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Thread: How do I clean salt off of my car?

  1. #1

    Default How do I clean salt off of my car?

    I was driving in the blizzard when I passed by this pick-up truck. Someone on the truck accidentally poured salt on my car with his shovel. Salt can make my car corrode. Will spraying water be enough to clean it off? Unfortunately, the water in the outdoor pipe is frozen. I might have to get water from the bathroom. There's no carwash where I live.

  2. #2
    Philologist Senior Member ajaxfetish's Avatar
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    Feb 2005

    Default Re: How do I clean salt off of my car?

    No personal experience, but salt is highly water-soluble, so that should be more than enough.


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  3. #3

    Default Re: How do I clean salt off of my car?

    water's the best bet, something with a bit of pressure would be ideal.

    Edit: and remember to give the bottom a good wash down as you don't want a rotten floor pan.

  4. #4
    Master of Few Words Senior Member KukriKhan's Avatar
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    Jun 2001

    Default Re: How do I clean salt off of my car?

    Water will do the trick. Since it's cold enough to freeze your water pipes, tape over your door locks first; you don't want them full of ice tomorrow morning.
    Be well. Do good. Keep in touch.

  5. #5
    Oni Member Samurai Waki's Avatar
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    Sep 2004
    Portland, Ore.
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    Default Re: How do I clean salt off of my car?

    Water would do the trick, or if you want to avoid having your car as an iceblock in the morning, you could always use anti-freeze Window Washing Fluid...but thats gonna cost a little bit, unless you already have some on hand.

  6. #6

    Default Re: How do I clean salt off of my car?

    Did the salt dissolve? If it's not in solution, or the solution is frozen/very close to frozen, your car isn't going to rust that quickly and you don't absolutely have to have it washed by yesterday, in my opinion.

    I'm guessing your bigger problem is, as stated earlier, salt on the underside of the car, in wheel wells (although these seem to be mostly plastic, but maybe the metal fasteners and some suspension parts), etc, where the road salt gets kicked up. The salt the guy accidentally threw on your car most likely just got on the top of the car and slid off, and if it didn't, its fairly easy to just rinse the top of the car off with water. Under the car is more annoying.

  7. #7
    Tree Killer Senior Member Beirut's Avatar
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    May 2003
    Quebec, Canada

    Default Re: How do I clean salt off of my car?

    Around these here parts, where they dump salt on the roads like the streets were french fries, people have the bottom of the cars coated with oil. Costs less than a hundred bucks.

    For several hundred dollars ($750?), they spray oil inside the doors and hollow parts of the car. That really helps but, well, it costs several hundred dollars.

    Washing salt off with water is the best I've ever seen. Park your car in a buddy's garage, let it thaw, then give it the once over.
    Unto each good man a good dog

  8. #8

    Default Re: How do I clean salt off of my car?

    Both of my cars receive the anti-rust treatement every year. It really help keeping the car free of rust. But its not that expensive, its less than 90$ by car.

    As for the salt, best is to find someone with a garage and wash it there.

  9. #9
    TexMec Senior Member Louis VI the Fat's Avatar
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    Apr 2004
    Saint Antoine

    Default Re : How do I clean salt off of my car?

    If I spill salt, I always poor a lot of red wine over it.
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  10. #10
    Medical Welshman in London. Senior Member Big King Sanctaphrax's Avatar
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    Jan 2003
    Cardiff in the summer, London during term time.

    Default Re: Re : How do I clean salt off of my car?

    I thought salt didn't work too well as a de-icer under -10 degrees, as it only lowers the freezing point of water to that temp? It seems strange that they use it in really cold places if that's the case.
    Last edited by Big King Sanctaphrax; 02-08-2006 at 20:26.
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  11. #11

    Default Re: How do I clean salt off of my car?

    Thanks for the tips m8s. I'll go and try them. Unfortunately, I live in a place where they don't oil cars. After I wash the car, I'll check and see if they do any anti-rust treatement around here.

  12. #12

    Default Re: How do I clean salt off of my car?

    Also, wax in, wax out grasshopper.

    Every winter I put my car in a thick layer of carwax...
    Abandon all hope.


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