To Cover or Not to Cover your Mustang (that can only live outside)?

Fly2High

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I have no choice but to have my Mustang live outside.

I would like to know is it better to leave the car uncovered or to cover the car?

My reasons for covering:
1. I have a red car - some colors can fade from sun exposure
2. NY seasonal debris - between leave, pollen and all, I would like to keep it off the paint
3. Water spots- the rain we have here is rather polluted and so will water spot. So far, no wax or sealant has prevented it. It is only prevented if I clean the car or at least dry it, after each rain which can be time consuming. The NOAH cover I have is waterproof and breaths so should not trap moisture.
4. Keep the car cooler
5. Reduce damage to interior - all that plastic and leather I expect hate sunlight.
6. Love to see the clean car when I remove the cover and take a trip, especially when everyone else's looks really bad. My paint seems to shine and looks so much wetter than every car out there. Of course, theirs are dirty, mine is not (at least for a little while).

My reasons for NOT covering:
1. Cover movement can cause marring which means I will need to polish out the car more often and, eventually, can run out of clearcoat (will be some time though I expect).
2. Annoyance of install and removing it - they need a better system to pass the strings under the car!
3. Cover gets dirty - a dirty cover will scratch the paint
4. Need to wash the cover periodically - most outdoor covers need a pro machine to clean it.
5. Need to clean the car before putting the cover on - No point in covering a dirty car. The dirt on the car will get on the cover and act like sandpaper besides. So, once I drive it, it will remain uncovered until I can get a chance to ONR or bucket wash it.

Did I miss anything?

Should I cover or not?





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wcharon

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Good points. I am in the same boat so i am tagging to see recommendations.
 

CJJon

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Covers area big PITA. Especially if you think you are going to use it daily. Taking them on and off sucks. The covers get dirty and wet. At the end of the day your car is dirty and you will not want to drag the cover over the dirt. You will find you will use them less and less. They do get torn too taking them on and off so much.

The big show stopper for me was moisture. Condensation occurs under the cover, at least it did for me. The more water proof the more it happens. Also dust does get under the cover too.

If I didn't live near pine trees I'd have kept the cover off. Pine needles are dicks!

I have a 24x48 shop now that I keep my car in.
 

ORRadtech

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Having more vehicles than garage stalls I usually have at least 1 car in the drive. I've done both covering and not. It's far easier not to cover. The work involved for each is about the same. It's different work for each but the volume is about the same.
Personally I'd forego the cover in favor of being more proactive with cleaning.

I don't know your situation but there are fairly inexpensive car canopies that might be an alternative.
 
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Fly2High

Fly2High

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Car canopy is a good idea. Unfortunately, I do not have a spot to put it.

Do you know if they are bolted in place? Might look somewhat odd sitting on one half of my 2 car wide, car and half long driveway.

I do not think we are allowed to put them in our front yard is what I speculate. Do not know for sure.
 

ORRadtech

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The one I have in my back yard does not have specific tie down points. I've used the screw in yard anchors, think dog tie out, and ratchet straps to keep it in place.
As for putting it in the driveway, that depends on what you want to see and local/HOA rules.
 

WD Pro

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Subbing for this one :like:

I'm also very interested with this and have very mixed feelings.

A couple of things have come up recently which may interest you :

'Rubbing' is a real concern, but I cant quantify it. I bought a Roush decklid spoiler and the paint had been rubbed of the outermost corners. It was satin black and I was having it repainted anyway, but it was enough to confirm a potential problem. I cant comment on what sort of cover or timescales had been involved to do the damage.

With regards condensation, have a look at this thread for a recent UK experience in a 'damp' environment (post #111 onwards) : https://www.mustang6g.com/forums/threads/mustang-gt-project-2.132324/page-8

Mine lives outside and doesn't get used over winter / when salt is on the road. In summer it will get constant use but both at home and at work, the front screen gets sun all day.

Here's what I am thinking :

Winter = Good paint prep. Frequent bodywork washing. Wheel covers (to prevent rusty disks from driving rain and / or bodywork washing). Those £1 shop ($ store ... lol) desiccant trays to cut temperature change humidity issues.

Summer - Good paint prep. Frequent washing. Quality sun shade.

In addition if you park close to brick / mortar walls during heavy frost and freezing, I have noticed sand / tiny fragments of brick are removed from the wall and end up on the car - in particular the door top / window seals - which then makes a lovely noise if you open the car before washing (power jetting) them ... If I know I'm not opening the car for a while I'm just experimenting with a simple line of masking tape from the glass to the window seal flat area. Looks like shit but I now have debris free seals ... lol

WD :like:
 

Dana Pants

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You can/should cover if you park for the winter and have a low-wind spot to park the car on pavement.

you will need to put additional weights /straps on the edges of the cover to avoid it blows away. Car will be shockingly clean in the spring if you do this right after a big cleanup and wax.

don’t cover the car in the seasons you drive it.
 

