If you’re going on a six month business trip, a year long excursion for fun or simply want to keep your classic Austin-Healey in a safer place, storing your vehicle in a self-storage unit requires some extra time and care. Not only should you opt for a storage facility that offers 24/7 security, but you’ll also have to some extensive cleaning, as well as some research, before you store your car. To keep this process from being a bumpy ride, the experts at Secure Self Storage have come up with six tips for storing your vehicle, so your car will come out of the storage unit and hit the road with its normal vroom-vroom.
- Top off the fluids. Before you store your vehicle for a long period of time, make sure you check your car’s fluid levels. These include your antifreeze, brake and gas fluid and your oil—you should also replace your oil filter. Be sure to change fill all of these fluids to the fill line with fresh, new fluid at least two weeks or less before you store your vehicle.
- Baby the battery. There are a few different options when it comes to ensuring your battery stays in good condition during storage. The first option is to keep your battery in your car, plugged in, but this option requires you to have it connected to a battery maintaining device. The second option is to remove it from your car. To make sure nothing happens to your battery while it’s out of your car, be sure to keep it in a dry, safe space that doesn’t get too hot or cold and isn’t exposed to moisture. The third option, and possibly the most simple, is disconnect it but leave it in your car.
- Take care of the tires. Just like the battery, there a few options to consider to make sure your tires stay inflated while in storage. If you have the equipment to do so, the first option to keep your tires inflated is to place your car on jack stands or wooden blocks inside your unit. Not equipped for that? The second option is to take plastic sheeting and wrap your tires in it. This will prevent them from losing any moisture, keeping them from losing any air. Whichever option you choose, nothing will make a difference if your unit is exposed to temperature and humidity changes, so be sure to choose a unit that is climate-controlled.
- Prep your car. Preventing rust, mold and mildew is an obvious priority, but it may take a little elbow grease on your part. Before storing your vehicle, be sure to clean it from top to bottom, inside and outside, bumper to bonnet. If you’re opting to clean your car yourself, make sure you vacuum and dust every inch, you throw out every piece of trash and you clean the oil the cylinders to prevent rust. Putting in this extra time before storing your car will help ensure that it comes out of the storage unit in the same condition as it was when it went in.
- File for an affidavit. Depending where you live in, the registration requirements may vary. You may be required to file for an “Affidavit of Non-Use” with the Ministry of Transportation.
- You may need insurance. Just as registration requirements can vary from province to province, some provinces may ask that you get insurance for having an inactive vehicle. To prevent any potential problems, check out your insurance requirements and purchase any additional coverage you may need, so you can provide the proper documentation at the time of storage.
When you’re ready to store your vehicle, contact the team at Secure Self Storage, located in North York and Mississiauga.