Storing Your Car: A Beginner’s Guide

If you have a car that you don't plan on driving for a while, putting it into a storage unit is a good way to keep in in great shape. However, there are some tips to keep in mind if you want to ensure your car emerges from storage without any damage.

Put dryer sheets on the seats and floor to absorb moisture.

Moisture is your number one enemy when storing anything, including a car. It can perpetuate mold growth and lead to musty odors. To prevent moisture from damaging your car's interior, lay a few dryer sheets over the seats. Also place one under each floor mat. The sheets will not only absorb moisture but also leave a fresh scent.

Clean the interior first.

Whether your interior is leather or fabric, give it a thorough cleaning before putting your car in storage. In particular, address any stains or spots. If you leave them in place, they may become set-in and harder to remove while the car sits in storage.

Purchase an actual car cover.

It's important to keep dust off of the car while it's in storage since the dust can adhere to the finish and make the car look dull. Covering the car with a tarp or plain sheets is not a good idea since these materials don't have the proper breathability to prevent moisture accumulation. Invest in an actual car cover, and make sure the one you buy fits the car snugly so dust does not blow in underneath it.

Crack a window.

Crack a single window before you put the cover on the car. This will allow for more air circulation to prevent moisture accumulation and molding. It will also keep the car from getting too hot inside, which could damage rubber components.

Disconnect the battery.

If you leave the battery in place, it may slowly drain over time, making the car impossible to start when you remove it from storage. So disconnect the battery as soon as you park the car in the storage unit. I t will be ready to reconnect when you need your car again.

Fill the gas tank.

It's best to store a car with a full tank of gas so that there's less space for moisture to accumulate in the tank. Do make sure you empty a full bottle of fuel stabilizer into the tank after filling it. This will keep the gas from turning into a thick gel and clogging up the engine.