Saline solution - Lee H
Happy new year to everyone, hope you all had a good festive season.

As I look outside to my doom blue Xantia, it is showing the signs of having toured the North of England in the past week in that it is now white with salt. Not just a little bit, but enough to flavour all the chips in Whitley Bay.

It's not attractive, and I'm heading out to wash it, but my question is this - what's all that salt doing to the expensive bits under the body? Should I drive with haste to a car wash that does the underside of the car?

Any advice much appreciated.

Re: Saline solution - Graham
>what's all that salt doing to the expensive bits under the body?

I think you already know the answer to this one

>Should I drive with haste to a car wash that does the underside of the car?


Read old posts on the dangers of drive thru brush style automatic car washes and decide how over protective you are of your car. If you have the space at your house consider investing in a home power washer (B&Q do one for around £50 last time I looked) @ around £3.50 per wash at a 'filling station'* it will soon pay for itself, and you don't have to rush to beat the beeps between cycles of wash, rinse, wax!

* Notice the demise of the trusty garage, too many 'filling stations' these days, cannot find a decent one with coolent, oil, petrol additives, wiper blades, fuses etc like you used to.
Re: Saline solution - David W
Hello Lee, how are things? Happy New Year to you and yours.

Graham is right, getting that muck of the underneath asap can only help. Having said that you are lucky owning a Xantia in two respects.

First they are superbly rust proofed on the underbody area for a car of their class. Far better than a Renault, Ford, Vauxhall, Nissan and many others of that era.

Second you can lift the suspension enough to do a decent job with your own pressure washer, just kneeling on a pad and pushing the lance underneath on a softish fan spray.

Good time of year to get your own washer as well, sale discounts and free protective slippers if you're lucky.

Re: Saline solution - Lee H
David W wrote:
> Good time of year to get your own washer as well, sale
> discounts and free protective slippers if you're lucky.

I cannot escape my destiny....I'd not realised that I can get special slippers too, excellent! SWMBO didn't respond too well to my last suggestion that I needed a new power toy, er tool, but if I can find one in the sales, I think I'll have to jump in. At least I could remove all the green gunk from the backyard.

Colin, I spent most of the holidays in Keswick and so know where to find all those pitted roads, there's a good selection on the route to Rosthwaite/Stonethwaite. But will I get any benefit when the Xantia sails effortlessly and evenly across the holes ;-)

In the meantime I'm going to follow Graham's advice and find a decent car wash and do the underside.

Thanks to everyone for the responses.

Re: Saline solution - ladas are slow
a friend of mine has a SAVE garage, its on tynemouth road, north shields. he sells - oil, bags of coal, logs, biscuits, tins of cat food, wiper blades, drinks, crisps, fuses, coolant, anti freeze, de icer, magazines (non of those horrible smutty ones), and you can get your car wash, air, water, vacuum, and of course you can get petrol.

he sells just about anything.
Re: Saline solution - mike harvey
If the rustproofing measures are undisturbed, the salt should not get to the body shell to damage it, but in my experience, a lot of damage is done at garages with jacks axle stands and lifts scraping away the underseal, leaving the metal exposed, especially on the bottom of sills. When its a bit dryer, I should have a good look and touch it up. If it's always been serviced at the dealers, why not ask them to do it FOC? They may well blame it on tyre fitters though!
Best wishes
Re: Saline solution - Colin Standing
Probably because of innate laziness, I have for fumpfty-fump years not bothered getting the salt off the underside. But laziness is the mother of less disagreeable alternatives, even if often as not they don't work, so for fellow procrastinators, here's the reasoning :-

However much you push your fancy nozzle all over the place, you will not replicate the forces which put the gunge there in the first place. So wait till the ice and salt has been washed away from the roads, pick a day when it's chucking it down (not difficult in Cumbria - one will come along any day now), find the worst repaired and rutted road with lots of lovely big puddles and make sure that you go that way to work every day for a week.

Does it work? Possibly not, but I'll feel better.

2002 is going to be a star. All enjoy.

Cuilon S
Re: Saline solution - Vin
One note of caution is that the handbook for my car suggests that powerful under car washing can wash off the protective wax. Dunno if it's true, but X hundred PSI could conceivably do it, so I just put a hose with a sprinkler on the end under the car for a few minutes instead of using a jetwash.

Re: Saline solution - Brian
Good idea about the sprinkler, but not practicable at the moment as the hose is sitting on the drive frozen solid from end to end!
Re: Saline solution - ladas are slow
put the hose in a bucket of warm water.

Value my car