The Ultimate Guide to Car Covers: Why Use One & Best Options April 13 2016

 

Car covers are amazingly practical and cost-effective accessories: they can protect your car from many unwanted external elements for a relatively small investment. With many car owners looking to shield their beloved vehicles from bad weather and other external hazards, it’s no surprise that car covers are popular because of their availability and low cost.

Since not every car owner can afford a garage or a car port, car covers are the go-to accessories for protecting the exterior of many vehicles: they are usually affordable and versatile, as you can carry them with you when traveling. There are several types of car covers and choosing the right model for your vehicle will depend on what your needs are.

To help you understand what the available options are and how you can find the best fit for your car, I’ve put together this guide detailing the elements you should know and consider before buying your car cover. It’s important to make an informed decision when purchasing one so that you can get your vehicle the best possible protection against the surrounding hazards.

 

Contents

A. What Are Car Covers and Why Use a Car Cover?
1. How Do Car Covers Work
2. Main Advantages of Car Covers
Non-Water Resistant Car Covers
Water Resistant Car Covers
Water Proof Car Covers
B. Top 3 Best Car Covers for Your Vehicle

 

A. What Are Car Covers and Why Use a Car Cover?

There are many external hazards that can damage your car’s exterior. Rainwater can damage and corrode areas of your vehicle which are unprotected. It can also dry into your car’s paint and cause water spotting, which is typically difficult to remove. Debris and contaminants that are brought up by strong winds can have a corrosive and abrasive effect on your paint and finish over time. Snow, hail, and ice can also damage the exterior of your car during the colder days.

Besides the obvious damage that bad weather will inflict on your car over time, there are other hazards that you need to protect your vehicle against. Bird droppings, industrial fallout, dust, scratches, acid rain, and ultraviolet radiation can all have a strong negative effect on your car’s exterior and unprotected parts. Even if your car is kept in a garage or in a car port, dust gathering on the exterior can have a corrosive effect, so it is still recommended that you use a car cover to protect it from the long-term effects of dust and fallout.

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1. How Do Car Covers Work?

Car covers come in many different shapes, sizes, and fabrics. Deciding on the right car cover for you depends on what you want to protect your vehicle against, the climate that you live in, and on whether you usually keep your vehicle in a garage or outside. The cost of car covers can also vary depending on the material that they are made of, the amount of protection they offer, the model of the vehicle they are made for, and on whether they are generic or tailored specifically for your car.

Car covers are typically used as a protective shield that fits perfectly over your vehicle and keeps it safe from the oxidation, corrosion, and damage that external hazards usually cause. However, choosing the right cover for your vehicle is important since a cover that does not fit properly can do more harm than good. If the car cover you use is too loose, it can flap against the surface of your vehicle when the wind is powerful: this can cause your car’s paint to deteriorate or leave severe scratches on the surface. It’s also important to have a clean car before covering it. The dirt on your vehicle can get trapped between the cover and the paint and cause scratches as well.

Ideally, you should get a car cover that fits tightly and make sure that your vehicle is clean before sliding the cover on it to protect its exterior from any kind of damage that might occur. The universal one-size-fits-all car covers that you can get from any producer are typically cheaper than the customized ones but they might not fit your car properly. If you are going to purchase a one-size-fits-all cover, measure your vehicle in advance to estimate the size of cover you will need as accurately as you can,then measure the cover itself. This way you can have an idea about how well the cover could fit on your car.

If you can afford to spend a bit more and are looking for a perfect fit a tailored car cover is the best option for you. Having a custom-made car cover will ensure that your vehicle’s paint coat does not suffer any damage because of a bad fit but it is a bit pricier. Some of the better quality covers will also have a locking system at the bottom, which will allow you to hold the bottom edges of the cover down tightly with a plastic covered cable. This way, the cover will not be moved by the wind and potential thieves will be unable to lift it off of your vehicle.

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2. Main Advantages of Car Covers

There are several types of car covers and each comes with its own advantages and disadvantages. Which one will work best for your vehicle will ultimately be decided by what your needs are in terms of protection. Making an informed choice about your car cover will help you find the right product in the right price range. You may not have to spend an exorbitant amount for some situations so there’s no point in buying a model that doesn’t cater to your requirements. The most common types of car covers are non-water resistant, water resistant, and water proof. Aside from extra features some models may have, your decision will ultimately boil down to choosing one of these three types of cover.

