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Old 04-29-2013, 12:45 PM   #1
offthehook1
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Default Corvette, winter driving and salt

I always scan the forum and have gotten a lot of great information, but there is one thing that keeps coming up on the forum that has me wondering.

A lot of Corvette owners seem to worry about salt and corrosion on their cars. I own a 2009 C6 and drive it in the winter when the roads are dry. I enjoy driving it every time I can.

With all of the luxury cars on the road today I do not seem to see the same concern with salt or corrosion from Mercedes, BMW, Jaguar owners. My question: Is the Corvette more susceptible to damage or corrosion from salt than any other car on the road?

I check the underside of the car twice a year and have not seen any indication of corrosion.
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Old 04-29-2013, 12:51 PM   #2
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I don't know if it's much of an issue but I moved up north for 8 years for graduate education and my two prior cars (SRT-4 / Audi A4) handled them fine with no rust.

I'm keeping the Vette salt free. It was a Florida car, sold at auction to Chicago, waited for winter to pass, bought it, and I'm (ironically) taking it back to Florida in 2 months.
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Old 04-29-2013, 12:57 PM   #3
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Here's my take on salt. It depends on how long you plan on keeping your car. If you trade regularily, drive it. Who cares what the underside looks like, the next guy can worry about that. I tend to keep my cars for a very long time, in other words, I don't sell or trade, I just add to the fleet. So, I want to keep the car as pristine as I can. Here in MN they salt the heck out of the roads. They are literally white in the winter and not with snow. Since I do drive my cars in the rain, I just try to minimize the corrosion by not mixing salt and water.

I don't think the corvette is any more susceptible than any other car. Just trying to keep it as nice as I can. The older C3's were very susceptible to rust in the frames.
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Old 04-29-2013, 01:07 PM   #4
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Depreciation is the same for salted cars or cars that have never been salted. Winter salt will take the newness out of your car faster than anything I can think of. I drive mine in the rain but not on wet salt laden roads. Compromise, yes.
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Old 04-29-2013, 01:49 PM   #5
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The car is mostly aluminum and plastic. Salt has very little effect on aluminum and none on plastic. Salt is less of an issue with Vettes than with cars of steel.

http://www.aluminiumdesign.net/desig...on-resistance/

Aluminiumís corrosion resistance

Untreated aluminium has very good corrosion resistance in most environments. This is primarily because aluminium spontaneously forms a thin but effective oxide layer that prevents further oxidation.

Aluminium oxide is impermeable and, unlike the oxide layers on many other metals, it adheres strongly to the parent metal. If damaged mechanically, aluminiumís oxide layer repairs itself immediately.
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Old 04-29-2013, 01:50 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by loflite View Post
Here's my take on salt. I don't think the corvette is any more susceptible than any other car.
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Old 04-29-2013, 01:57 PM   #7
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[QUOTE=
I don't think the corvette is any more susceptible than any other car. Just trying to keep it as nice as I can. The older C3's were very susceptible to rust in the frames.[/QUOTE]

The salt can really play hell with your paint, and the last thing you want to do is get stuck behind a salt truck. Not a pleasant sound that salt bouncing off your Vette.
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Old 04-29-2013, 02:04 PM   #8
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Along with road salt comes sand/salt mix. Wide body Vettes have a tendency to get sandblasted easily and Winter detailing would take up time that I have little of. My reasons for putting my Vette into hibernation .
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Old 04-29-2013, 03:25 PM   #9
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Quote:
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The salt can really play hell with your paint, and the last thing you want to do is get stuck behind a salt truck. Not a pleasant sound that salt bouncing off your Vette.
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Old 04-29-2013, 03:55 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by QUAKEJAKE View Post
Along with road salt comes sand/salt mix. Wide body Vettes have a tendency to get sandblasted easily
When my Z06 was new, I was anxious to take the car out and took it out after the first hard rain to wash the salt away. But the sand was still there and the rear quarter air intakes were sand blasted after only 1000 miles. Our big tires are sticky and can pick up alot of the sand.
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Old 04-29-2013, 06:01 PM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Walt White Coupe View Post
The car is mostly aluminum and plastic. Salt has very little effect on aluminum and none on plastic. Salt is less of an issue with Vettes than with cars of steel.

http://www.aluminiumdesign.net/desig...on-resistance/

Aluminiumís corrosion resistance

Untreated aluminium has very good corrosion resistance in most environments. This is primarily because aluminium spontaneously forms a thin but effective oxide layer that prevents further oxidation.

