Motor Storage Tips
An easy way to keep your car in great shape is by renting an enclosed, climate controlled storage unit. Regular units let in moisture that can rust and otherwise damage your car. Additionally, an enclosed unit will keep your car safe from theft or vandalism. Your car will also be safe from bad weather, like rain, snow, and hail, that may damage it or decrease its value. When renting a unit, try to pick a facility close to your home so that you can check on your cars frequently.
Check with your insurance provider when considering storing your cars. Some companies may offer coverage specifically for stored vehicles; however, others may not. Review your insurance options to get the best deal.
The key to storing your car properly is cleaning and prepping it before storage. Therefore, keep the following tips in mind when preparing your car for motor storage. This will help keep your car running properly and looking new.
3. Clean all mirrors. Dirty mirrors may rust or otherwise be damaged in storage.
5. If your car is in need of any repairs, have them fixed before storage. This will prevent the problems from getting worse over time.
6. Make sure to change your oil and replace your oil filter no sooner than 1 to 2 days before storing. Used oil is full of acids and moisture that will corrode your engine over time, especially if your car isn’t driven for a while.
7. After you change your oil, drive your car for a few miles to give the new oil time to circulate throughout the engine.
8. Take out your spark plugs and put a teaspoon of engine oil inside each cylinder. Then, put your spark plugs back in. This will coat your cylinders with oil and prevent rust.
9. Use cotton cloth to fill any engine openings. Cotton cloth will absorb excess moisture and prevent bugs and rodents from getting in your engine during storage. You can also fill your exhaust pipes and other openings with cloth. However, make a reminder to remove all of this cloth before you drive your car next.
10. Spray metal surfaces in your engine with WD40 to prevent rust. The WD40 will evaporate, but it will leave a protective cover over your engine.
11. Before storing, fill your gas tank to prevent air and moisture from collecting in your tank. (However, if you’re storing your car in a unit with poor ventilation, only fill the tank halfway. Otherwise, you could run into problems with gas fumes.)
12. Put fuel stabilizer in your gas tank as well. Drive your car for a few miles to let the stabilizer circulate through the car. This will prevent your gas from breaking down and damaging your car.
14. Also check your transmission and steering fluid and your engine coolant. If any of these fluids look dirty, flush and refill them. If they’re still clear, fill them completely to cut down on moisture and air inside your car.
18. Look for a ‘storage switch’ on your car. If you flip this switch, your car battery will turn off and not drain any energy.
19. Make sure your windows are fully closed and shut your air vents. This will stop bugs and moisture from entering your car.
20. Check the quality of your hoses. If they have bulges or cracks, get them replaced.
21. Protect your exhaust pipes. You can duct tape a plastic bag over these pipes to protect them from bugs, rodents, and moisture.
22. Remove windshield wiper blades. To prevent them from scratching your windshield, remove the blade and place cotton cloth or thin wooden block underneath them.
24. Cover your car with a tarp to protect it from dust and other debris.
26. You should check on your car at least once a month. Start the engine and let it run for a few minutes. (Remember to remove that cotton cloth!) Also, remember to leave the storage unit door OPEN while doing this. You’ll need proper ventilation. You can also take your car for a quick drive.
If you’re looking to store your boat during the off season, there are some precautions you need to take to prior to motor storage to make sure it’s ready to run in the spring. If you don’t properly prepare your boat, it could cause major damage like leaks, cracks, and corrosion. Often, these major repairs will require major bills. However, you can avoid these unwanted issues in the spring by spending a little time and energy taking care of your boat in the fall.
Consider these steps when winterizing your boat: