Classic Car Winter Care and Preparation
Whether it’s old or new, your car is likely to get damaged if left out during the winter months, but old cars are likely to fare much worse than newly built models! The reason for this is that new models have all the upgraded specialized paintwork and design solutions that stop extreme cold and moisture from entering the vehicle and causing damage – something most classic cars don’t have. If you’re putting your favorite vehicle away for the winter months, make sure you follow these steps to ensure it’s in exactly the same condition when you go back to it in the spring!
Wash, polish, protect
Washing and polishing a car isn’t only to make it look brand new, it also protects the paintwork and body from slow erosive damage caused by moisture and other destructive components like acidic bird droppings. Give your car a full wash and polish before the winter and use a water-resistant silicone spray on all aluminum and chrome parts to ensure they repel any damaging moisture. Use a car cover even if you’re keeping your vehicle inside – this will protect against damage caused by dust and moisture but will also protect against any accidental scratches or bumps.
Time for a change
If you’re leaving your vehicle for a few months, it’s worth changing the oil before you do so. Contaminants in engine oil that build up over time can cause engine damage or lead to a buildup of sludge which may cause you to have an unwelcome surprise when spring rolls around!
Don’t forget your battery
Car batteries go flat over time, and the slow decrease in power can also make it go bad, meaning you will need to buy one sooner than otherwise. It’s a good idea to disconnect the battery if you’re not using the car for a long while. If you want to keep the electronics in the car connected to ensure the clock or radio doesn’t need to be reset in the spring, use a trickle charger to guarantee your battery stays charged until you need to use it next.
Repelling destructive critters
Mice, rats, roaches, and moths all love to weave their way into your vehicle. They can also cause damage by chewing away at cables and interior upholstery! Make sure there are no holes through which they can climb and use steel wool to block up holes like the exhaust pipe and the air intake. Lay down some traps and moth balls around the vehicle to catch any daring critters before they do damage to your beloved vehicle!
Caring for your tires
Tires left for too long in the same position will develop flat spots which can lead to a risk of blowouts at high speed – not good! So, ensure you take precautions such as completely removing the wheels and leaving the car on jacks or wooden blocks. The downside of this is that you are unable to move the vehicle at short notice should that be necessary, but you’ll be glad when spring comes around and you have nice, safe tires for the rest of the season!
Winter can really take its toll on vehicles so it’s best to know how to limit the damage it does. If you want further advice in how to safely and effectively store your vehicle over the winter months, give us a call at JD’s Auto Repair or visit us in person, we’ll be happy to advise you on the best course of action for your circumstances.