Is your classic muscle car collection ready for winter storage? Make sure your treasured vehicles retain their beauty throughout the season by following these simple steps.
Reserve Reliable Storage
Whether you’re going to store your car in the garage or in a separate facility, make sure the area will stay dry all winter. A concrete floor is best for reducing moisture. If necessary, run a dehumidifier to keep the air dry. Security is also an important consideration, especially in rented storage units.
Keep It Clean
Clean the entire car inside and out. Dry the exterior with a microfiber cloth to prevent damage and give the body a good waxing with quality carnauba wax. Vacuum the floors, seats and mats and remove any belongings that may be stowed in the glove compartment. This step not only ensures that your car will be in good condition at the start of the driving season but also prevents dirt from causing scratches when you put on or remove the car cover.
Check the Fluids
From coolant and oil to gasoline and brake fluid, make sure all the liquids in your car are at ideal levels. Fill the gas tank and add a fuel stabilizer to keep it from breaking down and becoming gummy.
Oil the Engine
To prep the engine for storage, remove the spark plugs and put a small amount of oil in the cylinders to coat them. This helps prevent rusting during the cold weather months. Replace the spark plugs once the cylinders are well coated.
Put the Battery to “Sleep”
Disconnect the battery and clean it to remove any dirt or chemicals. If you discover any defects, dispose of it and invest in a new one come spring. If not, attach it to a trickle charger. Do not store the battery on the floor; instead elevate it on a wooden board to prevent damage from changes in temperature or moisture.
Keep Pests Away
Make sure that no animals can get into the area where you’re storing your classic car. Check the space for holes or cracks and seal any you find. Make sure that all doors are properly sealed as well and that there are no gaps around the windows. If you’re renting a storage facility, talk with the owners about how they handle pest control. You may also want to cover the tailpipe of the car with a bag to deter small animals from climbing inside.
Elevate and Cover
Last but not least, elevate your classic off the floor with blocks or jack stands. This relieves spring tension and prevents the tires from developing flat spots. Once it’s up, protect it with a cover that allows air to flow through but keeps dirt and moisture out to preserve all the hard work you’ve done to keep the car looking great.