Opening and closing your car's doors put them at risk to dings and scratches, especially when in a cramped spot. Fortunately, you can always install a door guard. This accessory is made of either automotive-grade rubber or plastic that you can attach to each door. Once this is installed, it prevents the door from accidentally hitting a wall or another vehicle. If you're planning on buying one for each of your car's doors, take a look at the different guard types available in the market, the material they're made of, and tips when installing one:
Door guard types
- Stick-on. As its name suggests, this guard uses an adhesive backing that lets you stick the trim guard in place. This is usually installed on the edges of each door so that it won't change your car's overall look. Once installed, each trim guard will seamlessly blend in with your ride's door panels.
- Slide-on door. If you don't like to deal with adhesives when installing a guard, go for a slide-on type. Depending on the kit you choose, a slide-on guard is usually a trim molding strip (at least 15 feet) that you can easily cut into smaller pieces with a pair of shears or scissors. To install this type, simply slide each strip in place over the lower side edges of each door. It doesn't use any adhesive strips, but once attached, this guard won't move out of place even when you close or open the door. Because you just need to cut this guard into 4 pieces and then slide each piece in place, installation is about 30 minutes or less.
Door guard material
The materials used for a guard can include strips of stainless steel, flexible PVCs, and automotive grade rubber that are also usually used when making door trims. These materials are made to resist constant exposure to force and friction since you'll be opening and closing the doors several times each day. To increase the lifespan of a trim guard, some manufacturers also coat plastic and rubber materials with UV protection. This is especially helpful if you've installed transparent plastic guards. Without a coat of UV protection, these clear strips will easily turn yellow after months of use.
Door guard installation tips
- Clean the surface before installing stick-on guards. To make sure each strip will properly adhere to the door's edge, the surface should be free from dirt, grime, and other residues. Before installation, use alcohol wipes or a microfiber cloth dipped in alcohol to clean the edges. If you're replacing a damaged stick-on guard, get rid of stubborn adhesive with a paint-safe solvent or degreaser.
- Get the right measurement before cutting up a guard trim. Many DIY kits include a single piece of door guard that you can cut into four pieces for each of your car's doors. Before cutting them up, make sure you get the right measurements. Give some allowance for each strip since it's easier to cut off extra pieces than buying a new one because one strip is too short. A good tip is to measure twice before cutting anything.