7 Best Tips to Winterize and Store Your Vehicle

by | Nov 18, 2021

Are you are a classic car owner wanting to preserve your prized vehicle, or do you need storage for a car you won’t be driving? In either case, preparing for storage is a smart move. Here are some essential tips that can help you prepare your car for storage.

1. Wash and Wax your Vehicle, and Clean the Interior
First and foremost, it is essential to clean your car inside and out. Wash and wax the outside of your vehicle, and make sure to examine any small debris like tree sap or spots of greasy dirt that may damage your car if left on the paint for too long. A thorough wash and wax can go a long way in protecting your vehicle from scratching, especially when using a car cover while in storage. Washing the inside of your car can help prevent damage as well. If you are cleaning the carpets or using liquid on the interior, make sure to do it ahead of your storage date so that it is nice and dry and does not form mold. In addition, remove any items from the inside of the car that can burst when exposed to freezing temperatures, leak, or cause damage to your vehicle if left unattended for some time.

2. Remove and Store your Car Battery Separately
Another priority to take care of is removing your battery and storing it in a warm, dry location (i.e., in your home somewhere) separate from the car. Extreme temperatures can damage a car battery and cause it to freeze and crack.

3. Cover your Vehicle
Covering the crevices of your car that are in windows and doors and door handles can go a long way in preserving it. Cover any areas that have small openings that can expose your car to the elements. Investing in a quality waterproof car cover is a great idea. You can even get a custom-made car cover that hugs it tight, protecting your mirrors and paint from rust and corrosion. Having a decent car cover can help cut down on dust, moisture, and salt in the air that can corrode your car’s paint. A less expensive alternative is to use plastic bags to cover the windows with masking tape and mirrors with rubber bands. To prevent damage to your car, be sure to use automotive masking tape or painter’s tape, and use techniques that protect your paint job.

4. Protect your Vehicle from Critters Looking for a Home
Rodents and other pests can enter your vehicle via vents, windows, tailpipes, or other small openings. You can cover your air intake and exhaust pipes with rubber-banded plastic bags and cover vents and windows. Be sure to keep track of all the places you block off, so you don’t forget to remove them come spring. A popular way to ward off rodents is to lay scented dryer sheets in the trunk and inside the vehicle because they don’t like the smell. Many people also use mothballs, but they can leave an unwanted odor in your car. You can also use rodent repellants around your car but be forewarned not to put traps inside your vehicle. It could become quite unpleasant if you catch something and don’t find out about it till next spring.

5. Protect the Undercarriage of your Car
Review your car’s undercarriage for any unpainted parts that may be subject to rust and use wd40 or an undercoating product designed to protect these areas.


6. Check and Change your Fluids
It is essential to check your fuel levels before storing your vehicle. First, fill your gas tank and then add a fuel stabilizer. These precautionary steps will provide a protective barrier preventing air and moisture from ruining your fuel and will also prevent your gas from gumming up your fuel system. In addition, it’s a good idea to change your oil before storing your vehicle. Finally, it is also vital to check your anti-freeze to prevent a cracked engine block.

yellow classic vehicle in storage for the winter

7. Check on your Insurance Needs
Most self-storage facilities require your car to be insured when storing it, be sure and check with your facility. In addition, your auto insurance company may need the name and address of where you have your vehicle stored, so be sure to check on their requirements as well.



At Great Lakes Self Storage, in North East PA, we have several units to accommodate vehicle storage. Our units suitable for storing a car are units sized at 10 x 30 (these are exact measurements). They also can accommodate small boats. Check our rent now page or call us for unit size availability. Our friendly customer services staff would be glad to help you find a unit that meets your needs. We trust that you will rest more easily after properly preparing your car for winter or long-term storage. Knowing your vehicle will be safe and sound until the weather breaks and you’re ready to hit the road again. Use our website menu links below to learn more about what we have to offer.

The content presented in this blog post is general advice. It consists of helpful tips for maintaining your automobile through the winter. We are not experts in auto repair and maintenance, so please use common sense and get expert advice from a professional mechanic to be safe. To the best of our knowledge, which may be limited, this information is accurate. Still, there may be errors, omissions, or mistakes, so be careful as you must use this data at your own risk.

Message Us

Get In touch via phone or message us on our contact page. Ask Any Question, or Choose a Storage Unit to Rent

Call Us

(814) 725-1416

Pin It on Pinterest

Share This