For some people, there comes a time when they will need to store their car for an extended period. It is easy to think that just parking a vehicle in a safe location is enough to prevent anything bad from happening to it, but that is not the case. According to industry experts, here are some important tips on how to keep your car in good condition while it is in long term storage.
Invest In A Good Cover
Even if you store your car in a garage or a warehouse facility, it is a good idea to place a high quality cover over it. Not only will a cover prevent dirt and dust from accumulating on its paint and glass, but it is also a great way to avoid scratches too. Keep in mind however, that not all covers are equal, as it relates to their ability to protect your vehicle. Be sure to purchase a cover that can breathe, meaning that it is designed to allow airflow to move in between the car and the outside environment. You don’t want a cover that traps moisture, as that could damage paint and encourage rust.
Fill The Tank
It might seem illogical to spend the money to fill up your car’s tank if it is going to be sitting for months, but it is actually an important part of keeping the vehicle in good condition while it is not being used. Experts advise to keep a full tank of gas in a stored car because it minimizes the chance that condensation will form.
Keep in mind however that today’s gasolines normally contain ethanol, which is made from corn. Over time, ethanol can breakdown and gum up engine parts, so it is important to add a high quality gas stabilizer product to the tank after you fill it. These additives will help keep the gas in good condition for easy startups after the car comes out of storage.
Tires & The Parking Brake
Automobile tires that sit in one place for an extended period can develop what are known as “flat spots”. Flat spots can leave permanent indentations in a tire, which can affect driving performance. To avoid this, it is very important to inflate your tires to their recommended pressure level before you store the car.
Another crucial thing is to not engage your parking brake. Parking brakes can get stuck after being applied for months, which will bind up your rear brakes and make the car undriveable. Simply putting the vehicle in park will hold it sufficiently in place while it is in storage.
Critters Love Stored Cars
Nothing says home to a mouse or rodent like a car stored in a garage, away from the elements. Mice and other small animals love to make nests in exhaust pipes and engine bays, where plenty of wire and belt chewing opportunities exist. It is amazing how much damage a tiny critter can do to a stored car. Before you put your vehicle away for a long slumber, buy some steel wool and insert it into the exhaust pipes to prevent any nests from being built. In addition, scatter mothballs around the engine compartment, as mice another other animals cannot stand the smell and will not build a home in that area.
We depend on our cars as an integral part of our daily lives. Should it become necessary to store your car for an extended period, it is important to make sure that it remains safe. By finding a suitable indoor facility to store it, purchasing a good quality cover, filling the tank, properly inflating tires and preventing rodents from moving in, you will be well on your way to protecting your car while it is in long-term storage.