Windproof, water-repellent, and UV-resistant car covers can keep your paintjob protected. This helps preserve the appearance and resale value of your vehicle. But the best car cover will vary depending on the size of your car, local weather, and if you keep your car indoors our outside.

We’ll explain the ins and outs of car covers and recommend some of our favorite options for auto enthusiasts.

Car Covers Buyers Guide

Car covers are seemingly simple by design, but this isn’t the case for all high-quality covers. A surprising amount of engineering and design goes into these products, making the process of figuring out what works best for you more complicated.

Below are a few factors that we believe are worth considering before you buy a new car cover.

Indoor Vs. Outdoor

Indoor covers are drastically different from outdoor covers. The features of each type of cover vary, as does the way the car cover should be used.

  • Indoor: This type of car cover is meant to protect your vehicle from the hazards of the garage. While you may view your garage as a safe place to store your vehicle, the dust that’s typically found in a garage can run your car’s paint. Additionally, this type of cover should protect against any accidental bumps or dings when you pull out tools from your garage.
  • Outdoor: Outdoor covers are meant to protect your vehicle from a wide variety of weather conditions. Whether rain, sun, sleet, or hail, this type of cover should be equipped to handle anything Mother Nature brings its way. Additionally, outdoor covers are typically UV-resistant and meant to withstand bird droppings and tree sap.

Weather Resistance

If you’re looking to purchase an outdoor cover, that cover will need to handle a variety of weather conditions.

  • Sun: UV protection and heat-reflective material are a must if your car is sitting in the sun for an extended period of time.
  • Dust/dirt: For those who live in windy areas with lots of dust, a custom-fit car cover ensures that dust and dirt won’t get to your vehicle.
  • Rain: If you’re worried about rain, a waterproof cover is the way to go. At the very least you may need a water-repellent material, but it’s also a good idea to research covers that have been treated for mildew.
  • Snow/ice: Similar to rain, you will want a waterproof cover to fully protect against snow and ice. It should be noted that there are car covers available on the market that are specifically designed for ice protection.
  • Hail: Anything past light hail will require a hail storm-specific cover. This type of car cover is typically padded and will sometimes even be inflatable.

5 Best Car Covers

Car Cover motortrend

  1. Best Overall: Budge RSC-3
  2. Best Multi-Layer Cover: Motor Trend SafeKeeper
  3. Best Value: Budge Lite
  4. Best Weather Protection: OxGord Executive Storm-Proof
  5. Also Consider: FH Group C502-L

#1 Best Overall: Budge RSC-3

Pros Elastic hem Soft stretch outer layer Breathable
Cons Low-quality fastening cord

Approximate Cost: $150

The Budge RSC-3 is our product testing team’s pick for the Best Overall car cover available on the market. This car cover is extremely breathable, meaning the car cover will dry quickly to prevent the formation of mold or mildew. The high-quality car cover is designed for indoor use, but it can protect against airborne pollutants and also offers UV protection.

This indoor car cover consists of a soft inner liner, soft stretch outer layer, and full elastic hem. As the car cover isn’t designed for outdoor use, it is unsurprisingly not waterproof, but it will hide any dings and dents from view. The cover is made from nylon and polyester material, meaning it is lightweight and can easily be stowed away even if you have limited storage space.

Our Experience

Budge RSC-3 Car Cover

Overall Rating5 out of 5
Ease of Installation5

Duly recognized by our team as the Best Overall car cover in the industry, the Budge RSC-3 has everything you could ask for from an indoor car cover. The material is high-quality and durable, the cover fits well, and it’s easy to install and remove.

