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New Car & sand

We just got a new car & will be taking a vacation to Florida in a week. My wife thinks that driving near the beach will ruin the car. We will not drive on sand. I think she’s crazy.

Any opinions?

Sand is very abrasive, but I don’t think driving near the beach on a normal day is going to hurt your car. If hurricane winds whip up now that is a different story. Cars in front of you can kick up sand on roads near the beaches. If you give yourself some distance between cars you won’t get the front of your car “sand blasted” as you drive.

I don’t think your wife is crazy. If you are aware of the negative affects of sand blowing around you can reduce the risk of damage to your car to practically zero.

When you get down in Florida, start looking at the cars down there. Chances are they are in better condition than the same make model and year cars where you live. That road salt is really hard on cars. Much more so that a couple of weeks in Florida.

Driving near the beach is part of the fun for most of Florida. You got to do it.

Really don't worry. 

BTW if you look at most roads up north you will see that there is some sand on most of them. Some sand will be left over from winter salt and some is just from wear of the road.

I don’t think based on this post that your wife is crazy, but I do think she’s overly anxious about the effects of salty air in your new car. I’ve spent many, many long days at the beach all of my life, I’d buy a house there if I could, and I keep my cars for many years and in some cases hundreds of thousands of miles. They’re fine. Driving near the beach will not hurt the car or reduce its lifespan one single bit. There are many millions of cars that spend their entire lives on the coast, and they do fine.

No worries. Enjoy your vacation. If it makes the wife more comfortable, you can always rent a car for your vacation and leave yours in the garage.

Driving near the beach will not hurt the car. I’ve been to the Florida coasts (both sides) several times and my cars were not affected by the sand at all.

I’ve even driven briefly on Daytona Beach. Once again, no damage. Any sand that gets on the car washes off.

People in Florida own cars, too, and they don’t get ruined by the sand.

What exactly does she think will happen to your car? Is she worried about the paint or the interior? Does she think sand will get into the mechanical parts?

Obviously there’s really nothing to be concerned with, or you’d see the sides of the roads in Florida littered with these “ruined” cars, but I figured I’d ask anyway.

I live in Florida and work in paint & body shops in Florida. Unless you drive REALLY fast through a hurricane or roll it over on the beach, I don’t think the sand will hurt your car.

There will be no problems. Driving a car ruins it but we won’t all walk because of that. Florida cars have rust because of the humidity, and that is everywhere…

Many years ago, my dad had the bed rust out of a pickup truck that lived about a mile from the ocean. Most likely due to salt and humidity since they don’t know what road salt is in San Diego County. But modern rust protection is much better, and the rust process took years, not days.

Maybe run the car through a car wash when it gets back home. Almost certainly not necessary, but maybe it’ll make the wife happier and it probably won’t do any harm.