Maintaining The Right Humidity Levels For Long Term Classic Car Storage
If you want to effectively regulate the RH of your classic cars storage unit, youll need to employ some form of dehumidification. There are lots of different types of dehumidifiers available on the market, but theres non better for long-term classic car storage than the desiccant dehumidifier, which uses hydroscopic substances to remove and re-introduce moisture into the surrounding air, keeping your environment optimum for safely storing your vehicle.
Of course, youll only want the best for your classic car, and so opting for a bespoke design that meets all the requirements of your garage and car is the best option if you take your car care seriously. If this is the route you choose, ensure you take the time to speak to the specialists with experience protecting classic cars before making your final decision.
Invest In A Quality Car Cover
For outdoor car storage, a cover is essential. An auto cover protects your vehicle from both sun and precipitation. Both of these can do extensive damage if a car is stored outside for long periods of time. Some who use indoor storage even opt to use a car cover for added protection from dust.
Extra Space Storage has vehicle storage guidelines that our customers must follow.
Last But Not Least Cover Your Car To Finish Prepping It For Long
As we already mentioned, keeping your car outdoor for a long time isnt really a good idea. Bad weather can do a lot of harm to it. Imagine a heavy storm coming through, strong winds breaking a tree and having it crash your car? Nobody wants that. Therefore, you should definitely keep your car in a covered area. To be extra safe, invest in a waterproof car cover and cover the car after its been serviced and cleaned. Even though it is inside, itll still keep the critters and insects from trying to creep inside.
Our final tip for preparing your car for long-term storage is to refrain from using the hand brake. Instead, get a tire stopper and place it under your wheels. Itll keep your rotors from fusing, and your car from rolling into the street. When youve done all of this prep before storing your car, you wont have to worry about a thing!
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Wrap The Wiper Blades
The rubber strip from wiper blades can get stuck to the windshield glass after remaining in the same position for a long time. Placing a strip of plastic wrap under each blade is a simple step that will prevent adhesion from occurring. Two alternatives to this method are to remove the blades altogether or pull the blades away from the windshield in the out position.
Elevate Your Car With Jacks
Don’t forget to protect your tires. Having the full weight of the car on the tires without moving them can cause permanent flat spots. If you’re leaving the car for more than a month and won’t be able to drive it occasionally, consider removing the tires and placing the vehicle on blocks or jack stands. If you must leave the tires on the car, make sure they are inflated to the correct pressure. Use a chock or tire stopper instead of the parking brake, which could also be damaged if you leave it on for a long time.
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Clean Out The Water Tanks And Dry Out The Pipes
When cleaning out your RV, dont neglect the water and sewage tanks. You can empty your wastewater and freshwater tanks, including the toilet and water heater, at a dump station. One DIY way to clean your tanks is to fill them with a solution of water and baking soda or bleach. Then, briefly drive your RV around so the liquid is able to move about the tanks, and empty them afterward.
Now that your tanks have been cleaned out, dry out the pipes. Especially if youre storing your RV during winter weather, water will freeze and expand inside the pipes, potentially causing them to burst. Although its not possible to dry your pipes 100%, you can send compressed air through the system to expel as much moisture as possible.
Fill Up Your Gas Tank Before You Go
While you wont be going anywhere anytime soon, it is a good idea to fill up your gas tank before you go. A full gas tank can prevent moisture from accumulating inside the fuel tank.
Excess condensation in your fuel tank can lead to acceleration problems. It can also cause a fuel line freeze in the winter, which can cause issues when you want to run your car engine.
If you plan to store your car for a very long time, you may want to purchase a fuel stabilizer to prevent your gasoline from becoming gummy.
An added benefit of a full gas tank? Youll thank yourself when you get back and need to drive again.
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Does The Material Of Your Garage Make A Difference
Generally, wooden and brick garages are better for managing humidity than other paid-for storage options like pre-cast concrete units, as these are known to cause vehicles to sweat, and in turn, causing corrosion. However, if you have the right solution that deals with the problem at its core, it will not matter whether your garage is wooden, brick or concrete.
Prepping Your Vehicle For Long Term Storage
There are a number of times when people need to store a vehicle for an extended period of time. Perhaps its a summer cruiser, or maybe youre leaving the country for work or that much needed holiday. Here are some important tips you should consider to ensure your vehicle remains in tiptop condition to save money and prevent hassles later on.
