Garage Conditions for Defender Longevity - Defender Source
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  #1  
Old December 21st, 2015, 05:26 PM
DrZ123
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Garage Conditions for Defender Longevity

So we have a ski house in VT and our 1984 Defender 110 is arriving over Christmas. Can't wait to see her!

We have a 1995 Wrangler that has been the house car up there for skiing and around town for about a decade now. It just went in and failed inspection because of tons of rust on the underside and in the brakes.

I want to make sure the Defender doesn't have such trouble. I know rust is inevitable, even with the undercoating we had done.

Thus I was wondering if there is something we could do to the garage (it is attached) to keep the truck in the best shape possible? Like a dehumidifier? Temp control? Etc.

Thanks for any suggestions!
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  #2  
Old December 21st, 2015, 05:30 PM
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Keeping the salt off is key, but an 84 defender is going to rust as bad or worse than a 95 wrangler no matter what. Climate control might help a little, but I don't think it will make a material difference. Having everything waxoyled is the best bet short of getting a galvanized chassis, bulkhead etc.
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  #3  
Old December 21st, 2015, 05:37 PM
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Everything is freshly waxoyled. How often should that be done?
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  #4  
Old December 21st, 2015, 05:41 PM
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Fresh waxoyl over three decades of rust?

Recipe for disaster.
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I don't know about the brakes, only their unreliability.
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  #5  
Old December 21st, 2015, 05:45 PM
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Nope truck only has 47,000miles on it. Pretty much rust free as of now. Can post photos if you want but doesn't really answer my question ...
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  #6  
Old December 21st, 2015, 06:05 PM
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Don Bunnell
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Does your garage up there have a drain? If so keep a sprinkler underneath the Defender and run it every time you park. It should keep the floor clean of the winter sludge mix that is made with the wheel wells
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  #7  
Old December 21st, 2015, 06:33 PM
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I'm sorry to report that there's nothing that can be done to assuage the rust issue - not a dehumidifier, a frequent bath, or otherwise. Here's three anecdotes to work from:

1. We have had exactly 2 snow storms in northern Vermont so far this winter - one in November, one last weekend. Several weeks ago, I had trouble installing my brand new Boss vee-plow on my new Polaris Ranger. After an infuriating couple of weekends, I finally relented and trailered it to the dealer to inspect. Turns out the frame was bent from the factory... at any rate, I went to collect it and, wouldn't you know, it started to snow. By the time I loaded it up, things were really nasty and as I got on I-89, behind a snow plow, the salt started to fly. I got home and that weekend, rinsed off my new plow. Note: I didn't pressure wash. I rinsed. This past weekend, I looked at my plow and sure as sh&t, all of the hardware - bolt heads, nuts, chips in the paint - are showing brown corrosion/rust.

2. I bought a new 2012 Silverado. After the first winter, with 8,000 miles on the clock, I had to pay the dealership over $400 to rebuild the front calipers because the salt brine/road salt had seized the pistons. Chevy covered the warped rotors. I traded it after the second winter because the frame had turned brown. At 20k miles.

3. When my dad's 1995 NAS Defender wagon was new, he parked it at home and at the office in Boston. I convinced him to wash it every 2 weeks. By the second year of ownership, the interior seatbelt buckle hardware was rusty.

Sorry. These vehicles are not made for northern climates that use salt. At least, without severe preventative measures (think: galvanized chassis, stainless brake lines and hardware, etc). Either accept that it will not pass inspection and enjoy it or park it in October.
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  #8  
Old December 21st, 2015, 06:41 PM
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Steel + aluminum = galvanic corrosion
Add salt = accelerant/catalyst
End result = prolific rust!!
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  #9  
Old December 21st, 2015, 06:43 PM
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I sound douchy in that last posting and feel compelled to follow up. The real issue here in Vermont and the source of my frustration is "salt brine." It's a relatively new concept (state-wide in the last few years) that combines salt with a gelatin-like liquid that is put down in anticipation of a snow storm that will result in slippery conditions. I call those conditions "greasy" - when the road is surprisingly slippery in the absence of ice. It doesn't work at low, low temperature conditions.

At any rate, "salt brine" is designed to stick to the road - but the problem is, for purposes of steel, it also "clings" and "seeps" after you kick it up into the wheel wells. Which is why my Chevy brake calipers seized in the first year of ownership, notwithstanding constant use. My state inspection friends have called the Silverado a 6-year disposable vehicle. Like a 6-use disposable razor blade.

