By Brennah M. Dallaire
Special to the Live Wire

Courtesy of Kleen

In 2015, the first day of spring was March 20 and this year the first day of spring means snow on the ground and freezing temperatures. Nevertheless, it doesn’t hurt to prepare for the changing climate with some minimal car maintenance including, a car wash and rust prevention.

That familiar white residue that is left on car rims, side panels and glass over the winter is corrosive and can damage the finish and performance. The continuous buildup of salt on a car undercarriage can lead to serious damage in the long term, including rust on engine components, suspension and anything else exposed underneath the car, said Matt Mangal, a Lube Technician at Gale Toyota of Enfield.

Corrosive salt is used everywhere, even here at Manchester Community College.

Darlene Mancini-Brown, director of Facilities Management and Planning at Manchester Community College, confirms that Ice B’ Gone Magic is the ice control salt used on campus. While the brand claims its product is “less corrosive, non-toxic and environmentally friendly,” Material Safety Data Sheets from Sears Ecological Application Company provided by Mancini-Brown read that this sodium chloride product is corrosive to metals.

Ice B’ Gone Magic is the ice control salt that the campus uses on campus. Photo Courtesy of Magic Salt of Maine.

Ice B’ Gone Magic is the ice control salt currently used on campus. Photo Courtesy of Magic Salt of Maine.

“I think it’s important to take care of maintenance no matter the season,” said MCC student Eric Jenkins. “But I have noticed during winter, especially coming to school, has shown abnormal wear and tear on my girlfriend’s car.”

Getting a thorough wash as soon as possible will preserve the look and performance of your vehicle. A wash to flush salt from the wheel wells and undercarriage should be a part of your winter car maintenance, Mangal said.

Mangal said he recommends Airport Auto Wash in Windsor Locks. They run weekly specials, have coupon packages and offer tunnel as well as touchless car wash options; vacuums are available on site. Other local car washes include Russell Speeders in Manchester and Mr. Sparkle in West Hartford.