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Ultimate Guide to storing your Z/G for the winter

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Ultimate Guide to storing your Z/G for the winter

Old 11-28-2007, 09:51 AM
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folgrz
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Default Ultimate Guide to storing your Z/G for the winter

Since i noticed a few threads over here that some members are looking to store their Z for the winter here are a couple of things that i have come up with

Winter Storage Procedure-


--Put in fresh oil/filter and change the anti-freeze (does depend on the car/system). It's also a good idea to bleed the brakes so there is fresh brake fluid in the system.

--Fill the gas with fresh fuel from a top quality station using high octane (no alcohol if you can help it). Top it off, but not to the top of the neck, leave room for it to expand and contract with the temps. Use a gas preservative such as sta-bil.

--Put plenty of air in the tires (over inflate slightly). 5 to 15 pounds should be enough.

--Make sure the car is thoroughly washed, including the underbody.

--Wash and wax your car right before storing it.

--Store the car only when it is dry.

--Make sure the car has had a good run on the highway before storing it. By getting your car up to operating temperature it helps to burn off contaminants in the oil and it also gets rid of moisture in the crankcase and the exhaust system.

--To stop moisture from getting under the car put a couple layers of plastic sheeting under the entire car and several feet either side/ends. This plastic is cheap and a good vapor barrier.

--Close all the windows and put the system on max a/c to close the outside vent. If the garage is heated, then the window can be left open a small crack to allow air circulation.

--Put a large bag of desiccant gel inside the car. This absorbs excess moisture in the air. Put them in a pie tin on the floor of the car. You can also place an open box of Baking Soda on the floor of the car to absorb moisture. The Passenger Side floor works fine.

--Treat all rubber with a good rubber cleaner/conditioner. Meguires makes a good one. Clean your interior and vacuum it out, use leather cleaner/conditioner and vinyl cleaner/conditioner as required. Do NOT use water on the carpets/seats right before storage, mold and mildew will follow. Do NOT treat inside surfaces with Armor-All (or similar) products before storing your car. They contain a lot of water and chemicals that can encourage mildew and mold. You may get a musty spell concentrated over the winter.

--Take out the battery and store it inside, and trickle charge it once a month. If storing the battery outside the car, place it on wood blocks.

--If storing the car on the wheels, place cardboard or old carpet pieces under the tire to separate from the cold concrete. If you put the car on jack stands, use them under the suspension so all the bushings and springs are the way they are supposed to be, and not drooping down. Drooping from the weight of the wheels etc is hard on the suspension, and exposes parts to rust that normally are hidden.

--If the car is manual, leave it in gear. Use wheel blocks to prevent it from rolling.

--If the car is stored on its wheels, it may be helpful to roll the car slightly once a month.

--Never set the parking brake. The brake shoes or pads could stick to the drums or rotors or the cables could rust or freeze up during storage. Use wheel blocks.

--Put steel wool or rolled up scotch-brite pads in the tailpipes.

--IMPORTANT!!!!! It is far better to let your car sit for four or five months without starting it, than to start it once a week, or once a month and let it sit for 10 minutes. NEVER start your car unless you plan on driving it on the highway for at least 1/2 hour and get it to full operating temp. Doing otherwise will just load the engine and exhaust with moisture to start rust etc.

Last edited by folgrz; 11-28-2007 at 09:54 AM.
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Old 11-28-2007, 09:57 AM
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i would rather jack my car up and put it on stands then to over inflate tires. Also, not sure about filling the gas tank up. I usually drive until most gas is gone in the tank. I leave very little gas in there.
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Old 11-28-2007, 10:06 AM
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Originally Posted by SuperBlack350z
i would rather jack my car up and put it on stands then to over inflate tires. Also, not sure about filling the gas tank up. I usually drive until most gas is gone in the tank. I leave very little gas in there.
Jacking the car up and taking weight off the suspension is not a good idea- been there, done that- it will kill the suspension (shocks or struts) much quicker. As long as you don't inflate the tires past the max printed on the sidewalls, you will be fine.

A full tank of gas leaves no room for condensation- good idea.

The system is sealed, so this shouldn't be a problem. Unless you are storing the car for a long time, the gas won't spoil over the winter- again, been there, done that. Please don't use Stabil unless you replaced your VQ with a Toro lawnmower engine or can't resist succumbing to marketing hype.

