Winter storage tips

automobile winter storage During winter months we recommend these measures when storing your Ferrari, Lamborghini, Maserati, Aston Martin or other prized exotic car whether or not your garage is climate controlled:

  • Clean the entire car, even underneath and in the wheel wells.
  • Fill the fuel tank to prevent condensation and add fuel stabilizer. Drive a few miles to get the stabilized fuel into the carburetors/injectors.
  • While the engine oil is warm, drain it and refill the crank case with fresh oil.
  • If you change the oil filter, pre-fill the new filter with fresh oil before installing it to help prevent premature wear and tear at startup.
  • Change brake/clutch fluid and coolant.
  • Park the car on a sheet of plastic to keep moisture that may come up through the concrete away from your car.
  • Remove, service, clean, and charge the battery. Clean the battery tray and cables. Store the battery in a cool, dry place off the cement floor. Check its state of charge every month. Use a good quality automatic trickle charger (‘Smart’ charger/battery tender). Cheap chargers may over-charge your battery which will damage it.
  • Fill several old gym socks with moth balls and place around your car. Place clothes ‘dryer sheets’ in the engine compartment around the air filter, in the trunk, in the heater air duct, under the seats, and in the glove box.  Place a ball of steel wool in the tail pipes. This will help keep rodents out. (We’ve been in some pretty fancy climate controlled garages – no one is immune! Rodents do not discriminate!)
  • Roll the windows down slightly so that moisture is not trapped in the cabin.
  • Use a fitted cotton car cover that can breathe. Never cover cars long term with plastic, particularly out of doors. Plastic will trap moisture under it and sunlight will bake it onto the paint.
  • Once per month roll the car forward or backward a foot or so to prevent flat spotting the tires. This is particularly important for older cars with bias ply tires.
  • Set the tire pressures. Inflate the tires to the maximum recommended PSI to prevent flat spotting. Jacking it up and resting the frame on stands leaving the suspension hanging is not recommended. In the event of a catastrophe such as fire or flood your car would be difficult to extract quickly.
  • A heated storage area is nice but it should be ventilated or dehumidified. Cold but dry is better than hot and humid. Remember that standard dehumidifiers don’t work under 40 degrees Fahrenheit. For low temperature storage the thing to have is a desiccant dehumidifier.
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