How To Maintain Your Car While In Storage

If you have a vehicle that you put into storage every year, you might not realize it but there are probably some things that you are not doing or could be doing to make sure that it is better maintained while it is not in use. Whether it is being stored on your property, or somewhere off-site like a self storage facility, below are some tips to help you make sure your car is properly stored while it is not on the road.

Keep it covered

Whether it's indoors or outdoors, one of the most important things you can do for your car while in storage is to keep it properly covered. This goes a long way to protecting the paint job, as well as covering up any areas where dirt and grime might be able to work its way into the inner workings of the vehicle.

Change the oil

It is important to ensure that your car goes into storage with clean engine oil. Many owners manuals state that leaving dirty or used engine oil in the car while in storage can end up damaging the engine. You might also consider changing the oil again once you have taken it out of storage, especially if the car has been in storage for a long period of time.

Top off the fuel

Many people don't realize it, but putting your car into storage with less than a full tank of gas can allow moisture to build up in the tank, diluting the gasoline with water. Having a full tank will also help you prevent the fuel seals from drying out while the car is not in use. It is also recommended to add a good fuel stabilizer to the mixture in order to prevent ethanol buildup.

Keep the battery charged

Before putting your car into storage, you should always remove the battery. You should then store the battery indoors, connected to a charger that will keep the battery charged, but not overcharged. A battery left in the car all winter or summer will quickly lose its charge and you will find yourself with a car that you have just taken out of storage that you might not be able to drive.

Putting your car into storage, whether for the long or short-term, means following some pre-storage steps to ensure that it is ready to drive once you take it out. If you are thinking about putting your car into storage for the season, but don't have a lot of experience storing vehicles, keep the above storage and maintenance tips in mind and ensure that your car is well protected while not in use.