If you don't have a garage to store your car during bad weather, you don't have many options when it comes to dealing with a hailstorm on short notice. However, even a normal tarp not designed for hail resistance will provide plenty of protection against typical hail sizes as long as you attach and buttress it properly. So if a hailstorm is coming and all you have is a tarp and a few ordinary household tools, use these three tips for securing the tarp on your car's windshield.
Stuff A Good Portion Of The Tarp Underneath The Windshield Wipers
It's important to keep your windshield wipers from moving around in response to hail impacts. If you don't, the edges of the wipers will exert a lot of pressure on the tarp, potentially causing the tarp to loosen and unravel.
The best way to do this is to create a crease in the tarp over the wipers and stuff part of the fabric in the area between the wipers and the windshield. Together with a few pieces of tape on the top of the tarp and the wipers, this configuration will go a long way toward preventing movement.
Tie A Cord Around The Tarp And Secure It With Duct Tape
A cord like you'd normally use to secure a tent or hammock will be very useful on the tarp because it'll ensure that as little free air space as possible remains between the fabric and the windshield. This means that falling hail will have to meet resistance from both the tarp and the rest of the car all at once instead of one at a time, reducing the damage from impacts.
Once you've stretched the cord around the car as far as it will go without snapping, use a few pieces of duct tape to hold it in place. Since duct tape is so thick, it'll resist any rain that comes down with the hail very well.
Thicken The Tarp By Putting A Small Pillow Underneath It
Pillows are great for supporting relatively thin tarps that aren't designed for hail protection because their soft interiors can blunt the impact of even very large hailstones. Keeping the pillow in a pillow cover is advisable because you'll have a much easier time taping the cover to the windshield instead of the pillow itself.
Make sure that the pillow isn't so thick and heavy that it causes the tarp to stretch to its breaking point. If you don't, hailstones will easily be able to pierce taut tarp sections. For information on windshield repair, click here.
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