  • Material: While other car covers we tested seemed like they had a high propensity to rip or tear, the material of this car cover was great to work with. The stretchy material meant we didn’t have to worry about tearing holes in the cover, and the cover felt like it was well-made.
  • Fit: Many car covers we tested featured an elastic hem for the front and rear of the vehicle, but not the sides. As this cover had an elastic hem around the entirety of it, it meant that the car cover snugly fit onto our test vehicle. Fitting this cover to the car was so easy that it drew comparisons from our testing team to putting a fitted bed sheet on a mattress.
  • Ease of Installation: Sometimes less is more. While many car covers come with straps or buckles to tie down your cover to the vehicle, this cover didn’t. We found that the elasticized hem meant this car cover fit our test vehicle well but it didn’t require us to be on our hands and knees connecting buckles underneath the car. It did include a cord to tie underneath the car, however, we didn’t find it made much of a difference as the cover was already secured properly.

What Customers Are Saying

Amazon Review Score: 4.6 out of 5.0 based on over 380 ratings.

Reviews speak to the car cover’s dust-proof material, while others note the stretchy fabric allowing for a snug fitment on the vehicle. Many reviewers sing the praises of the soft fleece on the inside of the car liner and how they don’t have to worry about scratching or damaging their car’s paint when using this quality car cover.

#2 Best Multi-Layer Cover: Motor Trend SafeKeeper

Pros Six layers Waterproof Scratch-resistant
Cons No mirror pockets

Approximate Cost: $80

Built to handle any weather conditions, the Motor Trend SafeKeeper is our product testing team’s choice for the Best Multi-Layer Cover in 2022. This six-layer car cover consists of an outer breathable film, outer ethylene-vinyl acetate (EVA) waterproof, waterproof sealant layer, particle filter film layer, enhanced polyethylene (PE) compound foam comfort layer, and an inner scratch-proof fleece lining.

Providing heat and cold resistance, the breathable woven polyester also prevents moisture build-up. This exterior layer of this car cover is well-made and durable, it even includes reflective safety strips. This car cover is 100 percent waterproof and it offers protection from UV rays. Additionally, it includes wind-resistant safety straps to ensure a snug fit over your vehicle.

Our Experience

Motor Trend SafeKeeper Car Cover

Overall Rating4.8 out of 5
Ease of Installation5

Although the number of layers that make up a car cover wasn’t part of our testing criteria, it should be noted that the Motor Trend SafeKeeper is one of only two multi-layer covers that we tested. The multi-layer design certainly gives this car cover a leg up on the competition.

  • Material: Unlike the other car covers that our team tested, this was the only cover with multiple materials. In terms of the layers that you can visibly see, the interior and exterior layers, we had no qualms. The interior layer was soft and ensured no damage would come to the car’s paint while the exterior layer was thick, durable, and seemed to be built to withstand anything Mother Nature might throw its way.
  • Fit: This car cover fit snugly over our test vehicle, and the wind-resistant safety straps ensured the car cover wouldn’t blow off when we left the car unattended. The front hood of the car fit especially well, but we would’ve liked to see mirror pockets included in the design for the cover to receive a perfect score in this testing category.
  • Ease of Installation: This car cover was arguably the easiest to use of the covers that our team tested. The wind-resistant safety straps were already buckled, meaning our team members didn’t need to crawl under the underside of the car to secure the cover. We simply tightened the straps and the car cover was good to go.

What Customers Are Saying

Amazon Review Score: 4.4 out of 5.0 based on over 2,000 ratings.

Reviews mention the warranty that comes with the SafeKeeper cover, and others state the Motor Trend SafeKeeper is as good as any custom-fit car cover available on the market. Quite a few reviewers recognize the three buckles as very helpful and easy to fasten, while others note how heavy-duty the car cover is.

#3 Best Value: Budge Lite

Pros Elastic hem Double-stitched seams Sewn-in grommets
Cons Less-durable material

Approximate Cost: $27

The Budge Lite is an affordable option for those looking to protect their vehicle without spending hundreds of dollars. This car cover is lightweight and is made from a single layer of spun-bond polypropylene. The indoor car cover is also fully breathable and features an elasticized hem and built-in grommets.

The elasticized hem guarantees the car cover won’t fly off in the wind and ensures a snug fit. The sewn-in grommets act as additional reinforcement against the wind, and using a cable to secure the cover with the grommets can act as a theft deterrent. The seams are double-stitched for increased durability, and non-abrasive materials ensure that no damage will be caused to the car’s paintwork. 

