Many of us benefit our possessions much more than we should, especially a possession of extreme worth. It’s only natural that you would wish to take better care of a car you have been saving to purchase for several years (see Bilt Hamber shop). This is why, throughout the winter months, your treasured vehicle should be considered cautiously. When considering a classic car, leaving your car stashed away through the winter can actually do more damage than good – so running it through the winter can instead be the more sensible choice.
If you would prefer to keep your car running throughout the winter months, there are a few factors to consider, in order for your car your car in tip-top condition. Experts have clearly stated that in their experience, they have seen more cases of vehicles deteriorating due to poor and improper storage, then those that have been driven during the British Winter.
Many mechanics and other professionals within the motor trade have stated from experience that vehicles perform better when used on a regular basis, as vehicles can in fact suffer when they remain out of use for substantial periods of time. Even motorbikes suffer when left in storage. If you have left your car or bike over the winter months, without so much as a “hello”, the first drive of spring could prove to be one of misfortune and costly repairs.
When leaving your motor vehicle out-of-use over the winter months, the following problems are likely to occur; corrosion of paintwork, sticking brakes, flat tyres, sticking clutches and perished leather or rubber. If you still plan to put your vehicle away in storage over the winter months, aim to do each of the following;
- Wash your car, then take it for a drive to ensure it is completely dry
- Wax-polish (see car polishers) the exterior and leave the wax on the car to prevent paint deterioration.
- Pump your tyres to 50psi to avoid the likelihood of flat tyres.
- Charge your battery or if you plan to leave your car unused for four months or over, take out the battery instead.
- If you have the time, aim to change the oil, filter and coolant too.
Once each of the above tasks has been completed, aim to leave your car in a dry and airy space. If you have a barn, this is the ideal place in which to leave your car, otherwise a brick or wood garage will suffice. Pre-cast concrete garages generally become incredibly damp during very cold conditions, so if you plan on leaving your car in a garage such as this, placing an inflatable plastic tent over the car can help to keep the damp out.
Aim to start-up your car at least once a month and to take it for a short drive. This means your engine can run fully and reach it’s full operational temperature. In order to avoid the risk of corrosion (see rust remover gel) in your fuel tank, or to avoid your modern fuel going off, you can invest in fuel preservatives that promise to ward off corrosion, oxidation and keep the fuel in grade. Finally, remember that in a damp garage, mould can easily grow, so ensure that you clean all your interior surfaces thoroughly.