Here are some recommended tips and suggestions for the proper storage of a vehicle, as provided to me in my Fiero vehicle information packet from Pontiac Historical Services. (It is not Fiero specific).
So there you have it. I have not stored a car per these procedures, so I cannot comment on their necessity, difficulty, or usefulness. I'm also not saying all should be done, or need to be done. Essentially, follow them if you like at your own risk.Pontiac Historical Services' Suggestions for Preparation of Vehicle said:Storage
Less than 30 day storage
1. Wash vehicle exterior completely to remove surface dirt
2. Check engine coolant level and if necessary increase "antifreeze" protection.
3. Check battery and charge if below 1.225 specific gravity to avoid freezing and deterioration. Both battery cables should be disconnected at the battery to prevent gradual discharge, and the possibility of fire due to short circuits.
4. Check tire pressure and if low, inflate to recommended pressure
5. Vehicles are best stored in a clean, dry, closed or roofed area. If vehicle is subject to corrosive fumes or bird droppings, vehicle should be covered. If the vehicle is to be stored where the wind might move the cover extensively, the cover should be tightly secured to precent rub-through on the paint.
6. Run the engine until completely warmed up before turning off the ignition. (At fast idle for a minimum of 15 minutes).
7. Make sure all windows are closed.
8. Leave parking brake in the "Off" position. If car is equipped with a manual transmission, the selector lever should be placed in reverse.
9. Check trunk and glove compartment for personal items that might freeze or deteriorate with time.
Extended Storage Beyond 30 Days*
*In the event vehicles are to be stored for extended periods beyond 30 days, the following items are suggested in addition to the steps given above for vehicles that are to be stored less than 30 days.
1. Apply a coat of wax to the exterior painted and plated surfaces.
2. Start and run engine until completely warm. Drain engine oil and replace filter element, refill with fresh oil. After oil has been replaced, remove air cleaner and pour one-half to one pint of 10-W or lighter oil into carburetor air inake with engine running [obviously not applicable to fuel injected vehicles]. Pour slowly at first, then rapidly using last quarter to seal engine. Replace air cleaner. If vehicle is equipped with air conditioning, the unit should be operated during this final engine warm-up to lubricate the compressor seals.
3. Drain coolant from radiator, cylinder block and heater.
4. If freezing temperatures are expected, the battery should be removed from the vehicle and stored in a cool, dry area at above freezing temperatures.
** CAUTION: As part of the normal function of a automobile storage battery, hydrogen gas is produced through chemical action. This gas is toxic and extremely combustible when mixed with air. Do not store battery where it will be exposed to sparks or open flames, nor where it is exposed to children.
5. Place blocks under the front and rear suspension so that tires do not contact ground.
6. Drain gasoline from fuel tank, fuel lines, and carburetor to reduce the fire hazard and to prevent gumming of the fuel as it evaporates.
7. Remove winshield wiper arms and blades and store in vehicle.
Additional tips and information
All rubber weatherstrips such as those used around doors, deck trunk opneings, window ventilators, rubber gaskets with exposed edges around tail lights, cowl ventilator lid gaskets, etc. should be painted with silicone grease.
It is also recommended that doors be left closed, and that the trunk and deck lid be locked to prevent rats, mice, and squirrels from destroying the upholstry.
All upholstry and floor coverings should be thoroughly cleaned. The entire interior should be sprayed with a stainless moth preventative, such as dichloricide. Apply a high quality furnture wax to decorative wood inserts. [Ok, this is an old-school tip from when cars had wood inside! ]
The tops of convertibles should not be collapsed.
Care should be exercised to keep oil or grease of any kind from either top or leather upholstry. Put a paper cover over the top, to prevent dust and dirt from penetrating the fabric.
Coat folding top chromium plated parts with body wax.
Do not store in direct sunlight or near a radiator.
Observe the precautions concerning rubber weatherstrips as listed above where applicable.
Selection of Storage Place
SAince extremely high and low temperatures, precipitation, freezing and thawing, sunlight, soot and other conditions found outdoors have very detrimental effects on cars in dead storage. Outside locations should be avoided.
An inside storage place should be selected having a reasonably cool, even temperature, a minimum of dirt in the air, and an absence of direct rays from the sun which may cause uneven aging of painted surfaces and upholstry, and accelerate deterioration of tires and other rubber parts. If it is necessary to store cars near windows, sunlight may be effectively reduced by painting the window pains black or blue. Avoid storing in a place where coal, smoke, ammonia, or other detrimental fumes may be present.
Place the car in the location where it is to be stored and support on jacks or stands at all four wheels to relieve weight from tires.
Six conditions should be observed in connection with the storage of tires, either on or off the car.
1. A cool place
2. A dark place
3. No air currents
4. Under no load
5. A dry place
6. No contact with grease or dirt.
Normal seepage will soon relieve pressure. Under no conditions should direct sunlight be allowed to reach the tires. If this cannot be avoided, then some sort of light proof covering should be placed over the exposed tire. If tires have picked up oil or grease on the tread, the accumulation should be cleaned off with a cloth wet with alcohol. Do not use kerosene, gasoline, carbon tetrachloride, duco thinner, or any other petroluom product.
Drain the gasoline tank. Run the engine until it stops, using as much as possible of the remaining fuel. Disconnect the carburetor gasoline line at the fuel pump to allow gas to drain from this line. Disconnect tank to fuel pump line at fuel pump and blow line out with air. Crank engine over five or six times to empty the pump. Reconnect both gasoline lines.
If coolant is left in engine, make sure enough anti-freeze is in cooling system and heater to insure adequate protection from freezing. If car is to be stored more than siz months, drain coolant from radiator, cylinder block and heater. (Disconnect hose at the heater to drain it completely, and reconnect the hose).
It is not necessary to prepare the engine if the car is not to be stored longer than 60 days. However, for longer periods, remove the spark plugs and squirt oil into the spark plug holes. Reeplace spark plugs finder tight. When preparing the car to run, remove the spark plugs and crank the engine momentarily to assure that any excess oil is removed from the combustion chamber.
If car is to be stored more than one year, remove the cylinder head and coat all internal arts of the engine (Cylinder bore, combustion chamber, valves and seats, valve stems, etc) with cup grease.
Remove tension on belts.
Place paper bags over the air cleaner, crankase ventilator valve outlet, and tail pipe and secure it in place. This is especially important in areas where salt air might enter the engine or exhaust.
Do not drain the oil!
Remove the battery and take it either to your car dealer or a reliable batter station for storage, so that it can be checked regularly and recharged when necessary to keep it in good condition.
Before storage, the car finish should be checked over for any foreign substances that might have accumulated on the finish, such as grease spots, oil, tar, mud, etc, which may have a detrimental effect on the finish of lacquered surface if allowed to stay on. The car should be thoroughly washed and waxed prior to storage. A cloth or paper cover should be put over at least the roof, hood, and front fenders to keep them free from dust accumulation and also as a precaution against foreign objects falling onto the paint, through windows, or other openings.