Probably one of the most tragic mistakes car owners make is keeping their ride out of use for long periods of time. While it’s probably not wise to take your 67 Chevy on a 3,000 mile ride across country it is extremely important to take her for a spin around the block a few times at least once a month. Just like muscles, car parts get weak when out of use and must be exorcised in order to maintain endurance. Running your car frequently keep all the fluids moving lubricating any gears that may otherwise become dry or sticky.
It’s also important to keep your cars body from rusting. Rust and corrosion are irreversible problems and the older your car, the more time it has to become rusty. Storing your vehicle in a cool dry place when not in use is one simple way to prevent such damage. Also, keep an eye on the overall condition of your cars exterior; if you notice a problem spot you may want to use a rust preventative product. But keep in mind that any product used on your car must be both strong enough and mild enough not to cause additional damage accidentally.
This is especially important even with cleaning products used on painted parts of your vehicle. Know what type of paint was used to paint your car prior to choosing cleaning products, and beware that cleaning some substances off the paint may require a specific technique. Acidic materials such as bird droppings or soda must be carefully removed with the right type of cleaner. Too mild of a cleaner may cause particles in droppings to scratch the surface, and too powerful of a cleaner may take the paint right off with every wipe. Keeping a cover over your vehicle when it’s outside would prevent all these problems.
Interiors to classic cars may need special care as well. The craftsmanship that was once put into the production of what we now call a classic car simply doesn’t exist anymore so if the leather on your seat covers begins to crack you’ll need to take it to a expensive expert to get the nostalgic look you’re aiming for. So keep the inside of your car clean, out of direct sunlight, and moisturize leather and plastic coverings.
One final piece of advice is this; be gentle with things likes knobs, buttons, and locks. These simple touches add a specific feel to your vehicle, and without them they lose a little of that authenticity. If it’s hard trying to find the right hose for your car, it’s probably impossible to find the right radio knob. Take good care of your dated car and be sure to keep her classy.