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#3269142 - 02/03/14 12:44 PM Washing the salt off
supton Offline

Registered: 11/09/08
Posts: 6414
Loc: NH
Ok, I decided to do that for the first time yesterday. In my defense, when I got up it was 50F, and when I washed it was more like 37-39, so perhaps it wasn't the brightest idea ever. [I woke up in CT and then drove home to NH.] I took the garden hose and tried to angle it up underneath the car; but afterwards I'm not convinced I accomplished much. Is that actually accomplishing anything? I had sprayed (what I could) with FF this fall, but it had seemingly been a warm (and wet) day, so it seemed like a good idea to try hosing down the car. In hindsight I should have popped the hood and hosed down the engine too.

I did find some irony in that, since I needed to vacuum the car afterwards, I found myself tossing salt on the driveway, as it had gotten quite slippery!
2011 Toyota Camry, base, 6spd manual, 95k, hers
2010 Toyota Tundra double cab, 4.6L, auto, 96k, his

#3269147 - 02/03/14 12:49 PM Re: Washing the salt off [Re: supton]
JHZR2 Offline

Registered: 12/14/02
Posts: 35762
Loc: New Jersey
Did it do anything? Well it probably helped remove 90% of the salt. Problem is, the crystals may not be doing anything, its the fine dust of salt all over that is an issus.

Ive used salt away in a garden fertilizer sprayer for years now. It works pretty well, helping to release more salt (IMO). Its a mixture of TSP, corrosion inhibitors, surfactants, etc. It just helps to dissolve and carry away dirt and salt crystals and fines.

With those sprayers, I just hold it under and spray up as much as I can.

In the past Ive sprayed it on with a pressurizable garden sprayer with a long wand to get better in the wheelwells and underneath. Thing is, you dnt get enough flow, so its slower and more tedious. The garden fertilizer sprayer works well.

#3269148 - 02/03/14 12:50 PM Re: Washing the salt off [Re: supton]
eljefino Offline

Registered: 06/15/03
Posts: 26514
Loc: ME
It's a no-win.

I felt good going at it once with the hot water tap from my apartment washer dryer hookup. Just ran the hose out my window. If my landlady saw me she'd have flipped.

Warm water dissolves salt much better. A gentle cloth, too, but there are lots of abrasives.

I don't usually try.

#3269155 - 02/03/14 12:53 PM Re: Washing the salt off [Re: supton]
daves87rs Offline

Registered: 02/23/09
Posts: 14484
Loc: Michigan
Washed one....covered with salt less than 8 hours later. You would think a some days above freezing with no snow might be possible some time this winter....
“The Only Thing Necessary for the Triumph of Evil is that Good Men Do Nothing.”

#3269156 - 02/03/14 12:53 PM Re: Washing the salt off [Re: supton]
Donald Offline

Registered: 03/21/04
Posts: 15208
Loc: Upstate NY
You will never get it all off until April. I just shot for getting the bulk of it off.
2015 Subaru Forester 2.5 engine/CVT PP & M1
2001 Jeep Grand Cherokee Laredo 4.0 - PP & M1
1999 Dodge Ram 2500 w/Cummins - Rotella T6 & M1

#3269157 - 02/03/14 12:55 PM Re: Washing the salt off [Re: supton]
supton Offline

Registered: 11/09/08
Posts: 6414
Loc: NH
I wasn't sure, since that was the point of spraying down the underside with FF in the first place. Just seemed like a good time yesterday, it was warm out, then I figured it'd get good and cold again. I figure, as long as it's cold out then it won't rust, as nothing is wet. Once it warms up and roads get wet is when issues probably start--if anything, a layer of salt probably wicks up any moisture and holds it away from metal... maybe.

Wait a minute: salt is a preservative, isn't it? grin

I didn't bother washing the top of the car off, just kinda hosed off the fenders; was worried about underneath.

Edited by supton (02/03/14 12:56 PM)
2011 Toyota Camry, base, 6spd manual, 95k, hers
2010 Toyota Tundra double cab, 4.6L, auto, 96k, his

#3269171 - 02/03/14 01:09 PM Re: Washing the salt off [Re: supton]
doitmyself Offline

Registered: 06/03/02
Posts: 5021
Loc: MI
I contend that maybe it is doing more harm than good. Dissolve that salt and blast it into the nooks and crannies that normal driving might not achieve.

