This is especially true if you live in Central or Eastern Canada, where winter salt is a major cause of corrosion. While the CAA recommends rust protection to prolong the life of your vehicle, it prefers and endorses sprayed solutions instead of the modules.
It involves spraying a black, tar-like substance on the floor pans, wheel wells, and other exposed parts of the under body of your car, which then hardens and acts as a permanent shield against moisture, salt, and other elements. This will not protect the whole body of your car though, and it cannot stop corrosion if it has already started, which means it is best applied to brand-new vehicles.
The major risk to tar-based solutions is that if not applied properly, cracks may develop in the hardened coating over time and trap moisture within itself, leading to rust. Heart is one of the largest providers of this method of rust protection and charges approximately $150 per vehicle.
Heart also offers something called Penetr-Oil, which is a very dense, wax-like oil spray applied to the entire body of the vehicle. There is a catch though, as this method involves drilling holes into a car's doors, fenders, and other areas to make sure the substance gets applied everywhere.
Another known issue is that due to the substance's high viscosity, it cannot get into all the nooks and crannies in the same way more watery oil solutions can. As the name suggests, a slight annoyance is that the sprayed oil drips for about two days after application, potentially leaving stains in your garage, driveway or parking spot.
Holes still need to be drilled in specific spots on your car to ensure the substance gets applied to all areas and annual reapplication is again recommended. Andrew Tai is CEO of Untangle, which helps consumers find new car deals by providing access to data on what others paid for the same vehicle, current incentives, invoice prices, and more.
Every month, we ask for stories from our technician pals which highlight the need to understand one’s vehicle, how to maintain it, and how it works. This month’s story comes to us from Jeff Major, a body man and collision repair tech in Sudbury, Ontario.
In a little break from our usual format, we’re not focusing on one customer or one complaint, but rather a trend in the marketplace that’s seeing plenty of shoppers wasting their hard-earned money on a questionable product, according to Major. According to Major, the effectiveness of these modules is sketchy at best, though shoppers continue to drop hundreds of dollars on them.
“I had a customer in for a body repair, and he came into my bay to get something out of his car while his front fender was off,” Major says. “I didn’t know the customer had a rust module installed to this car, and when he saw that the surface beneath his fender was rusted fairly significantly, he was pretty upset.
Installation quality may be part of the reason for the poor performance of rust modules Major has noted on automobiles. “I’ve seen several examples where the electrodes for the module are attached to a painted surface with two-sided adhesive tape.
When purchasing a new vehicle, shoppers are advised to use caution when deciding on enhanced rust protection. Annual oil sprays can protect steel or aluminum that has become exposed, too,” Major concludes.
This month’s contributor wants to save you money by shedding light on a commonly overrated product.5/24/2016 10:45:54 AM5/24/2016 10:45:54 AM Nearly all modern vehicles are built with sophisticated corrosion protection, which makes rust -proofing obsolete in many geographical locations.
However, warranty does expire and there are still plenty of regions in the world where vehicles are at a high risk of corrosion damage. If you often drive in central or eastern parts Canada, then your vehicle may be at risk of rust due to heavy usage of road salts and plentiful snowfalls.
Cars have changed a lot in the past 20 years, and one key difference is the treatment and usage of metal. Modern car frames are galvanized and well-protected, which means that you can still drive your “ugly” vehicle without any major problems.
If you want a cheap prevention solution, simply wash your vehicle after it’s been exposed to deteriorating elements, such as salt, and you should be good to go. One rust -proofing method exists in the form of an electronic module, a device that sends a faint electric current through the sheet metal and generates an electrochemical reaction that stops the corrosion.
These modules are easy to install, and many dealers offer them as an optional upgrade. Electronic modules are designed to prevent rust and can also be found in retailers such as Canadian Tire.
Simply put, the spray is an undercoating that creates a barrier underneath your car. Also, take into consideration that you’ll need to bring your vehicle in for occasional check-ups to ensure there are no cracks in the barrier.
But it does require extra steps, such as drilling holes into parts of the car, so that the substance could be applied. The average price for dripless oil spray from Heart is about $120 to $140, depending on your vehicle.
If you intend to trade in your vehicle after the warranty has expired, paying more for rust -proofing would be a complete waste of resources. | Reader's Digest Skip to main content Photo: Shutterstock Take yourself back a few months: you arrive at your dealership on a cold winter day to pick up the brand-new car you bought, but the manager stops you.
He suggests rust proofing your vehicle before you leave, and explains that it can be done right at the dealership, for a fee. We’ve done some research on four of the most common rust proofing methods to make that decision a little easier.
