Should I add rustproofing to my van?

John Paul, AAA Northeast's Car Doctor, answers a question from a reader who wants to prevent his handicap van from rusting away.

Chrysler recalls 119,500 2011 and 2012 sedans to fix air bag lights Date: April 9, 2013 Units: About 119,500Chrysler is recalling roughly 119,500 sedans from the 2011 and 2012 model years because their air bag warning lights are illuminating for no reason, the Associated press reported. Chrysler 300, Dodge Charger and Dodge Challenger sedans made between April 2011 and December 2011 are involved in the recall. No one has been reported injured as a result of the defect. The company plans to fix affected vehicles for free.
–AFP PHOTO/Karen BLEIER/FILESKAREN BLEIER/AFP/Getty Images

Q. I have recently purchased a 2006 Chrysler Town and Country handicap van. My current 2000 Dodge Caravan handicap van completely rusted out underneath. My mechanic suggested putting a protective coating on the bottom of the van to hopefully prevent the rusting out that happened to my other van. When I asked at the dealership, they said it couldn’t be done. Is it possible the dealer is wrong and just wants to sell me another van down the road? Or is my mechanic right that he can do it?

A. Depending on the condition of your current vehicle, I don’t see any reason why you couldn’t add rustproofing to help preserve the undercarriage. Today much of the rusting of vehicles is due to the brine we put on the roads to prevent freezing. Although it works well, it is hard on metal. Recently I became aware of a product called Waxoyl (a 50-year-old Swiss company). This product is flexible, only requires a one-time application, and doesn’t harm rubber parts. Additionally, there is a product that can be sprayed into body panels to prevent rusting of door and fenders. This may be something you want to try. 

John Paul is AAA Northeast’s Car Doctor. He has over 40 years of experience in the automotive business and is an ASE certified master technician. E-mail your car question to jpaul@aaanortheast.com.

Car News
Rats will devour your car
February 13, 2020 | 1:58 PM