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Discover how to keep rodents out of your classic car this winter

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So, you have decided that winter is not the ideal time of the year to drive your classic car. Many classic car experts offer advice and tips on how best to store classic cars over the cold, damp months. These include releasing the handbrake, removing the tyres to avoid flat spots, disconnecting the battery, thoroughly washing and drying, slackening auxiliary drive belts, protecting with a quality rust prevention cover etc. But, what is often not mentioned is the prospect of rodents taking up residency in your classic car.

How can you stop rodents damaging your engine compartment?

Small creatures like mice look for a cosy place to nestle down over winter and the many cavities of an engine compartment offers just the warm shelter they desire. Rodents also like the taste of the biodegradable coating that automotive manufacturers apply to protect the wiring. The coating contains soya hence the attraction.

Engine compartment damage caused by rodents making nests and chewing wires is a real issue especially in rural areas of the UK. The type of damage includes the chewing of spark plug wires, coolant hoses, wiper fluid hoses, rubber CV axle boots, rubber steering rack bellows, wiring insulation and even sound deadening material. If the water coolant hose is chewed it can cause a car to overheat quickly, blow a head gasket or crack a cylinder head. 

Open access from underneath the engine mount can make it all too easy for rodents to enter a car. If you are going to store your classic car away this winter, we have a non-harmful solution, DINITROL 81. This is a transparent metal protection coating that can be applied throughout the engine compartment by spraying it on. Once the coating has been applied it forms a smear-free film.

Rodents including mice, rats and squirrels don’t like the taste of the DINITROL 81 waxy hydro-carbon based coating. The moisture repellent solution is not harmful to them and also provides an anti-rust protection coating.

A further tip to keeping small creatures out is to make sure all the doors and windows are sealed tightly. You can also stuff steel wool inside the exhaust and intake pipe - but don't stuff it in too far! Once that’s done, put a quality car rust protection cover over.

Rust proofing your classic car will keep it free of corrosion while in storage. Rejel supply DINITROL rust proofing kits for Classic Cars in aerosol or in litres (who will need access to an air supply or compressor). Classic car rust proofing kits contain DINITROL 4941 underbody chassis coating, DINITROL 3125 HS cavity wax and DINITROL RC900 which converts rust on substrates into a stable organic iron complex.

Storing your classic car over the winter takes a lot more than just parking it until the warmer weather returns. keeping rodents out and corrosion from eating at bare metal are two important steps to protecting your prize possession.