Our Experience

Budge Lite Car Cover

Overall Rating4 out of 5
Ease of Installation4.5

Price wasn’t one of our testing criteria, but it would be unwise to overlook the cost of a product. This car cover offers quality indoor protection at an affordable price. It should also be noted that the manufacturer mentions that the cover is somewhat UV-resistant.

  • Material: This car cover received the lowest material score out of all of the covers that we tested. The material felt brittle and delicate, which isn’t ideal for a car cover. Our team members felt that they had to coax the material around the edges of our testing vehicle.
  • Fit: The fit of the car cover was what we expected. It fit reasonably well, but it didn’t cover much of the wheels of the testing vehicle. Sewn-in grommets and a cable that was included in the packaging ensured the cover wouldn’t blow off in the wind.
  • Ease of Installation: Engulfing our test vehicle with this car cover was easy. But due to the delicate nature of the material, we felt that we had to exercise caution while installing or removing this car cover.

What Customers Are Saying

Amazon Review Score: 4.3 out of 5.0 based on over 8,800 ratings

One reviewer notes that it fits their 2019 Toyota Avalon perfectly, while another appreciates the grommets that are included which can be used for tie-downs. Many reviewers rave over the elastic hem, as it gives the car cover a snug fit over their vehicles. The majority of negative reviews seem to be attributed to customer misuse, as even though this car cover is meant solely for indoor use, many customers complain about its outdoor use.

#4 Best Weather Protection: OxGord Executive Storm-Proof

Pros Seven layers Reinforced seams Waterproof
Cons Relatively heavy

Approximate Cost: $70

The OxGord Executive Storm-Proof is an outdoor car cover that’s adept to handle a variety of weather conditions. This semi-custom car cover not only offers UV light protection but is also 100-percent waterproof. Featuring reinforced seams for added durability, the car cover is also highly breathable to ensure mold and mildew don’t form.

This multi-layer car cover features seven layers, five of which are layers of spunbond polypropylene. The remaining two layers consist of one layer of micro-porous film and a soft layer of cotton. Additionally, elastic hems are included on the front and rear of the vehicle, making the fit notably better than it would’ve been without the inclusion of elastic hems.

Our Experience

OxGord Executive Storm-Proof car cover

Overall Rating4 out of 5
Ease of Installation4

The OxGord Executive Storm-Proof is a great option for those looking to purchase a car cover to protect their vehicle against the elements. Most car covers only feature a single layer, but this seven-layer car cover shows why multi-layer car covers are so sought after.

  • Material: Our product testing team was quite impressed with this car cover. While some car covers are lightweight and leave you wondering how they could protect against adverse weather conditions, this cover leaves nothing to the imagination. The cover is thick, durable, and has an interior layer that is extremely soft.
  • Fit: Comparisons to a tarp being thrown over a car came to mind for our testing team when taking a step back to scrutinize the fit of this car cover. While this car cover did cover most of the wheels’ surface area, it felt oversized on the whole. Several of our team members had concerns about this cover flying off in the wind because of its bagginess.
  • Ease of Installation: Covering our testing vehicle with this car cover was relatively easy in relation to the other car covers that we tested. You may need an extra set of hands, as the cover is heavier than most of the others that we tested.

What Customers Are Saying

Amazon Review Score: 4.2 out of 5.0 based on over 2,400 ratings.

Specific customer reviews point to the high-quality material of the universal car cover and the soft underside of the cover, meaning that the car’s paint isn’t scratched. Many reviewers note the car cover’s ability to handle extreme weather conditions. Negative reviews mention that the car cover will almost melt onto the car in very hot temperatures, leaving behind irreparable damage to the car’s paint.

#5 Also Consider: FH Group C502-L

Pros Waterproof UV-resistant Special silver coating for added durability
Cons Relatively ill-fitting

Approximate Cost: $40

Designed for outdoor use, the FH Group C502-L rounds out our product testing team’s top five picks for the best car covers on the market. This outdoor car cover is fully waterproof, UV-resistant, and can shield your car from airborne pollutants. The cover is made from a breathable polyester material, meaning the car will air out and dry before mold has a chance to form.

