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I'm starting to plan for storing my 1990 Convertible for the long, cold Minnesota winter. I have found a car storage facility that is heated. They keep the temperature at 45 degrees (radiant heat). What should I do to prepare the car for storage? I was planning on starting the car about every two weeks, but the storage place does not allow it. Is this a problem, or should I not be starting it anyhow? Any thoughts would be greatly appreciated.

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This is from: <A HREF="http://www.miata.net/faq/faq3.html" TARGET=_blank>http://www.miata.net/faq/faq3.html</A> <P>With the exception of the manual transmission and loaction of fuel inj. relay the same rules apply.<P>How do I prepare my Miata for Winter Storage? <BR>1. Clean all painted surfaces, use touchup paint as needed, and wax the exterior and door jams, under the hood and trunk lid, and wheels. <BR>2. Flush with generous quantities of water: the undercarriage, behind inner front fender liners, inside rocker panels (being sure that all 8 drain slits are unblocked). <BR>3. Use a good rubber/vinyl cleaner-conditioner on all vinyl and on rubber gaskets, seals, and other rubber parts. <BR>4. Change oil and filter; do lube job. (Optional: Remove four spark plugs, squirt oil in cylinders, and turn engine over. This may be unnecessary with modern engine oils and their additives.) <BR>5. Check that engine coolant has 50-50 mixture, or that coolant is good for 35-below temperature. <BR>6. Lubricate door window channels and tracks with silicon (on power windows, keep silicon away from electrical contacts and use white lithium in the metal tracks). <BR>7. Fill gas tank as full as possible. Add a can of dry gas made for use with fuel injection. (Optional: Add fuel stabilizer to gas; some believe this is unnecessary for modern gasoline with its additives.) <BR>8. Stuff rags (steel wool or crumpled foil should foil rag-eating rodents) tightly into tailpipe and intake snorkle under hood in order to keep out rodents. Tape a note to the steering wheel that reminds you to unplug the pipes before trying to start the Miata. <BR>9. Jack up car and store on blocks under the jack points; this takes weight off springs, shocks, and tires. (Alternative: Store car with at least 40 pounds of air in tires, to minimize flat spotting of tires.) <BR>10. Transmission in neutral and parking brake off. (The MCA has recommended that you also depress the clutch pedal by using a stick between base of driver's seat andthe pedal; however, no one has seen a sticking clutch pedal on a Miata and some experts question whether you should follow this step, which would put the linkage under stress.) <BR>11. Battery<BR> 1.Disconnect battery and store it where temperature is above freezing and NOT on a concrete floor. (Be sure to record the radio code, which you will need to re-enter when reconnecting battery.) <BR> 2.An alternative approach, at least with indoor storage, is to leave battery in car and use a trickle charger set at 2 amps, approximately once each month. An even better approach is to use a timer on the charger, set weekly. Best of all is use of an automatic trickle charger which is attached to the battery, plugged in, and then forgotten. <BR> 3. It does NOT work to start the car up weekly or monthly when it is in storage. <BR>12. Store car with convertible top up, to ensure that it is dry and does not mildew. <BR>13. Where mice are a problem, a few mothballs placed in the car will discourage the building of nests. <BR>14. Cover car with a soft breathable cover, to keep away sunlight and to keep dust off Miata. <BR>15. In choosing location for storage, remember that moisture, rodents, and direct sunlight are the enemies, to varying degrees in different parts of the country. <BR>16. Wait in agony for winter to end, then to restart, pull the fuel injector relay (under hood, on fender, N. American passenger side) and crank until you've got good and steady oil pressure -- about 8 psi on the guage. This will take 45 seconds or so. Plug relay back in and away you go.<BR> <BR>Credits and appreciation: <BR>Lester Seal, apex@miata.net<P>Richard Dekker, dekker@freenet.edmonton.ab.ca<P>John Emerson, jemerson@panther.middlebury.edu

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