There are a few important factors to consider when purchasing an SUV cover, including the cover’s fit, materials, and added features. To ensure you’re purchasing the best SUV cover for your vehicle, take note of the following:
A well-fitting cover effectively protects your vehicle from water, dirt, and other contaminants. Often, manufacturers provide an elastic or adjustable hem to create a snug fit around the vehicle. Grommets and buckles can also help tighten the fabric around the SUV in case of wind.
If a vehicle cover is too loose, it may blow away or create pools of water in unwanted places. If a vehicle cover is too tight or small, it may not protect the vehicle’s paint adequately.
SUV covers often come with multiple layers, though those intended for indoor use may only come with one. Below, we’ve explained common materials used in SUV covers.
- Aluminum: Provides UV protection by reflecting the sun’s rays
- PEVA: Plastic-derived water-repelling material with some mildew resistance (also used for water resistance)
- PE: Another water-repelling material made from plastics (also used for water resistance)
- Polyurethane: Usually a protective coating for weather and corrosion resistance
- Synthetics: More resistant to mildew and mold
- Cotton: Guards against scratches, chips, and other cosmetic damages
Many car covers are made with water-resistant or water-repelling materials. While you don’t want a car cover that is going to soak up a lot of water, it’s also not the best idea to have a fully waterproofed cover. While it’s a good thing to repel rain, some amount of moisture will inevitably get underneath your car cover, and you don’t want a cover that will trap that moisture.
When we spoke with Kyle Marker, a parts manager at Leith Lincoln, he told us that a car cover is a useful accessory for car care and maintenance, especially because it provides heat protection for cars parked outdoors. Marker also noted:
“An outdoor car cover, people don’t realize, is not supposed to be waterproof. The waterproof, that turns into mold. I know because I’ve had it. And I’ve had to clean and de-mold a car, it’s never fun.”
This is why we’ve tried to recommend car covers that are water-repellent, but also breathable to reduce the risk of mold.
Additional bells and whistles are what make the best SUV covers stand out against competitors. Here are a few features to look for when buying a quality vehicle cover:
- Buckles and clips: Secure cover in case of wind and provide a snug fit
- Antenna patch: Reseals SUV cover after a small cut is made for antenna
- Grommets: Threaded to secure cover in case of wind and help achieve a more custom fit
- Reflective accents or external layer: Allow the vehicle to be seen in low light conditions
- Storage bag: Allows for portability and storage convenience
- Front and rear indicators: Design makes it easier for drivers to put the cover on in the right direction
- Door zipper: Driver’s side door can be accessed even with the cover on