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Storing Your Car? 3 Tips For A Successful Experience

After spending the entire summer cruising main street in your classic car, you might be wondering how to protect your restored ride from damaging salt and terrible road conditions. Unfortunately, if you simply park your car in a vacant storage unit, you might end up with a few surprises when spring rolls around again. Here are three tips for a successful vehicle storage experience, so that you can protect your investment:

1: Inspect Your Storage Space

You were picky about your car, so why wouldn't you be picky about your storage unit? Before you rent a space, take the time to carefully inspect the area where you will be keeping your vehicle. Here are a few things to watch out for:

  • Weather Stripping: Wind can whip dirt through tiny door cracks and into your storage space. Carefully inspect the weather stripping that surrounds your storage unit door so that you can keep your car clean.
  • Signs of Water Damage: If your storage unit roof leaks, it could spell trouble for your long-term storage goals. Look for signs of existing water damage like ceiling discoloration or mud buildup inside of the unit. If you find problems, ask facility managers to show you a different space.
  • Door Hasp: Check to make sure that your door hasp, or lock, is secured firmly to your unit. If the rivets have come loose or appear damaged, ask storage employees to replace the door hardware. 

To keep your unit safe, ask facility managers to report any unusual storage unit conditions, such as extreme weather. To return the favor, do your part to keep your unit clean and damage-free. Install a drip pan and a few layers of cardboard underneath your car to absorb any oil that leaks from the engine.   

2: Tidy Up

Those candy wrappers laying around your backseat might not seem like a big deal, but messes can attract pests that can damage your car. Before you pack it in for the winter, take the time to tidy up these areas:

  • Wheel Wells: Wash your car thoroughly, including the wheel wells. Wheel wells can accumulate mud, grime, and anything left on the road, including food and dead animals. Unfortunately, these items can attract pests, which is why the area needs to be cleaned.
  • Interior: Mice are attracted to small food particles, which is one of the reasons thoroughly vacuuming the cabin is important.
  • Trunk: Check your trunk for rogue grocery items, leaky bottles, and chemicals that could explode. That container of sour cream that fell out of your grocery sack or that leaky bottle of engine oil could create a mess while you are away. 

In addition to eliminating a potential food source for vermin, cleaning your car will also save you time later. 

3: Top Off Those Fluids

Because fluids can expand, most people figure that leaving those tanks on empty seems like a good idea. However, extra airspace can pave the way for rust to take hold in metal holding tanks, which can create problems later.

Believe it or not, the gas stored in your car can deteriorate. Over time, gasoline degrades and its ability to combust is compromised. Because regular fuel only has a shelf life of around three months, leaving untreated gas in your car could corrode your fuel lines and engine components. If you start your engine after storing your car improperly, it might not run as well.

However, you can avoid all of these problems by topping off your fluids and adding a fuel stabilizer to your gas tank. Stabilizers work by neutralizing acids that could destroy your engine. 

By taking the time to store your vehicle properly, you can keep your ride looking incredible and avoid engine trouble down the road.  For more information, contact a local storage company like Epic Group Inc.