Rust is one of the nastiest enemies a car can have. Corrosion is mostly caused by water penetrating the paint, and after this happens, water starts bubbling the paint. Rust starts spreading from inside out and eventually breaks the paint itself.
Strong corrosion protection is vital for a car that is more than 10-12 years old because most cars get battered with loads of stone chips throughout the car’s life which can cause corrosion. After a car has been exposed to moisture and oxygen for a while, rust is bound to happen.
Some car manufacturers like BMW do comprehensive corrosion protection even before the car has been assembled, but this type of corrosion protection does not last forever. You are also able to take advantage of lots of different aftermarket corrosion protection techniques.
But if you take care of your car, wash it regularly, and even apply paint protection film on specific vulnerable areas, you can negate these effects for a long time. Rustproofing a 12+-year-old BMW is a good idea, if the car is younger than that, just take decent care of it.
BMW factory corrosion protection
All BMW cars receive comprehensive rust protection before leaving the factory. This consists out of the body of the entire car being dipped into manganese, phosphate zinc, and nickel. After the bath, BMW puts on a protective coating layer onto the entire body.
This process even extends to a sub-atomic level as BMW uses a special coating called e-coat which consists out of electrically charging the entire body. This ensures that every nanometer of the car’s body has been equally protected. After this, high-tech robots start injecting high-pressure sealants into all vulnerable cavities of the car’s body.
BMW goes to great lengths to ensure that all the vulnerable parts of the car’s body are being protected. Starting with the underbody, BMW applies a polyvinyl chloride mix that protects the car from water ingress and underbody moisture.
After this, BMW paints the car and applies an additional layer of protection with a special melted paraffin-based cavity wax to ensure that all the small cracks, seams, and crevices are covered. The wax dries and becomes a strong corrosion deterrent. BMW also offers a 12-year long corrosion warranty for cars made after 2004.
Aftermarket BMW corrosion protection
If your car is more than 12 years old, you might want to take a lot at some of these aftermarket corrosion prevention techniques. One of the latest corrosion prevention techniques is a special electronic module that sends out a weak current throughout the car’s body which theoretically prevents your car from reacting with oxygen. Prices range from $500-1000.
If you are looking for a cheaper $150 alternative, tar-based sprays are also often used for mostly underbody rust protection. This technique consists out of spraying a tar-like layer onto the car’s vulnerable areas in an effort of rust protection. But this layer is susceptible to cracking which can even speed up the corrosion process and it should be avoided.
Special dripless oil sprays are somewhat similar to the aforementioned tar-based sprays, but this technique, if carried out by a professional offers better and more thorough protection. Some drilling is necessary so you should consult with a professional. Costs range from $120-150, and this should be repeated annually.
You might also want to check out drip oil sprays which are more viscous than the aforementioned dripless oil sprays and offer even better rust protection for the same price. This technique should also be carried out on an annual basis and is often the recommended way by lots of specialists.
General everyday rust prevention
Be sure to wash your car regularly, as this is paramount for paint longevity and rust protection. Furthermore, you should also use a dedicated ceramic coating layer for increased paint protection and always watch for salt on your car, and clean it as often as you can.
You should also keep all the dedicated drain plugs clean so water can easily exit all of the cavities of the car. If you don’t clean your interior often, there is a good chance that the dirt might spread to the exterior as well, and this can cause rusting.
If you want the highest level of protection, go ahead and apply paint protection film onto all the vulnerable areas of your car. This is done to prevent stone chipping which is often the main reason why rust occurs on exterior panels.
Is it worth rustproofing a car?
It depends on a few different factors. If you live in a warmer, mostly dry climate, and you mostly drive in the city on paved roads, then it’s maybe not as necessary. But if you live in a climate with diverse weather conditions, or you often encounter moisture on your daily commutes, it might be a good idea.
If you own a fairly new car, and you are not planning to own it for a long time, then there is no need for rust proofing. If you just follow all the everyday corrosion prevention tips, the chances of rusting are fairly minimal.
Do newer cars fare better with rust compared to older cars?
Yes, they do. Lots of modern car brands use galvanized steel for some specific car frame parts. This means that these areas are not as prone to corrosion as regular steel. Older cars did not use this type of steal which means that corrosion is not as intense.
Furthermore, newer cars are generally assembled better. They offer tighter panel gaps, and many newer sealant techniques are applied straight from the factory. BMW’s comprehensive rust protection technique offers a 12-year-old warranty for a reason.
Summer vs winter rust probability?
During winter, corrosion is much more relevant due to increased moisture, and most importantly salt. Most countries use salt as an ice deterrent, but this also means that there is a great chance of your car being plagued by corrosion during the winter.
To remedy this, always make sure to wash your car regularly, if you don’t, the salt accumulation can damage the paint after a while. If this happens, you ought to look into more comprehensive rust-proofing solutions listed in this article.