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How To Store A Car For Winter- Should I Start My Stored Car In Winter?

How To Store A Car For Winter- Should I Start My Stored Car In Winter?

Winter is upon you and now it’s time to store your car for winter. So, how do you store a car for winter successfully? We have the information and details you need to have at your fingertips! 


How Do You Winterize A Car For Storage?

When “Old Man Winter” is beginning his reign, it’s time to store that beautiful car, ensuring it is kept safe from the elements and ready to rev in the spring. But how do you go about doing it? Check out our step-by-step guide below! 

Steps To Take Before Storing Your Car For Winter 

As you prepare to store your car for the winter time, there are a few tasks that you need to take care of. 

Select A Great Place For Winter Storage 

As you prepare to store your car for winter, choose a dark and dry location for the storage area. You also want a location that has limited access. If you’re able to select a place that has a concrete floor, that would be great- as the concrete floor will help keep the moisture at bay. If you’re forced to store your car on a dirt floor, be sure that you place some sort of a plastic barrier under the vehicle. And don’t forget your carpet pieces, small rugs or plywood that should be placed under the tires. 

Wash & Wax Your Vehicle  

Before you place your car in storage, wash and wax it. And then follow with a vehicle cover that will keep unwanted scratches and dust away.  Placing a vehicle cover is a great idea as your car will stay in pristine condition. 

Fuel The Tank 

The next step in winterizing your vehicle is to fill the fuel tank- and if you can use premium gas-that would be ideal. Don’t forget to add your fuel stabilizer too. You want to make sure that you turn on the vehicle and run it for a bit, so that the fuel stabilizer has an opportunity to enter into the fuel rails, injectors, carburetor and other components of the car.  The fuller your fuel tank is, the less room there is for air- which allows for moisture, and can eventually lead to fuel contamination and rust- in the tank.

Check Oil and Add Antifreeze 

Another step you want to take in winterizing your vehicle for storage, is to check and change the oil and filter. Once there’s clean oil in the car, this will reduce the risk of damaging contaminants working their way into your vehicle’s engine. Check the antifreeze and if you need to add any, now’s the time to do so. 

Add Pressure To Your Tires

Don’t forget to keep tires inflated. If there is a low tire, lower than what is recommended for the vehicle, fill that tire with air. 

Offsite Storage 

If you’re storing your vehicle at an offsite location, you may need to call your car insurance company- as some companies require that you supply the location. Call your car insurance company, to make sure you follow all that is outlined in your policy, for offsite storage. 

Should I Start My Stored Car In Winter?

Many auto experts say that if the proper storage techniques are used for winterization, there will be no need to start it. But remember if you do decide to start it, you have to remove all that you covered it with, and then place it back on, after you turn the car off. Some experts state that starting the car periodically may even do more harm than good. One report indicates that brief engine starting during intervals will introduce contaminants and moisture into the cold engine. 

Then you have car enthusiasts that encourage and advocate that the car be started occasionally during the winter. The idea behind this notion? The fluids and oil will have an opportunity to circulate throughout the car- and the car’s engine will have an opportunity to evaporate fuel while burning off contaminants that collect during winter storage. While there are car enthusiasts that say start and don’t start, the experts say that whatever you decide to do, follow through with your decision- and stick with all storage recommendations. 

Steps To Take While Storing Your Car For Winter 

Baking Soda and Plastic Bags 

As your car sits for three of four months out of the year, you want to take boxes of baking soda and place them in the interior and trunk of the car. This will allow the car to remain fresh and not smell stale or even take on the smell of the storage facility. You can buy baking soda that you don’t have to open at the top. Baking soda makers have boxes that are specifically designed for a refrigerator. This means you can take off the front and back panels of the box and allow the baking soda capture moisture and stench smells. 

Be sure that you also put a plastic bag over the air inlet/air cleaner as well as the car’s exhaust pipes. You may also cover these with aluminum foil. After they are covered, you can tape the covering. Critters will find their way into those areas if they’re not sealed off and covered.  We also recommend that you take mothballs and put them in the opening of the tailpipe and around your car’s sides. Steel wool is also good for inserting into the tailpipe.

Jack Stand 

The next step you want to take in winterizing your car, is placing the car on a jack stand.  When you take this step, you are keeping tire flat spots at bay and adding longevity to the suspension. 

Windows and Battery 

Next, move on to closing or raising all of the windows of the car. Afterward, tend to your car battery. Unhook your car battery by removing your battery’s negative cable first. Store that negative cable separately. Be sure to never place it on the concrete floor, where it can potentially freeze. You also never want to place the cable in the car. Grab a box and place it in there and store it on a shelf, then seal the box. 

Write Things Down! 

As you place your car in storage, it may be helpful to write down all that you did. For example, if you placed foil over certain areas, write that down. You want to make sure that you have a detailed description or a checklist of all actions performed, as you prepared your car for winter storage. You may also want to take pictures of your winterization process so that you know what you did to store your car for the long winter. 

 

With these steps, you can be assured of a car that will survive the winters and not succumb to issues once you’re ready to drive it! 

 

How To Take Your Car Out Of Winter Storage- The Checklist You Should Follow 

OK- now that “Old Man Winter” has left, how do you get your baby ready for the spring roads? Check out our checklist below! If you took pictures and made your own checklist of all that you did to prepare and place your car in storage, getting your car ready for spring drives should be fairy easy! 

  1. Remove all of the coverings and tape. You don’t want to have a great looking car, with foil over the tailpipe. 
  2. Check the car’s battery charge. Be sure that the car’s battery terminal connections are snug and you have no corrosion. If you do, it’s time for a new battery. 
  3. Now’s the time to inspect the hoses and wiring. Be sure that you check for cracks, breaks, tears, loose connections and rodent damage. 
  4. Is your oil level normal? If not, it’s time for an oil change. 
  5. Check your tires and if you need to top them off with air, do so. Be sure that the tread looks good and there are no balding areas, bulges or cracks. 
  6. Do you have any fluid leaks under the vehicle? 
  7. Check out your struts, shocks and the suspension. Are they in working order? 
  8. Turn on the headlights and taillights. Do you have any broken bulbs? 
  9. Remove all of the baking soda boxes from the trunk and the interior. 
  10. Check your pre-winterization checklist. Make sure that all coverings, supplies and items are removed that you used to winterize your vehicle. 
  11. When you start your vehicle, hear how it sounds. Give your vehicle a bit of extra time to warm up. 
  12. Drive your car for a mile and do so very slowly. How does it sound? What do you hear? 
  13. You may even want to take your car to a mechanic and explain to him or her that you just removed your car from winter storage. Your mechanic can evaluate your car and share with you- anything that needs to be replaced or fixed. 

Looking To Sell Your Classic Car That You Store Each Winter? 

Are you ready to give that car up that you store away each winter? Have you decided to end the winterization process and just move on to something else? Sell that car to Cash Cars Buyer! We buy all makes and models, including cars that are stored for winter! We also offer: 

  1. FREE junk car/classic car removal! 
  2. Personalized service right to your front door! 
  3. FREE online offers that you can obtain from your location, 24 hours a day, seven days a week! 
  4. Fair market value for your car! 
  5. Payment on the spot, and more! 

So, if you’re tired of the winterization routine and need cash for your classic, old or junk car, click here now to get started!