Last edited by Z'd; 11-28-2007 at 10:09 AM.
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Old 11-28-2007, 10:06 AM
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this is so helpful...thanks in advance...more feedback pls...the more the better!!!
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Old 11-28-2007, 10:33 AM
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Can we sticky this some how? Atleast for the next month?
Will save several threads from being created I suspect.
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Old 11-28-2007, 09:13 PM
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Originally Posted by SuperBlack350z
i would rather jack my car up and put it on stands then to over inflate tires. Also, not sure about filling the gas tank up. I usually drive until most gas is gone in the tank. I leave very little gas in there.
please re-read more carefully, i explain different views on the tire situation, and its best to keep as much gas in there as possible to reduce gas vapors
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Old 11-28-2007, 09:35 PM
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Very good thread

Placing car on jackstands (with or without removed wheels) is risky for another, albeit lesser known, reason too: Making the car immobile prevents a quick removal in case of fire or other emergency. I am not talking about a rapidly-spreading house fire here; no one in the right mind would risk their life attempting to save a car in that case. I am talking about a planned evacuation or if firefighters need to quickly push the car out of the garage (they always do since fuel is a massive accelerant). I never even thought of it until reading about it in a magazine some months back. Someone lost an original Shelby (yes, the multimillion$ kind) and half of their house in an explosion resulting from an otherwise moderate house fire because it was on jack stands and fire crew couldn't push it out.

Another thing to add: When possible, and in bitter-cold climates, it is a good idea to remove leather seats out of the car and store them indoors. They are quick to remove and this tip prevents extensive drying of the leather in the dry winter air, extending their life. If there's no way to do it, then thoroughly conditioning the leather (as mentioned above as well) is the bare minimum one should do, preferably even once a month during storage.

Last edited by usmanasif; 11-28-2007 at 09:52 PM.
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Old 11-29-2007, 04:10 AM
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Finally, a good, comprehensive list of To-Do's for winter storage. This is the first winter ever that I will be storing my car, so this thread came at the right time. I won't be doing half of these things (like Saran wrap the underbody), but most are logical, preventative steps (like taking the battery out).
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Old 12-11-2007, 05:10 PM
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I could understand not driving the Z in the winter 3months. But storing it longer then that I dont get it. Its not a Ferrari or limited prod car! I'm thinking about storing my rare C36.
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Old 01-02-2008, 07:12 AM
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This is from the Sta-Bil site: http://www.goldeagle.com/sta-bil/index.htm
PDF Link: http://www.goldeagle.com/sta-bil/Sto...scle%20Car.pdf

Originally Posted by Tom Wicks, Gold Eagle Co.
Tips for Storing Your Hot Rod, Muscle Car or Collector Car
(Written by: Tom Wicks, Gold Eagle Co. Manager of Product Development)
When you plan to store your Hot Rod, Muscle or Collector Car during off-months, it is essential that you take a few extra precautions to ensure that it will be running the way you remember when you take it out next season. Following these simple steps will keep your Hot Rod/Muscle/Collector Car running its best and protect your investment for years to come.

Fill your Tank with Fresh Gas & Use STA-BILŪ Fuel Stabilizer. Old gas in your tank breaks down over time, and leaving old gas in your Hot Rod/Muscle/Collector Car can lead to gummed-up or varnished fuel lines, carburetors, injectors. However, there are several disadvantages to draining old fuel as well. Draining fuel exposes the bare metal in the tank and fuel system to air and moisture that causes rust and corrosion, and can dry out gaskets and seals leading to leaks when the system is refilled. The best solution is to fill your fuel tank 95% full with FRESH fuel, and add STA-BILŪ Fuel Stabilizer. STA-BILŪ will keep your fuel fresh for up to 12 months. Make sure you read the directions carefully … that little 10 ounce bottle will treat 25 gallons of fuel (use 1 ounce per 2.5 gallons).

Change your Engine Oil and even the Transmission Fluid. During the year, acids, dirt, and water can accumulate inside the engine oil and transmission fluid. Engine Oil acts like a garbage can or a "waste collector" for all the things that are created by combustion or are
broken apart with high heat and friction. Any unburned fuel, unspent exhaust gases, or water vapor is trapped inside your engine. During storage, (a period of months), some of these chemicals eventually break down the viscosity of your engine oil, transmission fluid, and can
even begin to corrode metal surfaces. Lubricate Hood Latches and Door Locks using a dry lubricant like a graphite-based cable lube or Dri-Slide.

