Summer is drawing to a close. Whether that means it is time for one last vacation or it’s time to think about storing a convertible or Jeep, there is a right way and a wrong way to go about long term car storage. Here’s what you need to know:
1. Thoroughly Clean Cars Before Storing Them
If you are about to put one of your vehicles into storage, cleaning it may seem like a low priority. Thinking this way can cost you a lot of money in the long-run. Stains from mud, dirt, bird droppings, rock salt, tar, grease, and more can leave lasting damage if you’re not careful. Prevent this from happening by thoroughly cleaning cars and trucks before storing them. What’s more, “a good waxing prior to your departure will add extra durability to the paint job,” according to the U.S. Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV).
2. Fill Up the Gas Tank, And Change the Oil
When storing a vehicle for over a month, it is wise to fill up the gas tank and purchase a fuel stabilizer. Popular Mechanics recommends driving the car for at least 30 to 40 miles to effectively mix the fuel stabilizer and gasoline. A fuel stabilizer should protect and sustain the gas in tank for up to a year. Many manufacturers also advise changing the oil — again, if the vehicle in question will be in storage for over 30 days.
3. Take Steps Against Infestation
Most indoor car storage units, including self storage units, long term care storage units, and RV storage units, are more or less air-tight, protecting vehicles from the elements and any pests. Still, it doesn’t hurt to take a few extra steps to keep rodents out of your car. “Try to cover any gaps where a mouse could enter, such as the exhaust pipe or an air intake,” Edmunds suggests. “Steel wool works well for this.”
When it comes to long term car storage, self storage units are a perfect option — with a few essential preparations.