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What's everyone using to remove road salt from the undercarriage? I'm not really interested in bringing it to a car wash , I'd like to keep my paint scratch free. I'm thinking a lawn sprinkler?
 

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I like that idea, but I'd use one you can orientate front/back so you don't have to run over the hose. So not an oscillating sprinkler unless you want to sit there while it goes back and forth. I'd rather just run over it back and forth (if I worried about such things).
 

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To do a decent job, you need high pressure. Driving over a lawn sprinkler really isn't going to get it.

You can buy an attachment for your pressure washer that will do the job. Do a Bing search on "undercarriage wash" for a variety of choices.

I usually drive through the no-touch car wash and pay for the undercarriage wash. It costs $2, but it gets a majority of the mud and road slime off. We don't use salt around here.
 

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I have a membership to a sonic wash. 20 a month go as often as ya want. I work construction and have an off rd truck so it has scratches not bad ones and it gets a hand wax in the fall. And will get a ceramic job this spring.
 

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I was in the twin cities for a year/ 1 winter. Couldn't do anything with water outside at home, too damn cold, otherwise I would have been out there with a pressure spray setup. I ended up buying a carwash membership. Went through a couple car washes at different places to see who had the best underbody sprayer, and purchased a membership there. It was on the way home from work so I'd go through 2, sometimes 3 times per week depending on how often the roads were salted. Once spring rolled around I was under there with a pressure washer...neighbors thought I was crazy.

Keeping the underbody flushed IMO is more important than any hairline scratches or swirls from automatic carwashes. Those can be taken out later with paint correction. Rust can't be.

Or do like I did...move to where the roads aren't salted. Left there after a year and will never be back.
 

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Wool wax once a year. Sand (important) and touch up and paint chips once a year.

I never wash my vehicle in winter. No rust here.
 

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What's everyone using to remove road salt from the undercarriage? I'm not really interested in bringing it to a car wash , I'd like to keep my paint scratch free. I'm thinking a lawn sprinkler?
Touch-free car wash with undercarriage wash and rust inhibitor won't scratch your paint.
 

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To do a decent job, you need high pressure. Driving over a lawn sprinkler really isn't going to get it.

You can buy an attachment for your pressure washer that will do the job. Do a Bing search on "undercarriage wash" for a variety of choices.

I usually drive through the no-touch car wash and pay for the undercarriage wash. It costs $2, but it gets a majority of the mud and road slime off. We don't use salt around here.
Sounds like you're addressing removing mud more than salt. I would agree a higher pressure would be needed for that. For salt I would think volume of water would be the bigger factor.
 

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2021 Colorado 2.8L Diesel Z71
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Around here, when the roads are salty my hoses are drained and put away for the winter. It isn't really feasible to wash a car at home in the winter in most places that have a winter climate. Go to a coin operated wash, or find a touch-free.
 

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Around here, when the roads are salty my hoses are drained and put away for the winter.
At a minimum you would need to keep the hose in a warmer space so that ice wouldn't block the flow of water. And you'd also need to worry about creating an ice rink wherever you did the rinsing!

Our weather isn't that extreme, but I know someone who not only didn't winterize their outdoor sprinkler system, they also forgot to turn it off and then went out of town. They created quite a dangerous situation on their front sidewalk (back yard too, but no one was home).
 

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Sounds like you're addressing removing mud more than salt. I would agree a higher pressure would be needed for that. For salt I would think volume of water would be the bigger factor.
No, I'm talking about salt. Mud just needs water, and preferably under pressure. Remember, all that crud under there isn't just salt. It's dirt, mud, oil, and other road crud. To get that off there you need pressure. A good solvent like Simple Green wouldn't hurt, either.

I moved here to CO from upstate NY about 25 years ago.
 

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No, I'm talking about salt. Mud just needs water, and preferably under pressure. Remember, all that crud under there isn't just salt. It's dirt, mud, oil, and other road crud. To get that off there you need pressure. A good solvent like Simple Green wouldn't hurt, either.

I moved here to CO from upstate NY about 25 years ago.
GM does put some coatings on the frame. Exactly what is hard to say. Some form of sealant and waxy substances.

Pressure washing and simple green will remove those coats pretty quickly. As for how bad that is for rust I don’t know.
 

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GM does put some coatings on the frame. Exactly what is hard to say. Some form of sealant and waxy substances.

Pressure washing and simple green will remove those coats pretty quickly. As for how bad that is for rust I don’t know.
Crawled under your own twin yet? I don't know about you, but my Canyon's frame has no such waxy substance(s). The frame has been dipped in an e-coat or paint-like sealant, I can wash it with as much pressure and cleaner as I want and it's not coming off.
 

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Crawled under your own twin yet? I don't know about you, but my Canyon's frame has no such waxy substance(s). The frame has been dipped in an e-coat or paint-like sealant, I can wash it with as much pressure and cleaner as I want and it's not coming off.
Yes. It’s there when new. It’s not very thick.
 

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Yes. It’s there when new. It’s not very thick.
I've owned my truck since it had 8 miles on it and have done all but one oil change so I've been under my truck who knows how many times since new, can't say mine ever had such a substance. I know what the rust preventative looks like, it's quite sticky and gooey. Can't tell you how many German cars I've seen "leaking" it in the summer or how difficult it actually is to clean off. My truck frame never had the stuff or if it did it washed off very quickly and was likely for protection during rail car transport which is Hell on paint and untreated metal. If it were meant to be a long term rust prohibitor they wouldn't use a thin coat that washes off just by driving in the rain.

Sent from my SM-G986U using Tapatalk
 
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The only time I worry about salt is when the weather warms up. I frozen salt caked truck won't rust if kept cold. If you have a garage, don't heat it up too much and try to get rid of the water from melting snow. I use a touchless car wash for the most part in winter just before I get home, and normally park in my garage when I do.
When I revamped my garage, I added a hot water supply to my hose, the only thing worse than washing inside your garage is washing it with cold water.. your hands turn beet red when you finish.
 

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I've worked on the underside of my truck far more than should be required on a brand new vehicle. I crawled underneath in the dealers lot before I brought it home. I found just the opposite of DieselDrax's truck. No film or coating of any kind.
In fact I was disappointed on how many components were NOT coated. When I build a car, everything gets coated. There is no bare metal under there. I even use coated bolts.
 

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That is realistically not true. You can stop the oxidation reduction reaction by lowering the temp enough. But, unless your garage is on Europa, it's not cold enough. :)
It's a 'kinda both right' situation. Salt can cause rust to form just using the humidity in the air. This is especially true with magnesium salts that are more commonly used with brining these days. With brine you have very tiny crystals (because they were dissolved in water) than can get all up everywhere and make a fine dust, which really loves to form rust just via some humidity.

But if the car is actually wet, then rust forms even faster.

If you plan to keep a car for over ten years, and especially if you plan to keep it 15+ then I suggest an agressive approach of 1) waxing regularly, 2) cleaning regularly espcially in winter, and 3) apply some fluid film type rust inhibitor on the undercarriage every 2-3 years. You can do all this yourself, no need to pay someone.
 
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