outside During Winter: ...
- Top Off Coolant: ...
- Raise the Wheels: ...
- Lubricate Flexible and Moving Components: ...
- Protect Your Engine from Animal Damage:
Definitely. Prolonged sun exposure will damage your vehicle's paint, seats and dash more than virtually any other element. In order to preserve the value and condition of your vehicle, it is critical to use a car cover.Is it OK to leave car covered in snow? ›
Even when the weight of snow isn't enough to crush it, snow can damage your car and its body when it isn't cleared soon. Salt and chemicals from the roads can mix with the snow sitting on top of your car, and this could end up corroding the finish and the paint of your car.How do I prepare my car for overnight snow? ›
- Check your tire tread. ...
- Fill up your tires. ...
- Consider snow tires. ...
- Change your oil and antifreeze. ...
- Fix your heater. ...
- Inspect your battery.
Snow and ice can damage your car's windscreen or paintwork, so a winter car cover can help prolong your car's lifespan. Low temperatures can also damage engines and metalwork, but a winter car cover can prevent the vehicle from freezing over.Does leaving car outside in winter damage it? ›
Parking your car outside in cold weather may accelerate the rusting process on your brakes. While some amount of rust is unavoidable during the winter months (especially if you're driving down salted roads), you may reduce the amount of exposure to moisture your vehicle gets by keeping it parked inside.How long can a car sit in the winter? ›
If you have not prepped your vehicle for a long time of not driving it you should not let it sit for more than one month, and even then, you should try to start it up and drive it for 15-30 minutes a few times within the month.Should you brush snow off car? ›
It's important to brush and clear the snow off your entire vehicle, including your roof, windows, headlights, and hood. Leaving snow or ice on top of your vehicle is extremely dangerous to other drivers on the road. Snow and ice flying from other vehicles can cause accidents and even damage other cars.Is it bad to park your car outside in the winter? ›
Parking your car outside in cold weather may accelerate the rusting process on your brakes. While some amount of rust is unavoidable during the winter months (especially if you're driving down salted roads), you may reduce the amount of exposure to moisture your vehicle gets by keeping it parked inside.How do you get ice and snow off a car without scraper? ›
Let it flow — Some people swear by using tepid, warm water to clear ice from automotive glass. The water will turn the ice to slush, and it will largely be able to be removed using the windshield wipers, or a towel if you're dealing with the side windows.How do you scrape snow off a car without a scraper? ›
Rubbing Alcohol & Water
It's true—rubbing alcohol will quickly dissolve ice buildup on your windshield, so if you're in a rush, this method is a safe alternative to using an ice scraper.
- Salt: Salt is a well-known and easy way to melt ice, but you should use it with caution. ...
- Urea fertilizer: Natural fertilizer urea is a safer alternative to salt. ...
- Alfalfa fertilizer: Like urea, alfalfa meal is used as a commercial fertilizer.
The acetic acid in vinegar is a chemical compound that lowers ice's melting point, but it doesn't melt ice quite as well as rock salt and some of the above alternatives. Like isopropyl alcohol, vinegar can technically be used on its own, but it provides better results in a mixture of equal parts vinegar and hot water.