If you don’t often drive or have a car that only comes out when the sun is shining, you know how important it is to store your vehicle correctly.
When your vehicle is sitting on the drive for an extended period, getting a dead battery is only one of the issues that can happen.
Unfortunately, not many people think about the other things that can occur.
Here are some efficient storage hacks for your vehicle
The sun is shining, and you are ready to take your car out for a spin – but it smells a bit odd, there are severe rust patches, and the battery is dead… What could you have done to prevent it?
Change The Oil
If you only store your car for a week or two, this step isn’t vital. However, if you have something like military deployment or storing the vehicle for 30 days or more, read on.
Before your car goes into storage, get the oil checked and changed. Old oil can damage the engine and leave you with a costly bill.
The parking brake should be used when you leave your car for a short while. Anything over 30 days, and you are risking issues.
Prolonged contact between the rotors and the brake pads could cause them to fuse.
To prevent your rotors and brake pads from fusing, invest in a chock (tire stopper) to prevent your car from moving – without risking your brakes.
If you aren’t going to be driving your car for a while, you might want to skip the deep clean.
All of those little food crumbs that have made it down the sides of the seats can turn into a nasty mold. This can cause a stench that is difficult to get out, as well as damage to the upholstery.
Animal droppings, squashed insects, and dirt on the side or wheels can cause damage to the paint, and once that damage starts, it can lead to rust and more serious body issues.
Deep clean the inside and outside of your car, including the car’s fenders and underside.
To maximize the protection that your vehicle gets, put on a high-quality wax coat too.
You might be tempted to leave the car on your driveway. However, leaving the car on the driveway puts it at the mercy of the elements and will almost certainly result in the issues you are trying to avoid.
Proper storage of your vehicle will prolong its life.
If you don’t have a garage, then you should consider container covers; they are a cost-effective option that keeps your vehicle covered correctly.
As an extra layer of protection, cover your car with a car cover too.
Correct storage of your vehicle will prevent many costly repairs and damage.
Filling your gas tank up might seem excessive – since you won’t be driving anywhere.
However, it is one of the most effective methods to protecting your fuel tank.
When the tank is full, it minimizes the room that moisture has to accumulate and prevents the seals from drying out.
Another problem that can arise is the build-up of ethanol. To prevent an ethanol build-up, you can add a fuel stabilizer into the tank.
Fuel stabilizers can also prevent the fuel from deteriorating for several years.
Have a chat with a garage or check your owner’s manual to check which fuel stabilizer is best to use or if you need one at all.
This one can be tricky if you have no one available to help you. Over time your car battery will naturally lose charge.
If you have someone that can drive your car every two weeks for over 15 minutes, this is the best way to prevent your battery from losing all charge.
The short drive will also keep your car in good working order by keeping its parts well lubricated.
During the drive, kick the AC on to keep the air in the car fresh.
If no one can help you to run the car for a short period, then you have two further options:
- Disconnect the negative battery cable. You will lose some settings (clock, time and other digital settings), but it is a small price to pay.
- Invest in a trickle charger; use this to keep the car out of the danger zone when it comes to the battery.
You might be tempted to cancel your insurance. However, it is better to keep the insurance running. Many insurance companies will increase the rate when you take short time-outs from the policy.
And that’s it! Some simple hacks to keeping your vehicle in good working order when it might need to head to storage for a short period.