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Can Rain Damage Your Car? Rain Doesn’t Only Wash Dirt Off Your Car!

Can Rain Damage Your Car? Rain Doesn’t Only Wash Dirt Off Your Car!

Have you ever wondered, “can rain damage your car?” Unfortunately, rain does not only wash the dirt off your car because it might cause significant damages to your vehicle! When rain dries out, it leaves a layer of contaminants and pollutants on top of your vehicle that could damage your vehicle's finish.

Rain events impact our lives in many ways. Some people like to stay indoors and enjoy watching the rain. However, when rain is extreme, it might cause flooding to our properties and caused some risk issues.

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Our vehicles also react to rain in many ways because rain can cause some traffic jams, problems vehicles flooding, it's a trap. However, even a small amount of rainwater might also impact your car down the road. Therefore, if your car is not completely flooded and soaked in water, it doesn't mean that rain doesn’t have an impact on your car’s quality.

This article walks you through the different consequences of rain on your vehicle. In this article, we're not focusing on flood damage to your vehicles but we’re addressing the issue with typical low-intensity rain impact on your car.

Can rain damage your car?

Many people enjoy watching the rain and take advantage of it to wash their cars from dirt and debris. However, they are not thinking about what is the source of this water and what exactly it contains?

Depending on your region and your environment's air quality, rain might collect many dangerous contaminants that could impact the overall finish of your vehicle. This is because when it rains, it collects all potential particles hanging on the atmosphere for a long time. These particles can have different packs on your vehicle.

Once rain hits your car, it doesn't simply repel and wash away. Instead, when rainwater dries out, it leaves a thin layer containing all collected contaminants and pollution from the air on your car. Obviously, you won't see a significant impact on your vehicle's finish right after it rains. However, down the road, you'll notice that vehicles living in rainy environments don't have the best finish as other vehicles that don't get a lot of rainwater exposure.

The question always remains, how dangerous can rainwater be?

Although we all understand that our vehicles are rain resistant, that's not always the fact. With strong contaminants and pollutants sitting on the vehicle, it is easy for these contaminants to see through and get to the vehicle's structure to impact its overall exterior. The more rain, the more contaminants, and the easier it is for these contaminants to impact the finish and therefore get to the central core structural components in your vehicle.

What about acid rain?

Have you ever heard about the term “acid rain”? Acid rain refers to the type of rain that contains many acidic materials like nitric acid, sulfuric acid, etc. This material has a very high acidity level that impacts their cars significantly.

Acid rain is typically associated with certain regions that don't have the best water quality. These regions are more of the ones that have a lot of factories and other air pollution sources. So if you know that you live in an area with typical acid rain, you must take care of seriously because it can severely damage your vehicle.

It also goes to people who are looking to purchase a car. If you're planning to buy a used vehicle, you must familiarize yourself with the region that the car lived in. If the vehicle got exposed to a lot of rain, including acid rain, you better walk away because the vehicle might have internal structural problems that might not be visible to the inexperienced car shopper.

If you're looking for more information about regions impacted with acid rains around the United States, here's what unique autobody.com experts indicated: “The areas of greatest acidity (lowest pH values) are located in the Northeastern United States. This pattern of high acidity is caused by many cities, the dense population, and the concentration of power and industrial plants in the Northeast. In addition, the prevailing wind direction brings storms and pollution to the Northeast from the Midwest, and dust from the soil and rocks in the Northeastern United States is less likely to neutralize acidity in the rain.”

Should you wash your car in the rain?

Many people think that rain is a free car wash. However, as we indicated earlier, rain could contain many other contaminants and particles that might ruin your vehicle and do the opposite job to the car wash. Therefore, another question that you should consider is, “should you wash your car in the rain?”

According to experts at autodetaildoctor.com, “The longer you leave the pollutants and contamination on your vehicle’s finish, the more damage it will inflict on your car’s paint finish.” Therefore, experts recommend that you clean your vehicle as soon as possible after it rains, especially if you live in areas with the best air quality.

Some experts recommend that you try to wash your car as fast as possible or, using a dry towel, wipe all rain leftovers to get rid of the small thin layer of contaminants that might build up on top of your vehicle's exterior.

Keep in mind that the impact of rain on your vehicle’s quality depends on where you live, which means that many people don't wash their cars after rain and their cars are still in good condition. Therefore, washing your vehicle after it rains is recommended, but ignoring the wash should not necessarily result in significant immediate damage to your car if you live in good water quality areas.

Is it OK to leave your car in the rain?

As you might already know, not everybody can afford to park the vehicle indoors and have a garage. Therefore, it's very common for people to have their vehicles parked in the rain, and it's hard to say that everyone needs to protect their cars from rain, especially in areas with continuous heavy rain.

Therefore, the short answer to the question “is it OK to leave your car in the rain?” is it depends. As we indicated earlier, if you live in a region with a lot of acid rain, for example, you might want to consider getting a water-resistant element that you can cover your vehicle with or probably try to park your car indoors as much as possible.

