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Just Say No to Minivans
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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I don't have a garage and plan on parking my '01 Z3 3.0i Coupe once the snow falls and they start salting the roads like a giant bag of popcorn here in the DC area . I've been doing tons of research and think I have some ideas of what's a good idea and what's not--but I would love to get some firsthand suggestions.

1. Given that this winter will probably have snow, sleet, and rain, should I use a waterproof cover? Or do those always cause mold, rust, and bubbling, as some warn?

2. The previous owner gave me a thin nylon cover, which I'm hesitant to use--although it did cross my mind to put it on over a breathable fabric cover (Evolution, etc.). Bad idea?

3. Do I even need a cover at all? If I put on a good coat of Duragloss or some similar synthetic wax, would that be enough to prevent damage from acid rain when it does rain during the warm spells?

4. Finally, who makes a cover that actually fits the Coupe really well?

Sorry for the shotgun blast of questions; thanks for any advice!
 

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Cargirl
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Cover

I did lots of research and pricing and mine came in the mail today. I settled on a waterproof cover for $50. The research suggested being sure not to buy a water resistant cover or a dust cover if u want to keep it dry. Mine came with a bag and nylon string. It is a compact size and was very easy to put on. Then i used a magic marker and labeled front and back. I also cut a half inch slot for the antenna and marked it too.
 

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Just Say No to Minivans
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71 Posts
Discussion Starter · #3 ·
I did lots of research and pricing and mine came in the mail today. I settled on a waterproof cover for $50. The research suggested being sure not to buy a water resistant cover or a dust cover if u want to keep it dry. Mine came with a bag and nylon string. It is a compact size and was very easy to put on. Then i used a magic marker and labeled front and back. I also cut a half inch slot for the antenna and marked it too.
I'm confused: You said the research said not to buy a water-resistant cover to keep it dry? I thought it would be the opposite--that a waterproof cover will keep the rain off but possibly keep condensation in.

At any rate, you bought a water-resistant cover, didn't you?
 

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Just Say No to Minivans
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Discussion Starter · #6 · (Edited)

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Cargirl
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Yeah, im with u. I read customer comments on at least a dozen different sites regarding covers. I thought the terms were interchangeable. But the more i read, the more info i gleaned. I found it when buyers started complaining about how porus some were. Today im putting on my new top. I just got the stqples in the back. At 125#, i had lots of trouble pulling the handle of the stapler, ha. Should have used th air driven one, but too lazy to hook u the compressor.
 

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I generally don't like having anything potentially abrasive pressed up against my paint: even the softest covers can turn into sand paper once some grit gets up in there (or was already on it or the car); same issue with wash mits or polishing pads. The wind will cause minor shifts in the cover dragging stuff over the paint. Swirls, followed by histrionic screams when you take it off. :D

Have you checked out touchless car covers? I have one...not the most durable or easiest thing to work with, but fine for those rare times she's not in the garage for a while. For leaving a convertible out in the sun for the day, roadster solutions makes a cover just to shield your (more vulnerable) soft top and doors.

In your case, the best option might be a portable garage. You can get one from Harbor Freight for $150-200. Much better than nothing; allows you to easily go out and run the engine now and again, leave a trickle charger attached, etc.

Hope that's good food for thought!
 

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Cargirl
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Im only using a cover while its in the restoration stage. When i get it painted in the spring, it will find its place in the garage. Even then, i will cover it with a kngsize cotton sheet txks for the great suggestion.
 

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Just Say No to Minivans
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Discussion Starter · #10 · (Edited)
I generally don't like having anything potentially abrasive pressed up against my paint: even the softest covers can turn into sand paper once some grit gets up in there (or was already on it or the car); same issue with wash mits or polishing pads. The wind will cause minor shifts in the cover dragging stuff over the paint. Swirls, followed by histrionic screams when you take it off. :D

Have you checked out touchless car covers? I have one...not the most durable or easiest thing to work with, but fine for those rare times she's not in the garage for a while. For leaving a convertible out in the sun for the day, roadster solutions makes a cover just to shield your (more vulnerable) soft top and doors.

In your case, the best option might be a portable garage. You can get one from Harbor Freight for $150-200. Much better than nothing; allows you to easily go out and run the engine now and again, leave a trickle charger attached, etc.

Hope that's good food for thought!
Thanks for the thoughts and the suggestion. I was thinking that if I bought a really soft Evolution cover and was sure to tie it very securely to the car (and made sure the car is super-clean first), I could avoid marring the paint. The previous owner kept it covered with a nylon cover, and it looks great--even though that cover has no liner whatsoever, just raw nylon. :yikes:

Never heard of touchless covers before--good to know!

I might look into a portable garage. Not sure how my local government would view that, but if I don't leave it up except during big storms, I don't see how they could object.
 

