Imagine driving on a highway, and a big chunk of rusty metal comes rushing towards you from the car in front. Ok, we know that there is little possibility of that happening, but we dare you to undermine rust. Rust quietly eats up the metallic parts of your car that can lead to a catastrophic failure. Apart from affecting the car’s structural integrity, large patches of rust will lower its resale value. Hence, many car owners try to steer clear of it. However, to do that successfully, you need to know what rust is and the causes of car rust.
What Is Rust?
Rust goes by the chemical name of iron-oxide which results from the combination of iron with oxygen. For rust to form in real life, three ingredients are a must.
Source Of Iron: Rust is the oxidized form of iron, but where can we find iron in real life? Everywhere! Iron is economical and strong, so it’s used in automobile construction worldwide. In addition to using iron, we use steel which is a derivative of iron.
Air: Air has the other element rust needs to form, oxygen!
Water: Water either in the form of splashes or humidity will do the trick. Water breaks oxygen molecules allowing them to react with iron molecules forming rust.
In a nutshell, that’s the chemistry of rust formation. Without any of the three horsemen, rust cannot form. Rust is porous, which means rust opens your car for more rust formation. Hence, it’s important to get rid of rust spots to stop further oxidation.
Reasons For Car Rust Formation:
Rain: Rain exposes your car’s body to moisture. Suppose some scratches or dents uncovers the metal body underneath; moisture due to rain will be quick to act. Hence, make sure your car is well protected during the rainy season.
Living Near Ocean: Living near a beach might be cool getting amazing beachside holidays. However, your car will not appreciate that because the beach nearby translates to high environmental humidity.
Salt: Salt speeds up the formation of rust; it acts as a catalyst which means that salt stays unaffected in the reaction. Hence, if the salt concentration doesn’t dwindle, salt will continue to speed up the reaction until you get rid of it. Now, where will the salt come from? Road salt is a common occurrence, especially during the snow.
Neglect: Neglect is perhaps your car’s worst enemy. Rust only paves the more rust. Therefore, you need to be proactive here and try to remove any surface rust you can find. Removing surface rust is a do-it-yourself task. However, you may need to stop by a mechanic for more deep-rooted damage.
Nonetheless, keep an eye out for new specks of rust. A regular car wash can help you with quick detection because it’s easier to detect rust without a layer of grime covering the body. Cadillac Car Wash can help you with optimum body wash; drop by our service center to learn more about how we can help.