What are your thoughts on undercoating? - Dodge Challenger Forum: Challenger & SRT8 Forums
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post #1 of 11 (permalink) Old 04-02-2019, 05:01 AM Thread Starter
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What are your thoughts on undercoating?

It seems that undercoating is not a very popular "thing" anymore. But living in the Northeast (PA), I always wonder if I should get it done now, while the undercarriage is still in like-new condition.

But I've also read how some people feel that it causes more issues than it solves - and that water can get "trapped" underneath it and actually *cause* rust.

I know that some places like ZIebart actually have a super-thick undercoating service that also acts as a sound-deadener, which is kind of nice too....

Thoughts?
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post #2 of 11 (permalink) Old 04-02-2019, 06:00 AM
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My experience with Ziebart is that it just delays rust and by the time you do see signs of rusting it's too late. It's also way easier to repair the vehicles without Ziebart.


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post #3 of 11 (permalink) Old 04-02-2019, 06:31 AM
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the key thing is to flush the under-body to get rid of salt / de-icing brine to not have it in contact. If salt is encrusted and and goes through cycles of getting wet (or staying wet) any weak spots / thin spots in primer / e-coat are going to be areas that get affected.

if gravel or sand has eroded away the primer coat - having that re-shot is another preventative step.

those applied undercoatings can create areas that encapsulate moisture - if salt or brine gets into there, now it does the damage but isn't readily seen due to being trapped between the metal and the undercoating

Probably the thing to do is after each season, put the car up on a lift and inspect the under-body and remove salt build up and proactively treat those areas.

Another member had recently posted a thread about a engine cradle bolt snapping off - the cradle and the apron pinch welds had a great deal of corrosion taking place as well as the bolts being very badly rusted.

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post #4 of 11 (permalink) Old 04-02-2019, 07:02 AM Thread Starter
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Thank you!

So it sounds like that is 2 votes for NOT undercoating. :-)

Anyone else have any input? Anyone think that it's a good idea?
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post #5 of 11 (permalink) Old 04-02-2019, 07:11 AM
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Actually once you rinse the undercarriage it would be best to blow dry the water away. I have a blower from a bouncy house that my kids are too big for which is what I use to blow all the water away after I wash the car. I got the idea from this:

https://www.autogeek.net/dp-turbo-car-dryer.html
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post #6 of 11 (permalink) Old 04-02-2019, 07:31 AM Thread Starter
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Also - I should have mentioned. Specifically, in my case, I'm talking about a 2018 GT, which will be driven year-round in all types of weather. Does that change anyones opinion? It just seems like the undercoating would at least provide some sort of protection and slow the rusting process at least a little. But again, maybe there is a good reason why underscoating just isn't done much these days anymore - maybe history has shown that the cons outweigh the pros...

I certainly try to keep my car clean (and it is garage-kept), but during the winter, it's not always easy or practical to keep it really clean...
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post #7 of 11 (permalink) Old 04-02-2019, 07:50 AM
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Don't forget FCA put foam in the rockers and other locations. Even though it is closed cell, it will still retain some degree of moisture.
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post #8 of 11 (permalink) Old 04-02-2019, 01:07 PM
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In the truck community, many owners will take a can of clear enamel (spray paint) and target areas prone to obvious corrosion, such as frame joints and the rear axle. Cheap and simple, with no loss in visibility to inspect for problems. I don’t remember which forum it was on but one of the guys reported back after a few seasons of hitting it with clear in the fall and there was a noticeable reduction in rust without any issues. In my experience working on cars, it’s usually the fasteners that actually pose a problem unless you keep your car long enough for body rust. Undercoating either ignores those fasteners or makes them more difficult to remove. For that reason I’ve never been big on it despite living in an area with lots of salt and snow.
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post #9 of 11 (permalink) Old 04-10-2019, 06:59 AM
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Do not do any of those thick coatings, even the stuff from the spray cans. They can trap moisture and cause more rust. If you want your car undercoated, look at Krown or fluidfilm.
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post #10 of 11 (permalink) Old 04-10-2019, 08:47 AM
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Your rockers will rust out before your underbody. I wouldn't worry about it.
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