When the sun beats down on your car, it does so relentlessly and without remorse. After all, unless you have a tent that you can set up or park in a covered area, then you might want to take a few precautions before you leave your car parked out in the open.
Heat damage, or sun damage, is particularly disheartening to see. Discoloration, deformation, and even cracking will occur if exposed for long enough, and without proper care or protection. UV damage and heat damage will deteriorate your car’s exterior and interior over time, so here are a few things you can do to prevent and mitigate sun damage.
Park in the shade
It’s pretty self-explanatory, park your car in the shade so it’s not as exposed. It’s free unless you need to pay for a spot, and it’s an easy fix. Park it under a tree, but be careful of things like falling fruits and branches. Park your car in the garage, so it’s not so exposed to the elements.
Get a good heat-rejecting tint
When you get your car from the dealership, you have the option to install tint before it rolls out of the lot. It’s important to get a tint with good heat rejection properties to keep your interior from getting too hot out in the sun.
Use a sun deflector
These items can get pretty affordable, and you can keep multiple in your car. There are different form factors as well, but the most commonly used deflectors are often the most effective. There are many types of sun deflectors in the market, each with its own uses.
Insulated sun deflectors are only used while stationary, as are collapsable ones with the two rings. These are the most effective protectors against the sun, and make sure to keep a few in the car so you can cover all the windows if you need to park your car under the sun.
There are also netted shades like the integrated ones found in more expensive cars. These types of shades are often used for passengers, but not so much for the driver. These shades can get pretty inexpensive and can be attached via a suction cup.
If your car is parked outside, chances are, you won’t have a roof over it, and the sun has free reign to shine down on your paint and interior. However, if you use a car cover and block off most of all of the harmful rays, you will be more or less in the clear, and able to keep your car from getting damaged over time.
Clean your car’s interior
Make sure that you keep your interior clean and free of clutter. Do take out the trash and keep your car free of dust and any stain-causing substance that can become a permanent fixture in your upholstery or carpet. Also, clear containers and take out alcohol and any other flammable substances that can be ignited with excess heat. Also do not leave electronics with batteries inside the car, as they could overheat, expand, or even catch fire if subject to high instances of heat.
Condition your leather
This piece of advice will apply to cars with leather seats and interiors. Get a leather interior and make sure you clean your seats first before applying it to the leather upholstery. By conditioning the leather in your car’s interior, you hydrate it and keep it from drying out and cracking.