Invaluable Advice For Storage And Getting The Best Classic Car Insurance Quote
The summer is officially over. Wet days and long, icy nights mean less time to enjoy driving in your classic car. Keen to avoid motoring on rust-inducing salted or damp roads, you might think the best thing is to safely lock your car away until the spring. But simply leaving it unused could do more harm than good. And that can mean big bills and a pile of misery when you’re ready for its first drive of the new season. Instead, time spent preparing your vehicle properly for storage over the winter months can pay off with a lot less hassle when it is time to get it back on the road. In addition, it’s also a good time to review your insurance policy and even think about getting a fresh classic car insurance quote.
Need an insurance quote for your classic car? Speak to our classic car team now on 0117 955 6835.
If you’ve got a cherished classic or pampered future classic in your garage, follow our guide for trouble-free over-winter storage.
Keep it clean
Wash the bodywork and make sure it is really dry before waxing. It’s ideal to take your car for a quick drive (in dry conditions) to get rid of pools of water that may build up in your door sills.
Get it covered
Covering your car will help to protect it from spider droppings and dust. But you car really does need to be spotlessly clean before putting the cover on or it could rub dirt into the paintwork, causing scratches. Choose a soft cover made from a breathable fabric. If you are storing your car in a garage that can be prone to dampness, it is best to use a man-made material that won’t absorb moisture and then hold it against the paintwork.
Change the oil
Used oil can be contaminated with debris that could damage the engine, so give your car an oil change.
Fill her up
Filling your car up with petrol will help to prevent condensation from building up in the tank and causing corrosion. It will also help to stop seals from drying out and cracking.
Limit fungal growth
Damp air can cause fungi and mould to grow on leather upholstery. Make sure seats and any leatherwork are cleaned thoroughly before storing over winter.
Cracking and crumbling
Extreme changes in temperature can cause plastic trims and rubber seals to crack and crumble. Feeding or conditioning these items can help prevent this degradation.
Don’t use the handbrake
Whilst in storage, it’s better not to use your car’s handbrake as this can stick if left parked for long periods. Instead, store your car on level ground and use a pair of chocks either side of the wheels so it cannot roll away.
Prevent flat spots
The weight of a stationary car will press down on the tyres, creating flat spots if left in one position for a long time. Make sure tyres are inflated to the maximum pressure recommended for your vehicle and invest in a pump so you can keep them topped up throughout the time it is stored. Alternatively, remove the wheels and tyres or have the car lifted so tyres are not touching the ground.
Start her up
Ideally start the engine every month and let it turn over until it gets up to temperature. This gets the oil moving around, keeping the engine lubricated.
Invest in a battery conditioner
A battery that isn’t used will eventually run down. A battery conditioner works like a trickle charger, but monitors charge levels to top up only when required. It costs just a few pence a day to run and will help keep your battery in good condition so it will start first time.
Fill up the washers
If your garage isn’t heated, make sure that the washer reservoir is filled up with fluid to the highest recommended strength to help to prevent freezing. The pump, pipes and jets can all become damaged if water does freeze inside them.
Why do car enthusiasts love barn finds? Because a draughty barn offers optimum storage conditions. If your garage doesn’t have enough ventilation, condensation can build up on both the bodywork and engine. If that sounds like your garage, consider investing in a bubble-like storage system, which will create a ventilated environment around your car.
Your over-wintered car provides the perfect, undisturbed spot for vermin to take up residence. Warm and dry, there’s also lots of things for mice and rats to chew on – which could be bad news for you. Put traps nearby to keep the situation under control. You could also try techniques to help dissuade vermin from making your car their home, such as plug-in ultrasonic repellents or by placing something with a strong smell nearby, such as mothballs or cotton wool soaked in peppermint oil.
When it comes to keeping your pride and joy in tip-top condition, it’s important not to overlook your insurance. Your car still needs protecting from unforeseen incidents even if it’s not on the road. If you’re moving it to specialist storage facilities, or anywhere not listed in your policy, make sure you keep your insurance company informed. Or contact us to receive a classic car insurance quote if you’re up for renewal.
Protecting your investment
You might not be in it for the money, but there’s no getting away from the fact that classic cars are a sound investment. In the last 10 years, classic luxury models, such as Porsche and Ferrari, have increased in value to the tune of an eye-watering 467%. Soaring values for classic cars are great news on the one hand, but only if you’ve got the insurance to match. If you’ve had your car for a long time you might be surprised at how much it is now worth. And if something does go wrong, and you do need to make a claim, this surprise will be anything but pleasant.
Market value versus agreed value
One of the biggest issues when it comes to insuring your classic car is valuation. It’s essential that you don’t under-insure your vehicle or, if something unfortunate does happen, you might find yourself seriously out of pocket. Unlike valuing a brand new car, valuing your classic motor can be complicated. This is made trickier still if your vehicle is a future classic like a Porsche 993 or 996 – which are still too young to be considered true classic cars by insurance companies but have seen significant value increases in the last year or so.
Make sure you are clear how your insurance company has assessed the value of your car. If you have a low-mileage model in concourse condition, market value is unlikely to be enough to replace it. And if you have an agreed value, be sure to find out whether your insurance company will accept your valuation, an owners club valuation or will insist on an independent valuation.
Insurance as individual as your car
Whether you like to put your foot to the metal on track days or prefer a gentle pootle down a country lane on high days and holidays, your classic car insurance quote can be tailored to the way you use your car. This will help to keep costs affordable, without compromising on the level of cover.
Worth taking the time to get the best classic car insurance quote
Classic cars are there to be enjoyed, so make sure you have the right insurance you need to give you the confidence to hit the road. Speak to a specialist broker, like Park Insurance, for expert advice and cover you can trust. As a preferred broker for a number of the UKs leading insurance providers, we know exactly where to go to find the specialist cover that you need. We can offer a wide range of bespoke options, from track-day cover to limited mileage discounts, to meet your individual requirements.
Speak to our classic car team now on 0117 955 6835 for a free, no-obligation classic car insurance quote.