Covercraft Car Covers
Selecting the Best Car Cover
If youíre reading this, chances are pretty good that you have at least one special vehicle, a car or motorcycle that you tend to pamper and take exceptional care of. A vehicle that you want to last for a long period of time in at least the same condition that itís in today. If thatís the case, then you really do need some kind of cover to provide the maximum protection possible during periods of inactivity.
Paint and bodywork is the one area of your car that is most susceptible to harm from the environment. Itís also the most expensive and difficult to repair or restore, and a quality car cover is the easiest way you can protect your carís body and paint work, adding years to its life expectancy. If youíve recently completed a restoration, you know how expensive paintwork is, and itís only natural that youíll want to protect it and make it last. Even if the paint on your car is several years old and starting to show its age, protecting it now with a cover will prolong its life and perhaps add several more years before you have to make the paint/no paint decision.
Besides the protection offered by a quality car cover, thereís also the convenience of having those special cars clean and ready to go whenever you want to go for a drive. I know from my own experience that when my cars arenít covered, they pick up a layer of dust pretty quickly, and if I get an urge to take a drive somewhere and I donít have time to clean them, I tend to defer the drive until I have the time to clean it first. Yes, youíll probably drive and enjoy your car more if itís under a cover, clean and ready to go whenever the mood strikes you!
So now that you know some of the advantages of storing your car under a cover, how do you choose the right cover for your car? First and foremost, you need a cover that will breathe. Any and all moist air that passes below your car must be able to escape from under the cover, or youíll make the situation 10 times worse than if you hadnít covered it at all. Therefore, plastic sheets, drop cloths, or blue tarps should never be placed over a car you want to keep.
In most cases, dust and dirt are going to be your biggest enemy and the area where youíll want the most protection from your cover. Some people cover their cars with old bed sheets or blankets, but household fabrics were not designed to stop dust and dirt from passing through, so the protection gained from this approach is minimal at best. It may also be harmful to a beautiful paint job because these types of fabrics are not engineered with paint abrasion in mind, and they are actually rough enough to act like extremely fine sandpaper. They will put micro fine scratches in your paint every time you put them on or take them off, slowly dulling your paint finish over time. If the rough texture of the fabrics isnít bad enough already, consider the dust and dirt particles that will work through the fabric, and the scratches are going to be that much worse!
Some of the lesser expensive car cover fabrics are engineered to give a ďsoft touchĒ to your carís paint, but arenít necessarily the best at stopping the dust and dirt. Years ago I paid what I thought was a lot of money for a cover from some place in CA, and every spring when I uncovered the car following a winter of inactivity, it had a fine layer of brown dust all over it. I had to not only clean & buff the car, but I also had to take the cover somewhere to have it cleaned. It certainly wasnít what I was expecting when I bought the cover! Another example of a purchasing mistake would be to buy a universal cover from an auto parts or department store. The materials arenít going to be the best, and ďuniversalĒ covers that donít hug your carís shape will billow and flap more than a custom fit cover thatís outdoors or even inside when a garage door is opened. This flapping action tends to suck dirt and debris up under the cover and onto your paint, which again is not something that you would want..
So, your overall priorities when selecting a car cover should be a) breathability, b) high dust/dirt resistance, and c) custom fit. Now the fun begins as you select a fabric that will work best for your car. Iím going to make a reference here to Covercraft car covers, because I believe their products to be the absolute best covers available, in 12 different fabric types and over 70,000 available patterns. I recently needed a cover for a Peerless GT, one of only 294 cars produced in England between 1958-1960, and Covercraft had a pattern for it! Theyíve been producing premium quality car covers since 1965, and on the slim chance that you have something really weird and they donít have a pattern, custom measurement forms make it easy to get a special custom fit cover for your car.
To get back to fabric selection, and choosing the right one to protect your car, you have to understand that all of the features of the available fabrics are give and take, and no one single cover is the absolute best in every single category. Just looking at all the fancy fabric names can be intimidating, so you have to dig into the categories and decide what protection areas are most important to you. Youíll have to decide if an indoor cover will meet your needs, if thereís any chance youíd need to use it outside occasionally, or if it is going to be outdoors all of the time. You might even want two covers, one for the best possible indoor protection, and another for those times when your car must sit outside.
Is your garage Ďbusyí with other cars or maybe kids and bikes coming and going all the time, someplace where a heavier fabric with some scratch and ding protection is desirable? Is your garage dusty and dirty, where you want the maximum dirt protection, and would you like a material that could be cleaned in your home washing machine? And what about storage space? If you have a small car like my own Triumphs, and youíd like to take a cover along on a trip, youíll need a cover that packs down to a very small size so you can take it along without leaving something else at home. Have a dark color car with paint so deep you could dive into it? Then fabrics rated ďBestĒ in the soft touch category are going to be important to you. And if you live in the sunnier parts of the USA where parking your car out in the hot sun all day is a concern, then youíll want a fabric that is rated for use under ďintense sunĒ.
A complete list of all these features associated with Covercraft car covers is available on this web site by following the link below. If you need assistance choosing the best possible cover material to protect your car, please give me a call at (937) 266-1831 or send me an email (firstname.lastname@example.org) and Iíll be happy to discuss your needs. I hope that by now you can see that thereís more to selecting a quality car cover than just picking something off a shelf or choosing from only one or two selections offered by the parts catalogs. Your car and the environment you store it in have their own set of unique challenges, and as a Covercraft Authorized Dealer, I would be honored to help you make the right choices to protect your car(s).
Continue reading about Covercraft car cover material choices HERE.