Tucking Your Car in for the Winter

Tucking Your Car In For The Winter

There’s no denying that September in Michigan is a treat for car lovers. The leaves are changing color and the air is warm enough for convertibles, making leisurely Fall Color Tours a pleasure. In just a few months, though, the first snow will send salt trucks trundling through Macomb County. The last thing you want to do is expose your beloved Corvette to the salty, slushy mess of winter roads. Before the snow falls, think about how you’re going to protect your favorite Chevy show car over the winter. Here’s some advice on winter storage from your fellow car lovers at Heidebreicht

Prepare the storage area.

The ideal place to store your car is inside a home garage. It’s dry, safe, and keeps your car close enough to drive when the roads are clear. Start by sweeping and dusting the area, then lay down some heavy duty plastic sheeting as a moisture barrier. A car cocoon is helpful for storage of longer than a month, though it can be a pain for those who plan to drive on clear days.

Parking your show car outside is not recommended, but if you have no choice a waterproof cover can provide some protection.

Fine-tune your car.

Fix any mechanical problems you might have been letting slide. Small problems snowball into huge issues when a car sits idle, and getting repairs during the winter will be a hassle. If you plan to store your car more than a couple weeks, change your oil and oil filter. Cars that will sit more than 30 days also need the gas tank topped off to prevent moisture building up inside the fuel tank. Clean your car thoroughly inside and out, taking time to get everything “car show” clean. When you finish, rub a quality wax into your bodywork. If you are pressed for time, consider having the car professionally detailed.

Fill in the gaps.

Once the car is clean and full, park it on the plastic sheeting. Leave the parking brake off; a chock behind the tires is safer. Stuff some steel wool or oily rags in the tailpipe to discourage critters from making their home in your Camaro.

If you can drive at least fifteen minutes every two weeks, your set-up is done! Drape a good quality cover over your car (even inside) and don’t forget to drive as planned. Leaving a car sitting will damage the battery and cause flat spots on your tires.

Make long term arrangements.

If you can’t drive the car or start the engine regularly, you need to remove the battery or at least disconnect the negative battery cable. Leaving your battery in and connected will drain it fast. You could also use a device called a trickle charger to prevent your battery from running out. This is the best choice since removing your battery can disrupt any saved seat or radio settings.

After taking care of the battery, jack the car up to ease pressure off the suspension and tires. You can use your trolley jack to raise the car, but storing it that way is not safe. Use axle stands front and rear for stable support. In very cold places the rear brakes can lock, so double check that the transmission is in Neutral and the parking brake is off. You may now put on the car cover if you haven’t already.

Don’t have a performance car to winterize? Now that you see how simple it is, a GM or Chevy showpiece could be your dream come true. Check our showroom to see our collection of show cars.

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