Norm Peterson

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I have no choice but to have my Mustang live outside.

I would like to know is it better to leave the car uncovered or to cover the car?
All of my cars have been in the same situation for the last 40 years. My '08 has never been in the garage (wouldn't reasonably fit even if I could move all the toolboxes and cabinets anyway), and other than when there was much snow on the roads it's been a year-round kind of car.

Never been covered, either. I know I wouldn't have had the patience on a good day. Let myself get soaked taking a cover off in the rain? #NotGonnaHappen.

So I snapped a picture a few minutes ago . . . car has been outdoors for almost 13 years at this point and claybar'ed exactly once (last fall sometime, detailing being one of my least favorite things). Judge for yourself based on the reflections (overcast, very light drizzle).

Paint at 13 years.JPG



Norm
 

Mach VII

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I use a cover on mine for all but the winter months (cover can freeze to car, sun low in sky, not nearly as many birds). It is a NOAH-type and is easy to put on/take off myself and does not require strings under the car to stay in place. No rubbing that I can see...

https://www.autoanything.com/car-covers/covercraft-noah-custom-car-cover

edit - My car is a toy, spends most of the time under cover and I don't take cover with me when I go places.
 
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EFI

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For a car you put away for the winter, yes do cover it.

For a car you drive daily, don't bother. Covering and uncovering it multiple times a day will get tedious and do more damage than not.
 

Dai Uy Ted

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Mine's outside, 24/7, in Florida.
I don't cover, for all the reasons you listed.
I'd like to add a canopy, but HOA won't allow.
For my past five cars, my solution has been ceramic coating. Not a perfect solution, but it has served me well. Don't need to wax, and routine cleanup can be done simply with a "California Duster" (accept NO substitutes). Hose off when really dirty.
Which coating? Pick the best detailer/shop, and let them use the brand they're comfortable with. Mine uses Feynlab.
Not cheap; my first job six years ago was $800, and last month I paid $2300 for prep, 5-year treatment, cloth top protection, and thorough wheel protection, plus vinyl bra for front and mirrors.
 

Ninpop9

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I wash mine and cover it especially during the winter, ends up saving a lot of time with snow removal. I try to wax my car every couple of months to add that extra layer of protection when I don't have the time to cover it.

I haven't been driving often recently so I just cover it when I wont drive for a couple days. Pro tip in regards to scratches and rubbing, I use a cheap non-waterproof dust cover under the actual waterproof cover stays cleaner in my opinion and also wont freeze to the car.
 

Zooks527

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Mine lives outside, no cover, with ceramic coating. I keep it clean and it goes back to the ceramic place once per year for a $100 touchup. Looks great going on 2 years now.

Covers inside work well. Outside, dust and grit gets under them and gets ground into the paint every time the wind blows.
 

jrsimon27

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I have no choice but to have my Mustang live outside.

I would like to know is it better to leave the car uncovered or to cover the car?

My reasons for covering:
1. I have a red car - some colors can fade from sun exposure
2. NY seasonal debris - between leave, pollen and all, I would like to keep it off the paint
3. Water spots- the rain we have here is rather polluted and so will water spot. So far, no wax or sealant has prevented it. It is only prevented if I clean the car or at least dry it, after each rain which can be time consuming. The NOAH cover I have is waterproof and breaths so should not trap moisture.
4. Keep the car cooler
5. Reduce damage to interior - all that plastic and leather I expect hate sunlight.
6. Love to see the clean car when I remove the cover and take a trip, especially when everyone else's looks really bad. My paint seems to shine and looks so much wetter than every car out there. Of course, theirs are dirty, mine is not (at least for a little while).

My reasons for NOT covering:
1. Cover movement can cause marring which means I will need to polish out the car more often and, eventually, can run out of clearcoat (will be some time though I expect).
2. Annoyance of install and removing it - they need a better system to pass the strings under the car!
3. Cover gets dirty - a dirty cover will scratch the paint
4. Need to wash the cover periodically - most outdoor covers need a pro machine to clean it.
5. Need to clean the car before putting the cover on - No point in covering a dirty car. The dirt on the car will get on the cover and act like sandpaper besides. So, once I drive it, it will remain uncovered until I can get a chance to ONR or bucket wash it.

Did I miss anything?

Should I cover or not?
Get a ceramic coat for it.
And also get a cover.
 

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