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:
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.
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.