Wednesday, January 21, 2009

Tips On Winterizing Your Muscle Car

During the winter months, my Cougar goes into hibernation. Even on the nice sunny winter days, I might be tempted to take her out for a drive but where I live those days are rare so she just sits all winter.

Here are some useful tips for winterizing your muscle car...she will appreciate it and reward you with a Summer full of driving excitement, fun and unadulterated pleasure!

The Muscle Car Club, an organization dedicated to the preservation, restoration, and enjoyment of all American muscle cars, offers these tips for the owners of collectible cars and other vehicles that will be up on blocks this winter:

1. Protect your fuel system. To keep the gas fresh and the system safe, add a container of fuel stabilizer to the gas tank, and fill the tank to the top right before putting the vehicle into storage. Take the collectible car for a brief drive before putting it in the garage so the stabilized fuel will circulate throughout the system.

2. Drain the cooling system (including the radiator) and refill it with a rust-inhibiting antifreeze.

3. Change the oil and filter. Make sure the oil contains corrosion protection.

4. Hook up a battery charger/maintainer to keep the battery alive.

5. Protect your tires. If you can’t store the vehicle up on jack stands and don’t want to remove the wheels and tires, let some air out of the tires to reduce strain on the shocks and other suspension components.

6. Protect the paint. Give the collectible car a good end-of-season washing, dry it thoroughly and apply a protective coat of wax. Cover the car with a breathable cloth cover (plastic covers will trap condensation and provide a fertile breeding ground for rust).

7. Protect vinyl, leather and rubber. If the vehicle will be stored in a dry climate, it's wise to apply a preservative to prevent seats, armrests and dash pads from cracking. Likewise, a good coat of rust inhibitor applied to unpainted metal surfaces will prevent rust.

8. Provide critter protection. All kinds of small animals find vehicle wiring, seats and carpet delectable, and they think cars and trucks make a nice den, too. To keep critters out, place mothballs inside a vehicle, including under the dash, and cover the tailpipe. Or, for total protection, store the vehicle inside a cocoon that seals it completely from the elements.

9. Store convertibles with the top up. Convertible tops can actually shrink if they are left in the down position for an extended period of time.(courtesy of Car Accessories Magazine)

I am hoping for Winter to fly by. I'm sick and tired of the snow! As far as I'm concerned, Summer can just drop the standard operating procedure this year and breeze right on in this January!

The Lady -wishing for a change of seasons

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