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Cargirl
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We have those wheels on r new vet and on the lotus awesomely beautiful. Thinking of upgrading on the bmw, but its a grand and only if i decide to keep the car after painting. I really want a z4
 

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Never heard of touchless covers before--good to know!

I might look into a portable garage. Not sure how my local government would view that, but if I don't leave it up except during big storms, I don't see how they could object.
Different municipalities feel differently about 'temporary structures.' You can have them on your property as long as they're X-number of feet from a public road. More than likely, though, unless your neighbors/home owners association are dicks, noone will care.

The Portable garrage survived a Virginia Winter well enough (easy to slough the snow off) but I'd be warry of high-winds: make sure it's anchored well (like a tent) if you go that rout.

As far as car covers; it's partly just my OCD: trapping moisture and grit in with the paint is a bad idea. I've seen cars come out from under them after a few months and you can see it up close. Nothing a good polishing won't take care of, generally, but why when it can be avoided?
 

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Just Say No to Minivans
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Discussion Starter · #14 · (Edited)
Hey, u want to sell that car to me?
Haha--not just yet! I've only had it a month or so. Love it so far. Only 45K miles. Thanks for the comment on the wheels; they're a little less sporty than the five-spoke ones you usually see (especially on the M Coupes), but the appearance of the 3.0 is slightly more relaxed than that of the M, so they're in keeping with that.

You mentioned a Z4; I test-drove an '07 Z4M Coupe. Great car. Much faster than mine, but a lot more expensive, and the visibility of the blind spots was much worse. Plus I like the in-your-face quirkiness of the E36/37 coupes.

Different municipalities feel differently about 'temporary structures.' You can have them on your property as long as they're X-number of feet from a public road. More than likely, though, unless your neighbors/home owners association are dicks, noone will care.

The Portable garrage survived a Virginia Winter well enough (easy to slough the snow off) but I'd be wary of high-winds: make sure it's anchored well (like a tent) if you go that rout.

As far as car covers; it's partly just my OCD: trapping moisture and grit in with the paint is a bad idea. I've seen cars come out from under them after a few months and you can see it up close. Nothing a good polishing won't take care of, generally, but why when it can be avoided?
Thanks for the info. I found a great deal on a custom Evolution cover ($67!), so I was sorta tempted. Figured keeping the snow and ice off the paint has to be a good idea--though I can see how ground-in dust would be worse.

No HOA here, but we do have some a-hole neighbors.
 

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Cargirl
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Well, ....

If u change yr mind, im here 4u. When the tops down on the vette, i can see well. When its up, not so good as im 5'6". I was hot to buy a new camaro when they came out, but couldnt see in it either so i passed. Its such a sexy car. Puts the mustang to shame...which is a design run amuck.
 

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Bumping a thread.

I've seen many many comments on covers over my years. There seems to be two schools. One ho thinks it's better to cover, and one who thinks it isn't. The potential for trapped moisture and the damage it can do puts me off them if nothing else. The finish on the car should stand up nicely if you just give the car a good application of wax and a good detailing. No problems with microscopic scratches or trapped moisture. Plus you can actually SEE the car and see what's going on. No place for critters to decide to hibernate either.

And if there happens to be a nice day or three where you want to drive it, you can just fire it up and go. Otherwise you have a garage queen without the luxury of a garage. The portable garage things have merit as long as you don't mind looking at them while they are up and as long s the weather doesn't decide it wants it down! THAT can do more harm to the car than any cover!
 

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Just Say No to Minivans
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Discussion Starter · #17 · (Edited)
Bumping a thread.

I've seen many many comments on covers over my years. There seems to be two schools. One who thinks it's better to cover, and one who thinks it isn't. The potential for trapped moisture and the damage it can do puts me off them if nothing else. The finish on the car should stand up nicely if you just give the car a good application of wax and a good detailing. No problems with microscopic scratches or trapped moisture. Plus you can actually SEE the car and see what's going on. No place for critters to decide to hibernate either.

And if there happens to be a nice day or three where you want to drive it, you can just fire it up and go. Otherwise you have a garage queen without the luxury of a garage. The portable garage things have merit as long as you don't mind looking at them while they are up and as long s the weather doesn't decide it wants it down! THAT can do more harm to the car than any cover!
I agree. I ended up doing just what you mentioned--a coat of Klasse All-in-One plus a coat of Klasse sealer. It doesn't snow in my area till January most years, and I think those coatings will keep the water out pretty well. (Besides, I don't think it's snow that really hurts paint, as opposed to bugs, sap, road tar, road salt, and bright sun.)

A guy on my street has an old 911SC that he never covers, sitting in his driveway. (He never drives it either, but that's another story.)
 
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