The Do’s and Don’ts of Winter Car Storage Properly storing your car away for the winter can prevent many mechanical problems, paint problems, or other issues when you take it back out in the spring.
It’s almost time for winter car storage. Whether it’s a classic car or just the one you are leaving behind while you head south to warmer weather, the procedure is similar. Here are a few tips to help ensure that when the car comes out of its hibernation, there won’t be any problems.
Check Your Fluids
If it has been a while, have the oil and filter changed. If this service was done recently, check all the vital fluids to make sure they are full. This includes brake fluid, engine coolant, transmission, power steering fluid and even the windshield washer. Also lubricate all the door hinges, hood latches and door locks.
Prior to leaving the car, fill the fuel tank and add a fuel stabilizer. The fuel stabilizer will keep the gasoline from getting stale. (Typically, gasoline only has a 30-45 day shelf life.) Gas stabilizer will prevent any problems.
Properly Inflate Your Tires
Air up the tires before winter car storage (don’t exceed the maximum inflation) and if possible, park the vehicle on squares of two-inch foam board insulation. This will help lessen the chance that the tires will develop flat spots from sitting for months. Tires will lose air over time, so don’t forget to recheck the tires inflation when you retrieve the car.
Take Care of the Battery
When it comes to the vehicle battery, you have a couple of choices. You can disconnect the battery and deal with resetting the cars clock, radio and power seat memory, or you can use a battery charger designed for long-term storage. These float-style chargers maintain, rather than recharge a battery.
Where to Go for Winter Car Storage
If the vehicle is in a garage, block any holes that could allow critters in. Mice and other animals can do thousands of dollars worth of damage to a vehicle – anything from just making your car their home to chewing wires and hoses.
If you are parking your vehicle out on a dirt or gravel driveway, roll out heavy plastic sheeting or a plastic tarp about the size of the car. This will minimize moisture coming up from the ground. Chock/block the wheels if you are worried about the car rolling. But do not use the parking brake. The parking brake can rust from sitting and could be a problem if stuck in the applied position. Consider us for any of your car storage needs and contact us at 631-403-0474 anytime.
If you have properly stored your car for winter there will be no need to start it during the season. At our location we attend to the daily needs of your vehicle by weekly startups and frequent "wipe-downs" of your vehicle.
When it is time to take the car out of storage, remove any tailpipe and air-intake covers as well and the battery charger. If you disconnected the battery, charge it before trying to start the car. Look under the hood as a quick check before starting the car and then drive it like a brand-new car – nice and easy. You may notice some odd sounds at first. This is probably the result of the car sitting for too long. Also consider a premium trickle-charger for your battery which keeps it fresh and alive!
At our facility every vehicle that is stored has a "trickle-charger" to ensure that the vehicle starts!
At Body Brilliant Detailing we are the premier detailing service for the North Shore of Long Island and have storage spaces available for your classic, exotic, or premium luxury vehicle in our climate-controlled facility with 24/7 personalized access!