Menu

Shop

Garage

Cart

Account

Products to Compare (max of 3)
X
Compare These Parts

How to Winterize Your Car

3/13/2020
Add Article To List

Every year after all the long weekend car shows, early morning cars and coffee, and late night cruise inns comes a time for some of us to put our hot rods away for the winter.

Here are a few helpful tips to make sure your hot rod is ready to go as soon as that new spring season comes back around.

1. Wash and Wax

By giving your car a good last detail it is not only therapeutic but also helps protect the finish on your car. Washing and putting a good quality coat of wax on your car will ensure there is nothing on your paint finish that will harm you vehicles perfect shine.

2. Check Fluids

Depending on how much you drive the vehicle or not the fluids in your car sitting inactive for an extended period of time may cause harm to certain vital components.

I typically suggest changing the oil regardless of the miles driven, simply due to the fact that oil does degrade over time whether it is used or not.

A coolant flush can prevent break down of aluminum components internally and also give you peace of mind ensuring that you have a correct mixture of antifreeze and water. This will prevent your coolant system from freezing over during some of those harsh winter nights.

3. Lubricants

Along with refreshing all of the greasable joints, mostly in the suspension, it is also a good idea to remove all of the spark plugs and apply a generous amount of fogging oil to protect the cylinder walls.

4. Fuel

Fuel mixed with oxygen begins the breakdown process in just over 30 days turning fuel to varnish. It is recommended filling your tank with premium fuel and a stabilizing agent just before parking the vehicle. This will help prevent any further damage to the fuel tank and lines.

5. Interior

Vacuuming out the interior and placing dryer sheets inside the car will help prevent a musty smell when the car is removed from storage. This may also keep small critters from turning your street rod into a Christmas dinner. Filling several tube socks with cat litter and placing them in the vehicle will also help absorb any moisture that is present.

6. Start the Vehicle

Starting the vehicle is often recommended, however, I would avoid this unless you plan on running the vehicle long enough to get the vehicle up to operating temperature for no less than 10 minutes. Starting the vehicle and running it for a short period of time creates unneeded moisture inside the engine and exhaust components allowing corrosion from the inside out.

7. Seal the Vehicle

One thing that may often get overlooked is the exhaust and the carburetor. As the car sits in storage, if left open, it provides a perfect hiding place for smaller animals to nest. It also allows moisture into the motor which can cause damage to components that have been sitting.

8. Create a Barrier

Parking your vehicle on a poured concrete slab, although better than a gravel or dirt floor, can still have adverse effects on any bare metal components that are on your undercarriage. Fuel and brake lines and suspension components can rust due to moisture coming through the concrete. By placing a couple sheets of cardboard under your car this will not only keep a barrier between the vehicle and concrete from moisture, but also protect your concrete from any fluids that may unfortunately come from the vehicle.

9. Jack Stands

If you do plan on having your car sit for 4-6 months or more I also recommend placing jack stands under the vehicle. Getting the tires off of the ground will prevent flat spots wearing in the tires and also preventing cracks in the tires if they do happen to go flat.

10. Car Cover

To finalize your storage we recommend a good quality car cover with a fleece or microfiber inner lining to protect your cars finish.

By doing these small preventive steps before putting your car away will make it that much easier to hit the streets once spring comes back around helping you scratch that itch you’ve had all winter.

Products Featured in this Article

Related Articles

Vintage Mag Wheel Restoration
by Jeff Karls - Posted in Hot Rod
6/4/2020
Learn how to restore vintage 200S mag wheels. These steps ensure a smooth and successful restoration and installation.
Effects of Ethanol in Gasoline
by Speedway Tech Team - Posted in Tech
6/27/2019
Learn the benefits and effects of ethanol in gasoline and what to do to prevent issues from ethanol on your fuel system. Find out more on ethanol warning labels.
Ford 9-Inch Housing Identification and Axle Measurement
by Speedway Tech Team - Posted in Tech
12/23/2021
Need help with rear end identification for your muscle car or hot rod? Learn how to identify 9-inch Ford housings and how to measure your axles with our diagrams.
How to Assemble Speedway Motors Aluminum Hot Rod Bomber Seat DIY Kit
by Joe McCollough - Posted in Videos
10/28/2021
How to assembly the new aluminum hot rod bomber seat DIY kit.
How to Install Side Detent Shifter for GM TH200, TH250, TH350, and TH400
by Joe McCollough - Posted in Videos
10/27/2021
Learn how to install a side detent shifter in a 1969 Chevy C10.
How To Crimp Spark Plug Wires and Install Boots
by Jason Lubken - Posted in Tech
10/22/2021
Learn how to install spark plug wire terminal ends. Our step by step guide takes you through terminal end and boot installation with the use of a wire crimping tool.
Selecting The Best Performance Spark Plug Wires
by Jason Lubken - Posted in Tech
10/13/2021
Learn about some of the differences between factory plug wires and the improvements you'll receive with a quality set of aftermarket performance wires in our spark plug wire buyer's guide
Gen III/IV LS Engine ID Guide
by Speedway Tech Team - Posted in Tech
10/4/2021
Looking to swap the venerable LS engine into your hot rod, muscle car, or classic truck? Take a look at our detailed identification guide for Gen III/IV LS engines before you hit the salvage yard or swap meet!
LS Radiator Guide
by Joe McCollough - Posted in Tech
8/27/2021
The radiator is an important part of that LS swap. Here are some options from the Speedway Motors catalog.
Chevy Small Block - Short vs Long Water Pump
by Jason Lubken - Posted in Tech
8/27/2021
Small block and big block Chevy engines were designed with two styles of water pumps, short and long. Before you purchase a new pump, it's important to determine which oneyou have.
Error
X
Note
X
Ok