From putting your car away due to bad weather to heading off on a long vacation, there are plenty of reasons why cars end up in storage—sometimes for a prolonged period of time. However, it’s not as simple as throwing on a cover and leaving it at that. Cars contain many complex parts and can degrade easily if left uncared for. They can also be vulnerable to bad weather and theft, and, since some damage is hard to see, leaving a car unprotected can also lead to it becoming unsafe to drive.
However long you are putting your car away for, this checklist will help you protect your car in storage until you’re ready to use it again.
Ideally, a car would be kept indoors, particularly during summer and rainy season as either of it is not good for your car. Infact this not only beneficial for the betterment of your car, but is also helps it to keep it more secure. If you do not have a garage available on your property, is there any way you could rent one, or make a deal with a neighbour who may not be using theirs? Think about accessibility, and how long you will be putting the car away for before making your decision.
It’s important for your car to be in tip-top condition before you leave it in storage for a while. Check the oil, add fuel to prevent rusting, inflate the tires, and make sure to clean it both inside and out. This could include washing and waxing, as well as vacuuming and having a proper clear-out of any rubbish.
You may also want to ensure that there is nothing like a car fresher or polisher lying inside the car storage box, the outside heat may destroy the body of the box (chemical burn). Many of us tend to ignore this and focus on cleaning the most obvious junk, such as food crumbs or wrappers. The last thing you want is to find smelly old food packaging the next time you use it!
As long as the car is secure and can not move anywhere, releasing the handbrake takes the strain off the system, and makes sure it will not get stuck for any reason.
Cars stored outdoors in heat or in dusty locations should always have a cover, but even if you are storing your car indoors, it could be a good idea to invest in a cover to prevent it from debris, dust, and falling objects. However, it’s also worth considering that leaving it uncovered allows water vapour to properly disappear during humid weather, so factor in the climate where you live too. Investing in a sun protection car cover is also a nice bet for car protection in case your car parking is nothing but open space.
Putting tire jacks under the tires helps take the weight off, and reduces the likelihood that you will get flat spots.
The last thing you want is to find the battery dead when you finally retrieve your car, so look into the option of a trickle charger or battery maintainer to keep things ticking along while you are away. A car battery charger might be a good investment.
Before you leave, write a note detailing everything you have done—especially if you removed anything or blocked parts of the car—and stick it to the steering wheel. That way, you know exactly what to fix before taking the car out again.
Even in a secure spot, it’s important for the car to be closed and properly locked. Not only could thieves get in, but you might also have problems with animals making themselves at home!
Make things extra-hard for potential thieves with certain techniques, such as using a car steering wheel lock, and turning off the wireless signal if keyless entry is possible. Although these might seem tiresome, especially if your car is locked in a garage, just having a few more steps to work through can often be a great deterrent against theft such as installing an anti-theft alarm.
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Twitter: Theft, a dead battery, flat spots on tires. Follow these tips to keep it safe:
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