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Mazda Miata Splash Shield

Identifying Top Mazda Miata Splash Shield Problems and Their Causes

Don't you just hate it when your newly cleaned and polished wheels become dirty every time you drive through a puddle of mud? Well, that's what your Mazda Miata splash shield is for. It protects your precious wheel assembly and/or engine block from harmful elements like mud or water puddles, road debris, and other contaminants. But after sometime, this protective gear eventually wears out. As your Mazda Miata splash shield ages, you need to watch out for the following signs of failure and the possible reasons behind them:

Annoying noises

Do you often hear unusual noises coming from your vehicle's undercarriage? If you continue to hear the annoying clunking, rattling, scraping, flapping, or whistling noise from under your road glider, you should definitely check your Mazda Miata splash shield. Usually, the splash shield produces these sounds when its mounting screws become loose. It also tends to fall off your vehicle when you hit a road bump, especially for those Mazda Miata models that are lowered for aesthetic improvement. To get rid of these annoying sounds, you just need to re-tighten the loose screws and secure the splash shield in its mount. In some cases, you have no other option but to replace the screws because they are covered with rust, or they already lost their threads. Moreover, if the splash shield obtained so much damage from scraping the road or flapping against the car's underside, do not hesitate to replace it with a new one.

Rust accumulation

For a steel-made splash shield, oxidation and corrosion are the top enemies. Its constant exposure to water and mud makes it vulnerable to rust accumulation. Since the splash shield uses its entire body to protect the wheels or the engine from damaging splashes, rust and corrosion is not only limited to the splash shield's surface. Its mounting screws can also be covered with rust, which can cause them to deteriorate and fail. Usually, rust on the splash shield's surface and screws can still be removed using a commercial rust remover. But if you have extra money to spare, it is better to just buy a new set of splash shields for your Mazda Miata. This will save you from all the hassles of manually removing rust from the old shields, and you are more certain that your wheels and/or engine are well-protected.

Cracks, scratches, and dents

If your steel splash shield is vulnerable to oxidation, your Mazda Miata's plastic splash shield is very much prone to physical damage. Although cracks, scratches, and dents can also occur on a steel-made splash shield, these forms of damage are more common to its plastic counterpart. Aside from old age and excessive use, cracks and scratches are often acquired from hitting road bumps, fender-benders, and full-blown head-on collisions. For a plastic splash shield, minor damage can still be repaired with the help of sandpaper, sealing agent, and a new paint. However, if the splash shield is already broken beyond repair, replacement is the only option.

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  • Useful Tips for a Well-maintained Mazda Miata Splash Shield

    A poorly maintained Mazda Miata splash shield is as useless as a shabby umbrella on a rainy day. It's just there for the sake of having one, but it is not really effective in protecting your sleek sports car's wheels and engine block. But if your sports car's splash shield is always in excellent condition, it will protect your road surfer's undercarriage like a sturdy and reliable raincoat. If you want to maintain your Mazda Miata splash shield's tiptop shape, just follow these very easy and useful tips:

    Keep it clean and shiny.

    A spotless splash shield is very hard to maintain, especially if its primary job is to protect your vehicle from mud splashes and road dirt. But if you really want to prolong your Mazda Miata splash shield's life span, scrubbing it clean as often as possible will absolutely do the trick. Aside from washing it with the usual soap-and-water solution, it would also help if you polish a plastic splash shield using a commercial waxing agent. For a steel-made splash shield, applying a thin layer of rust-preventing wax or oil is advisable.

    Always check for rust and damage.

    To prevent your Mazda Miata splash shield from suddenly falling off your vehicle, make it a habit to examine the shield and its mounting assembly for rust accumulation and other forms of damage like dents, cracks, and scratches. Cracks occurring near the mounting screws can cause the splash shield to become partially detached from the vehicle. This will result in earsplitting scraping or dragging noise, which is both annoying and embarrassing. Rust, on the other hand, can lead to what others refer to as "rust holes" on the splash shield's surface. These tiny holes develop when rust buildup is so severe. Aside from its body, the shield's mounting screws can also be infested with rust. You have the option remove the rust manually using a rust-remover, but it is more advisable to just replace the damaged or rust-infested splash shield assembly.

    Customize and repaint.

    Another way to keep your vehicle's splash shield in excellent condition is by repainting it at least twice a year. Painting the splash shield, whether it is plastic or steel, will improve not only its appearance but also its durability. If you use a special rust-preventing primer and paint on it, the shield will have extra protection against corrosion. This will also allow you to cover up minor scratches and cracks on the splash shield's surface. If you have time and resources, you can also customize your Mazda Miata splash shield to match it with your road surfer's cool exterior.