If you have been staying home for the past two months, so is your car. And just as you need to put in a bit of physical exercise to keep your joints running and maintain sanity, so does your car. To ensure that your car returns to its previous vigor after the States lift their shelter-in-place restrictions, you need to park your vehicle safely so that these idle months do not take a toll on its parts. Cars, after all, were never designed to stay standstill for a long time and deteriorate faster when simply kept in the garage. The top used car dealerships follow a few simple tricks to keep the fleet healthy in their lots. You can do the same with your vehicle to make sure that the coronavirus does not make your car sick as well
Start your engine periodically to warm up the battery
A few standstill weeks can kill the battery. You will probably have to change the whole thing once the lockdown rules end. To avoid that expensive inevitability, start and run your engine for some time at least once a week and give the battery some workout. You can also take the vehicle out for a quick round around the block or shop at a further grocery store than you normally do. A ride is suggested to keep the entire powertrain alive. Or, in the worst case, take out the battery from your idle car.
Clean the interiors before parking
Do not park your car with empty chips packets or coffee cups. The food will not only decompose to make your life difficult later but the moisture emitted will damage the electronics. The fungus can destroy the leather on your seats or your expensive mats and you will be staring into an expensive makeover before taking out your vehicle again. Clean, vacuum, and sanitize the interiors with proper cleaning agents. Repeat the process every fortnight to minimize the risk of fungal growth.
Cover the car parked on the street
If you are parking outside, be sure to cover the car thoroughly. Invest in the cover specifically designed for your vehicle’s model so that the fit is not improper. Dust can quickly clog up your vents, form sludge by mixing with oil, or choke the air filter. Moisture can also find its way and rust places if left exposed for prolonged periods. However, keep in mind not to cover your car inside your garage. That will have the opposite effect where the moisture will not be able to escape and dust will find a safe harbor.
Do not park with the handbrake
For a few minutes or hours, handbrakes are fine. But for a few months, the brake pads will fuse with the drums or discs. That will bring a whole lot of trouble where the simplest instant will involve the car not starting at all. In the worst case, the brakes will not apply properly. Use wheel clogs instead like a brick or a wooden chip or tilt the front wheels towards or away from the curb depending on the slope of your street. Once normalcy comes back, be sure to have a mechanic check your brakes in case you left the handbrakes engaged.
Keep the oil tank full
Most used car lots do not park their vehicles with empty tanks. That leaves the interiors exposed to dust and moisture accumulation which might harm the entire engine. If you had already run about 7,000 miles, go for a complete oil change before parking the car again for a few months. Or keep the tank full so that there is no empty space for contaminants to enter and settle in. And while you are at the service center or the gas station, be sure to inflate the tires to its proper pressure to avoid flatting due to long-term standstill. You might also have to jack up your car if the restrictions do not go off soon. Or talk to your used car dealers about spark plug maintenance and paint protection. Also, sanitize your car every time you take it out for that occasional trip to the grocery and use gloves while filling your tank. The COVID-19 has grounded the entire world. And people are surviving for the storm to blow over. Give your car a similar treatment so that the idle months do not take an expensive toll.