If you have a garage to park your car in, and also use this place to store many seasonal items, it is very likely there isn’t much space left to park your car when the temperatures get cold. So how can any family that takes care of its possessions, best protect its second major investment, their car? Here are some tips that will help you protect it from mishaps waiting to happen.
Park your car safely
One challenge that homeowners with crowded garages have is to successfully park their cars so that their doors can be opened safely.
If you don’t want to spend a lot of money, use a piece of string to hang a tennis ball indirectly connected to your garage door. When the door opens, the ball drops to a precise place so that when it touches your windshield you know you are in the correct spot. Another option is to spend a little more and buy rigid PVC parking mats with two raised sections – once you drive over the first bump, you know it’s time to stop.
Finally, for you, tech-types, there are laser pointers. A laser light is placed on the ceiling that directs a beam downward. When it hits a precise place on the dashboard, you know you are at the perfect place to stop the car.
Protect car doors
Once your car is properly parked in the garage, the next step is to be careful not to dent the car doors. If your car is parked near a wall, a low-cost method is to attach foam pool noodles along the wall in appropriate locations.
You can use a similar method if you have two cars parked close together. A foam noodle can be attached to a wooden post that you keep in place with a solid base or screwed to the concrete floor.
Properly secure tools to the walls and don’t overload shelves
This may see obvious, but leaning a rake against a wall that can be knocked off by accident can cause inadvertent damage to your car. There are many ways to safely hang or place various objects along walls. Do a little research online and you find lots of suggestions and interesting pictures.
Another point: don’t overload shelves attached to the walls. Various vibrations, like those coming from a washing machine, could cause something like a can of paint to end up on your car.
It’s only natural that small rodents look for a warm place to pass the winter each year. If your garage is insulated and heated but the weatherstripping at the bottom of the garage door is torn, broken or not doing its job, it is very likely that a small mouse or mole will slip in. Did you know that a field mouse can squeeze through a hole the size of a nickel? Check carefully that the U-shaped bottom weatherseal isn’t broken and that it firmly presses on the threshold of the door. Also verify that these rodents don’t try to get in through the lowest part of the exterior frame weatherstripping.
If your garage non-insulated and located behind your house, can you imagine another place where these little pests can find warmth? Believe it or not, near the motor of your car. As you might suspect, they can do considerable damage to the wiring of your car. Luckily, there is a cheap solution – mothballs. Rodents can’t stand the strong odor and will stay away from your garage.
Another danger to your car to watch out for is the salt spread on our roads in the winter to make them drivable. The corrosive power of salt is well known. A good way to eliminate this source of corrosion, especially in the fenders, is to regularly wash your car in a car wash where you can direct the wand controlling the water under pressure. Just avoid washing your car when the temperature gets very cold (50F / -150C) unless you can park your car in a warmer garage not long after being washed.
Some final words
A good way to be sure your garage never becomes overly cluttered is to clean it up twice a year. Be sure you aren’t keeping an object “just in case” you may need it. Give away unnecessary items to charity. These organizations are often happy to pick them up at your home.
We can also prepare a customized quotation and email it to you. If need be, we will happily visit you at home to explain the full range of garage doors available on the market. We will then advise you on the best choice for your circumstances. If you need ideas and inspiration for a new garage door, use our Design Centre or look through our image gallery.