How To Store Your Car This Winter31st October 2017
There are very basically three schools of thought when it comes to looking after your prized possession through the cold, damp winter months. In fact make that four if a little re-location to the warmer climes of the southern hemisphere is an option, but let’s face it, not many of us would go to those lengths to keep a battery in check.
So what can we do, what’s best? In summary, the three realistic options are as follows; simply keep on trucking and just keep using your car, alternatively store it in your own garage or barn, or finally check it into a specialised storage unit for safe keep.
Its actually better to keep driving your car through the winter months on a regular basis than it is to store it in the wrong way. Rubber seals are prone to perish if left, leather can dry out, damp can cause mould and rusting, batteries go flat, tyres can get flat spots and that’s before we even mention ceasing and engine problems.
Lets step away from what can go wrong for a moment and look at what we can do right. Andy Lockley is our Classic Classics manager. He has years of experience keeping our fleet in top notch condition, so we had a chat to see what advice he would offer anyone wanting to store their car, here is what he had to say;
“If you have the space and time to store your own car in your own garage, then a good place to start is thinking about the environment you want to use. Check the garage is cleared of grass seed, animal food and loose paper. All of these things are great at inviting small animals to nest. Move these out and you’re less likely to find any in your car come the spring. Gnawed pipes, tubes, seals and interiors we can all do without.
If you have a concrete floor, place a heavy plastic sheet on the floor to stop any condensation forming on the undercarriage. At this point also put out a drip tray so you can easily spot any leaks that may have occurred under the car.
Clean your car inside and out. Again this helps with rodents etc. Also grease all joints and fittings, wheel bearings, suspension and steering.
If you’re storing the car for more than 4 months, then it’s a good idea to disconnect the battery. If you do disconnect the battery make a note of your radio security code so you’re not locked out in the spring – for those in the digital era.
Pump your tyres to 50psi to avoid flat spots. Though again if you are leaving it for a long period, consider removing or moving regularly (say once per month) to keep the tyres at their best.
Finally cover the car with a breathable fabric. We advise you use soft blocks to allow some air to flow between the car and the cover, this just allows small amounts of moisture not to manifest into big damp and rust problems.”
The final option for how to store your car in the winter is to book your car into a specialist storage unit. This is something we’re very familiar with, as its one of the after sales services we offer here at Classic Classics. So what would you expect with this sort of service? Again we spoke to Andy Lockley, and these are the elements that are most important to him.
“At our classic car storage, we use Carcoons where possible. A Carcoon is a sealed unit that constantly monitors moisture levels and creates a 24/7 atmospheric airflow to keep everything in its optimum condition. We have the space to offer these to all our customers.
We also do monthly checks. This includes starting the car and running it to temperature once per month which gives us the chance to check for any electrical or mechanical issues. We also roll the tyres as part of the check, so they remain balanced and as they should be, no flat spots. These checks eliminate the need to disconnect the battery or worry about tyres, we keep on top of it ourselves, its our job”
So there you have it, DIY or book in for a stress free approach, its up to you, but do contact us for more information on anything you’ve read in this blog. We would love to hear from you.