7 Top Tips for How to Maintain Your Vehicle with Infrequent Driving
If you’ll be storing your vehicle for a month or more, you may want to follow these car maintenance tips:
1. Clean It (Check out our 5 TIPS TO CLEAN YOUR CAR)
Start by giving your ride a good deep cleaning. Be sure you get hard-to-remove dirt and debris, like sap and hit all the high-touch surfaces. Polish and wax the outside and if you are at the beach, and consider spraying any unpainted metal with undercoating to help protect against rust.
2. Get a Full Tank of Gas
This is one of the most important tips! Be sure to fill up your gas tank, especially if you will be storing the car longer than 30 days. This helps prevent moisture from building up in the tank. And if you aren’t going to drive it for more than 2 months, add a fuel stabilizer to the tank when it’s almost full, as the shelf life of standard fuels is only about three months. This can help keep the fuel lines and engine from corroding.
3. Check Your Tires
This time of year the temperature is up and down, and your tires can slowly lose pressure. Be sure to inflate your tires to your car’s recommended PSI, but do not exceed the maximum– this is bad for your tires. Also, make sure to check the tire pressure when you take the car out for a ride. For any additional tire help feel free to take your car to any of the 7 Mossy Nissan Service departments.
4. Top Off Your Fluids
Since you aren’t going to be using your car as much – or at all – now is a perfect time for your regular maintenance. It’s important your vehicle’s fluids are where they should be. We can help make sure your brake fluid, engine coolant, power steering fluid (if applicable), transmission fluid, antifreeze and windshield wiper fluid are good to go— you can easily make an appointment here! And if your vehicle is going to sit in storage for more than a couple of weeks, you should consider changing the oil too. When it’s time to use your car again, be sure to take a short drive to help circulate the fluids.
5. If You Can, Keep it Covered
If you can’t store your vehicle in a garage, get a good quality cover. Make sure it fits securely while still allowing airflow. This will help protect the exterior from bumps, scratches and dirt. It also may be a good idea to put steel wool in the air cleaner intake and exhaust pipe to keep small animals from using your vehicle as shelter, according to Edmunds.com.
6. Run the Battery
if it isn’t driven at least every few weeks a battery will eventually lose its charge. So, go for a nice drive to get out of the house, at least 10 miles, preferably at highway speeds.
Just turning a car on and idling it for a while doesn’t count; in fact, it’s probably a negative. Drive it! If you don’t want to do that – you can connect it to a trickle charger or battery tender with an automatic shut-off feature or float mode. This will ensure the battery doesn’t get overcharged. The battery can remain in the vehicle or be removed while it’s hooked up to the battery tender. Contact any of our Service centers for help with all of your battery health needs.
7. Quick Check When You’re Ready to Roll Again
Once you’re ready to use the vehicle again, remember to undo all of the storage prep you did originally (specifically, the prep involving the battery, steel wool, etc.), you can use a simple checklist of what you did! Be sure there are no critters that built nests, which can be evidence of rodent damage. Remove steel wool if you’ve placed it in the exhaust pipe. Check your wipers aren’t damaged or rotted. Check the tire pressure, fluids and top off as needed, reconnect the battery and check that the battery terminals are clean. To make sure you’re all good to go, you can take your car into a Mossy Nissan Service location and return to business as usual in no time.
We hope you liked these top tips. Stay tuned for more Mossy Nissan Tips and Tricks! We are here for you during these trying times! Stay connected and let us know if your vehicle needs any love too!