How much does rust proofing cost in Canada?

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Updated August 3, 2023

How much does rust proofing cost?

It typically costs $130 to $150 to rust proof a car and $150 to $170 to rust proof an SUV or truck in Canada depending on which service provider you go with and larger vehicles will cost more.

Rust Check$130$160
Corrosion Free (Complete Package C)$180$170

One of the best ways to protect your vehicle and ensure you maintain its market value is to apply a rust proofing solution.

Rust proofing helps to slow, or completely prevent rust and corrosion, but is the cost of applying it every year actually worth it? Check out: Should you rust proof your car in Canada?

Cost of rust proofing processes

The best way to prevent moisture and salt from producing (or accelerating) corrosion on your car is to treat it with a rust proofing solution. Here are the four most prevalent options available, along with how much they typically cost:

Drip oil spray

Rust Check and Krown cost $130 to $160 at a recommended interval of 12 months. by at a recommended interval of 12 to 18 months at a

A drip oil spray is the option that experts most commonly recommend. Professionally trained technicians spray a rust proofing product on the car and underbody that seeps into the hard to reach door seam, joints, and crevices and forms a barrier that protects it from moisture.

The downside to this method is that there will be some dripping of oil after application, which typically after 24 to 48 hours. This can cause stains on your driveway or garage, but can be washed away by rain or a pressure washer. Small holes need to be drilled in the door and rocker panels in order for the product to reach the inside of the car’s body panels.

Dripless oil spray

Corrosion Free applies a dripless oil spray for $130 to $170 every 18 months, depending on the size of the vehicle. They have 3 packages:

  • Underbody Package (U): $60 to $100 – Underside, bumper supports, wheel arches and liners, and rear bumper supports
  • Essential Package (E): $90 to $119 – Hood seams, bottom door seams, trunk lid seams
  • Complete Package (C): $130 to $170 – Entire vehicle

It is a dense mineral oil based gel is applied to the entire body of the vehicle, including the underbody. Unlike the drip oil sprays, it doesn’t require any holes to be drilled and won’t cause any dripping after application.

Ziebart/Uniglass Plus Penetr-Oil is another dripless spray that costs $130 and is recommended to be done annually.

Electronic rust inhibitors

Electronic modules could previously be sold and installable at Canadian Tire for around $300, but appear to no longer be available.

However, many dealerships still offer them as an option and alternative to sprays and sealants, charging $500 up to $1000.

This solution involves an electronic module that sends weak electric currents through the metal of a vehicle. The theory is that it will prevent a car from rusting by disrupting the electrochemical reaction that causes it.

However, while it might sound like a high-tech, modern solution, the products offering this technology have repeatedly been shown to be ineffective when used on vehicles time and time again

Tar based sealants

Ziebart’s “permanent” tar-based undercoating running $600 to $900, while many dealerships offer a vulcanized/rubber undercoating option on new and used vehicles, charging $600 to $1,000, and offering a a 10-year warranty:

It involves spraying the underside of the vehicle with a black, tar-like solution. After hardening, the tar-based coating performs as a barrier, protecting the vehicle from water and other elements.

This is a great short term solution, however the undercoating can chip away and cause moisture to actually seep into cracks, getting trapped under the coat and accelerating the corrosion process. The undercoating also doesn’t protect the rest of the car, and won’t be any help for areas already affected by rust or damage.

Should drilled holes be a concern?

Applications such as a drip oil spray or a dripless oil spray require a few small holes to be drilled into specific spots to ensure the solution can reach all of the necessary areas. It’s easy to understand the concern of a drill being taken to your car, however in reality it is only a minor inconvenience.

When done by a trusted professional, any holes should be drilled in unnoticeable places such as near the door latch and on the underside of the vehicle, and will be too tiny to spot. The holes will also be filled in with stoppers, and no moisture or liquid will be able to get in.

The benefits of drilling in order to apply a rust proofing solution outweigh the inconvenience of having small holes that no one will ever know are there.

What causes corrosion?

