JUL 31, 2013

Storing Your Classic Car

Most classic car owners tend not to drive their vehicles during the winter months as the cold weather and grit/salt on the roads can damage classic cars. However storing a classic car whilst it isn’t being used can also pose problems for the vehicle. We’ve put together a quick guide to storing your classic car safely over the winter:

  • Detail your car – Give your car a really good clean, making sure that you remove any grime and grit residue from the undercarriage as well as the paintwork. Wax the paintwork as you normally would and vacuum the upholstery to get rid of crumbs that could attract critters.
  • Drain the oil – Try to drain it while it’s warm as it will pick up contaminants and particles on its way out. Make sure you wear gloves to avoid getting the oil on your hands as warm oil can burn.
  • Grease the joints – Make sure that before your car goes into storage you grease the steering and suspension as well as lubricating joints and wheel bearings.
  • Bleed the brakes – Drain the old brake fluid from the system and replace it with fresh brake fluid in order to prevent deterioration of your brakes.
  • Drain the fuel tank – If you’re going to be storing your car for more than 6 months then fully drain the fuel tank and start the engine to run the remaining fuel out of the lines. If you’re not storing your car for quite as long then add a stabiliser to delay fuel deterioration.
  • Drain the cooling system – Drain the fluid out of the radiator then leave the cap off so that air can circulate. Also disconnect the hoses and drain the heater too.
  • Remove the battery – Take the battery out of your vehicle, clean it with a suitable cleaning solution then store it in a dry place.
  • Remove the tyres – Take the tyres off your vehicle and stack in a corner of the garage. Then raise your car up onto stands so that it is off the floor.
  • Depress the clutch – Clutch plates can often stick together during storage so use a wooden board or some such object to lock the clutch in place.
  • Ventilate the vehicle – Roll down the windows to allow air to circulate, and place tubs of bicarbonate of soda in various places to absorb moisture and combat damp/mould damage.
  • Keep critters out – Stuff an old rag up the end of the exhaust pipe to stop mice and rats from getting into the vehicle.
  • Cover the vehicle up – Cotton flannel fabrics will allow air to circulate so that your vehicle can ‘breathe’ so these are the best thing to cover your car with. Try to avoid storing your vehicle outside exposed to the elements as plastic waterproof covers don’t allow your car to breathe so things can become damp. Wherever possible store your vehicle in your own garage or pay for space in a specialist car storage garage.
Created on 31st July 2013
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