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The winter storage blues

Discussion in 'DIY (Do-It-Yourself)' started by charlson89, Sep 28, 2014.

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    Hello all it is that time of year again when the leaves start changing and we know the horrible winter is coming for us. So it's time to put that BMW/ MINI away for storage sadly until next driving season. So here are some things you should do to store you vehicle.

    1. Wash the vehicle outside and give it a good coat of wax. Wax is like a protective barrier for your paint. Also make sure you give your leather a nice leather conditioner to help keep the leather from drying out. Also not a bad idea to have a car cover as well always helps.

    2. Fill the tank with fresh fuel. Just before you put your car away always fill the tank with fresh fuel and add stable to the gas tank. Sta-bil helps the fuels from going bad on you faster.

    3. Depending on where you store your vehicle there are two different options for battery care. The vehicles battery needs to be charged while in storage either with a trickle charger in car or out of car with a normal charger. If you do use a battery tender/ trickle charger make sure it has a smart chip in to monitor battery voltage and switch it self off when the battery is charged if you do not do this you will damage the battery.

    4. If the vehicle is stored where there will be cold you will need to check the coolant freezing point to make sure it will stand up to you winters or you will have major repairs in spring. (note wind chill does not affect cars so don't take that into account)

    5.(Optional) Change the vehicles oil before storage because dirty oil has a higher acid value and will break down the oils cleaning and protection abilities.

    6. (If stored for a year or longer) Leave the vehicle resting on jack stands to prevent flat spotting of the tires.

    7. You need to take preventative measures to keep unwanted guests out of your vehicle. Cover tail pipers with socks put moth balls down. Different parts of the country will have different guests.

    8. Fill tire above specs. Now don't go crazy with this just a little bit lets say 10 psi over.

    Note- You may have heard about putting wd-40 or oil on the rotors to keep them from rusting that isn't the best idea since the pads can not get oil on them or it will ruin them.

    Thats most the basic stuff you need to know about vehicle storage. Here some stuff about restart in the spring.

    1. Remove car cover check under car, under hood tail pipers for unwanted guests.

    2. Check for any leaks and fluid fill levels and reinstall battery if removed (make sure battery is fully charged a full battery will measure 12.6v at 12v your battery is low on charge)

    3. Turn to the key to the on position DO NOT START. Make sure you hear the fuel pump prime the car and smell and look for any fuel leaks. If no leaks turn key off and back to on position a couple times to make sure the vehicles fuel system in primed.

    4. (Optional) You can removed you fuel pump fuse before doing step 3 and crank the engine over to prime the oil system of the engine if you are worried about dry starts.

    5. Start the vehicle and listen for any weird noises (note the engine will make some extra noise on start up after sitting for months). DO NOT step on the accelerator allow the vehicle to warm up to full operating temp. (note do not do this in a inclosed area make sure the garage door is open because of fumes) Look for any leaks, tail pipe will have a lot of water come from them this is normal. While warming up adjust tire pressures.

    6. Go ahead and drive the car it may be stuck a little from the brakes but just give it some gas and it will start moving. Do not right away start doing spirited driving because your brakes need to seat back in so drive moderately and use the brakes until they feel normal again. Also this will give any time for the flat spots on the tires to go away as well.

    After that you are back on the road and can have as much fun as you desire.
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    steven s

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    Sounds like good tips for my lawn mower. :)
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    TomF BMW EnthuZiast

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