Remove your Battery, Disconnect the Cables or Attach a Battery Trickle or Tender Unit to the Battery. When it is not being used on a regular basis, a battery will gradually lose its charge. You can also use a Battery Tender, a small "smart" charger — it turns itself on and off
as needed so that your battery never overcharges.

Tires: Keep your Tires out of Direct Sunlight. Rubber is sensitive to ultraviolet light, and prolonged exposure to UV light will cause tires to crack and split, and cause premature tire failure. This condition is known as "dry rot". Jack up the car and put it on “jack stands” to take
the weight off your tires .Inflate your tires to their proper level. Underinflated tires can cause flat spots in your tires, shortening their usable life.

Clean Your Hot Rod/Muscle/Collector Car Thoroughly. Start when the engine is cool, and carefully remove all road grime, grease, tar, stains, and bugs from all painted surfaces, chromed parts, and wheels. Make sure you use good quality cleaners. Dry your Hot Rod/Muscle/Collector Car thoroughly, and apply a polish to all painted and exposed metal surfaces. This will protect your finish from color fade caused by UV light.

Store your Hot Rod/Muscle Car Inside, or Use a Car Cover. Protect your car from snow, ice, freezing rain, and wild temperature variances. When you can't store your Hot Rod/Muscle/Collector Car inside, make sure you get a Car Cover that is a form-fitting, breathable, long-term cover. The cover will keep dust off of your car and it will also keep the kids from playing on it. The price of a Hot Rod/Muscle/Collector Car cover is money well spent. If you are storing your Hot-Rod or Muscle Car inside, make sure the cover is designed for indoor storage and that it is made from a breathable material (like Gortex), or ask your auto parts or service store for the proper cover to fit your Hot Rod/Muscle/Collector Car. Store your Hot Rod/Muscle/Collector Car in a Low-Traffic Area. Don't store your Hot Rod/Muscle/Collector Car in a location where anyone is likely to trip on it, tip it over, drop a tool on it, or dent it with a car door, or a dropped wrench.

Last edited by Robert_K; 01-02-2008 at 07:17 AM.
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Old 03-05-2008, 12:13 PM
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after storage do you change the oil before car start up or after it's reach operating temp for the first time?
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Old 07-17-2008, 02:20 PM
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Excellent job on the thread. I wish I had this last year. I tried to find the proper way to store my Z and every thread I read, I would find one that would contradict it. It was insane. I essentially did everything that I found logical. I didn't wrap the car and I had the tires on concrete. I did overinflate the tires. When I took the car out this Spring, I can hear a repetitive noise when I am in motion. I thought it may have been that I got a flat spot on the tires because I didn't roll the car. I was told that flat spot would go away with motion but it has been 4 months since my car has been on the road. Could the omission of the rolling really have caused that?
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Old 11-15-2008, 12:34 PM
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bump for canadian winters hitting western canada
make sure everyone takes care of their Z's for this most-likely brutal winter
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Old 10-09-2009, 01:41 PM
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thank you
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Old 10-12-2009, 10:23 AM
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Thanks for this thread. This will be my first year parking the Z in the garage all winter so these tips will come in handy.
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Old 10-12-2009, 04:01 PM
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Old 10-19-2009, 06:55 AM
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I don't have a garage, only a covered car port so planing to do all the above + get a cover... any additional tips for such a storage?
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Old 12-03-2009, 06:09 AM
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I'm guessing this thread doesnt get much traffic for people that can help me but I have a few questions.
I am deploying for 6 months, these 6 months are during the summer. Is there anything I should or shouldnt do differently from storing it in the winter? Its going to be in South Carolina, with its hot and humid summers I would like to get a climate controlled storage facility. But if I cant get one I imagine it is going to be hot as hell in the room.
Any suggestions would be helpful, thanks.
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Old 01-08-2010, 02:45 PM
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i guess im doing it wrong i start it up once a month for 10-15 mins been doing this for 5 years no issues or rust i park it on styrofoam and leave it covered i do change the oil before storing should i be worried since ive been doing it kinda wrong hehe
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Old 01-16-2010, 06:04 PM
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ginger, no the following procedures work fine likewise for the summer. Crack your window open a bit if you're in an indoor garage if it's not climate controlled and it's the summer however.

Fearless, that's not going to kill your car by any means, i'm kinda surprised your battery hasn't died as a result however... biggest issue is unused oil sitting in the pan etc.

Even the material under the tires isn't such a big deal... newer tires don't exactly get flat spots if they're properly inflated.
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