Aluminium oxide is impermeable and, unlike the oxide layers on many other metals, it adheres strongly to the parent metal. If damaged mechanically, aluminiumís oxide layer repairs itself immediately.
The frame on most Vettes is steel and this is what seven winters on a steel frame looks like. Its from my truck..........People who never lived with the salt on the roads just dont get it...

Attachment 47724249

Attachment 47724250

Attachment 47724251

Last edited by R&L's C6; 06-03-2013 at 10:53 PM.
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Old 04-29-2013, 06:43 PM   #12
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Only the side rails are steel on the standard C6. Like I said it's mostly aluminum and plastic and moving forward the C7 is all aluminum and plastic so it's even less of an issue.
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Old 04-29-2013, 06:56 PM   #13
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Old 04-29-2013, 07:23 PM   #14
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I'll never understand many Vette owners worried about a little surface rust or dirt underneath the car, storing it for months, not driving it in rain, etc. It's a car, not an investment (at least for most Vettes), drive the freaking thing and quit worrying about stuff that doesn't matter.

I'll post a thread later this week about my nearly 2,500 mile round trip to run mine in the Big Bend Open Road Race 150 mph average class. I'll post pics, which will horrify many here. I drove through snow, ice, salt (actually magnesium chloride since CO and most other states don't use rock salt any more), sand, LOTS of bugs, road construction, etc. A trip like that isn't easy on any car, especially with the race, but I've never owned a car that I don't drive. One thing about going to the BBORR is that you see a lot of Vette (and other expensive cars) owners who run their car hard and don't treat them like garage art.

I'm not knocking those who rarely drive their cars and keep them pristine, I'm glad there are owners like that. I'll gladly buy their pristine, low miles car when they sell and they find out that not driving it didn't make it worth any more than other similar Vettes.
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Old 04-29-2013, 07:33 PM   #15
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When I lived in the north (Ohio), I regularly washed the underside of my vehicles at the coin wand washes.
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Old 04-29-2013, 07:34 PM   #16
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Corvette drivers are far more concerned about their $60,000 cars than the average owner of a $110,000 Mercedes.
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Old 04-29-2013, 07:38 PM   #17
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cclive View Post
Corvette drivers are far more concerned about their $60,000 cars than the average owner of a $110,000 Mercedes.
True, except most C6 Vettes aren't worth anything remotely close to $60k.
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Old 04-29-2013, 07:40 PM   #18
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cclive View Post
Corvette drivers are far more concerned about their $60,000 cars than the average owner of a $110,000 Mercedes.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Steve_R View Post
True, except most C6 Vettes aren't worth anything remotely close to $60k.
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Old 04-29-2013, 08:25 PM   #19
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Steve_R View Post
True, except most C6 Vettes aren't worth anything remotely close to $60k.
Actually I thought about that but I figured I would catch hell if I said $40,000...people always quote the sticker price that they never paid...LOL
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Old 04-29-2013, 08:47 PM   #20
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cclive View Post
Corvette drivers are far more concerned about their $60,000 cars than the average owner of a $110,000 Mercedes.
For a consolation prize, if you look as a percentage, Mercedes will depreciate more! Unscientific claim support.

I have not studied the underside of the car much. Is the suspension system and drive train mostly aluminum as well? Wouldn't salt cause these parts to wear faster than salt free car?

My car is a DD and salt is the main reason I tell my family and friends I cant move back north, good thing they dont read this forum!

Last edited by Firewater Burns; 04-29-2013 at 08:49 PM.
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