January 20, 2015
Store Your Car For The Winter With Centron Storage
Now that the weather’s turned frigid, running away to a tropical island or an all-inclusive resort sounds more attractive than ever. Even if you’re not heading to some enchanted beach get-away, taking a long vacation from the winter cold can prove to be just the escape you need to return to work or responsibilities refreshed and invigorated.
If you’re going away on an extended vacation, you’re going to need a place to store your car. Not everyone has the luxury of having a heated, secure garage, so if you normally park on the road or in an alleyway, know that our 10’ x 15’ and 10’ x 20’ rental units can accommodate small to mid-size automobiles easily. And with all that extra room comes security features that will keep your convertible, sports car, or minivan safe and secure for however long you plan on catching some rays.
Before closing the door and running away, remember to employ good storage practices for your car. That way, when you return things will be as good as new. Here are a few tips on storing a vehicle for an extended period:
Remember to put a weather cover over the vehicle to reduce the accumulation of dust. Beforehand, give your car a thorough wash (including the undercarriage) to avoid any tar, droppings, grease, salt, or mud from the road damaging your paint job or leaving a permanent stain. A proper wax will seal the deal even more. Wipe down the interior, protect the leather, and in the case of a convertible, clean and leave the top up to avoid developing unsightly creases. Remove the windshield wipers to prevent them holding one position for too long and staying that way. Cover all vents and openings to your car—like the exhaust pipe, heater box, air vents, and so forth—to seal against unwanted tenants, like mice.
Give your car a full oil change, top up all fluids, and fill up the tank with gas. If you’re going to be away for more than a month, you’ll want to put in a gas stabilizer to eliminate a build up of ethanol. It will also protect you against rust, varnish, gum, and having extra moisture and dried out seals. Ensure you’ve got between 50 and 30 percent antifreeze in the coolant system before saying “so long.”
If you’re gone for more than a month, and you have no one to come in to drive your car and keep things lubricated (and use the A/C briefly to keep it functional), you’ll want to put your vehicle up on jack stands to avoid flat spots in your tires (especially since it’s going to be cold this winter). Inflate them to just beyond the recommended level before you leave. Use a chock instead of the parking brake to avoid any movement and to prevent brakes fusing with rotors.
Also, remember that your battery can’t be left unattended and still be expected to work properly upon your return. if you’re gone for many weeks, remove the battery completely and leave it somewhere that’s cool and dry—then you can keep the battery charged to avoid sulfating and freezing. Alternatively, you can use a trickle charger to keep a small charge in the unit and to get away from using jumper cables. You can clean your battery while you’re at it using water and baking soda.
Properly preparing your vehicle for its dormancy means it’ll be road ready when your vacation comes to its inevitable conclusion. And we’ll be here at Centron Storage whenever you need to pick it up. Drop us a line or give us a call to discuss how and when we’ll be caring for you car. And enjoy your trip!