Storing your classic car

Courtesy photo

Storing Your Classic Car the LTW Car Question of the Week

Conner asks; What is the best way to store a classic car for the North Carolina winters? I have a pole barn I can use, but it has a gravel floor making it a little damp. Should I cover the floor with plastic sheeting or a fan to circulate the air? Would it be better to store the vehicle outside with a car cover?

Mike: That is a question that I get every year, and it’s an important one if you really care about your classic.

Of course, any type of protected storage for the vehicle is the best. If you have use of the pole barn then here is a good plan:

First, prepare the storage area. Get three 4×8 sheets of treated plywood to place under the car. Then, place a tarp down to act as a moisture barrier and place the plywood on it. Then get a good quality breathable car cover that fits well.   

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Next, prepare the car. Top off the coolant and change the oil. (fresh oil won’t have moisture in it)

Top off the gas tank and add fuel stabilizer. (cleaning a gummed up carburetor is no fun)

Drive the car two or three miles to circulate the fuel stabilizer and fresh oil.

Top off the tire pressures, then place the car on jack stands to take the load off the tires and suspension.

Give the car a good cleaning, inside and out. Be sure to put on a good coat of wax. (preferably paste wax) If you have leather seats, you should put conditioner on them.

Remove the battery and place it on a trickle charger.

A small fan to circulate the air will help, but it’s not a big deal.

If you do all of this, you will be as ready as you can be, short of putting it in climate controlled storage. – Mike Herzing