However, many people don't park their cars indoors, and their vehicles are still good. There has been a great discussion on quora.com regarding the same topic, and some people indicated that “I park mine outside every day in all weather (except for hail). My car is an average car that will be on the road for a couple of decades, and it’s a tool to do a job (family transportation). So parking it outside for a couple of decades will not prevent it from fulfilling that purpose.”

Without, deciding on whether to park your car in the rain or not depends on your circumstances and your region.

How can I protect my car from rain damage?

Whether you park your vehicle in the rain intentionally or unintentionally, there are some tips that you can't implement to reduce the severity of rainwater damages to your car, assuming that they are qualified in your area is not that great.

Experts nowcars.com divided these recommendations into two categories that you can implement before and after it rains:

1.    How to protect my car from rain damage before it rains?

We can get ready before rain season, especially if you live in areas where we have intensive rain events. Some of these things might be a little expensive investment, but it might be worth it.

For example, experts recommend that you invest and waxing your car to add a thin invisible layer that helps repel rain and prevents it from sitting on the vehicle to damage it.


Another idea would be to invest in a huge raincoat car cover that you can place on the vehicle, especially if you don't have an indoor parking lot like a private garage. These raincoats help water drop off to the floor and not reach your vehicle's exterior.

If you're concerned about the underneath portion of your car, you can also invest in known mudguards that don't allow water to get to the vehicle's undercarriage and seep through the important components like the engine or the exhaust system.

Finally, you recommended implementing all recommendations regarding a regular maintenance and preparing for the rain season. For example, you might want to replace the headlights, inspect the windshield wipers, add more windshield fluids, and change any damaged tires.

2.    How to protect my car from rain damage after it rains?

If you got into a situation where it rained on your vehicle, there are still some tips that you can implement to help reduce the severity of rain damage on your vehicle.

First, you must perform a quick visual inspection around the vehicle to see any signs of dirt accumulation. The faster you take care of this dirt, the easier it is, and they say it is for your vehicle. Therefore, try giving your car a quick car wash or wiping off the dirt from locations where rain events impacted it.

Then, look for any locations that are more susceptible to rust and corrosion than others. For example, you might find some areas with metal bits or locations that got paint peeled off for any reason. Try to take care of these locations as fast as possible to prevent rust from accumulating. Keep in mind that your vehicle's warranty might cover certain rust-related problems. Therefore, look at your warranty and see what they can cover.

Finally, there is a very common problem that many drivers are not aware of. Did you know that in certain circumstances, water can get inside your vehicle doors?! Yes! If your windows seals are not in good condition over time of use, they can allow water to seep through the vehicle’s door itself. Therefore, look underneath the vehicle and locate the plugs you can take out to open the door. Once opening it, try drying it out and removing any accumulated dirt.

With the last one, you must maintain a good window ceiling to prevent the headache of rain impacts on the vehicle’s doors. Again, you might want to hire A mechanic who can have a better look at whether your windows seals are in good condition or not.

Should you wash your car with rain?

How we indicated earlier, relying on rain as a free car wash is never a good idea. Although it has some positive sites, the negative sites are more severe. To ground-truth this fact, let's take a closer look at what auto.howstuffworks.com highlighted in terms of the main positive and negative size of relying on rain as a free car wash:

1.    What is the positive side of rain wash?

Obviously, it could easily get rid of old dirt and contaminants on the vehicle's exterior when it rains. It also takes care of any remaining stock bugs that allow your vehicle to shine.

2.    What's the negative side of rain wash?

On the other hand, relying on rain as a free car wash, especially in areas with heavy rain pollution, is never a good idea because of the expected pollutions and contaminants that wolves talk about on your vehicle’s exterior.

After understanding the two sides, it is very clear that you should rely on a car wash and spend a couple of dollars to clean your vehicle rather than risking damaging the exterior by washing it freely and naturally using rain events.


Rainy days can be a lot of fun to many different people, but if rain gets very severe, it causes floods and impacts our life in many ways. Although we all think of heavy rain as the worst type of rain that could cause negative consequences to our vehicles, even a small amount of rain can result in significant damages to your car if not taken care of properly.

Many people take advantage of rain as a free car wash; however, they don't know that rain can create a thin layer of contaminants and pollution that could damage the vehicle's exterior and get to the internal structure in certain instances.

Therefore, this article walked you through all that you need to know about “can rain damage your car?” It also highlighted valuable tips and tricks that you can implement before and after it rains to prevent and reduce the severity of rain impact on your vehicle's exterior.

If rain events were severe enough and damaged important components in your car and, it might not be worth your time and investment taking care of these problems. Instead, he recommended selling your vehicle and using its value towards a better car that doesn't have major issues.

The good news is that Cash Cars Buyer is willing to remove your vehicle within one to three days only! Cash Cars Buyer is one of the top-rated car removal companies in the nation that guarantees to pay you the top dollars and provide you with free towing despite your living location around the United States.

Our process is very straightforward and doesn't take more than a couple of days to get your car removed safely and for the most money.

All it takes you is to:

  • Describe your car’s type and condition
  • Receive our instant free quote
  • Accept the quote
  • Get your car removed and receive your cash payment on the spot!

To learn more about our process and our teen, you can reach out to us by giving us a call at 866-924-4608 or visit our home page click on the free instant online offer.