Situations may force you to want to store your car long-term; for example, you have a car you love driving during summer and another cruiser for winter. In whatever season, you may want to store one until the fall of the season. People have reasons for wanting to store their vehicles for long-term. Maybe you serve in the military, and now you have been deployed overseas, or you are going out of town for a long period of time. Whatever the case, you will need to store your time away from the car until you get back into action. Until then, you will not want to return to a damaged engine, dead battery, a rat nest under the wood, flat tires, and the rest.
Following are essential steps to store your car if you want to return to a live engine and a working car battery.
Keep it covered
A garage is a suitable place to store your vehicle, at least it will protect your car from weather elements, and the temperatures inside the garage are stable. But if you are not lucky like some of us who don’t have a space for a garage, you might consider renting one at a nearby public storage facility. And if your car is to stay outdoors, ensure a weatherproof cover to keep your vehicle dry and clean.
Clean your car
Clean your car before putting it up for storage. Water or droppings left on the car surface for a long time may damage the paint. Clean the wheels and the underside to remove mud or grease and wax it for added protection.
Change engine oil
You don’t want to skip changing engine oil. Used engine oil can contaminate the engine. You may skip this step if you are out for less than a month. Beyond one month, kindly don’t! For the love of your engine.
Fill the tank
Filling the tank to the top will prevent moisture from building up inside the tank, and it will keep the seals from drying up. Consider a fuel stabilizer to avoid the buildup of ethanol, gum, varnish, or rust. The fuel stabilizer will keep the gas last for more than twelve months.
Charge the battery
If the battery stays for a long time without use, it will lose its charge. Make sure you start the engine every 2 weeks or even drive the car for some distance. Also, run the air conditioner every 2 weeks to keep parts working.
Switch off the parking lights
It is wise to use parking brakes when you park the car, but don’t use them when storing it. The brake pads will come in contact with rotors for too long, which may fuse. Use a tire stopper instead to keep the car still.
Prevent flat spots
Inflate the tires to the suggested storage pressure to avoid flat spots resulting from your car being stationary for long; having someone drive the car for more than 15 minutes will eliminate the flat spots on your tires.
Keep pests at bay
A garage is warm and habitable to critters. Plenty of spaces inside your car attracts rodents who may destroy your upholstery or chew the cables inside your vehicle. To prevent this, cover every gap that a rat might find entrance into the car.
For reliable car storage, look for a reliable facility.