How to Prepare Your Classic Car for Winter

21 October, 2014

We understand many enthusiasts out there won’t be driving their classic during the cold, winter season. However, be aware that leaving your classic car unused can do more harm than running it. So if you’re thinking of locking your pride and joy in the garage for the winter, you should first make sure it’s fully prepared. For example, we'd suggest giving it a solid clean both inside and out, ensuring all rust spots have been properly cleaned and sealed with rust protection sealant. We’d also recommend storing your car away from any plants or weeds.

What else do you need to do to ensure your cherished classic will survive the winter? Well firstly, we’d strongly suggest investing in a cover which is big enough to protect the whole car. Also, when covering your car, use soft blocks to raise the cover. This is to ensure that if the cover does get wet, it’ll be slightly raised above the car itself, preventing mould and rust.

Here are some more things to consider:
- We know you’ll be checking on your precious classic from time to time. So when you do, take off the cover and give it some air. Whilst you’re there, check for any rust spots in case you missed some when sealing the areas.
- Cover the interior with a blanket.
- Make sure there is 50:50 antifreeze in your car.
- Also, as it may affect your premium, it might be worth letting your insurance company know that your vehicle will be off the road for the winter months.

Before storing your car away, we’d recommend charging the battery and pumping the tyres to 50 psi to prevent flat spotting.

The garage 
To keep the garage at an ideal temperature, and to prevent the sweat which can occur in wood and brick garages during the cold weather, we’d recommend using an inflatable plastic tent. This will prevent damp. You should also place fans inside to keep air moving.

Keeping your classic alive through winter
We’d recommend taking the car out once a month for a short drive, just to bring the engine to full operating temperature. However, if this just isn’t possible and the car must be stored for the full length of time, we’d suggest removing the spark plugs and pouring a tablespoon of Redex into each cylinder. Then simply turn the engine over. This will ensure everything gets coated. Once you have done this, remember to put the plugs back.

Driving during the winter
On the other hand, if you’re determined to carry on driving your classic this winter, check your insurance policies, to ensure you are protected if anything were to happen in the icy conditions. Have a look at our classic car insurance policies. We specialise in classic cars, delivering insurance for the passionate vintage and classic car enthusiasts.

What are you doing with your classic this winter? If you have any tips for the other classic car drivers in the community, let us know by emailing