Common Issues with a Nissan D21 Splash Shield
There are two types of splash shield that you can install into your Nissan D21 and will get you all set for an off road adventure: one for the engine and one for your wheel wells. While they both protect vastly different things, the function of both shields is exactly the same: they protect from splashes. Yes, splashes of water, mud, dirt, and debris. If that doesn't sound like a big deal, consider what they're trying to protect. For one, you have the wheel well, where dirt and debris can damage your tires and cause a blow out. For another, you have the engine, which costs thousands of dollars to repair and replace. There are a few things to look out for to determine that your splash shields are on the line:
Signs of physical damage
If you do regular inspections of your splash shield-and you really should-always look out for cracks and other surface damage. These are indicative of two things: one, you might be driving on a terrain that is particularly too rough for the shield to handle, and two, the shield might be ineffective and in need of replacement or repair. A quick fix would be to cover up the affected area by the slathering of epoxy putty. This is only a temporary fix, however, and really doesn't give the strength and support that you might need. On the other hand, if you notice that the shield you have installed simply can't handle the terrain you normally drive over, it might be time to shop around for a stronger splash shield.
Unusual noises and sounds
If you start to hear loud, rough, and out-of-place noises in the area of your wheel well or under the hood, it's best to stop and check those splash shields-because it's likely that pebbles and debris are starting to enter via a breach in the shield. Again, putty and even small sheets of metal can help temporarily cover the area up, but ideally, a replacement is a safer, smarter investment. It really isn't worth the risk of damaging the engine or tires to scrimp on the few dollars it takes to get a new splash shield.
How to Keep Your Nissan D21 Splash Shield in the Best Shape Possible
There are actually two types of splash shield available for your rugged Nissan D21. The first protects your engine; the second protects your wheel well. Protects from what, you might ask? Splashes! Splashes of water, mud, debris, and dirt-no joke! The shields' function might be simple, but they're very important. The areas they protect are extremely vulnerable to damage of any kind and are usually costly to replace or repair-the engine especially. They're therefore a very sensible and worthwhile investment that you should continue to take care of after you've installed them. Here are the best ways to go about that:
Keep them clean.
The simplest step to maintenance is one that we take for granted. It's not so much about looking good either-though that is an important consideration. The main reason you want to keep your splash shields clean is to be able to see any damage or deterioration that might affect its function. Think about it: thick layers of dirt and mud can easily obscure cracks and holes. You rest easy thinking everything is okay, and the next thing you know, you have busted engine. Cleaning is a simple affair. You don't want to be splashing water on the shield or hosing it down. This is counterintuitive. If there are hidden breaches, you might end up pushing the dirt into the area you want to protect. All you need is to carefully, slowly wipe the shield down with clean moist rag. The shields don't need to shine and sparkle-few will see them anyway. What they do need is to have an easily seen surface.
Repair cracks and any form of damage.
Even if you are looking at a tiny crack, you should deal with it right away. Fractures on a surface only get worse and grow over time so it's important to get them sealed right away. Small cracks or breaches still let water in and damage can still be done. Epoxy putty is an effective blocker or filler because it's stable, easy to apply, and water resistant.