Keeping Your Oldtimer Cozy: The Importance of Proper Classic Car Storage

September 26, 2019

 

Modern car manufacturers use a variety of advanced technologies, such as specialized alloys and protective paint to prevent or greatly decrease, corrosion caused by UV rays and severe weather. Unfortunately, these technologies didn't exist at the time when our beloved oldtimers rolled off the assembly lines.

Knowing how to correctly store your classic car will make the difference between a muscle car that goes through a harsh winter unscathed, and one that suffers from weather-caused corrosion that could be extremely expensive or even impossible to fix.

In this article, we'll answer some common Orange County classic car storage questions, and explain how to go about preparing your classic car for storage. We'll also tell you where you can rent out a professional-grade storage unit for your oldtimer. Read on to learn more.

How do you store a classic car?

Every vehicle, no matter how old it is, is meant to be driven. Leaving it in storage for months on end can have a detrimental effect on the motor and the car's integrity. Because of this, proper preparation before car storage is needed.

Prior to storing your oldtimer, you should:

  • Pump up the tires and put the vehicle on jacks. Replacing tires (especially vintage ones) can be very expensive. Filing them up and raising the car on jacks to relieve the pressure from the tires and the suspension is a great way to avoid unnecessary wear while in storage.

  • Prep and detail the car. Cleaning the vehicle before storage may seem unnecessary (who's going to see it?), but it's actually a way of protecting the car. Any debris or dust that's left on the stored car can easily damage or scratch the paint, while crumbs and dirt in the interior can attract insects and other pests.

  • Remove the battery. This is only really needed if you intend to store the car for a prolonged period. If you're only storing it for a short time, or if you still want to start the engine every now and then, you can use a trickle charger or a battery tender instead.

  • Change the oil and fill the fuel tank. The more gas there is in the tank, the lower the chance that excess moisture will build up in open spaces (this can cause the tank to rust). Adding a fuel stabilizer will prevent the fuel from gunking up or hardening.

How often should you start a car in storage?

A big part of proper storage of your classic car is knowing at what intervals you should start the engine and let the car reach its operating temperature. As a rule of thumb, you should start up and drive your classic car at least twice a month to keep the internals from deteriorating.

What is the best temperature to store a car?

Changes in temperature can cause metal to expand and contract. This is just one of the many reasons why wild temperature fluctuations are bad for your classic car. Ideally, the temperature in your classic car storage area should never exceed 70°F and humidity should always stay between 40% and 50%.

 

Where can I find reliable Orange County classic car storage?

Located a short walk from Terry Park, Chimera Motors is Orange County's leading provider of classic car storage, maintenance, and restoration. Our long-term car storage is available in both outdoor and indoor variants. Your cherished oldtimer will be overseen by expert technicians who will ensure it goes through the storage period unscathed.

Reach out to us today if you'd like to have your car stored, or if you'd like to learn about the other services we offer. We're eager to land you a helping hand.

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