Automotive Tips

Jiffy Lube's Guide to Long-Term Vehicle Storage

270px-Two-Car_GaragePerhaps it’s time to put your summer sports car away or you’ve been assigned to active military duty out of the country. For one reason or another, there may come a point where you need to store your vehicle for a month or more at a time. Your vehicle is one of your biggest investments, so when you go away for an extended period, it is important to take a few extra steps for long-term storage. Here are some guidelines to ensure your ride will be in the same condition as you left it.

Fill Up the Tank

If you’re scheduled to be away from home more than 30 days, fill up the gas tank before departing. Topping off your fuel prevents moisture from collecting in the tank and the seals from drying and cracking. Adding a fuel stabilizer like Sta-Bil helps keep the engine from rusting and inhibits ethanol buildup.

Store Your Vehicle Under Cover

The best place to store your vehicle is in the garage. Your garage provides protection from extreme weather and temperatures. If you do not have a garage, then a weatherproof car cover should keep your vehicle clean and dry.

Wash and Wax the Exterior

Before putting your vehicle in the garage, wash and wax the exterior to remove debris and dirt that could harm the exterior. Don’t forget to scrub the tires, rims, and underside of the vehicle to get rid of road debris and dirt.

Change the Oil

Though it may seem counterintuitive to get an oil change for a vehicle you won’t be driving, used motor oil may contain deposits that could harm the engine. Avoid engine damage with a signature oil change from Jiffy Lube.

Maintain a Battery Charge

If your vehicle’s battery goes unused for an extended period of time, it loses its charge. There are a few methods to counteract coming home to a dead battery. The first would be having someone drive it for 15 minutes every other week. This way, not only does your battery get a charge, but the driver can also perform a quality check on other parts. If it is not possible to have someone drive your vehicle, consider disconnecting the negative battery cable. The downside is that you will most likely lose presets like the time and your favorite radio stations.

Taking the time to prep your vehicle for long-term storage is well worth the effort. The last thing you want to worry about when you come home is vehicle repair. At Jiffy Lube in Southern California, we know that preventive maintenance is crucial for all vehicles, even those that won’t be driven for an extended period of time.

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