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Car Care Tips: Ways to Prepare Your Car for Long-Term Storage

Car storage involves more than just cleaning, covering it and leaving it in a storage facility or your garage. The way in which you prepare your vehicle for storage will determine its condition after the storage period. Protection from the elements is critical, and the last thing you need is a car with corroded parts and a smoky engine. Here are some valuable tips that will help you adequately prepare your vehicle for long-term storage and maintain it in good physical and working condition.

Top up the fluids

Topping up your car's fluids before storage is critical. An empty system will be vulnerable to corrosion from the contaminants that usually settle beneath the fluid tanks. Fill up your coolant, brake fluid, transmission fluid and change the oil together with the oil filter. Old, contaminated oil may corrode the engine components that it has come into contact with. You can have the fluids changed during a service just before storing the vehicle.

Fill up the gas tank

Many people tend to leave their fuel tanks empty when storing their vehicles for an extended period. An empty tank will allow in moisture, and this could be problematic the next time you fuel the car. Leave the tank at least half or three-quarters full of fuel to keep moisture at bay. Doing so will also prevent the seals from drying out. You can also add a fuel stabiliser to the fuel tank to prevent corrosion of the engine and the fuel line.

Disconnect the battery

The battery supplies electric energy to the vehicle. When the battery is connected to the vehicle, it drains the charge and recharges as you drive. However, since you won't be driving the vehicle for some time, it is wise to disconnect the battery. Doing this will retain the charge and protect it from corrosion. Alternatively, you can buy a battery tender which delivers charge to the battery while it's not in use. With this, your battery will be ready for use the next time you want to drive the car.

Remove the tires

Car tires tend to flatten or get damaged after sitting in one place with all the pressure for long periods. In fact, they may develop permanent flat spots that cannot be repaired. Car tires are costly, and the last thing you want is to find them in bad condition after the storage period. Consider removing the tires and placing the car on jacks or blocks of wood or concrete.

Follow these tips to prepare your car before covering it and leaving it in car storage for an extended period. Alternatively, you can approach a storage facility that will take care of all the above for you and provide storage and maintenance for the car during the entire period.