The best tips for winter car storage and care


Just when you thought you’d heard every suggestion and clever tip for properly storing your classic automobile, along comes another recommendation—or two, or three.

This is a companion discussion topic for the original entry at https://www.hagerty.com/articles-videos/articles/2018/10/24/best-tips-for-winter-car-storage-and-care


I tried Irish Spring in my cars one year.The mice ate it.I can just imagine the critters hiccuping green bubbles in their nest ! Traps work best,and poison.


The Pierce Arrow Transportation Museum uses CarSorb to keep cars dry, meaning mildew, mold and rust free, in the winter. You should too. https://www.mdsassociates.com/catalog/p-106056/carsorb-moisture-absorber-pouch-1-pack


Hi, i heard that mice don’t actually like to “walk” on the dryer sheets, it’s not the smell. i did soap and they ate it. i lay dryer sheets all over the floors now.


I agree with the previous comments about mice. last year they made a nest of my dryer sheets,chewed the soap. Best repell I’ve used is the stuff you buy at hardware stores or peppermint or spearmint. Make a barrier around the car with it. Don’t put poison in your cars as they will die in the car and stink it up. I’ve problems with mouse smells in the past . clean up all traces of them and use an ozone generator to rid the smell of mouse urine. I had good luck with the inflatable car bubbles sold on amazon. cheap at $200 and absolutely mouse proof


MOUSE MAGIC… Mice hate it, smells like peppermint, neat packets, no mess.

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Best thing to do is take it for a good long drive and park it hot. That dries out any moisture in the engine and exhaust. Then leave it all winter and resist the urge to periodically start it. As for tires, pump up to the max pressure (typically 45 psi). But even if they do flat spot, it goes away after a couple of miles of driving.


As others have said forget the moth balls,dryer sheets,Irish spring soap & peppermint they don’t work.i’ve been battling these little bastards for 20 years.They can fit through a space the thickness of a nickle so you can forget about keeping them out.Oh and snap traps you heard it here first their not 100% effective.Because you don’t have any mice in the traps doesn’t mean you don’t have mice.The smart mice will avoid them.The solution is bottle traps.check out utube homemade mouse traps.


One method I use to keep the humidity level down is to put an open container of crystallized kitty litter in the car. Basically silica gel that we often find in packaging.


I live in NY state and store several vintage cars in unheated garages on my property. The outside temperature and humidity varies a lot during the winter here. Any unheated building will tend to breathe this changing outside air causing condensation in the building, especially on cars, that tend to resist sudden temperature changes. I have found that an inexpensive ceiling fan, or freestanding floor fan running constantly at a low setting will reduce condensation, and help evaporate any that forms.
On that first warm day after a long cold stretch. Your first instinct is to check on the cars. When you open the garage door and that warm air rushes in you can see the cold cars glaze over with condensation. Better to check them on a cold day, and keep that fan going to help dry them out.
As for keeping mice out, dryer sheets work good for me. But buy a good brand name, not the dollar store sheets that stop working in a few weeks. … Gary


I use mice sticky pads. You can get them at ace hardware. They work great the mice get stuck and cannot get off the pad.then die. I use in my trunk, under my seats, fifteen to 12 under and around my 63 Chevy Noca 2 door HT. I also place all around in my engine. Do the same with my 74 Triumph Spitfire. I cover my cars with moving pad and 3 car covers.I save old ones use under and over moving pads to top off with new car cover. I live in Montana it gets very cold here. My Jenny (named after original owner) is a second owner car as is the Spitfire. I do same with the Spitfire. My my cars get started to warm up let they are my babies.

. Just crack windows in garage. I do this every 2 weeks. I may be obsessed about their care but I love them both.


The best way to store your vehicle for winter is the use of a car bag - I have been using one to store my '69 Roadrunner for the last 4 years. The car goes in clean, comes out the same. the car bag kits come with dessicant to absorb moisture so no condensation on the chrome. Also seals out any chance of rodents getting in and I still thrown in dryer sheets to keep everything smelling fresh. Best investment I’ve made. Check out carbag.com. I also use the bike bagf to store my Harley.


I used Car Capsule for two vintage Porsches…MOLD!!! Just sent one car for $400 detail to kill mold on the interior!


Glad to see my cautionary note on covers was used in the article. I’m trying a new storage are this year. Bernice is going to live in my farm shop this year. Not the one 35 miles from my house but the one I work in every day. We hire a pest company for the mice and they do good work. Bonus is I get to see her and the new addition to the family (bought the 11yr old a classic) every day at work. As they both may receive some surgeries this winter I’ve done little to prepare them.


I use Grandpa Gus’s mice repellent pouches and also spray Critter out under the car. https://www.amazon.com/Mouse-Rodent-Repellent-Ready-Use/dp/B00316JTQ6


The only way to store a car is …trail and error…I know we don’t have the same situations or even the same weather and having stored our car for 10 winters now, I’m doing less to the process than ever before…wash, wax, triple charger and cover…repeat!!! I always top of the gas and added fuel stabilizer and dropped in one of the deodorizers that absorbs moisture and use a ultrasonic bug repellent in one of the wall sockets…the garage is not heated and I have no plans on working on it… I leave the driver side window down so I can just lift the cover up enough to start the car and get it to operating temp the first Saturday of every month…about the only thing I regret not doing is removing the wheels and resting the car on jack stands…more cons then pros because I was crushing the link pin bushing allowing the front suspension to hang… for the past 6 years I have been removing the link pins as well… sometime I do it to soon or to late with the goofy weather here in Chicago…I’m getting old too and just not as involved with the hassles that I used to get myself into storing the car for winter…I do miss having both our daily drivers in the garage during winter weather…like the 5 inches of slush we had on Monday that froze inside of a few hours… this will be our last season with the car…the last 3 years weren’t the best times weather-wise to own a convertible…


I used to live in an area of town where there was a terrible rat problem, mice and other critters would have been much easier to control. I bought a bottle of peppermint concentrate from the essential oil place and have started using it in my 71 Airstream when storing it. Now the mice seem to stay out and the interior smells like Christmas when I open it up.