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Preserve your car during long-term storage


silblade

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If you are not going to use your car for more than a month, store it properly to prevent unnecessary damage and repairs upon your return.

• Fill the gas tank to help prevent condensation from accumulating in the gas tank. Add a fuel stabilizer and drive the car around a bit to distribute the additive to engine parts.

• Wash and wax the car thoroughly to protect the finish.

• Place a vapor barrier on your garage floor. A 4-mil polyethylene drop cloth will do.

• Disengage the parking brake to help avoid brake corrosion.

• Put the car on jack stands to take the weight of the vehicle off the wheels and tires.

• Disconnect and remove the battery to keep it from draining. Place the battery on a trickletype charger. Or periodically drain the battery, using a small light bulb, and then recharge it with a low-volt charger.

• Plug the tailpipe with a rag to prevent moist air from infiltrating into it.

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If you are not going to use your car for more than a month, store it properly to prevent unnecessary damage and repairs upon your return.

• Fill the gas tank to help prevent condensation from accumulating in the gas tank. Add a fuel stabilizer and drive the car around a bit to distribute the additive to engine parts.

• Wash and wax the car thoroughly to protect the finish.

• Place a vapor barrier on your garage floor. A 4-mil polyethylene drop cloth will do.

• Disengage the parking brake to help avoid brake corrosion.

• Put the car on jack stands to take the weight of the vehicle off the wheels and tires.

• Disconnect and remove the battery to keep it from draining. Place the battery on a trickletype charger. Or periodically drain the battery, using a small light bulb, and then recharge it with a low-volt charger.

• Plug the tailpipe with a rag to prevent moist air from infiltrating into it.

I store my cruising/show cars for 6 months every winter for the past 10 years and have never done any of that stuff, and have never had any problems.

* 1966 Deville Convertible

* 2007 Escalade ESV Black on Black

* 1996 Fleetwood Brougham Black on Black V4P -Gone
* 1983 Coupe Deville Street/Show Lowrider -Gone

* 1970 Calais 4dr Hardtop GONE
* 2000 Deville DTS - Silver with Black Leather and SE grille GONE
* 1999 Seville STS - Pearl Red GONE

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I hate to say this and dont take it the wrong way but I absolutely do not recommend raising the car at all.

It is best to sit in the normal position without putting strain on the suspension.

If you put it up on jackstands you are putting stain where the jackstands are and the struts and suspension are fully extended.

I store multiple vehicles every year and the best tip I have to add is irish spring soap. Reason being, cheap, smells great, and most improtant rodents cant stand it

Oh did I mentin welcome to the forum. Hope you enjoy it as much as we all do. With patience it is a wonderful forum with exceptional information

GM FAN FOREVER

Nice, clean, luxury= fine automobile

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I wouldn't do all that for just a month of inactivity - heck most used cars are on the lot for longer than a month...

It is not necessary to fill the gas tank to prevent condensation. Filling the fuel tank prior to storage stems from the days of fuel systems that were vented to the atmosphere. Cars in the last 35 years have a charcoal cannister vapor recovery system that prevents fumes from being released to the atmosphere and condensation to enter.

Fuel stabilizer is a good idea as is to cover the car with a car cover.

I have stored my Fleetwood Brougham for many winters and have never raised it on jackstands. Primarily because the storage building I used to rent had only about 3/4" of clearance at the front and the back. The car still sits at the proper ride height and trim.

Kevin
'93 Fleetwood Brougham
'05 Deville
'04 Deville
2013 Silverado Z71

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I think there is a lot of good information in this post, though it may need to be modified a bit to meet current designs. I do like the canister idea from KHE, even though I have never thought of the canister vent acting in two directions. This may need to be explored a little bit more thoroughly, considering the fact that we are now dealing with high amounts of ethanol in our fuels. In fact I read recently that potential problems with the Chevy Volt may exist due to NOT using the fuel in the tank for long periods of time. Was this idea just put out there by the news media to deter potential buyers, or is it a genuine issue?

Likewise, I think removing SOME of the load from the springs is a good idea, but most certainly only if the vehicle is to be stored for longer than 6 months. I can see the wisdom of not extending the shocks to their fullest extent, but a happy medium might be possible.

rockfangd, what exactly is it that you do with that Irish Spring soap anyway? Just stick a bar in the trunk and glove box? Tailpipe? What?

And speaking of tailpipes, that's one I never thought about. I think that is one way for moisture laden air to enter both the exhaust system and eventually the engine itself, causing rust. The vehicle therefore should be run for at least 20 minutes before putting it into long term storage. This would ensure that the exhaust system is completely dry. The plastic sheet is also a good idea, and one I never thought about, even though I have seen rust on my garage floor that fell from the exhaust system. This is presumably surface rust caused by humid air and/or road salt spray. Maybe a quick spray with WD40 would be in order?