Often sold by your dealer, an electronic module is a small device that must be professionally installed in your vehicle. These systems emit a weak current through a vehicle’s metal body, theoretically preventing it from reacting with oxygen and corroding.
Photo: Shutterstock Also known as an “undercoating,” tar-based sprays were initially introduced in the 1950s to make car rides quieter. The procedure involves spraying a black, tar-like substance on the floor pans, wheel wells, and other exposed parts of the under body of your car, which then hardens and acts as a permanent shield against moisture, salt, and other elements.
Unfortunately, over time moisture can seep behind the hard outer seal and corrode the metal beneath. Furthermore, the rigid nature of a tar based spray makes it susceptible to cracks, which will pose an entrance for water to get in.
Heart is one of the largest providers of this method of rust protection and charges approximately $150 per vehicle. Compared to its tar-based counterpart, a dripless oil spray covers more surface area because it’s applied to more interior regions of the vehicle, but this added protection comes with a price.
The application process often involves drilling holes into the frame of the vehicle to maximize the area covered. Additionally, these sprays will often leave smaller crevices and tight seams on your vehicle unprotected because of their high viscosity.
The biggest knock on this method is that the sprayed oil will drip off your vehicle for about two days as it dries. To make matters even more complicated, it’s become a common practice for manufacturers to use galvanized steel in their vehicles frames.
With a coating of zinc, galvanized steel doesn’t react with oxygen the way iron does greatly reduce the risk of rust. Rust proofing will make more sense if your vehicle is regularly subjected to the elements, but if you plan to mainly do city driving in a warm climate changes are it isn’t necessary.
Those with a short-term lease won’t see much benefit in rust proofing, save for a slightly higher residual value. When oxygen and water come into contact with the metal surface of a vehicle, oxidization begins to occur, which ultimately causes corrosion.
Car owners living in winter climates are constantly worried about cleaning road salt off their vehicles at the end of the day, to prevent rust from occurring. To get a good price for their vehicle, the owner takes careful measures to ensure its longevity, such as guarding against corrosion from rust.
Although many vehicles these days are manufactured with corrosion protection, there are a range of aftermarket kits to rustproof the car once the factory-made product has grown weak. This little device can be easily installed by a mechanic, and works by issuing a weak electric current throughout the metal of the vehicle.
Experts pursuing automotive careers do not believe there is substantial evidence regarding the efficiency of an electronic rustproofing system, or that it works better than other options like waxes. In addition to other arguments, many say that electronic rust protection for cars therefore only truly works when fully submerged in water.
“COMPARATIVE TESTING OF ELECTRONIC MODULES FOR RUST PROTECTION” By Vincent J. Curtis, M.Sc. The object of this set of tests was to evaluate the ability of electronic rust protection devices to protect steel Q-panels from rusting in a salt spray cabinet.
These electronic devices are sold commercially and are claimed to be able to protect an automobile from rusting when installed. Three pairs of Q-panels were tested at an independent laboratory in a salt spray cabinet operated in accordance with ATM D-117.
Another pair was coated with Known T-40 product at the Ricochet plant in Cambridge, ON. These panels were left to stand in the ambient atmosphere for five days before the test was begun at the independent laboratory that operated a salt spray cabinet.
Two electronic modules “Counter Act Electronic Rust Prevention” units (serial numbers 105645 and 105742) were provided by Known Corporate in their sealed original boxes to Ricochet. After 24 hours, the panels were checked, and it was confirmed that the lights on the devices were still flashing.
The faces of both panels protected by the electronic devices were entirely covered in rust. Yet, the devices were unable to protect a Q-panel in a salt-spray cabinet at all, for there was no difference in appearance between them and the unprotected blank panels.
Over twenty years ago, devices like these were advertised as working on the principle of cathodic protection. However, these cathodic protection devices failed in the real world because the special conditions of the lab test did not obtain in a car operating in the real world.
These new devices were claimed to work, not by the well-known principle of cathodic protection, but by some patented method new to the science of corrosion. Contrary to what the manufacturer claims, when installed in an automobile according to instructions these electronic devices do operate on the principle of cathodic protection.
When installed in an automobile according to instructions, the electric power that operates the device comes from the car’s battery. It would be risky of the manufacturer to make a claim of favorable lab results and not have anything at all that could be reproduced independently.
Nevertheless, I remained deeply skeptical that the devices worked in the real world based on: the description of the alleged operating mechanism in the advertising literature, upon the wiring diagram, upon the limited power and small size of the device, and upon the claim that the patented method was new to science. On the basis of these lab tests, I granted the devices more credit than they were due.
The “Counter Act Electronic Rust Protection” device does not work. When powered from a car battery, the principle of operation of the device is a kind of cathodic protection, a method which was discredited over twenty years ago.