Cars in Vermont have a much shorter shelf-life since salt brine has been put in use. That was really the point of my posting.
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  #10  
Old December 21st, 2015, 07:06 PM
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It's a conspiracy between car manufacturers and state departments of transport. I grew up in Alberta. Out there in winter the municipalities spread sand/grit, not salt. In spring, all the accumulated sand/grit gets swept up off the roads. Cars last longer. But also, people who learn to drive in winter out there learn to slow down and do not expect to be able to drive in January like it's July, or to have perfectly clear roads all winter long. When I moved out east, I was amazed at all the salt and the implicit price that people were willing to pay (replacing their cars at twice the rate) just to be able to run summer tires and drive like like maniacs all year round as opposed to just in summer LOL.
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  #11  
Old December 21st, 2015, 07:15 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Talleyrand View Post
It's a conspiracy between car manufacturers and state departments of transport.
Just look at my 10 year old DD with 212k on it.....Classic japanese rear wheel arch.... rust....
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  #12  
Old December 21st, 2015, 07:20 PM
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One thing to note is that we use the vehicles up there very sparingly. For example we got the 1994 Wrangler in 2005 and it had 6,000 miles.

Today it has 15,000 miles. That's under 1k miles a year
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  #13  
Old December 21st, 2015, 07:38 PM
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A lot of the rust results from moisture inside of the box frame; as they say, these rust from the inside of the chassis out. Unless you are heating the garage to the point of evaporating this moisture inside of the frame from the wet conditions, the rust from the inside out will continue no matter how often you spray clean the external surface. There are some great photos of cut sections that demonstrate this.

Galvanized chassis, waxoyl inside and out, stainless hardware, and constant washing is the routine here in Boston and on the islands in the summer. Despite that, the fight never ends.
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  #14  
Old December 21st, 2015, 07:41 PM
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So far I have heard hosing off the underside and keeping the garage warm enough that moisture doesn't build up inside the frame.

Is a galvanized chassis the real cure?
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  #15  
Old December 21st, 2015, 07:46 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by vtlandrover View Post
I sound douchy in that last posting and feel compelled to follow up. The real issue here in Vermont and the source of my frustration is "salt brine."

At any rate, "salt brine" is designed to stick to the road - but the problem is, for purposes of steel, it also "clings" and "seeps" after you kick it up into the wheel wells..
I dont think you sound douchy at all...

They're even using the brine down here in Virginia the last 2 years.
Really?

It seems that the northeast/midatlantic region cant stand it if a snowflake hits the road!?
Do they use all these millions of pounds of salt out west??


.
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  #16  
Old December 21st, 2015, 07:47 PM
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I personally don't see them rusting any faster than other cars. If you look at the rust on a mid 90s Disco, it is the same as other mid 90s cars.

I run a dehumidifier in my garage and it does help.
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  #17  
Old December 22nd, 2015, 01:49 AM
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I would never ever drive a vehicle I cared about on salt brined roads. Once it gets on the vehicle you can't get it off because it penetrates. I have an engine that came from the east coast that has salt deposits on it and I've tried half a gallon of Eastwood Road Salt Neutralizer on it, but it doesn't work. It doesn't matter how much I rinse it. Once it starts to dry the salt just wicks up through the metal itself and deposits reform on the surface.
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  #18  
Old December 22nd, 2015, 04:13 AM
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I saw a slick set up for rinsing the underside of a vehicle once. The guy had a narrow perpendicular channel in his driveway and a galvi pipe with holes arrayed specifically to spray up tightly and at 45 degree angles. The pipe was connected to a modified deer deterrent sprinkler (cheap off the shelf solution to a motion activated valve) and the vehicle trips the sprinkler to turn on for a preset period of time. I don't know how it wouldn't turn on when leaving, but going with a remote activated valve would negate the problem. Click the garage door, click the water. Drive in slow. Then a dehumidifier would also be necessary. Drilling a hole in the lowest and farthest part of the pipe would drain the water and resolve the freezing issue, although it would spray a small amount of water when the system was on.
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  #19  
Old December 22nd, 2015, 06:07 AM
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I'm thinking that you need to get rid of the salt with a thorough water flush and then dry as much as possible. Considering having fans to circulate the air under the Rover to dry it as much as possible.
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  #20  
Old December 22nd, 2015, 06:30 AM
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On Nantucket, we have series trucks with galvanized chassis from the 90s that are now toast. It slows the process but does not eliminate it. Comparing non-galvanized to galvanized, however, you see the benefit!
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