I'm interested in this mostly because my 2008 DTS now has 20,000 miles on it and hasn't been on a trip since November 2010............

I need a road trip!

Welcome Sil Blade! But I hope that wasn't really 2:24 AM when you posted unless you were working 4-12.

Never underestimate the amount of a persons greed.

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buy an 8 pack of irish spring bars. they work wonderful

2 in the trunk, 2 uunder the hood, 1 on top of the engine and one on the airbox, 1 on each floor mat. total of 8. leave all in the boxes and open both ends. set open boxes and leave it.

I still have them i my seville from last years storage and love the smell.

another tip I recommend for storage is to crack 2 windows just enough to vent but not leak

GM FAN FOREVER

Nice, clean, luxury= fine automobile

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I wouldn't jack the car off the floor; a more prudent thing to do (to help prevent flatspotting the tires) is to add air to the tires (I would inflate to the max pressure on the sidewall, which is probably overinflated to the car's recommended running inflation) but perfectly safe in the stored condition.

Also, since the OP suggests a battery tender after removing the battery from the vehicle, it would make more sense to leave the battery in the car and and still attach the tender to the installed battery (keeping all the electonics happy).

And I probably wouldn't do any prep (except maybe running some fuel stabilizer through the fuel system) unless storage was more like 3 plus months or longer.

If the vehicle did meet my extended storage criteria, then I would add one more thing, an oil change (to help defray any possible internal corrosion from old contaminated oil).

Chuck

'17 XT5, '04 Bravada........but still lusting for that '69 Z-28

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Changing the engine oil just prior to storage is a good idea - I do that on my car every year prior to putting it in storage. Any flat spotting on radial tires will be gone in a couple of miles.

Kevin
'93 Fleetwood Brougham
'05 Deville
'04 Deville
2013 Silverado Z71

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Changing the engine oil just prior to storage is a good idea - I do that on my car every year prior to putting it in storage. Any flat spotting on radial tires will be gone in a couple of miles.

thats what i forgot to say. preventing flat spots on tires goes back to the bias ply tire days. Old tip that is not necessary anymore.

* 1966 Deville Convertible

* 2007 Escalade ESV Black on Black

* 1996 Fleetwood Brougham Black on Black V4P -Gone
* 1983 Coupe Deville Street/Show Lowrider -Gone

* 1970 Calais 4dr Hardtop GONE
* 2000 Deville DTS - Silver with Black Leather and SE grille GONE
* 1999 Seville STS - Pearl Red GONE

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Share on other sites

Always leave as little gas as possible in your car !!!!!!!!!!!!!

I also add that Sta-Bil fuel preservative stuff...........

It works in my GTO and Z-28 when they go to sleep in the winter!

Of course disconnect the batteries is important.

The gas in my area has that 10% Ethenol (spl) additive and posts

on the net say it goes bad and creates moisture !

I say this because I have had carb. troubles with my small engine

lawn equipment and the small engine tech says the new gas additive

causes this and recommends to run the engines dry and drain the

tanks. I drain and run my Triumph m/c dry also for its winter rest.

Edited by sonjaab

93 DeVille-13 Chevy Impala

72 GTO - 77 Triumph Bonneville

84 Z-28

Syracuse NY

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Always leave as little gas as possible in your car !!!!!!!!!!!!!

I also add that Sta-Bil fuel preservative stuff...........

It works in my GTO and Z-28 when they go to sleep in the winter!

Of course disconnect the batteries is important.

The gas in my area has that 10% Ethenol (spl) additive and posts

on the net say it goes bad and creates moisture !

I say this because I have had carb. troubles with my small engine

lawn equipment and the small engine tech says the new gas additive

causes this and recommends to run the engines dry and drain the

tanks. I drain and run my Triumph m/c dry also for its winter rest.

Not sure how the ethanol creates moisture? Any residual moisture in the tank would be absorbed by the ethanol in the fuel. In a car from say 1973 to present, the fuel systems are so sealed moisture can't get in during storage unless the fuel cap is removed.

The reason many small engines (lawn mowers, chain saws, string trimmers, snowmobiles, etc.) have carburetor troubles is that the fuel systems are directly vented to the atmosphere. The fuel evaporates and leaves a film of varnish in the carb. With time, that varnish builds up and causes issues - particularly if the engine is started and run on an infrequent basis. The float bowl in the carb. fills up, and then with inactivity, the fuel evaporates and creates another layer of varnish. Once the varnish builds up in the jets, the engine will not run properly and the carb. needs to be cleaned.

Kevin
'93 Fleetwood Brougham
'05 Deville
'04 Deville
2013 Silverado Z71

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