This is basically the opposite question to Reviving a vehicle that has been idle for a long time

I'm planning to leave my 2014 Mazda 3 in undercover storage for a year, and was wondering what steps I should take beforehand.

I'm based in Sydney, Australia so the temperature variation isn't great enough to worry about, especially in a garage.

According to Should I get a battery tender for a car not used for long periods of time? it looks like I should probably buy a battery tender to keep the battery topped up while I'm away.

Is there anything else I should worry about?

  • 1
    Some good pointers here : mechanics.stackexchange.com/questions/9117/…
    – Solar Mike
    Oct 9, 2017 at 6:33
  • @SolarMike thanks, looks like I need one of those ;) I'll wait to see if anyone has any other suggested actions aside from the battery Oct 9, 2017 at 7:56
  • 2
    Take the weight of the vehicle off the tyres with stands - the tyres tend to "set" to the shape...
    – Solar Mike
    Oct 9, 2017 at 8:14
  • 1
    I don't know if you are planning to, but a car cover is in most cases a bad idea because it can get humid under the cover wich can create mold.
    – Granny
    Oct 9, 2017 at 12:41

2 Answers 2

  • As you have already said, place the battery on a tender.
  • Fill the gas tank completely. This prevents moisture from accumulating in the tank.
  • They also make fuel stabilizer (Sta-bil is a common one) that you can add to the topped-off tank. It's not really needed for 12 months of storage, but it's cheap insurance.
  • Placing the car on jack stands will take the weight off the tires and prevent flat spots.

That's really it. One year isn't too long, especially for a modern car being stored in a garage. The battery tender and the filling of the gas tank are the only two that I would say are "required".

The Sta-bil is optional, and the placing it on jack stands really just depends on how worried you are about your tires. If the tires are already pretty worn and you're just going to replace them in a year, then it doesn't really matter. If they are new tires, I'd do it to protect your investment.

  • filling with fuel is a great tip, which I hadn't considered. Thanks Oct 10, 2017 at 1:04

If you're storing it anywhere that vermin might be a problem, take appropriate steps... make sure the interior is super-clean, put out traps, etc. Old-school mothballs seem to be effective against mice, but they do stink up the car a bit. Some people recommend getting some disposable aluminum baking pans and putting them between the ground and the jack stands, under the theory that the crinkly sensation stops the little critters from climbing, but I have no proof that works.

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