Many people have more than one car, but very few can afford a state-of-the-art storage solution at their own home. That is why so many people store their cars in warehouses for both short and long periods of time. If you’re one of these people, you’ll want to know that you’re properly preparing your car for its time in storage. Follow these tips to keep your car in great shape while it sits in storage!
Preparing a Car for Short-Term Storage
Need to store your car for a couple of weeks? Maybe you’re going on a vacation or getting it ready to ship to your new home. Either way, there are a few things that you should remember to do before you put it in storage.
Put some gas in the tank.
Before you take your car in for storage, you should make sure that your gas tank is at least half full. After all, you’ll need to be able to get the car out at the end! Keeping some gas in your tank is also good because it prevents moisture from accumulating.
Wash your car and clean the interior.
Anything that might seem like a small cosmetic issue now can become much larger over time if you let it sit. Even something as minute as a rain spot can seriously damage your car over the course of its time in storage. So make sure to give it a thorough wash before taking it in for storage. And you’ll want to clean out the inside, too, so that you don’t leave something like old food in there. You don’t want your car to get stinky!
Preparing a Car for Long-Term Storage
Long-term storage is a bit of a different animal. This is usually for cars that are a little more special, like a classic car. It could also be storage for while you’re on a military deployment or long-term business trip. Either way, you’ll need to follow the tips above along with a few more maintenance-focused tips to keep your car in working order.
Change your oil.
Old engine oil can accumulate contaminants that are not good for your car. Before you take it in for storage for more than about a month, you should change your oil and filters. Having clean oil in your car while it sits will ensure that its engine stays in great shape.
Have a plan for the battery.
Car batteries need to be used to maintain their charge and general effectiveness. On top of that, cars use their batteries even when they aren’t on (ever heard a car alarm go off?). Because of this, you should have a plan in place to keep your battery in good condition. If you have a friend in the area who can drive your car a couple of times per month, ask them to do that, as it will also help you catch any other mechanical issues as they come up. You can also buy a battery tender, which will keep your battery from completely failing over time. Without either of these solutions, your car won’t start when you come back, so make sure to have a plan!