How to Store Your Camaro for Winter
While we hate to think about it, before too long many of us in the northern
climate will need to think about winter storage. We offer the following as
some long-term storage ideas that have worked.
- Clean the car inside and out and put on a good coat of wax.
- Change oil and filter (Some prefer to change oil first thing in Spring,
- Check and top off all fluids, including brake fluid.
- Check antifreeze quality, protection level, and pH level of antifreeze.
Antifreeze should be slightly alkaline at 7.5 to 8 pH. Add a can of water
pump lubricant before shutting down engine for the last time.
- Fill the fuel tank to the very top and add a gas stabilizer. Filling as
full as possible will help prevent rusting of the top of the tank from
moisture in the fuel.
- Inflate tires 10 lbs. to 15 lbs. over normal. (Tires will often lose 1 or
more pounds of pressure per month.) If you are concerned about "flat-
spotting" of tires, consider switching to old tires and wheels.
- If you decide to put the vehicle on stands, the stands should be under the
suspension to support the vehicle. If the stands are put under the frame
rather than the suspension, it leaves the vehicle suspension in an extended,
unnatural position, which could cause problems over the term of the storage,
such as rusted shocks and suspension components not normally exposed to the
- Put moisture-absorbing packets in the car.
- Rodent repellent is also a possibility. I leave my sunvisors down so
rodents have more problem getting into the headliner. The smell of mothballs
will repel some pests, but stays with the car for a long time (not
recommended). This last winter I went with bars of Irish Spring soap as a
deterrent. I put bars into open coffee cans in the trunk and front and back
floors. No mice problems, but we store our cars with about 150 others in the
same building. That increases my odds of the mice going somewhere else
- Steelwool in tailpipes and the air-cleaner opening keeps critters from
climbing in and nesting or using the areas for food storage.
- Remove the battery and keep it charged, preferably in a warm place. A
discharged battery can freeze. I keep mine on a piece of plywood rather than
directly on a concrete floor.
- Since concrete or dirt floors release moisture, store the car on another
flooring or make a vapor barrier with plastic under car, although wood under
the car is better. Try not to store vehicle where other winter vehicles come
in and out, bringing moisture with them.
- Leave windows opened about 1/2 inch to allow air to circulate.
- Leave Armor-All (or similar) products off the interior until Spring. They
contain water and chemicals that can support the growth of mildew and mold.
- To avoid the risk of the clutch and flywheel rusting together, I wedge a
board on the clutch pedal to partially depress it, leaving it released from
- Leave the parking brake off so the brake shoes do not stick to the drums
- Remove the windshield wiper blades or block them off of the glass, so they
do not rest against the windshield all winter.
- Pull the sparkplugs and put in a bit of oil. Some people also pour a thin
oil in the carburetor of a running engine until the engine stalls, to provide
a "fogging" lubrication.
- Don't start the car in winter unless you plan to drive it for at least a
half-hour to allow all systems to get up to proper operating temperature and
- Cover the car to protect against dust and possible scratches.
- Tape a note to the steering wheel to remind you what needs to be done in
Spring to get the car ready for the next season.