posted ago by nankingRoastie ago by nankingRoastie +15 / -0

Im just curious because it seems like a car left alone deteriorates so quickly . If you drive one every day it doesnt deteriorate at the same rate. That doesnt make sense, because use should be damaging, but its less damaging than lettng it sit in the same spot through wind and rain and sun.

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YesTradGirl 6 points ago +6 / -0

The engine and the fluids need to be “exercised” in order for damage to not occur. The fuel pump can go bad for just sitting and the brakes can rust more quickly because they don’t heat up.

Gotrek 4 points ago +4 / -0

We fill engines and transmissions with A mix of Diesel and ATF Right to the brim on any car we plan on storing for a loooong time. Then when it's ready for use again we drain and flush them and they are the same as when we stored them. The car itself goes in a dry (but not too dry) well ventilated space. And off it's tires (blocks)

Storing in a driveway or humid garage will seize everything/rust everything.

HuggableBear 4 points ago +4 / -0

Things that are designed to move and have fluids move through them will rust up and dry out when they don't.

The question you're asking is akin to "Why do my eyes start to hurt when I don't blink them? Shouldn't that wear from my eyelids be more damaging than not blinking?"

DivvyDivet 3 points ago +3 / -0

Because vehicles are complicated machines with lots of parts the answer to this could be pretty long.

Some basics though

Metal will rust or patina. This is due to oxygen. Oxygen likes to react with other elements. Iron turns to rust. Rubber becomes brittle and cracked. So do filters, gaskets and seals. Paint fades. Oil thickens. The ability for oxygen to react with almost anything means that your car is constantly under pressure to chemically react with the atmosphere.

Outside of oxygen the fluids in your car will all sink to the lowest point they can. This means lubricated parts will be dry in the higher areas. This can cause major problems when you start the vehicle and dry parts scrape against other dry parts. Also the seals and components that are normally covered in oil will be exposed to oxygen and they will greatly shorten the lifespan.

Gasoline evaporates quickly and sediments sink to the bottom of your tank. This can clog filters and cause engine knock If the ability for the gas to combust is altered from sitting.

Animals get into the car. This will range from bugs to rodents and possible snakes. Animals chew on wires and defecate in places that can ruin components. The main reason they come in is warmth and shelter. A sitting car makes a nice home for them.

Batteries are energy stored via a chemical reaction. Car batteries are wet acid batteries. Without a current the acid will start to corrode the metals in the battery eventually making the battery worthless. That acid will leak out and probably corrode other components it drops onto.

There are probably a ton of other things that could be listed. The TL:DR here is that cars are designed to be driven. When they aren't being driven a lot of the components suffer from not having the oils that protect them.

crash7863 2 points ago +2 / -0

-When oil sits too long it becomes sludge. When gas sits too long, it becomes basically water. So, draining fluids would be ideal.

-I know of a guy that stores his old corvette in a bubble to prevent any changes in atmosphere. No dust gets on it, no humidity.

-If the car is sitting in a drive way, it's going to deteriorate. Rain + sun exposure. Put it under a carport and that will change.