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Old 09/17/2017, 08:39 AM   #1
hatchdog
 
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Location: Spokane, WA
Joined: May 17
Posts: 56

Winter storage advice

I'm starting to think about winter storage for my car and would like your suggestions/tips on how to properly store it.

I live in a snow belt 15 miles north of Spokane which also has the honor of having the lowest temps for Eastern Washington on a daily/nightly basis. (Yeah I know, why did I choose Deer Park to live) My car will be stored in an uninsulated metal building with a concrete floor. The following is what I already plan to do but please advice me of other considerations.

Wash/Wax
Change oil and filter
Top off/check antifreeze
Add stabilizer to fuel tank, lines and carb
Cover car

Questions:

Due to consistent below freezing temps batteries don't winter well here. Should I pull my battery and store it in the heated basememt (this is what I do for other batteries I don't use in the winter) or leave it in the car in order to run the car (but not drive) throughout the winter?

That being said, should I start the car ocasionally or is it best to leave it un-started?

Do I need to be concerned about rodents? I haven't seen any evidence of mice or other critters in the building and I never allow any food products other than water and beer in the building. I haven't had any problems with the other equipment stored there including a travel trailer.


Thanks for your advice!

Mike

This is last winter 2016-17 and the prediction for this year is a repeat! Good think I enjoy moving snow!
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Last edited by hatchdog; 09/18/2017 at 10:02 AM..
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Old 09/17/2017, 12:58 PM   #2
mbsf1970
 
Dream car: '68 GTCS Pres Blue

Location: Calgary Alberta
Joined: Apr 13
Posts: 581

Mike,
I live a little further north and although I've had the pleasure of a heated garage for 1 year, the other 4 yrs of my ownership has seen it stored in an unheated garage. Here's what I did:

Ran the tank dry then filled it with fresh gas for winter storage (no stabilizer)
Placed a trickle charger on battery so it stayed charged
Didn't worry about fresh oil/filter since I change them in the spring
Covered car with dust cover
Placed cardboard under in case of any unsightly leaks...problem with my car--not necessarily yours!!
Started it when weather allowed (avg every 4-6 wks) and kept it going until block was warm/hot
Ran it around neighborhood if roads were dry in order to circulate fluids.
Inflated tires ---maybe a little over 30 psi to ensure no flat spots after storage....rolling around neighborhood also ensured parking them in new location on tire once back in garage.

Pretty basic stuff and car didn't seem to come out worse for wear in spring...

Stephen

Last edited by mbsf1970; 09/17/2017 at 04:26 PM..
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Old 09/18/2017, 06:53 AM   #3
green56
 

Joined: Oct 07
Posts: 505

I live in Wisconsin we also have cold weather live near Lake Michigan I also store it I a wear house it stays about 50 year round All I do is clean car add stabilizer in the. gas tank after it is full on the battery I have a disconnect switch turn of battery and that is it nobody goes up by the cars except the owner of the building. And I do cover car Tom WI
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Old 09/18/2017, 08:57 AM   #4
robert campbell
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Location: Bremerton Washington
Joined: Apr 07
Posts: 3,646

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An uninsulated metal building can be susceptible to condensation an sweating. This means drips on your car. The lists above look good, but I would always used a fuel stabilizer and even but Heet moisture absorber in your fuel. If possible you may have a fuel outlet with non-ethanol fuel. That would be the best thing. Do like Stephen does and run the car and drive it for a short stint if possible on decent days.

You may consider this.

https://www.amazon.com/CarCapsule-In.../dp/B004642U4U

This is the ultimate in keeping your car fresh without a climate controlled garage. It has a fan and dehumidifier stuff and for the price is good insurance. A car in a cold uninsulated garage will suffer from rust on unpainted surfaces. I stored one of my cars for one winter in a cold garage and the trim rings around the pedals turned brown!! And any aluminum surfaces will oxidize. Such as your alternator. Moisture hates aluminum. Especially inside your carburetor.

E-Washington is a lot drier in the winter than in the West. That may help.

Rob
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Old 09/18/2017, 11:55 AM   #5
BigJim
 
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Do not take your car out in the winter if they salt your roads unless you have a good hard rain first. Otherwise you will get salt on the underside of your car and in places you will never get it out of.

Disconnect the battery if you leave it in the car even with a smart (trickle) charger or no charger.