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Four: Tyres And Exterior
We suggest that you inflate your tyres before putting them into storage. The rule of thumb used to be that if you were storing your car for months at a time, that you lift it up with jacks to prevent flat spots on your tyres. However, with the more modern tyre technology that we have today, thats not much of an issue. Simply inflate them – over-inflating a bit is actually good.
When you put your car into storage, its crucial that you give the outside a good wash, to protect your cars paint against damage. In coastal cities like Melbourne, Sydney, Perth, Brisbane, etc., it will also lower the risk of salt corrosion.
No matter where you live, a good car cover is essential to protect your car from dust and dirt. And, if youre living in a city that is especially humid – were looking at you Sydney and Brisbane – choosing the right car cover is even more important. Fabric covers are better than tarp and plastic-based covers because they wont trap as much moisture.
Set The Car For Ignition
Label the spark plugs, eject them, and lubricate the cylinders. Be careful while handling the cables. While the spark plugs are off, turn over the engine with the key to force the lubricant to dab on the walls of the cylinder for lubrication before ignition. Check for corrosion and replace corroded cables.
Finally, eject the cover of the oil filter and sprinkle the engine starter fluid on the carburetors. Get into the car and gently match the gas pedal to resuscitate fluidity in the vehicle.
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Winter Car Storage Tips
Aside from the long-term car storage tips mentioned, its especially important to ensure your vehicle is equipped to withstand cold temperatures if youre storing it for the winter.
Consider the following steps for seasonal vehicle storage:
- Close off vents and windows.
- To protect its tires from wear and deflation, rotate the tires on your vehicle, and park it on a plastic sheet or up on a jack.
- To prevent air and moisture from entering the gas tank, leave about a quarter to a half tank of gas. Add a fuel stabilizer to help keep the fuel from breaking down.
- Remove and store your cars battery in a warm place. This will both help it to start easier in the spring and prevent its fluids from freezing .
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Find Vehicle Storage Solutions Near You
From the shorelines of lakes around Charlotte, NC, to the coastal beaches of Bonita Springs, FL, Go Store It is here to provide car, boat, and RV storage solutions at our facilities with vehicle storage units or parking spaces available. Call us at a self storage facility near you with questions about car storage, or rent your unit online today!
Rent Secure Car Storage Near You Today
Ready to reserve vehicle storage at Extra Space Storage? Give us a call! If you have any questions at all, let us know. Our team is here to help however we can. Rest assured that your car will be safe with us, too. We take facility security seriously. With security features like electronic gate access, perimeter fencing, video surveillance, and even resident managers at select locations, your vehicle will be in good hands.
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What To Put Under The Tires During Long Term Storage
If you are planning to leave your car for longer than three months, you should consider taking the wheels off and elevating the vehicle on jack stands.
You can also put wood, rubber mats, or carpet under your tires. Inflate the tires to 50 psi. The extra air will help prevent flat spots.
If you find your vehicle has a flat tire when you pull it out of storage, use caution before you drive. Check out our post on Can You Drive on a Flat Tire? for additional tips.
Additional Car Storage Tips To Know:
Park on a Flat Surface Dont Put the Parking Brake On Charge the Car Battery Up Keep Your Car Insurance Active Mitigate Wildlife Tampering
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How To Store A Car Long
Vehicles are expensive investments, so it makes sense to put some time and energy into storing your car properly when youre going to be away.
If youre going on a week-long vacation, the steps youll need to take will be very different than if youre leaving for a month or a year. Maybe you arent even going away, but you live in a city where you only use your car a few times a year and you want to store it safely.
No matter your reasoning, simply parking a car and walking away for a few months is going to cause you a headache down the road.
What should you do to store a car long-term? Lets take a look at everything you need to know.
It May Allow Moisture To Accumulate In The Gas Tank
When a car is left in storage for weeks or months, moisture in the air can work its way into the vehicles fuel tank. Humidity condenses in the gas tank like drops of sweat on an icy glass of lemonade eventually dripping down and into your fuel. These water droplets contaminate the gas inside your car, which could lead to decreased power during acceleration, engine sputtering, and damage to the fuel injection system.
