For some of us, we have been fortunate enough that we have been able to enjoy our classic cars much later in the year than normal. Others were forced to put them to bed quite some time ago. If you are one of the few that has enjoyed the fall and early winter months but are now looking to put the car away for a short period of time, you probably are still going to follow your traditional checklist for winterizing your vehicle. That will include a wash and wax, a fuel stabilizer for the fuel system, changing the oil and all of the other normal stuff.
We are here as a reminder to say…………don’t forget the brake system!!
The other side of the coin is the people that live in areas with weather that allows for driving year round. This is your reminder that something needs to be done each year. Just because you don’t have a winterizing schedule doesn’t mean that the brake system and every other system does not require some form of maintenance.
There are many systems within the vehicle that don’t require any work. Your brake system is not that system. Brakes are an important safety system designed to keep drivers and passengers safe, so it makes sense to take the time winterize and/or do regular yearly maintenance. This process is fast and easy and will pay for itself now and down the road. Just follow these three simple steps:
Change the Brake Fluid—Remember, brake fluid attracts moisture into the system. This can happen when the cap is removed, through the vent in the master cylinder lid, and even through older rubber brake hoses where the pores of the rubber are small enough to allow air in but not yet large enough to let fluid out. There is nothing that can be done to prevent air from entering the system but changing the fluid and putting fresh, dry brake fluid in the system is certainly something that will help over time.
Bleed the Brakes–Once the old brake fluid has been completely flushed out of the system, fill the entire system with a high quality brake fluid such as the Pentosin brake fluid we recommend and bleed the brakes. This will leave a fresh, dry system that should leave you with zero worries about rust creating havoc in your brake system during winter storage.
Don’t Neglect the Parking Brake Assembly–When raising the vehicle up to remove the wheels and tires, many folks set the park brake to aid in the process of jacking the car up instead of using a wheel chock. Once you have raised the car and removed the wheels and tires, reach inside and release the park brake. Leaving the park brake set all winter can lead to hardware fatigue or cause the pads to fuse to the rotor.
Proper maintenance and winterizing with your car not only protects your investment, it minimizes repairs and gives you the best chances of making each and every car show or driving event a reality. Don’t cut corners…remember your brakes. You’ll be glad you did!