When it’s time to put your car into storage, there’s a bit more to it than simply driving in and switching off the engine. If your vehicle is going to be in the garage for a while, there are a few things you should take care of first.
Think protection not economy
Filling your car with petrol is unlikely to be a priority. In fact, you may be inclined to do the reverse, running your tank low so it’s not sitting idle for many months.
However, one of the best ways to protect your car is to make sure it has a full tank of fuel when it goes into storage. This helps to prevent moisture from accumulating, rusting the whole tank and engine.
It’s a good idea to add some stabiliser to the fuel; once added, drive around for a few miles to allow it to work through the system thoroughly. Finish off by topping up your fuel once more and then drive to the garage.
Don’t be tempted to skimp on adding stabiliser; this helps to prevent the petrol from hardening or becoming gunky while it’s sitting unused.
Also check your other fluids and filters including oil, transmission, antifreeze and brake fluid. The oil should be completely replaced to prevent a rusted engine while all other fluids can be simply topped up.
Wax and clean
It may seem like a waste to get your car gleaming when no-one is going to see it for some time but it’s an essential step. If you don’t carry out maintenance on the bodywork before you store it, you could find your vehicle in a far worse state when you open the doors once more.
Cleaning your car inside and out is the first step, before moving on to give it a good polish and wax. Debris and even dust particles can cause permanent scratches and flaws so bodywork protection is vital.
Any crumbs or food remnants on the inside could attract vermin which could be simply disastrous. Vacuum the interior and make sure there’s nothing left before placing a box of baking soda to absorb any unwanted odours.
The final few steps of maintenance add an extra layer of protection for your car, reducing the risk of decay, damage and rust.
Doors and hinges should be well lubricated and the exhaust should be stuffed with aluminium foil or steel wool to deter unwanted pests. Don’t be tempted to use plastic cloths to cover the car as this can lead to a build up of moisture; replace plastic with breathable cloth instead.
The final step is to make sure your tyres are inflated to the maximum possible PSI recommended by the manufacturer. If your car will be in garage storage for some time, jack it up to reduce pressure on the suspension and prevent flat spots on the tyres.
Easy maintenance to protect your car
If you’re planning on using storage it’s essential to carry out the proper maintenance first. However, the top tips above will help you to get your car ready and keep it in prime condition while it’s in your garage.
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