Whether you own a classic Mercedez Benz, a souped-up Shelby Mustang, or a collection of restored muscle cars, owning even one of these historic and unique vehicles can often be one of the most fulfilling experiences for all classic car enthusiasts. Of course, if you have even one of these classics in your collection, then it also means that you must invest time and effort to maintain it.
Here are some practical tips to help you protect your classic car from damage or additional wear and tear. By working through these tips, you can keep enjoying the exhilaration you get from owning — and, especially driving — a classic vehicle.
Research the history of your marque and model
Yes! Owning a classic vehicle can be a rush, but owning one is only the tip of the iceberg. Knowing everything you can find about your specific marque and model can verify many things about your classic vehicle. Using this information, you can confirm the originality of the parts and check if all these parts were adequately installed, from the engine components to gauges and bumper guards. You can start by looking into catalogs, vintage magazines, books, and other memorabilia that mention your car. The good news is that you can also find plenty of information about classics on the internet.
Stick to regular tune-ups and service schedule
On top of frequent oil changes, you must also schedule regular tune-ups for your classic vehicle. Of course, because you own such a unique car, you must look for a reliable mechanic — or a service center with one — whose specialties cover the marque and model of your classic car. One of the best recommendations is to have your vehicle serviced at least once a year. However, it’s still best to double-check the specific maintenance schedule detailed in your car’s user manual.
Carry out preventive maintenance
Besides ensuring you stick to your classic car’s service schedule, you must also carry out preventive maintenance. Maintaining classic vehicles is very different from maintaining a modern-day car. You can’t just leave the work to your mechanic and keep hoping for the best. To ensure your vehicle lasts as long as it can, it’s essential to repair or replace the parts even before they fail. By doing this, you’re also preventing your car from a breakdown, which could create a domino effect and lead to other failures. You don’t want to end up dealing with irreparable engine damage. So, it’s much more cost-effective to prevent potential issues before they occur.
Keep all important documents
Your car’s original user manuals and historical photos are essential documents to keep safe. You must also file a copy of your car’s repair history for reference purposes. Not only will this make you appreciate your investment even more, but it might also increase the value of your classic vehicle. Of course, if you purchased a second-hand classic car from someone who no longer has the owner’s manual, you can still try to look for a copy online, as long as you know your car’s marque and model. Try to read through this manual to find out everything you can about the vehicle’s components so you can properly use them.
Prepare for long-term storage
A lot of elements could eventually add to the wear and tear of your classic vehicle. Sometimes, you may not have a choice but to store your car for more extended periods. Before storing your vehicle for extended periods, you must drain or even treat the fuel, then take preventive steps against rodent infestations. You must also inspect your garage to see if there’s a source of moisture that could lead to corrosion or sunlight that can cause the paintwork to fade. On the other hand, you must maintain the insulation, temperature, and humidity to prevent rust from forming.
Invest in proper insurance for classic cars
Classic cars will also need insurance. You can shop around for the best, however you can still get good inexpensive car insurance. On top of your car being a unique vehicle with special maintenance needs, you’ll also need to find insurance that won’t limit the mileage of your vehicle while allowing you to choose a qualified repair shop. If your car gets damaged, you’ll want an insurance company that can handle repairing the parts to their original specifications using the highest possible quality. By purchasing good inexpensive car insurance, you can easily protect your investment.
Drive your classic and enjoy the experience
Take your car for a ride at least every few weeks and enjoy that exhilarating feeling you get from driving a classic vehicle. By doing so, you can maintain your car’s proper lubrication and quickly identify if there are any immediate maintenance needs. Even if you aim to keep the mileage low, driving your vehicle a few dozen miles each month won’t diminish your car’s overall value.
Yes, it’s always vital to maintain your classic car’s brand-new look, but it’s also essential to make the most out of owning a vintage. By taking the proper steps to protect your vehicle, you’ll be able to maintain its sleek appeal and almost perfect condition for many years to come.