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10 Tips to Protect Your Car from Damage While Parking Outside

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                    GM power folding mirror parts

Apparently, nearly three-quarters of Americans park their cars outside routinely, if not every day. Evidently, as much as 20% of cars parked outside will at some point or other be struck by gravel or other road debris.

Many others are subject to incidental damage, either scraped by delivery vehicles or clipped by vehicles passing by (when parallel parked).

Here are our best tips to follow when parking outside to help you minimize your chances of making an unfortunate discovery when you walk back to your car.

1.The best advice: park smart
The most important advice we can offer you to help prevent incidental damage to your vehicle is to park smart and avoid risky areas.

For instance, avoid construction zones where damage is more likely to occur by thrown or falling debris or by construction vehicles. Don’t always park closer to the entrance of a building where there is the most traffic. You might do better a few lanes back.

Avoid parking too close to other cars, and try not to park behind cars that have poor rear visibility that might not see you when backing out.

Preventing damage by parking wisely is better than repairing it later.

2.Engage your emergency brake
Engaging your emergency brake can help prevent two potential problems. One is brake failure which can cause your car to roll into a building, obstacle, or vehicle, causing damage.

The other is that it can help prevent your vehicle from being towed or moved against your will. Not quite the same as damage, but can still protect your vehicle.

3.Get close to the curb
If you’re parallel parking, or just parking on the street, parking close to the curb is a good idea. It will keep you as far away from passing traffic as possible, and if there are other vehicles in line with you, if you can park closer than they are (comparatively) they will serve as a buffer between your vehicle and passing traffic.

4.Lock items out of sight
Sometimes damage is not incurred by passing vehicles, but by others with more nefarious intentions. If you want to protect your property and your windows, keep all of your valuables stored well out of plain sight whenever you leave your vehicle outdoors.

Place important items in the trunk or well out of view and always keep your doors locked. Replacing a smashed window is not an enjoyable project.

5.Don’t park under trees
If you’re thinking you can clean off bird droppings and fix dents left by falling acorns or walnuts, that’s not where we’re going with this.

While trees can shade your vehicle and keep it cool, it's never a good idea to park under them. Trees can topple and lose limbs unexpectedly during storms, which can incur serious damage to vehicles parked underneath them.

6.Fold your mirrors
Sideview mirrors are common casualties of incidental contact. Getting clipped can easily break a sideview mirror or damage its internal components.

Here’s the kicker. Some mirrors don’t even need to be hit by another vehicle to fail. For instance, select GM vehicles have power folding mirrors that have a thin plastic spur gear mounted to the main drive shaft.

One too many open-close cycles, or simply being walked into or whacked can break the spur gear and prevent you from using the power fold/unfold function or worse.

Our advice is to replace the parts in affected vehicles with our GM power folding mirror parts that include metal gears and internally grounded high-torque replacement motors - but you should still fold your mirrors when you park on the street.

7.Avoid spaces at the end of rows
Generally speaking, you’re more likely to get clipped if you park at the end of a row, where vehicles make frequent turns and where your car will stick out. This includes avoiding spaces at the ends of streets, where the same problems can arise.

8.Keep your wheels straight (unless parked on a grade)
Straightening your wheels after parking (except when parked on a grade) can help you avoid the possible mistake of starting the vehicle up and accidentally turning one of the vehicles parked next to you as you go to leave the spot.

9.Consider leaving your hitch installed
This one might invite some controversy. We know some people like to remove their hitches from their trucks after parking because people like to steal these.

However, if you leave it in and someone gets a bit too close to the back of your vehicle, instead of hitting your bumper, they’ll probably just run straight into your hitch, which may prevent additional damage to your truck.

10.Bonus: clean and wax your car
While it might not seem like an instrumental way to protect your car, cleaning and waxing your car will protect its finish.

This is because many waxes protect the car against UV exposure, and some will also prevent damage incurred by acid rain, accumulated pollen and pollutants, and even minor damage and swirl marks left by particulate abrasion.

                    GM Power Folding Mirror Parts

Got a Broken GM Mirror? Pick Up New GM Power Folding Mirror Parts
Hopefully, you observe these tips whenever you need to leave your car or truck outside overnight.

However, if you’re already dealing with a problem with GM power folding mirrors, we may be able to help.

We’ve created replacement GM power folding mirror parts including a stronger, updated brass spur gear and an internally grounded, high-torque motor replacement for select, affected GM trucks and SUVs produced from 2007 to the present (see the previous link for details on auto part numbers and for whether or not our mirror gears will fit your vehicle). We put them through rigorous testing and can confidently say that they’re far superior to the OEM mirror parts.

We suggest making the replacement before you have a problem, though, as our replacement is a cost-effective solution to the problem.

If your GM is one of the affected vehicles, save time, money, and a headache down the line and make the repair today - and contact us if you have any questions.



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