There are lots of reasons that you might need to put your car into storage. If you’re going to be away from home, perhaps for travel or business, then it’s much more secure to put your car into storage than to leave it in the drive. Similarly, some classic car enthusiasts prefer to secure their vehicles safely in a storage facility rather than at their homes. Whatever the reason, there are a few things you should consider when looking at facilities.
What type of security do they offer?
Some car storage facilities amount to little more than glorified forecourts. Cars are stored outside with only minimal protection from damage or the environment. Others are much more secure. Facilities like The Vault offer round-the-clock surveillance via CCTV and even have guards to protect your vehicle. It pays to research a facility before you hand your car over and, if possible, have a look around in person.
Security isn’t the end of your concerns, though. Some cars (especially classic vehicles) require special treatment. They might need temperature controlled environments or air purifying systems designed to take moisture out of the atmosphere. These services aren’t offered everywhere you go, so double-check and do the research.
What do you need to do?
Car storage isn’t a matter of dropping your car off and then leaving. There will be some duties that you need to carry out. At the very least you’ll need some kind of insurance. Most facilities offer basic cover against damage sustained at the facility, but many drivers prefer to go further and take out a more comprehensive policy. Car storage facility insurance is varied and largely depends on the type of vehicle you’re using.
Other tasks including topping up/emptying petrol and oil are essential. It’s also a good idea to thoroughly clean your car, inside and out, before you drop it off. Have a quick look for any scratches or damage before you go in and note these down. If your car does have existing damage or blemishes, it’s a good idea to take photos as evidence should a dispute arise. Most facilities will give you a checklist prior to drop off, so read it carefully and be sure to follow the instructions.
What’s access like?
Some people will be content to drop their cars off for months at a time. Others will need to drop in and out or won’t be able to say with complete certainty when they’ll next need the car. That’s where unlimited access comes in. You’ll find that some facilities heavily restrict access. They’ll only allow you to use your vehicle at specific times, sometimes only after an allotted period has elapsed. This can be troublesome if you need more regular access or your schedule is erratic.
Other facilities are much more flexible. They’ll allow you to take your vehicle out whenever you want, night or day. This sometimes comes with an additional cost but can be absolutely essential. Again, research is key prior to making a decision.