Parking Car on Grass – Is That Normal or a Dangerous Habit?

Parking car on grass has always remained a controversial topic in the automotive community as some say it leads to rust and others totally deny it. Maybe you are thinking of parking your car outside on the grass and are contemplating whether or not it is ideal for both the car and the grass.

Parking Car on Grass

Well, there are a lot of answers out there and some can be confusing, thus we asked our automotive team about the truth behind parking on the grass. Our team not only shared their thoughts on the question but gave tips on how to protect your car from rust, so keep reading.

Does Parking Your Car on Grass Make the Car Rust or Kills the Grass?

Yes, parking your car on grass can make it rust if the blades of the grass can transmit moisture to the underside of the car. Also, parking the car on grass robs the grass of the sunlight it requires to grow, therefore killing the grass.

– Cars and the Agents of Rust

Rust comes about when water and oxygen react with the metal parts of the car. Thus, when you leave the car on the grass, the moisture in the grass teams up with oxygen in the air and react with the metal of your vehicle to cause rust.

Cars and the Agents of Rust

Also, parking your car outside in humid weather without covering it can lead to rusting even without grass. This is because the oxygen and moisture in the air can affect the exposed metal parts of the car, causing it to rust.

– How Parking on the Grass Kills It

Plants require a lot of sunshine to grow and depriving them of that leads to their eventual death. Plants make their “food” through photosynthesis, which is a process that combines sunlight, carbon dioxide, water and other essential minerals to form oxygen and sugar. Thus, parking the car on grass for longer periods prevents the grass from accessing the sunlight which is a key factor in photosynthesis. This causes the grass to wither and eventually die, so it’s not advisable to park cars on lawns.

Also, an oil or gasoline leak from the car can cause serious damage to the blades of grass. Oils and gasoline are dangerous to all living things and grasses are no exception. These liquids even cause the death of grasses faster than the lack of sunlight. That notwithstanding, dangerous emissions from your car’s exhaust can harm the grass as well.

The effects of harmful gasses on plant and human life have been well-documented. From the greenhouse effect to global warming, dangerous emissions have been found to be harmful to grass. Thus, if your car’s catalytic converter is damaged, then long term parking on grass won’t be a good idea.

How long can you park on grass before it dies? If grass doesn’t get water and sunlight for at least two continuous weeks, it will die and that is how long you can park your car on grass before it withers. However, if you park it intermittently, it may take longer before it dies.

Does parking on grass damage grass during winter? Parking car on grass in winter for a long period can damage the grass. This is because the grass fails to get enough sunlight for photosynthesis to take place. 

– Legality

Is parking car on grass illegal? It depends on where the grass is located and whether there are warning signs. If the grass is in a no-parking zone or a restricted area, then parking on it is illegal. However, if the grass has no warning signs/restrictions then it is not illegal although it is improper.

Legality of Parking Your Car on Grass

It is not advisable to park your vehicle on the grass as that can hamper its growth and beauty. Instead, spread a grass mesh on the grass before parking your vehicle on it. This is how to park your car on grass without ruining it.

How Do You Prevent Your Car from Rusting When You Park on Grass?

To prevent your car from rusting when you park on grass, be sure to wash the car frequently, apply car wax to protect the metal parts, utilize a rust inhibitor, or cover the car. These methods protect your car not only from grass but from moisture in the air.

Also, you can use car parking mats as they would protect both the car and the grass.

– Wash the Car Frequently

One way to avoid rust is to wash the car frequently. This gets rid of all chemicals on the surface of the vehicle that may contribute to rusting.

Wash the Car Frequently

Be sure to use mild soaps as harsher soaps or detergents could compromise the car paint and wax.

Wash the vehicle at least twice a week to keep it free from any rust agents and remember to wipe thoroughly as well.

– Use Car Wax

Using car wax polish keeps the metal parts of the vehicle from rusting by creating a protective barrier against rust agents. Waxing also protects the car paint from harsh weather conditions that could destroy it.

Wax your vehicle frequently and ensure you use a wax polish made of natural chemicals because they do a better job. You can do the waxing yourself but it is best to allow a professional to do it for you. 

– Utilize a Rust Inhibitor 

Another way to protect the paint and keep the car rust-free is to use a rust inhibitor. Rust inhibitors are liquids that are applied on metallic surfaces to prevent them from rusting in the short term.

Thus, they need to be replaced much more frequently than car wax. Rust inhibitors can last up to 30 days or less, depending on the humidity of the surroundings.

– Cover the Car 

Covering the car keeps moisture and other rust elements from reacting with metallic parts of the vehicle. The materials used in making car covers including vinyl and polyester are strong and waterproof, keeping your car dry even on a rainy day. Also, the materials are breathable, which allows air to keep the car from becoming too hot on sunny days.

Cover the Car

If you can’t afford a car cover, then the next best thing is a tarpaulin which can do a great job. Tarpaulins are lighter, therefore, secure them with straps or bungee cords to keep them in place. You can get tarpaulins that are specifically made for cars but are cheaper than car covers.

Conclusion

So far, we’ve discussed how parking your car on grass makes the car rust and how it negatively affects the grass.

Here’s a recap of all that we’ve read so far:

  • Parking a car on grass causes the car to rust due to the moisture from the grass that mixes with air to corrode the car.
  • While the car gets corroded, the grass is also affected because it is unable to get sunshine, which is essential to its growth.
  • Leaking gasoline and other car fluids are detrimental to the grass and would cause it to wither and die off.
  • To prevent your car from rusting, ensure you wash it frequently, cover it with tarpaulin, polish it with a car wash, or use a rust inhibitor.
  • Avoid parking your car outside as this can lead to the rusting of exposed metallic parts.

Cars rust faster in humid climates, so ensure that you cover your car if you live in such areas or park it inside a garage to avoid rust. To protect the grass, you can use car parking mats for grass or learn how to park on grass without ruining it.

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