Modern vehicles rust when the protective layers applied at the factory (e-coat primer, base coat, clear coat and wax) are worn away by insects, road tar, tree sap, bird droppings, industrial pollution, mud and other deposits or damaged by deep scratches and stone chips to expose steel below to water, oxygen and salt.

Moisture from puddles, snow, mud and even humid air conditions are all ways water (and salt) finds its way into the nooks and crannies of your car, and when combined with the oxygen in the air, causes iron oxidization (rust) which eats away at the metal, weakening it and causing it to flake away and develop holes:

The underside of your car is completely exposed to anything and everything you’re driving over or through. In winter conditions, salt and other chemicals used for snow or ice removal make its way underneath your car and stick to the metal surfaces, accelerating corrosion.

Wear and tear

Your vehicle has a lot of moving parts, and over time the metal components eventually show the effects of wear and tear. Neglecting to address wear and tear on your vehicle is going to result in premature aging and rust. Both of which will cost you more money over time than the cost of investing in proper maintenance.

Components commonly affected by rust

Rust can create holes or cause damage, plus harm the function and performance of the following parts:

  • Muffler and exhaust system
  • Door and rocker panels
  • Coil springs
  • Floor panels
  • Frame and sub-frame
  • Hood

Choosing to forego rust proofing can result in more repairs more often, adding to the overall cost of your vehicle’s lifespan. Additionally, visible corrosion can result in a much lower resale or trade in value.

Over to You

I’m interested to know – do you rust proof your car? If so, how much did you pay and what type do you use? Let me know by leaving a comment below!

About the author

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Alex Wideman
Alex Wideman is a consumer rights advocate, serial entrepreneur and the editor-in-chief of Cansumer. He has a bachelor's degree in electrical engineering from Queen's University. He is passionate about helping others save time and money and has been creating consumer-focused online resources for over 10 years. More about Cansumer Read more

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  1. I have used Krown since 1990 and the cars we had it applied to were bought new and kept for 14 and 16 years. So I know it works. In fact my friend that bought my 14 year old car, it is now 22 years old and pretty well rust free (it only rusted because he failed to apply Krown after he bought it in 2013). Back then I would have it applied, but since 2000, I apply it myself and in all cases, no homes were drilled as I removed interior panels and went through access holes covered by rubber grommets that I would remove for the job.

    As for those Electronic Rust Modules that dealers charge a crazy amount for, DO NOT BOTHER WITH THEM. We tested them at a Federal Government lab and they are useless. Some of them come with a red LED that flashes every few seconds, to give you “hope”. LOL

  2. I tried the electronic one several years ago. It did not work then. It was just a waste of money. I don’t know if they are better now.

  3. Thanks for this article as it’s helped me make a clearer decision.
    I’m in the process of getting a new car and I said yes to the rust proofing; but after crunching some numbers I feel like my dealership is taking me for a ride since it looks like I’m going to be paying about 5k for it in the end. Mmmm no thanks!

    I’ll go with the crappy tire $300 special if anything lol

  4. You could choose a dripless oil spray, which forms a hardened wax-type barrier. This covers more area than the tar-based, as holes will be drilled into door panels and other areas so the oil can access more interior regions of the car. If cracks or chips form, this can let in water and hold it there, inviting possible corrosion, though yearly inspections are advised to prevent this. I was quoted Ziebart’s price for this service at $125 (should be done annually), with a combination of this and the tar-based undercoating running $400 with a 10-year warranty, needing annual inspections costing $50.

  5. It’s a scare tactic to tell you that rustproofing your new car will void your manufacturer warranty, and Krown’s warranty is comprehensive and will cover repairs up to the value of the vehicle. “If a customer brings a vehicle in from new, our annually renewable warranty will stay in place as long as they want to have the vehicle treated. We have customers with vehicles that are 20 years old and still under warranty with us,” says vice-president Jeremy Young. Wherever you go, look for a warranty like this.

  6. If you want to keep your car for a long time, rustproofing should be a no-brainer. But don t be fooled by the dealership upsell

  7. A few places will still do a grease rustproofing job for you, which is a great rust deterrent but more costly and not as readily available.