Just think of that salt solution sitting in the inside bottom of your door seam waiting to eat away the metal crzy.

It varies for everyone. We had about 5 days in January with no precipitation (wet, salty roads). So to wash the salt off was simply a feel good process that would disappear the very next day.

I had buyers remorse when I had my new car Krowned this past summer. Not any more. I was initially upset at how thin it was and how it seemed to be washed off the underside. But in October when I rubbed my finger on a frame rail, there was a very thin oily residue that wiped off. So, it seems to be there, just not in a thick, visible coating.

There does seem to be a much heightened level of whining this winter about salt, cold, ice, and winter in general. Each morning, after my morning exercise and check of the trap line, I sit under my sun lamp for a half hour looking at pictures of Caribbean beaches and laugh at old man winter. grin Bring it on!

#3269174 - 02/03/14 01:14 PM Re: Washing the salt off [Re: supton]
dparm Offline

Registered: 04/19/10
Posts: 12612
Loc: Chicago, IL
Every little bit helps, but don't for an instant think that periodically spraying it off will prevent any and all rust. You're just slowing it down.
2011.5 BMW M3 saloon ZCP
der stärkste buchstabe der welt
Castrol Edge Professional TWS 10w60 + Mahle OX 254D3

#3269179 - 02/03/14 01:19 PM Re: Washing the salt off [Re: supton]
supton Offline

Registered: 11/09/08
Posts: 6414
Loc: NH
Oh for sure; I'm just hoping to stave off the rust until mechanical issues / age indicates that "it's time". Our Honda made it 10 years with zero washing and I thought it was "time"; I'm not sure we'll keep these past 10 years (although it might be nice, we're talking 250-300k).
2011 Toyota Camry, base, 6spd manual, 95k, hers
2010 Toyota Tundra double cab, 4.6L, auto, 96k, his

#3269191 - 02/03/14 01:26 PM Re: Washing the salt off [Re: supton]
MNgopher Offline

Registered: 09/17/02
Posts: 3205
Loc: Lakeville, MN
From fleet experience: the vehicles that get washed tend not to develop rust problems. The ones that seldom get washed develop awful rust problems. As an example, I drive a 2004 Explorer for work that has rust in all sorts of places that you wouldn't expect. It rarely is washed. In the meantime, a 2003 Explorer with more miles and frequent washing is in excellent condition. Many more similar examples...

#3269199 - 02/03/14 01:28 PM Re: Washing the salt off [Re: supton]
Taildragger Offline

Registered: 10/17/10
Posts: 219
Loc: SW Florida
I use this on my boat, might work for you northern peeps.


#3269228 - 02/03/14 01:58 PM Re: Washing the salt off [Re: Taildragger]
satinsilver Offline

Registered: 01/24/08
Posts: 3087
Loc: Ohio
Ummm, where do you buy it? Since there are no prices listed and when you click on purchase info it says available in many stores. RRRRRRRRR.

#3269266 - 02/03/14 02:44 PM Re: Washing the salt off [Re: supton]
dlundblad Offline

Registered: 09/30/13
Posts: 4568
Loc: Indiana
Would a good under body wash once a month at a car wash be good enough?

Thats what i do. And weather permitting a quick rinse at a quarter wash once a week.

Edited by dlundblad (02/03/14 02:45 PM)
2003 Jeep WJ 4.0 (170k)
Pennzoil HM 10w30/ TG16
M1 75w-140 gear/ P1 air
Castrol ATF+4/ Valvoline PSF

#3269274 - 02/03/14 02:50 PM Re: Washing the salt off [Re: supton]
901Memphis Offline

Registered: 08/14/10
Posts: 8051
Loc: Northern Kentucky
You would need a rust proofing treatment to keep it away. Washing only slows things down. Unless it's clean and treated your going to be fighting hard.
2002 Buick Century 111k - QS Defy 5w30/Fram TG 3387A
Filter mag/Cooper CS5 GT/Wearever Platinum Ceramics
Triple Edge 4T65E/Maxlife Dex-Merc

#3269275 - 02/03/14 02:50 PM Re: Washing the salt off [Re: dlundblad]
satinsilver Offline

Registered: 01/24/08
Posts: 3087
Loc: Ohio
Yes, that would be a good idea. In the Toyota owners manual it states to do that. But just wetting it down is worse than not doing anything at all. High pressure spray to remove the gunk.

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