When it comes to automobiles, it’s not a big deal if they sit for long periods unless they have aluminum engines. Aluminum engines tend to deteriorate and suffer from pitting and oxidation when they’re not driven for a while. That being said, there are still some ways for automotive owners to protect their investment in vehicles they don’t drive frequently. The experienced professionals from Altra Insurance Services, a premier provider of car insurance San Diego drivers trust for affordable coverage and top-notch service, offer these tips for keeping your seldom-used car in great shape.
1. Add a Fuel Stabilizer
Gas is one of the first things to spoil when you store a vehicle for long periods. You may notice your car runs particularly rough on that first tank or two of gas as you try to clear the tank. This is because condensation tends to build up in the gas tank if you don’t run your vehicle often enough. For this reason, you should always fill your tank, top it off, and add a high-quality fuel stabilizer to reduce the impact between usage intervals.
2. Set the Car on Lift Stands
If you rarely drive your car, you may want to consider setting it up on lift stands to reduce weight on the suspension and prevent the tires from developing flat spots. While this may seem like you’re going overboard, it only takes an hour to jack up your vehicle and set up some lift stands on all four corners. Using lift stands prevents the shocks from seizing up if you store the car for a long time.
3. Use a Car Cover
Whether you have a garage or not, you should always put the added protection of a car cover over your vehicle when it’s not in use. A high-quality cover can protect your car from the weather and UV radiation and is thick enough that it should also hold up in inclement weather. A car cover will also protect the paint against damage from environmental factors such as bird droppings and tree sap. In addition, it avoids the perception that your vehicle doesn’t run and is nothing more than a junker cluttering up your yard or driveway.
4. Drive It
One of the best things you can do to ensure your vehicle doesn’t decay prematurely is to simply take it out for a few minutes every couple of weeks. Driving the car burns off any internal condensation that’s forming in the exhaust, engine, and fuel tank and allows the battery to recharge, which cuts down on the need for other maintenance. You won’t have to jack it up because the shocks won’t seize up if you get some play, and the tires won’t get any flat spots if you park it on different surfaces of the tires every time.
Following these tips can keep your car in good shape for years to come. It’s also important to protect your car with reliable auto insurance, so reach out to the trustworthy agents at Altra Insurance Services. In addition to auto coverage, we also offer homeowners, commercial, and motorcycle insurance. San Diego residents are urged to give us a call today at 619-474-6666 for a free quote.