Readying your cars gas tank for long-term storage: Dont store your car with an empty gas tank! A full tank makes it harder for moisture to accumulate inside, which may help prevent the problems mentioned above.
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Contact Your Insurance Company
You feel like it is worthless to keep the insurance running. In truth, you still need insurance. However, if you would be departing for a yearlong, it is okay to cancel the insurance to save costs.
Do well to contact your insurance company and find out whether they have a plan that can adjust your insurance expenses while you are away.
The doors of the car should remain open a couple of hours once a week. You do not want your vehicle to produce a foul smell that may take months to go off when you return to use the car.
Put The Car On Jack Stands
Tires can become deformed and create flat spots if standing for a long time on the same point. This can cause vibrations that can be difficult to get rid of after taking your car out of storage. Use jack stands to release the pressure on the cars tires.If you do not have any jack stands, you should make sure that the tires are inflated with the right tire pressure.
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Protect The Car From The Elements
Wind, moisture, sunlight, and rain can be extremely destructive to a vehicle. In addition, a vehicle left outside may become a home to small animals, which can be very destructive to the engine and the interior. Indoor car storage is the best option to protect your auto from the elements. You can get weatherproof covers, but these will not protect your car as well.
Rodents can live as happily in a garage as in the outdoors, although walls and a floor do provide some protection. Make sure your long-term car storage facility is clean and bright, so it won’t be as appealing to mice and other rodents.
Storing A Car During A Life Transition
If youre in the middle of a life transition like moving, you may need short-term self storage. This might include storing a vehicle for a month or two. In this situation, outdoor vehicle storage is typically the best option. However, if youre moving during the winter or want more protection for your car, indoor storage works as well.
Suggested Car Storage Solution: Indoor, Outdoor, or Covered
Getting Back On The Road
Ready to hit the pavement? Not so fast. First you need to make sure everything is running as it should before you even think about taking your car out for a spin. Follow these steps first and then youll be good to go.
- Check under the hood. Make sure you dont have any frayed wires or rodent stowaways camping out in your vehicle.
- Remove coverings. Do a walk-around and take off all the coverings from wheel wells, engine blocks and exhausts.
- Check windshield wipers. Look for signs of damage, like cracked or brittle rubber on your wipers, and replace them if necessary.
- Adjust tire pressure. When your car has been sitting for a long period of time, tires may deflate so be sure to increase pressure to the recommended specs.
- Do a walkthrough. Check the lights and signals to make sure all are working properly and change any fuses if needed.
- Top off fluids. Look under the hood and make sure your oil and cleaner havent leaked and are filled up to the recommended level.
- Test the battery. An unattended battery will eventually lose its charge, so you need to ensure its working properly. If its dead or weak, give it a boost.
- Wash your ride. Remove any accumulated dust and dirt so your car is fresh as a daisy.
- Check, check, double check. Refer back to your preparation list to make sure you havent forgotten anything!
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Leaving Your Car In A Drafty Shed For Months On End Can Lead To Rust And Ruin A Luxury Car Expert Shares The Finer Points Of Auto Storage
Dont activate the parking brake when readying your car for long-term storage. That can cause the brake material to fuse to the brake disk.
Storing a car might seem as simple as parking it in the garage and throwing a tarp overtop. But thats no way to treat such precious machinery, says Michael Prichinello, director and co-founder of the Classic Car Club Manhattan, a members-only luxury-car-sharing and social club. He details the ideal steps to take before putting an automobile away for an extended period, and explains why water is the nemesis of any steel four-wheeler.
Drain the Beast
The first thing an owner should do before putting a car away for more than six months is to change the oil and the filter. Mr. Prichinello, who opened the New York City outpost of the London club in 2005, suggests running the car for about an hour to get its juices circulating. Go get a pizza, he says. Then on your way home, fill the tank with gas so there is less opportunity for condensate in the tank. To prevent the petrol from congealing into the consistency of lacquer, Mr. Prichinello suggests picking up a small bottle of gasoline stabilizer and putting that in the tank as well.
A thorough washing, inside and out, is essential, says Mr. Prichinello. Road grime and dirt lead to scratches, which can rust when exposed to moisture, but a clean exterior coated in wax can create a barrier from water, Mr. Prichinello says.
A Cool, Dry Place
Bringing It Out of Hibernation
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