(WTAJ) — Have you ever noticed more people than usual in line at the car wash after a big winter storm? While snow and ice may potentially contain dirt, they don’t necessarily make your car dirty enough to need washing.

So, what gives?

The answer is salt. Because many state departments of transportation spread salt on roads to prevent too-slick road conditions, the salt treatment has some long-term side effects that most would rather avoid.

Salt is corrosive, so when it’s left on exposed metal for long periods it can cause problems.

According to Erie Insurance, the two car parts that take a brunt of the salt side effects are the brakes and fuel lines. Both of these are close to the undercarriage of the car, which means they take a lot of road salt damage.

One of the best ways to prevent any unnecessary road salt damage is to wash your vehicle’s undercarriage every few weeks and after any heavy winter weather. So, you can probably expect to continue waiting longer at the drive-thru car wash into the spring.

You can find more advice on how to protect your car from salt here.