10 Most Common Causes of Car Paint Damage

A car with a scrape on the front bumper.

Most of the common causes of car paint damage are sadly unavoidable. While car paints today are manufactured using advanced technologies and methods that have improved durability, over time nature takes its toll with fading and cracking. However, there are steps you can take to make your car paint last longer. Some of the most common causes of car paint damage are detailed below.

1. Temperature Fluctuations

When your car is constantly exposed to temperature fluctuations, the paint will expand and contract with the changes in temperature. Over time, this will result in small cracks and openings that will allow the infiltration of moisture, salt, and other chemicals that will cause rust and rapid deterioration of the paint.

2. Shoe Polish and Shaving Cream

These two items are sometimes used to write messages or etch decorative drawings on the windows of a car, for example after a wedding. However, if either of the two gets on to the car paint, it will be very difficult to remove and will most probably leave permanent marks.

3. Concrete

You must avoid leaving your car in the vicinity of a construction area. In addition to the high concentration of dust, there is also the danger of wet concrete landing on the car. If this happens and the concrete sets in place, it will leave prominent marks when it is scraped out.

4. Bird Eggs and Droppings

Bird droppings on a car.

Eggs and bird droppings can be quite damaging to car paint. They naturally contain chemicals that erode paint and expose the underlying layers. Therefore, it is important to remove these messes as soon as they occur.

5. Gasoline and Brake Fluid

These liquids from other parts of the car must be kept away from the car paint. If either is allowed to make contact with the painted surface, it will cause the paint to peel.

6. Sharp Objects

Sharp objects such as keys, razor blades, scissors, and knives will cause damage to car paint. These objects are often used by vandals on cars that are left unsupervised for long periods of time.

7. Stones and Rocks

Cars that are driven on highways are often subject to damage from small stones and rocks. This is also true of unfinished roads. These small objects chip the surface of the paint and leave openings that contribute to paint degeneration.

8. Generic and Abrasive Cleaners

A man cleans a car.

When you wash your car, it is important to avoid generic cleaners such as detergent and soap. Always stick to high-quality car cleaning products. Never use rough cleaning products or abrasive materials to clean the car.

9. Moisture

After cleaning the car, it is important to wipe it down thoroughly and remove all the moisture. This will remove water spots and also protect the car paint from accumulated moisture.

10. Dirty Cleaning Cloths

Never rub a dirty cloth on your car. The dirt particles can scratch the paint and leave marks. Also avoid rubbing dirt with a dry cloth, because it will cause friction and damage.