Classic car covers are an afterthought for many collector car owners, but they can be an invaluable tool to keep your hot rod or other collectible safe and in top shape. Whether protecting your car from dings in the garage from tools, or shielding the car from the outdoor elements, the proper car cover can protect your ride for a pretty low price. Top of the line covers will cost you up to $150, but depending on your needs you could get by with a very low end cover for around $30. This article will help you determine your needs and which cover is right for you.
The first note that needs to be mentioned is that not all car covers are the same. Buying a one size fits all car cover at your local retail store is not the same as getting a correctly sized cover to fit your model perfectly. These cheap universal covers are single layered fabric, and cost around $30 in the stores. You can buy the same type of cover online for the same price, and it will be fitted to match your model.
The importance of this is that the less a cover properly fits the car, the better chance for moisture to build up underneath the cover, which can cause serious problems to many parts of your car if left unattended for awhile. You want the car to be wrapped up tight like a cocoon. Once moisture enters, the cheaper car covers may not "breathe" as well as upper end covers, meaning the moisture cannot evaporate properly. You want a breathable cocoon.
The cheaper single layer covers will be perfectly fine if your car is garaged, keeping it safe from dust, moisture, and possible dents. If you are worried about dings from working in the area, a triple layer cover may be required. Protecting your car from the outside elements will require a heavy duty cover, and there are different options depending on whether you are mainly protecting the car from the sun or moisture. The top of the line models can be used in both scenarios, but if you are protecting from mostly one element, you will want to make your decision based on that point.
Car covers designed to protect from moisture can be very thick, usually triple covered breathable material. This will allow the cover to keep out the moisture, yet still allow it to properly evaporate if it does get underneath. Even the best car cover cannot hold up to a torrential rain, and moisture will seep in under this scenario. A triple layer cover is also important under snowy conditions.
The snow falling will have minimal impact on the car and cover when falling, but that will eventually melt into water causing problems. Snow can be slow to melt and can collect in ice pools, causing sitting water to breach the cover. The melting and refreezing of the snow and slush can take a toll on your classic car cover, so you may want to invest in a high quality cover from the beginning.
The high heat and ultraviolet rays of the sun can do some serious damage to a paint job, interior plastic, and leather. The fading done by the sun is not from the heat, but the intense ultraviolet rays emitted by the sun. There are car covers designed to block 99.8% of the damaging ultraviolet light, using treated fabric. Dupont Tyvek is a material used in some good car covers that will properly protect your car. Having a car cover not treated to block the ultraviolet light can actually trap heat under the cover, which you never want. If your car will be stored outdoors in Florida, Texas, and California you should invest in a cover specializing in blocking ultraviolet light.
When you are ready to use your new cover, remember to wash the car first. Dragging dirt and grime over your car, even the smallest particles, can do a number on your beautiful paint job. Even if you are storing an old car out back by the woods, a small invest now may mean a bigger return later as rust and other corrosion can be kept to a minimum, and possibly eliminated in some covered areas.