D.T. • Maryville, TN

Q: Can you provide any insights on storing my car for the winter? How do I protect it from the elements and prevent rust while it is parked? Also, does putting the car on jacks protect it from rusting?

A: We’ll dive into this topic with a more in-depth post later, but here is a basic overview of things you can do to get your car bundled up for the winter. First, give your car a thorough cleaning inside and out. Any debris left behind can hold moisture and cause rust and corrosion. After a good cleaning, you have several options depending on where your vehicle is stored.

For indoor storage, we suggest laying a plastic sheet or tarp on your parking area. This provides a moisture barrier between your undercarriage and the ground. If the car is going to be stored for several months, I also suggest removing your wheels and tires and placing the vehicle on a set of sturdy jack stands. This will prevent your tires from cracking and developing flat spots. However, only put your car on stands if you have an even concrete floor. Dirt and gravel are too unstable for your pride and joy.

For outdoor storage, I suggest using a breathable car cover that’s suitable for outdoor use. The breathable material prevents moisture build up between the cover and your paint. You may also consider spraying a light coating of oil on the undercarriage to help prevent rust. Just make sure when spring rolls around that you give your car another thorough cleaning to remove the coating of oil.

Author: David Fuller

David Fuller is OnAllCylinders' managing editor. During his 20-year career in the auto industry, he has covered a variety of races, shows, and industry events and has authored articles for multiple magazines. He has also partnered with mainstream and trade publications on a wide range of editorial projects. In 2012, he helped establish OnAllCylinders, where he enjoys covering all facets of hot rodding and racing.