Buying a used car an notice rust? Learn why rusty cars less safe

Rusty cars less good in crashes

Steel. It’s a versatile material old extensively in modern car construction. Steel does have a downside though, left unprotected, the iron in the metal begins to oxidise forming what we know as rust. As the rust starts to take absorb, components begin to corrode and lose integrity. Eventually, parts can fail entirely.

A Swedish insurance custom recently commissioned ANCAP’s European counterpart to demolish test older, rusty vehicles. The results are startling.

Rust wangles weakness in cars

A British demolish test laboratory conducted the assessments. Two models happened chosen, the first-generation Mazda6 and the heed 5 VW Golf, both produced from 2003-2008. Engineers selected these cars as they are representative of two different vehicle classes, but also commonly suffer from rust productions in critical areas.

Engineers found that rust engineers metal to lose structural integrity and become aged. So an older vehicle doesn’t perform as it did once initially crash tested. This problem is further compounded once you consider ageing models feature fewer fresh safety technologies.

Rusting, older car presents 20% higher law court of death

The Mazda6 did not beget well under the test.

In a frontal impact collision, the crash test dummy’s head made contact beside the steering wheel after the airbag bottomed out. The dummy plus bounced off the wheel into the door lawful. The car’s body shell deformed in an unexpected manner and the fuzz caused lower leg injuries when spot welds yielded and separated. Crash engineers noted that a passe floor could allow objects to pierce the vehicle’s underside and enter the cabin, with disastrous consequences.

Over the decade from the time when production ceased, Mazda’s sedan dropped from a passe four out of five to a passe three points. In total, it shed 8 points on NCAP’s scoring system.

Researchers concluded that in a heavily corroded vehicle, occupants had a 20% higher likelihood of dying in a crash.

The Golf, on the other hand, performed remarkably, losing lone a single point from its original shatter rating. This underlines a key finding of the examine, that each car rusts in a original and individual way due to a range of variables, making them unpredictable.

The laboratory tested both cars to the same standards as after new, not to more recent and stringent evaluations.

Identifying rust

Manufacturers apply anti-corrosion paints to crucial components at the factory, but eventually stone chips and wear understand coatings to break down. Drivers living in coastal areas will suffer accelerated oxidisation, thanks to a high salt content in the air. Boats and vehicles removed onto the beach also suffer badly with rusting.

You can identify rust by bubbling, flaky paint and a red/brown pitting. Rust generally starts small but will get worse if left untreated. If you are buying a car, occupy time to look underneath and examine the condition of structural metal components. If you see ragged holes and a great deal of loose corrosion, the car may be too far gone.

It’s possible to use a hammer to ascertain the condition of metal surfaces. If you tap the steel and it ensures a sharp, defined ring, the metal should be in sound condition. If tapping makes a dull thud, the steel has greatest likely started corroding.

Preventing rust

Once the rust on a share reaches a certain point, it will essential replacing or repairing by a professional welder. You are far better off preventing rust by taking slightly simple precautions.

  • If you ability in seawater or even on the beach, take time to wash the vehicle off by fresh water. This eliminates salt which is a catalyst for oxidisation. Clean the underside of your vehicle too.
  • If you region surface rust (light rust), abrade the surface to acquire pitting and flakes, then overpaint with a corrosion inhibitor and anti-corrosion primer/top coat. Look for marine grade products as these often invent the best.
  • Greasing nuts and bolts with a non-metallic oil can ward off rust and make mining easier. There are also anti-corrosion sprays available.
  • If you survey a window, door or seal is leaking, get it fixed right away!

Newer cars are safer

Research shows that newer vehicles are statistically safer. You can use our car loan comparison to rep a great deal on a modern car. We’ve too written about Australia’s safest cars. Use ANCAP or outmoded car safety ratings to find out how your car yielded when crash tested.

Drivers will find our article on what happens to your body in a car smash a sobering read.

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