Jack stands will help extend your tire life. If no jack stands park on wooden blocks or a vinyl garage mat.

Mice love cars, so dryer sheets or mothballs inside the car, under the hood, in the exhaust pipes and around the car.

BigJim
'68 GT/CS, Presidential Blue, Numbers Matching, J-Code, C-4
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Old 09/26/2017, 04:47 PM   #6
hatchdog
 
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Location: Spokane, WA
Joined: May 17
Posts: 56

Talking

Thanks everybody for your advice. A few follow up questions/thoughts.

Rob,

In your opinion would I be better served if I store my car in my standard residential garage? It's your typical wood framed wood sheeted asphalt shingled attached garage and it's not insulated or heated. Unfortunately our daily driver is also parked in there which will drag snow and rain water into the garage. I can keep the water swept out as much as possible but I will never be able to remove all. However I would have had the same problem in my shop as my snow plowing/blowing equipment is stored in there and no mater how hard I try I can't remove all the snow when done.

BigJim,

Spokane County uses Magnesium Chloride on our roads as an ice melt and man is it corrosive. Last year it caused some scaling on the concrete pad in front of our garage from visitors parking there. No way am I going to drive my Mustang on that stuff.

Question, why do you recommend parking my tires on wooden blocks or vinyl? I'm fine with doing this but just wondering?

I really like that inflatable cover Rob suggested but I just invested $230.00 in a California Cover so I'll give that a try. Fortunately a local station sells non-ethanol premium which is what I run in the car anyway but I will add stabilizer too. I think I will leave the battery in the car on a trickle charger and start and run it every month.

Thanks again for your replies and please don't hesitate to say more!
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Old 09/27/2017, 11:18 AM   #7
BigJim
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by hatchdog View Post
BigJim,

Spokane County uses Magnesium Chloride on our roads as an ice melt and man is it corrosive. Last year it caused some scaling on the concrete pad in front of our garage from visitors parking there. No way am I going to drive my Mustang on that stuff.
I'm not familiar with Magnesium Chloride, but a friend of mine in Title Town told me they spray beet juice on the roads up there. They claim in it's not corrosive, does not stain, washes off easily and it dissolves snow and ice.

Quote:
Question, why do you recommend parking my tires on wooden blocks or vinyl? I'm fine with doing this but just wondering?
To keep the tires off the concrete. Sitting on cold concrete all winter is not good for the life of tires. The vinyl mat has the added benefit of keeping ground moisture from seeping into the car.

BigJim
'68 GT/CS, Presidential Blue, Numbers Matching, J-Code, C-4
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Old 09/30/2017, 08:48 AM   #8
robert campbell
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Location: Bremerton Washington
Joined: Apr 07
Posts: 3,646

My Garage
Quote:
Originally Posted by hatchdog View Post
Thanks everybody for your advice. A few follow up questions/thoughts.

Rob,

In your opinion would I be better served if I store my car in my standard residential garage? It's your typical wood framed wood sheeted asphalt shingled attached garage and it's not insulated or heated. Unfortunately our daily driver is also parked in there which will drag snow and rain water into the garage. I can keep the water swept out as much as possible but I will never be able to remove all. However I would have had the same problem in my shop as my snow plowing/blowing equipment is stored in there and no mater how hard I try I can't remove all the snow when done.

BigJim,

Spokane County uses Magnesium Chloride on our roads as an ice melt and man is it corrosive. Last year it caused some scaling on the concrete pad in front of our garage from visitors parking there. No way am I going to drive my Mustang on that stuff.

Question, why do you recommend parking my tires on wooden blocks or vinyl? I'm fine with doing this but just wondering?

I really like that inflatable cover Rob suggested but I just invested $230.00 in a California Cover so I'll give that a try. Fortunately a local station sells non-ethanol premium which is what I run in the car anyway but I will add stabilizer too. I think I will leave the battery in the car on a trickle charger and start and run it every month.

Thanks again for your replies and please don't hesitate to say more!
I would keep it in you garage and sweep out the water. Get a large box fan and let it circulate the air when the floor was wet. I would leave it on all night. You guys have a dry climate so the humidity is very low. Your daily driver will like the extra care and company!!

Rob

And it is closer to protect and care for her. And drive her on a nice day
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