Advice for mothballing a car

bonebloodyidleMarch 27, 2009

Late last year my wife had a stroke and her driving licence was temporarily revoked. I kept her car on the road as it was handy to have another set of wheels available, meaning I could have mine fixed or serviced at the sort of cheap shop that dooesn't do courtesy cars and just use hers instead. But now the tax and insurance on her car have expired and although she has her driving licence back it will be a long time before she can go back to work, and until such time it is not worth taxing and insuring her car and due to the economic downturn I will get next to nothing if I sold it. So I hope to keep it in a corner of the garden until she needs it again. Any suggestions as to what precautions I can take? My main concerns are the engine, clutch and brakes seizing due to lack of use. I live in a very moist, humid environment.

The car in question is a 2000 Daewoo Lanos 1.4S

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Chemocurl zn5b/6a Indiana

Where are you located, Approximately how long do you expect it to maybe sit idle?

In my rural Indiana area, my main concern would be mice getting into it and doing damage both to the interior and under the hood.

Just how expensive might it be to keep plates and minimum insurance on it while it is not needed, so you could drive it every so often? I've found parking something 'for a while' is usually not a very good least not for me here.

Something parked near the garden here for a length of time also might get snakes in it, which would be going after the mice.


    Bookmark   March 28, 2009 at 8:18AM
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There's not much you can do to slow down deterioration when a car just sits. Stabil gas treatment helps deter fuel problems but brakes go bad fast when a car isn't being driven to warm the brake parts and dry out moisture. Older cars you could put a stick between the clutch pedal and the seat to keep the clutch from rusting up and sticking but with hydraulic clutches, it would just be a matter of time before a tiny bit of leakage would put the clutch parts touching again. My suggestion would be to sell it for whatever you could get or maybe get a warm fuzzy feeling by giving it to someone you know who is in a tight spot due to the economic downturn and would really benefit from your generosity.

    Bookmark   March 28, 2009 at 6:30PM
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i`d say put the cheap insur. and a plate on it and drive it, even in a good economy a 2000 daewoo lanos is only worth about 500 to 600 bucks. or pedal it and hit the auction when she can drive again.

    Bookmark   March 29, 2009 at 1:36AM
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Thanks folks for your helpful suggestions. Due to the unique way in which the Irish health system works I am not in a position to gauge how long it will be until the good lady is able to drive and work again. However my two cats mean there is no problem with mice and St. Patrick banished all the snakes. But you do give me enough justification to get rid of this far eastern vehicle and replace it when she is fit again with a European model. I have noticed that spares for Japanese and Korean cars are far more expensive than the likes of Ford, Opel, VW etc.. Last year I had to replace a breather hose on the Lanos. 90 euros! Just because the air flow sensor was an integral part of the hose, not seperate as it is on a European car.

    Bookmark   March 29, 2009 at 7:38PM
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bonebloodyidle, didnt relize you were outside the u.s., your lanos might b worth more in ireland, but here in the detroit area, they only bring 300 to 500 bucks in good shape at an auction and maybe couple hundred more from a private owner. we have alot of public car auctions here and used cars are dirt cheap.

    Bookmark   March 31, 2009 at 1:35AM
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Here in Ireland a 2000 Lanos with similar mileage (60,000) goes for the equivalent of USD2500. Cars, both new and used, are more expensive in Ireland than other EU member states due to the high rate of tax applied to each registration (both for new cars and grey imports). Now I can sell this tomorrow, bank the cash and then when she's ready to start driving again I can head over to Britain or over the border to Northern Ireland, get a 2002 Focus for 2.5 grand, pay 1500 tax to get Irish plates on it and bag myself a bargain as long as the Euro remains as strong against the Sterling as it has been recently. And as the Focus in question is built in the EU spares are cheaper than those for a Daewoo.

BTW I didn't realise that the Daewoo Lanos was marketed in the US too. Thought you lot had better taste! Only reason I bought it for her was it was cheap at a time when I had little cash.

    Bookmark   March 31, 2009 at 5:58PM
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yep they sold daewoo`s here for a while, until g.m. bought daewoo, cant get a daewoo now, but you can still get them as a chevy,they sell a daewoo as the aveo, and suzuki also sold 2 madels of daewoo, rebranded as suzukis. sounds like cars are costly there, 2500 us here and i could get a cadilac or lincoln a few yrs old with 60 to 90 k on it, at the auction. and if you dont mind a rebuilt wreck, you can really score a deal. my wife`s hard on cars so i always buy rebuilt wrecks for her.

    Bookmark   March 31, 2009 at 6:49PM
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