How to Store a Car That Will Be Stopped in Winter
As we already know, at this time many vehicle owners plan to leave their cars out of the way during the winter months for whatever reasons: travel, work...
With this in mind, we have decided to make a list detailing how to park a car in winter . Of course, the list is made to keep it in a closed garage, because on the street it would be different. In summary, if you want to save a car, follow these steps:
Wash the car before parking it
One of the main problems when it comes to parking a long-term vehicle is that due care is not taken with cleanliness . It is very important to leave the car clean before parking it, not only because of the fact of covering a dirty car for months, but also because of the rust that can arise from it .
Therefore, our best advice is to thoroughly wash the car before storing it with pressurized water , without forgetting to drive the car for a few kilometers to remove the water from the suspension joints and other systems that make up the chassis. If we wash the car and then put it away, over time the joints can deteriorate.
Pay attention to tire pressure
Another aspect to take into account is tire pressure . Over time, the amount of air that is housed inside the tire decreases . In addition, the cold speeds up this process.
So, if you don't want to find the car resting on its tires when you go to see it, make sure you inflate the wheels to the maximum pressure indicated by the manufacturer (it is not advisable to exceed that number) so that when you return to pick up the car, it will not be completely thrown to the ground.
As far as possible, do not use the parking brake
Many readers may be surprised to read this advice, but always keeping the parking brake engaged causes the brake calipers to lose effectiveness , in addition to losing tension in it.
Consequently, leave the car free of brakes , and even in neutral would be advisable, and make sure to put some chocks on the wheels (any piece of wood or similar would do) so that the vehicle does not move on the garage.
Change fluids before parking
This is advice that not everyone complies with, but if you are going to change the fluids, it is best that you do it before leaving it parked . With the cold, the oils that are in worse condition become more viscous and the residues that have been generated can be a problem when starting the car.
It is not a consequence that usually happens often, but to make sure, if you can, change them. Either the engine oil or the antifreeze from the radiator. Of course, run it in before leaving it parked so that the new liquids impregnate all the areas and do not stay in the crankcase.
Store the battery in a warm place
If you have been driving your own car for several years, you have probably realized how easily a car battery wears out. This advice arises for two reasons:
- A car battery is consumed if it is not used.
- Extreme cold causes a battery to become damaged and leads to battery discharge. It is one of the components thatsuffer in winter. Hence the cars havecold start problemsand sometimes it is necessaryjump start the car with pliers.
The best thing you can do is take out the battery (it's very simple, you don't have to be too handy to do it) and store it at home, or in a place where it's not too cold . In addition, it is advisable to cover the positive charge area of the battery with a plug (or, failing that, with insulating tape) to stop the discharge process. In this way you will not have to spend the money to buy a new battery when we go to use the car again.
Cover the car with a tarp
Finally, once all these processes have been carried out, cover the car with a cloth tarp to prevent the accumulation of dirt, so that it is always clean.
They sell specific tarps for each model, but if you can't find the one for your specific model, or you just don't want to spend money, you can use any fabric sheet big enough to cover the entire car (or make two sheets one) , and somehow tie it to the car so it doesn't fall off. If you are careful, you can put some magnets in the sheet metal areas and it will not fall off.
If you can, start the car from time to time.
There are many opinions on this subject. Some say that it is good, and others that it is not necessary. But to keep the car in the best possible condition, our recommendation is that if you can, jump start the car once a month . It's better to prevent than to cure.
It is true that if you have done all the previous steps correctly it is not essential, but if you decide to do it, do it well . Remove the tarpaulin that you used to cover it, move the car away so that the exhaust can expel the smoke correctly and, of course, never with the garage doors closed. You can also circle around with it a bit.