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I expect the cat will begin hibernation in about a month, and was wondering how others prep theirs for the winter.
I don't have a heated, humidity controlled garage, and the door will be opened regularly.
One item I've been looking at are the car bags that you drive on put in some desiccant, and then zip up to keep out moisture, rodents etc. Do they work? If so, has anyone found a source for these in Canada? Maybe I'm wrong, but it sure sounds like they're little more than a tarp with a zipper.

There are plenty of sites out there with basic steps to store a car (e.g., and it's usually the same - wax, change oil, check coolant, remove battery, raise it on jacks, fill the tank, stabilize the fuel, deter rodents - and some add the extra 'wrap the car' bit.

I've also been advised to put down a sheet of plastic under the car - a pool cover or roll out some vapor barrier to keep moisture from rising up under and into the car. I'd imagine the car bag mentioned above would effectively provide this protection - though I'd be tempted to do both.
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Hi Russ,

Although my garage is heated, my circumstances are very similar to yours. My car lives next to a daily driver that comes and goes every day and drops all manner of salty gunk all over the floor. Frowner
Here is what I do:
Fresh oil (cheap stuff) because I change it again in the spring. Don't forget the ZF
Thorough cleaning, everywhere
complete wax
obviously critical - make sure your coolant mix will withstand winter temps.
I do not remove the battery but I attach a battery maintainer (not a trickle charger) that cycles the charge up and down. I have been doing this for years with nary a problem
I do not jack mine off the floor but I do add 10 psi into the tires
Treat all the weather stripping with petroleum jelly or equivalent (tie rod boots too)
You already mentioned full tank and stabilizer (make sure to run the car 5 minutes to fill lines and carb)
I use a top quality car cover (personally, I would not wrap mine in a vapour barrier plastic bag. No way for condensation moisture to escape)
I have never done it, but I do like the idea of putting a barrier down to cover the floor
A lot of car guys say, don't touch, but I fire mine at least once a month, usually more often and let it warm to full temp
I also put it in gear and roll it in and out of the garage a few times. I chalk the tires to get a different spot every time
I tinker and fiddle with mine all winter to help ease the withdrawl symtoms
I,m sure others will add some stuff I missed

Doug M
Originally posted by INZOWHO:
obviously critical - make sure your coolant mix will withstand winter temps.
Doug M

This bears repeating as I have now purchased two US cars neither of which had coolant that would withstand freezing. Make no assumptions and just change it out for a good 50/50 Prestone mix if you don't have a hydrometer or know when your coolant was last changed.

Very good suggestion about the plastic sheet as well since a garage floor can hold a lot of moisture — especially with a slushy car right beside your Pantera. Happy hibernating!

I spray automatic transmission fluid in all the cracks and gaps to keep condensation out. Transmission fluid creeps so it does a good job of coating the metal and won't damage the rubber. I know Will coats the underside of his car with oil for the same reasons. The bags I have seen have a computer fan which circulates air through the inside of the bag which prevents condensation from forming. They had a buick in one the bags at an auction out in the rain and it was dry inside. Well worth the money, keeps the dust off as well.
Richard T.
When I visited Johnny Woods in the UK he had his own version of the 'car bag'. Pretty simple plastic sheeting with a frame he lowered over the car and connected up to a small dehumidifier.

For rodent control consider getting one of the ultrasonic pest repellers you just plug in and leave.
This list is great guys - wasn't sure about those ultrasonic rodent repellers, but know of a few folks who swear by them - probably want to get some now before the pests start making nests.
As for the storage bags, I'm trying to weigh the pros and cons (as I see them)...
1) Inflatable bags - Keep the car at the ambient temperature, let me look at the car (and possibly work on it inside the bag) / However, I would think that any humidity and dust would be blown in by the fan unless it has a decent filter and there is a de-humidifier inside as well.
2) Zip-up car jackets/bags - They're less expensive, and should effectively seal out dust and new moisture, while the desiccant (if there's enough) should take care of any that is sealed up with the car. / However, once the car is zipped up, I wouldn't be able to work on it - it would have to be left sealed up to prevent new moisture from being introduced. As for the plastic touching the car, most of the pictures of these bags show a car-cover on the car before it is enclosed - I assume to give a soft protective layer to the car.

Keep the great advice coming, I'm creating a list to be sure everything I need is on hand.
Russ I did alot research like you about this subject and found that the inflatable bag with a circulating fan was probably the best, I just found I didn't have the room. The fan which is very important circulates the air and keeps any humidity down. The humidity comes from temperature differential and as long as the inside and circulating air is constant temperature you won't have condensation build up. I found most condensation occurs in the spring when the garage is cold and opening the door allows warmer air which is humidity to accumulate and causes everything to sweat.
I keep my heat just above the freezing point during the winter season and I also have one of those redent sonic devices that everyone say don't work, but after three years I have yet to see any trace of them. So something must be doing the job. JMO.. Derrick
I've used the zip up car bag for about seven years now and it works great! The car comes out just as you put it away. A few thing that you need to do if you are going this route. First always put a good cloth car cover on first before zipping up the bag or you will scratch your paint. Make sure you store you car away after there have been a few dry days so that you don't seal in too much moisture for the desicant to absorb. If you want to open it up in the middle of winter, you can do so but do it on a very dry day otherwise all the moisture in the air will be attracted to your car like a magnet. The same thing goes for when you remove it in the spring. You can recharge the desicant by simply baking it in an oven for a couple of hours. I use a few disposable foil baking trays for baking turkeys. When you remove the trays from the oven cover them with foil right away because when it cools to a certain temp it will start absorbing moisture. You can also reuse the desicant year after year.

Finally when you open it up in the spring, don't have an open flame around or be smoking because there will be a lot of gas fumes traped in there too.

I have an uheated garage and live in Michigan where it gets quite cold and I have never had a problem using this method. I would highly recomend it! I am pretty sure California Car Covers sells them now.

Good luck,

Since I don't have space for the inflatable bubble, and Ian reports good results with the zip-bag, I went out and bought one today - came with loads of the desiccant to put in the bag as it is closed up.

Doing my research, I found a variety of the zip-bags in the U.S. for about $150-$250, but the exchange rate, duties and shipping costs motivated me look locally. Found a place in northern Ontario that wanted $399 plus shipping, then happened across a Craigslist ad from a lady that's starting her home-based business in Vaughan (just north of Toronto) and is charging $199 for the identical bag - she got my business.

If anyone in the T.O. area is interested, PM me and I can send you her number - I don't mind supporting and promoting someone who's starting a new business and offering a reasonable (vs. the competition) price - and No, I'm not getting a commission for doing this :-)

Also, I put some of those rodent repellent noise thingies in the garage (so hopefully no mice try to move in as it gets colder) plus some traps just to be sure - Great idea!

Now I just want some warm weather so I can get out and enjoy the car a little more before the oil change, waxing, oil spraying, battery removal ... final shut-down begins.

Thanks All for your input - and in the spring, I'll report on how well the zip-bag worked.

Hopefully I don't have to PhotoShop the car roll on floor
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