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Tips on Prepping Your Car for Long Term Storage

car storage

How to prepare you car for long term storage

Whether you are leaving town on vacation or a new job or you’re looking to keep your convertible safe and dry during the winter, you might eventually end up needing to store your vehicle for an extended period of time.

Whatever the reason is, you must keep the following in mind: leaving your car on the street for a long time can:

  1. Damage your engine.
  2. Kill your battery.
  3. Ruin your tires.
  4. Invite critters to nest inside your car.

So what can you do to preserve the life of your car’s engine and make sure that your cars starts when you return? Here are some important steps you can take to help you do that.

How to prep your car for storage:

  • Keep it covered

First of all, you need to make sure that your car is stored indoors. A closed garage area is the ideal place for that as it protects it from the elements and keeps it at a relatively stable temperature. If you don’t have a garage, you can always store it at a professional, discrete and secure storage facility such as Parc Fermé.

However, if you must park your car outdoors, you need to consider buying a waterproof tight fit car cover. This will help keep your car clean and dry.

  • Clean it well inside out

Getting your car cleaned before storage is essential and should not be overlooked. Leaving water stains and bird droppings on the car for a long time can damage the paint. Moreover, make sure that you clean the undersides and the wheels as well.

Bonus tip: After cleaning, remove the carpets to prevent them from becoming musty.

  • Change the oil & filter

If you are storing your car for a week or two, you can skip this step. However, if you are planning to store your car for more than 30 days, you must consider getting the oil changed as used oil has contaminants that can damage the engine.

  • Fill up the gas tank

Another important long-term storage tip is topping off the tank with premium fuel to 50% of its capacity, anything above that builds pressure due to the elements. Use a fuel stabilizer to protect the engine and prevent ethanol build up, and removes water from the fuel.

  • Trickle charge your battery

Any unattended battery will lose its charge sooner or later, get a trickle charger to maintain your battery, it will charge and discharge your vehicles battery simulating a daily usage.

  • Run your engine

Make sure that you get someone to start your car every 2 weeks or so for 10-15 minutes. This will maintain your car components properly lubricated.

  • Ditch the parking brake

Everyone uses his or her parking brakes when parking. However, don’t do it when you want to leave your car in long-term storage since long contact between brake pads and rotors increases the chance that they will fuse. Instead, purchase a tire stopper and use it to keep your car in place.

  • Double check your tires

To prevent flat spots, make sure your car tires are inflated to the recommended pressure. Moreover, if your car will be in storage for longer than 30 days, place it on tire cushions or matts that prevent flat spots, they relief the pressure between the ground and the tire.

  • The wiper blades

To prevent the wiper rubber from sticking to the glass, use a rubber lubricant and sealer. Apply it to the rubber on the wiper blade and let it rest. This should be done every 6 months.

For more information on where you can store your car safely in the UAE, click here

About the author

Beirut Abu Hdaib

Can be bit of a monomaniac. My lust for word manipulation is insatiable. An often doleful #writer with a flair for #marketing & #socialmedia :)


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  • I just wanted to thank you for going over some things to do to store a car for a long time. I’m glad that you mentioned that you should have the car cleaned really well, and to make sure the underside and wheels are cleaned. It definitely sounds like it could be beneficial to learn some deep cleaning tips for cars, especially if it can help the car stay in excellent condition while it is being stored. Maybe it could even be good to go and regularly clean it out every now and then too.

  • I am thinking about putting a car in storage for a few months, so this guide was really helpful for preparing it. I like that you suggest changing the oil and filter if you plan to store the car for more than 30 days. I don’t want any contaminants ruining the engine, so I’ll be sure to do this first. Thanks for sharing!

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