Hi all! My 30AE will spend its idle moments (pretty much all of the time, sadly) under a Monsoon Outdoor car cover in the open air. I’m concerned that the movement of the cover on windy days will in time damage the paintwork. Anyone have any suggestions as to how best to protect it? Just wax polish? Ceramic coating? Or am I worried about nothing, my last ND spent 3 years without any discernable damage but this one’s a keeper!
Mine can go in a garage in the winter, luckily, and it has an internal use cover. It is (almost) like silk and has a very soft lining as well. Maybe look to have an “undercover” to help protect the paintwork.
The secret, I suspect, is to ensure the cover is tightly fitted to stop any unintended movement so looking for a cover with good tie points is a must. Although price is not always a good indicator of quality, I suggest you don’t go cheap.
You could just cover the car with a couple of old sheets then put the cover on. It worked when mine was outside. It’s also supprising how many sheets are in the airing cuboard that are not used.
My NC and ND are under car covers (Mazda versions that only go over the soft top and windows). I can confirm that they do cause what I would call ‘dull areas’ on the paintwork around the top of the rear wing/rear area of door after a while. However, I find that using something like Autoglym Super Resin Polish from time to time restores the gloss completely. Keeping the areas well waxed also helps of course. I have used the cover pretty much every day for almost 4 years on the NC and the above method ensures there is no lasting damage at all. I think benefits of keeping the weather off the soft top (and keeping water out of the rear drains) more than offsets the other minor issue. The covers have been on through some very high winds without issue, though if high winds are forecast and I’m not using the cars, I add some duct tape to hold down the cover - just sticking it to the windscreen though, not to the paintwork. I give the covers a spray with Fabsil Universal Protector occasionally as well. I had a full cover on a TT I had and this was a bit softer on the inside surface but still left a few similar marks, again, easily fixed.
Ah! They are only “spare” until SWMBO discovers them missing - then you are in trouble!
Thanks all. I’m glad I didn’t go cheap on the cover so it does have a softer inner. I can make sure the straps are tight as they do have a tendency to loosen and will treat it to a polish from time to time. I see no-one recommended ceramic coating, so maybe that’s a step too far?
I have ceramic coating and it is very good, only a wash and NO polishing for 9 years (according to the paperwork). However it will mark and the main dealer managed to scratch it when they washed the car after its service - someone leaned over the car and it looks like a zipper on a jacket went across the wing in two places. It was recoated by the company who did the original coating and it looks as good as new.
I have been told by friends that they always put a large DO NOT WASH sign in the front and make sure the service sheet says the same.
Even then they ignore it. Can’t read the note taped to the steering wheel, or the instructions on the service sheet. So infuriating. When it happened to my NC I pointed out the two new scratches and they denied doing them. So I said I’ll take both cars elsewhere next year.
A hollow threat; soon afterwards, that dealer closed down their Mazda operation.
I touched them up with lacquer coat and now only visible if you know where to look. But I should not have to do this!
How about static plastic protection sheet. I have used it on a motor bike tank to stop scratching, it just sticks to the surface without adhesive. Before storage stick it on the vunerable corners after cleaning the paint.
The sheet idea sounds nice but they need to stay dry.
One can only try . . .
In my case, the dealer admitted the damage but said they subcontracted the washing to another firm and didn’t want to get involved. They did little or nothing to assist in me getting satisfaction from the washing company. When I pointed out that the car was in their care, custody and control, they admitted that they should have been more proactive. Luckily I had a copy of the booking-in form that clearly stated the car was unmarked, which helped.
I won’t name the main dealer.
Thanks for all your thoughts on ceramic and other solutions. I’m drawn to the idea of the plastic protection sheet (clingfilm?) for the long winter storage as that does seem to overcome the damp problem. Living in central London does seem to be problematic getting anything done though - the nearest recommended firm for underseal is down by Eastbourne and they want the car for three days. That’s reassuring in terms of thoroughness but does present a few logistical problems!
I’ll add to what other guys have said, mine sits on the drive and I had the fitted MX5 outside cover and found little rub patches on the wings and boot lip, these did polish out. I just went for a cheap soft (internal) cover and throw that over the car and the rain one on top, no more rub spots