Of course, you should always be taking extra special care of your classic car, and if you own one, you probably don’t need the likes of us telling you how to look after it. However, for those of you out there who are new to owning a classic car, you might just appreciate a little bit of friendly advice. Even though we might not own a vintage motor ourselves, it’s not for the lack of passion or love.
As the days are starting to warm up, well at least brighten up, a little bit, sometimes – we reckon that old school runarounds are going to become a much more common sight on the roads. With this is mind, we have some carefully honed top tips that will help make your baby run all the sweeter and look smashing when you’re out and about together. We’re keen to get your input too, so if there are any classic car owners out there who have some foolproof care or revival tips, let us know!
- How to store the car
If the vehicle has been sitting in your garage for several months, during the winter for example, you need to make sure that it’s been stored properly before you do anything else. A couple of standard storage tips are to inject fresh grease into all of the grease fittings and spray the hood latch and door hinges with white lithium grease to prevent corrosion.
Change the oil! This is a serious must, along with running the engine for a few minutes to make sure that the clean oil gets around all the parts. Fresh oil is going to prevent corrosion, which you do not want.
It’s a good idea to open the windows and doors on occasion too and spray some Teflon lube onto the stripping. This simply prevents it from bonding to the doors if your car has been sitting stagnant for too long. While, these are just a couple of basics that every good classic car owner should know, it’s by no means exhaustive advice.
- Buy yourself a trickle charger
Saga magazine says that spending £50 on one of these devices is near enough the best money you can spend when it comes to your classic car.
If it’s been sitting for a while – which we realise is highly likely – then a trickle charger is a gift that will revive car batteries and keep them fully charged. This is a good way to save a lot of money, as you won’t have to replace a battery and trickle chargers will help keep your car running smoothly from the get-go.
- Give it a good detailing
Although it sounds basic, you’d be surprised just how many people forget that it’s really important to clean and detail their cars. This isn’t just to make it super shiny, it’s actually a necessity to get rid of salt, mud and other nasty stuff that can get stuck in the undercarriage of your car and essentially ruin it. Don’t forget that cleaning things makes them run at optimum performance, so don’t be shy with the sponging and waxing.
- Car covers are your friend
Although we would recommend that you keep your car indoors, i.e. in the garage, as often as possible, we know that when it’s warmer you’re more likely to want to keep your classic looker outside. If you must do this – and we assume that you must – then make sure you invest in a car cover.
You can buy one of these as cheaply as £50, but it might not necessarily give your car the heavy duty protection you need. You’re better off biting the bullet and spending a couple hundred quid on something that will keep it safe from pooping birds and, well, acts of God.
- Drive it, now!
Often, classic and vintage motors are the apple of their owner’s eyes – not that there’s anything wrong with this, but it does tend to mean that the cars are looked at instead of touched. This is the worst possible thing that you can do to your beloved. Instead, take her out for a spin, even if it’s just once a month to warm up her parts and get the engine purring. Trust us, she and you will thank us for it.
It’s a good idea to take the beauty out for a couple of short runs before you open her up on the open road for a long journey, particularly if she’s been in the garage for a few months. Enjoy!
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