Before you put your vehicle into storage, some preparation needs to be done so that the car degrades as little as possible.
A clean car comes through self storage better than a filthy one. Most people will overlook this detail when they are trying to decide how to store a car. Yes, the engine and battery need attention, but so does the interior and exterior of the car. Clean the interior thoroughly, leave nothing behind. Vacuum, dust, and clean… the more spotless your car is, the better it will handle storage.
The Nuts and Bolts
When you are back from that honeymoon trip around the world, or you are invited to drive that gorgeous car in the St. Patrick’s Day parade, you will want it to start. There are careful steps you can take to make sure the internal workings of the car are maintained.
For long term storage here at Premier we recommend that you change your oil and filter, anti-freeze, power steering fluid, tranny fluid and brake fluid should all be changed right before storage. A week or two before storage is OK except the oil, make that as fresh as possible. We also recommend that your gas tank should be full with fresh, quality fuel. Fresh gas will last a full year if kept at a fairly stable temperature below 80 degrees.
If storing for a prolonged period of time the car battery should be either disconnected or connected to a battery maintainer, (also called a trickle charger or battery tender).
Insurance regulations for inactive vehicles can vary state to state. It is important to do your homework and check with your insurance company, especially since most insurance companies offer a discount if your vehicle if stored in an indoor secure facility.
Registration—Depending on how long the car will be inactive, you might need to file an Affidavit of Non-use with the DMV. This can vary state to state, so check with your local DMV.
Finally, give the car one last, farewell drive. This will get everything warmed up and circulated with the fresh new fluids.