The car cover’s polyester material is treated with a special silver coating for increased durability. The inner lining of this cover is soft and scratch-resistant, which means you won’t need to worry about damaging your car’s exterior when enveloping your car with the cover. Additionally, it should be noted that this car cover is heat-reflective.

Our Experience

FH Group C502-L car cover

Overall Rating3.8 out of 5
Ease of Installation4

The FH Group C502-L will undoubtedly be a reliable outdoor cover to protect your vehicle from the elements. Our product testing team firmly believes that this car cover will perform as advertised.

  • Material: This cover’s material is durable and high-quality. While there’s only one layer of material, that one layer seems fully equipped to handle any potential adverse weather conditions.
  • Fit: The fit of the car cover on our test vehicle was average. Our product testing team found that no matter how much you tweak, adjust, or reposition this cover, it simply won’t cover the bottom half of your car very well. The front of the vehicle cover does fit well.
  • Ease of Installation: The process of getting this car cover wrapped around the exterior of our test vehicle and then later removed was standard compared to the rest of the car covers we tested.

What Customers Are Saying

Amazon Review Score: 3.8 out of 5.0 based on over 360 ratings.

Reviews note that the car cover is easy to install and remove, and it protects cars from tree sap. Many reviewers sing the praises of this water-resistant car cover offering solid weather protection. Negative reviews complain that the cover is ill-fitting and looks like a storage bag rather than a car cover.

Other Car Covers We Recommend

Need more options to consider? We haven’t yet tested the car covers below, but based on our research think these would also offer top-notch paint protection.

Covercraft WeatherShield HP

Check Price

Approximate Cost: $400

The WeatherShield HP is a high-grade custom fit car cover. The breathable fabric allows moisture to escape while providing lightweight outdoor protection from UV-rays and bird droppings. It is available in 5 different colors and even includes a 4-year warranty.

Coverking Satin Stretch

Check Price

Approximate Cost: $300

The Coverking Satin Stretch is soft on your paintjob while being durable enough to guard against scratches. It has double stitching with waxed threads which help keep water out. This contour car cover is designed for indoor use and is custom fit to your vehicle.

CoverMaster Gold Shield

Check Price

Approximate Cost: $170

This 5-layer cover is fully waterproof. The innermost layer is built form soft fleece to be gentle on your paint, while outer, Polyproylene layers guard against rain and snow. This heavy-duty cover comes in truck sizes and is fit specific to your vehicle.

Our Review Standards

The car covers in this article went through two rounds of reviews. We started by searching the web for top products, looking at factors like Prime shipping eligibility, customer ratings, Amazon superlatives, and prices. Our product testing team ordered the five car covers that best met these standards. 

Car Covers Testing Process

A team member tested each product on a hatchback, taking note of how well the car covers fit the testing vehicle, how high of quality a material the cover is made from, and judging its weather resistance. Each car cover was given a rating out of 5 stars based on this criteria.

  • Material: The material that a car cover is made out of is one of the most important aspects of this kind of product. We judged the material based on its durability, its elasticity, and its propensity to tear. 
  • Fit: There’s no point in purchasing a car cover that doesn’t fit your vehicle. After spreading the car cover onto our test vehicle, we judged the fit and whether the cover was too small or too large.
  • Ease of Installation: It shouldn’t be a convoluted process to install a car cover over your vehicle. Our product testing team tested how quickly and easily a car cover could be put on and removed from a vehicle.

Why You Can Trust Us

Each year, we test over 350 auto products on vehicles and in our testing lab. Our team of product testers thoroughly researches top products, unboxes and puts our hands on each component, and tests the items on real vehicles before making recommendations to readers.

We publish hundreds of product and service reviews to bring car enthusiasts detailed guides on automotive tools, detailing kits, car seats, pet products, and much more.

Car Covers: FAQ

*Data accurate at time of publication.