How do you winter store the car? | FerrariChat

How do you winter store the car?

Discussion in 'Ferrari Discussion (not model specific)' started by Coyote, Jan 6, 2004.

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  1. Coyote

    Coyote Rookie

    Nov 10, 2003
    Toronto, Canada
    This subject has probably been done to death but here goes; I have a 360-F1 which I bought new last summer. I live in Toronto and have to store it in the winter. I have actually not been using it since mid-September when I had to do an extended overseas trip. From that time it has been sitting in an unheated garage and I make sure the engine gets started and the car gets "exercised" every week by driving it a few times up and down the little dead end road where the garage is located. I do this because I don't like to let machinery of any kind sit unused for extended periods of time as I have not had good experiences from this.

    The dealer says you only need to do three things for winter storage:
    (1) Put gas stabiliser in the fuel tank
    (2) Overinflate the tires
    (3) Trickle charge the battery

    Well about 3 weeks into my overseas trip I asked my brother to exercise the car a bit and he told me that when he tried to pull away, the car seemed to be stuck and then suddenly broke free with sufficient engine revs. This seems like the brakes were starting to seize up. (BTW I did not set the parking brake before I left).

    Well now the real winter snow has arrived and the car must stay in the garage until spring. I tried to start it last night but the battery was almost dead so I guess the short exercising runs aren't enough to keep it charged and the cold weather took a lot of the battery's charge.

    In any case the main question is, is starting the engine every week a good or bad thing? I usually let it run until water temp is almost to normal. The oil temp gauge barely budges. The next question is, should I continue to move the car every week, if only a few feet, just to keep the brakes from seizing and to keep as many mechanical parts as possible from sitting still the whole winter.

    I have already added the fuel stabiliser. I am going to overinflate the tires and trickle charge the battery all winter.

    BTW since returning from my trip overseas I noticed that now whenever I operate the driver side window, there is a ticking sound from within the door indicating that something has happened during the time that the window was left idle for 6 weeks. This gives me more incentive to "keep things moving" on a regular basis.

    Any comments, opinions or directives are appreciated. Thanks guys.
  2. rob lay

    rob lay Administrator
    Staff Member Admin Miami 2018 Owner

    Dec 1, 2000
    Southlake, TX
    Full Name:
    Rob Lay
    what's winter? I faintly remember something like that when going to college in Boston.
  3. Jerrari

    Jerrari F1 Veteran

    Jul 24, 2001
    Full Name:
    Jerry Wiersma
    I have always heard that starting the car without driving it is worse than if you had not started it at all. Main reason being that the exhaust builds up condensation inside of it which cannot be burned off without an actual drive of 10 minutes or so. I never start my 308 during winter, but mine is also kept in heated storage.
  4. Ken

    Ken F1 World Champ

    Oct 19, 2001
    Arlington Heights IL
    Full Name:
    It's a car, not a sugar cube. Drive it year round and clean it accordingly. I drive my Europa year round and it's a hell of a lot more fragile than any Ferrari.

  5. bear575

    bear575 Rookie

    Nov 10, 2003
    Being an F-1 car, I would not leave that car in gear while left in storage for an extended period of time. Sounds more like a clutch/flywheel issue with your car. I would leave the car on a trickle charger a, this eliminates any need to start the car. Too many short runs like that arr not good for that car. If your not going to drive it, leave it sit.
  6. jbrosseau

    jbrosseau Karting

    Nov 26, 2003
    Full Name:
    joe brosseau
    winter??? error! error! does not compute! seriously though i will drive the 308 on a 30 degree day as long as the roads are dry and bare. other than that if the car is garaged for a month+ i will start it every weekend and let it warm up. and i will jack up each corner of the car and spin the tires a little to keep from getting flat spots. other than that it is on a trickle charger.
  7. benedict

    benedict Formula Junior

    Nov 6, 2003
    Full Name:
    Wil Degroot, an F-chat member wrote a great article on car storage. Search for his posts and you'll come across a link to it.

  8. Hubert888

    Hubert888 F1 Veteran

    May 14, 2003
    Manhattan & LA
    Full Name:
    what is a good trickle charger to get and how much are they? do they work as in the same way as battery tenders?
  9. 95spiderman

    95spiderman F1 World Champ
    Silver Subscribed

    Nov 1, 2003
    drive mine all winter as long as no wet salt on roads
  10. Eilig

    Eilig F1 Rookie
    Rossa Subscribed

    Aug 31, 2001
    Full Name:
    Here's a web site I've used as a bit of an information resource on this topic. Excellent technical material, and I've used their car care products sucessfully for years. If I'm not mistaken, they provide several winterizing products to Griot's Garage under private label:
  11. Mitch Alsup

    Mitch Alsup F1 Veteran

    Nov 4, 2003
    If you start a car (especially in wintertime) you need to let the car run long enough that every engine related part is up to full operating temperature. This will take around 1/6-1/4 a tank of gas. But even with all this, unless you get out and use some revs, the battery will not be brought back up to a full state of charge.

    So, assuming you don't want to take those few good days and drive in the wintertime; you should just add gas stabilizer, remove battery and place inside (non-freezing) with the battery tender and then leave the car sitting for the duration.
  12. Steve275

    Steve275 Formula Junior

    Jun 20, 2003
    Full Name:
  13. cavallo_nero

    cavallo_nero Formula 3

    Nov 3, 2003
    Full Name:
    Giovanni Pasquale
    A good exercise for the timing belts is to just turn the engine over every few weeks without the engine firing up. this enables the timing belts to NOT deform as bumping the engine over puts the timing belt in a different orientation over the timing sprockets/gears.
    also, change the motor oil before storing it as impurities in old oil will deteriorate seals/gaskets.
  14. Coyote

    Coyote Rookie

    Nov 10, 2003
    Toronto, Canada
    Many Thanks to everyone for their replies - some very useful information here.

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