How to Store a Convertible for Winter

When the weather turns cold and wet, many of us choose to put our convertibles away for the season. When top-down driving season draws to a close, you can protect your car from rust and wear by storing it properly. There’s a right and a wrong way to store a convertible, however, and it’s important to make sure that you aren’t actually doing long-term damage to your special car with improper storage methods. Hopefully, this list will help answer any questions you may have about storing your convertible. Of course, if you still have questions, feel free to ask us – we’re more than happy to help. When the time comes for you to look for your next special car, please consider Blue Grass MOTORSPORT

Winter Convertible Storage

Where Do I Store My Convertible?

It’s important to store your convertible indoors, out of the ravages of bad weather. Like anything else, it’s best to store your car in a cool, dry place. You want the temperature to remain neutral (not too hot and not too cold). A barn may seem ideal, but a dirt floor will hold moisture and cause undercarriage corrosion. A concrete floor is usually your best bet, and while a climate-controlled storage facility is ideal, your garage floor is likely fine. Some folks even put a tarp or plastic sheeting over their floor before parking a car for the season to act as an additional moisture barrier. If your concrete floor stays very dry and doesn’t retain moisture, you can skip that step.

Winter Convertible Storage

How Do I Prepare My Convertible For Storage?

To prepare your convertible for storage, you should top up all of your fluids – especially antifreeze. If your oil is near the mileage limit or exceptionally dirty, it should be changed. However, you can opt to just change it in the springtime, too. The last fluid you should fill is your fuel. It’s a good idea to store the car with a full tank of fuel, and we recommend using a fuel stabilizer like STA-BIL or Sta Tron. Follow the directions on whatever product you use. It’s a good idea to run the car for a few minutes to circulate the stabilizer throughout your car’s fuel system.

Inflate your tires to the maximum pressure (usually listed on a label inside the river’s door) to prevent flat spots during storage. Treat your convertible to one last car wash, and dry it thoroughly. Leave the top up, but crack the windows to promote ventilation and prevent moisture from building up in your interior. Storing your convertible with the top down is a bad idea. Your convertible top may stretch, crack, or rip when you put it up after a very long period of time folded.

Winter Convertible Storage

Should I Start My Car Periodically?

You might be surprised to find out that starting your convertible periodically during winter storage is a bad thing. It actually does more harm than good. Moisture builds up inside your engine, exhaust, and fuel system, which could eventually lead to excess wear or even rust. With that said, if you decide to take the car out on a rare nice day over the winter, just be aware that you will have to repeat the storage procedure before putting it away again.

Winter Convertible Storage

What About My Battery?

When your car is sitting dormant, background systems like your clock can still run, gradually draining the battery. We recommend connecting your battery to a trickle charger while you store your vehicle.. A trickle charger will keep your battery charged and replace the small amounts of energy being drained by various electronic systems. That way, your battery will be ready for action when springtime rolls around.

Winter Convertible Storage

How Can I Protect My Car During Winter Storage?

Even though you aren’t driving your car over the winter, you still need to protect it from damage. Bumps and scrapes can happen while it’s parked, so we recommend parking the car in a low-traffic area if at all possible – and that includes foot traffic, too. Purses, shopping bags, bicycles, ladders, and even the lawnmower can cause damage when squeezing past the car in a cramped garage. Try to keep your car out of the way as much as possible to avoid these incidents. No matter which precautions you take, we suggest that you keep comprehensive insurance on your convertible just in case something does happen.

A good-quality car cover is important. The best option is a breathable car cover that is designed for indoor use and is custom-fitted to your car. Many suggest mothballs as a way to keep rodents at bay, but the odor can stick with your car well into next summer. Instead, use dryer sheets. For some reason, mice and other pests can’t stand the smell. We suggest placing them in the interior, trunk engine bay, and even exhaust pipes. Just remember to remove them all before you drive the car again.

We hope that these tips help you to protect your convertible during storage so that you can enjoy it in good condition for many years. Contact our Parts Department team if you are in need of a trickle charger for your battery, or a custom-fitted car cover, as we carry all the most popular models, and can quickly order anything we don’t have in stock.
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