4 Tips to Prepare Your Car for Long-Term Parking

66 / 100

Whether you are going on a summer vacation with the family, have to handle some business out of town for a while, or you are relocating and don’t have enough space for your second car, you need to take certain steps to make sure that your car does not suffer while you are away. 

Leaving your car for a long time can be a bit stressful. You might wonder what condition you will find it in, if you find it at all. But, it doesn’t have to be like that. 

To give you an idea, here are some tips to prepare your car for long-term parking.

1. Clean Your Car Inside and Out

The first step in preparing your car for long-term parking is to give it a thorough cleaning. This might seem like a small detail, but it can make a big difference. 

You can start by washing the exterior of your car. If you leave the dirt and grime on your car, it can damage the paint if it sits for a long time. Not to mention, cleaning your car before parking it will make it look nicer when you come back to it.

Then, you can remove any trash, food, and personal items from inside the car. Food crumbs and garbage can attract pests, which can cause damage to your car’s interior. 

If you don’t have the time, you can always visit a professional cleaning service. 

2. Fill Up the Gas Tank

While this might seem odd, you should make sure that you fill up the gas tank before you leave your car in a long term parking service. This can help you prevent moisture from building up inside the tank. 

When a gas tank is partially empty, condensation can form, which might lead to rust and other issues. By filling the tank, you can minimize this risk and help keep your car’s fuel system in good shape.

You can also add a fuel stabilizer to keep the gas fresh and prevent it from breaking down over time. It’s particularly useful if you plan to leave your car parked for more than a month. 

3. Check and Top Off Fluids

Another important step is to check all the fluid levels in your car. This includes oil, coolant, brake fluid, transmission fluid, and windshield washer fluid. If any of these fluids are low, you should top them off before you park your car. This ensures that your car’s systems will remain lubricated and protected while it’s parked.

4. Inflate the Tires

Tire maintenance is incredibly important. Otherwise, you might come back to damaged or flat tires because they can lose air over time. 

Before you park your car, check the tire pressure and inflate them to the recommended levels. You can find this information in your car’s manual or on the sticker inside the driver’s door.

If you know your car will be parked for a very long time, consider using tire jacks or blocks to take the weight off the tires. This can prevent flat spots from forming and extend the life of your tires. If this isn’t an option, you can ask someone to move your car a few inches every couple of weeks to prevent tire damage.