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Non-Water Resistant Covers

Non-water resistant car covers are typically made from either 100 percent cotton or cotton and polyester blends. They should not be used for extended periods of time outdoors as they provide little to no protection against water. This type of car cover was designed to protect vehicles stored indoors from dust and debris gathering on the surface and damaging the paint and exterior. If you want to protect your car or store it in a garage over winter, this type of cover is the ideal choice as the fabric is usually gentle on the exterior and easy to fold and put away. If you drive your car often but want to protect it while it is indoors, a non-water resistant cover might be the simplest option. In my experience, 100 percent cotton models offer more protection since polyester can sometimes scratch the paint. Pure cotton car covers are also great for cars with cabriolet canvas tops since they will not leave fibres stuck to the roof of the vehicle.

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Water Resistant Car Covers

Water resistant car covers are also known as breathable covers because they permit air circulation through the fabric, which helps prevent condensation from gathering beneath the material and damaging the car’s exterior. They come in a wide variety of fabrics and weights and they manage to keep most of the water away from your car.

These covers can typically be used outdoors as they repel a large quantity of water and are fitted with ultraviolet screens most of the time. They are lighter than the waterproof covers, and it’s recommended that you use a well-fitted one to ensure that the wind will not cause it to flap against your vehicle and damage your paint.

Water resistant covers are great for short term use both outdoors and indoors but they should not be considered the ideal option for long-term protection outside since they are not 100 percent waterproof and will not be able to properly protect the car from heavy rainfall or strong winds.

Some models will only filter the water and keep dust particles, fallout, and dirt away but will not manage to guard against acid rain. Other models will provide good protection against the elements over a longer period of time but will be significantly thicker and heavier.

When it comes to choosing a water resistant car cover the best thing to do is to focus on the kind of protection you need. If you’re planning on keeping the vehicle outside for an extended time, opt for a sturdier model. However, if you only need a cover to guard against dirt, dust, and rain in the parking lot for a few hours a day, choose a lighter version that you can put on and take off with ease.

When using this type of cover, it is important to bear in mind that stronger winds will often cause it to flap against the vehicle unless it is very well fitted. This can cause the cover to scratch the surface of your car and damage the paint if your car is dirty. The best thing to do to prevent this from happening is to properly wash your vehicle before covering it up and to get a tailored cover instead of a generic one in order to ensure a proper fitting cover that will not flap around when it’s windy.

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Water Proof Car Covers

The third type of car cover available is the waterproof cover which is best for guarding against rain, but which can cause condensation to get trapped between the material and your vehicle. This trapped condensation can damage you paint, sometimes to an astounding extent. In many cases, the problems caused by this condensation are worse than the ones that the rain would have caused had the car been uncovered to begin with.

Water proof car covers are usually made out of plastic film or out of fabric that is then coated in plastic. Because of the possibility of condensation forming between these covers and the vehicle, they are typically used alongside a non-water resistant cover to protect against moisture gathering on the exterior of the car. You can put a cotton or a cotton-polyester blend cover directly on the car and then place the plastic, waterproof cover on top of it. You can use this type of cover for long term storage over winter or for outdoor protection against the rain.

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B. Top 3 Best Car Covers For Your Vehicle

Whether you’re looking for a simple cover to guard against dust or you want to waterproof every inch of your vehicle, there are several great car cover options for you. If you want to get a tailored cover you can just use a local supplier, but you can also find great customized car covers online and get them shipped to you. Here are some ideas about what covers you can look for to best fit your needs.

  • Stormforce Car Cover The Stormforce is our biggest seller, mainly due to the fact it is a 4 layer breathable car cover, this allows the condensation to evaporate through the car cover. Many collector and enthusiasts choose the Stormforce for this reason alone.

  • Monsoon Winter Car Cover – this type of car cover is a heavy-duty model that is one hundred percent water-proof. It is ideal for long-term outdoor storage. It can withstand harsh weather conditions. It is impermeable so it can protect your car from heavy rain and snow fall.

  • Kalahari Ultimate Indoor Car Cover – this model is a custom-made dust cover designed to protect your car against dust and dirt indoors. It is tailored to your car’s exact measurements in order to fit like a glove. The fabric used to make it is soft in order to prevent scratching. It is lined with fleece and UV-resistant. This cover is ideal for long-term indoor storage. It perfectly fits your vehicle as it is custom made.

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