If you are leaving the United States and moving to another country for a year, this can be a very exciting time. You do need to make sure you take care of some things before you leave so you can enjoy your time without having to worry. One of these things is your car. Taking care of it properly will ensure it will run well for you when you return. Below are three tips to help you get started.

Renting a Storage Unit Facility

Unless you have someone that can keep an eye on your car and drive it every few days, you should put it in a storage facility. You can find storage facilities that offer indoor storage, much like a car garage. They will also have covered storage where there is a cover over your car but the sides will not be protected. This will be a less expensive option for you. Because you will be gone for an entire year, you should consider indoor storage for your car so it will be completely protected from the elements.

Visit a few storage facilities in your area to look things over. They should have good security, such as a security guard always on premises. They may also have a locked gate that would require you to enter a code to enter the facility.

Getting Your Vehicle Ready

Gas Tank

When a car sits too long with gas in the tank rust can develop from any exposed metal inside the tank. Once the tank becomes rusted, gas will start leaking. Moisture will also accumulate inside the gas tank in any exposed areas and the seals can dry out. To take care of this problem simply fill your tank with gas. When doing this, there is no metal exposed and nowhere for rust and moisture to accumulate.


A car battery self-discharges and the electrical systems in your car constantly draws power from your battery even if your car is not running. Without the battery self-discharging, your radio and clock would both lose their memory and you would have to reset these things each time you turned your car on. The best way to take care of this problem is to connect a maintenance charger to the battery. This will keep a low constant charge so your battery will not die.


All the fluids in your car should be drained, such as motor oil, antifreeze, transmission, and power steering fluids. Look at the manual for your car for instructions on how to properly drain these fluids. When you return, replace these fluids before you even turn the car on.

If you have questions about your car, talk with a mechanic. They can give you many more tips on putting it in a storage facility for a long period. The facility owner may also be able to help you as they have likely had a lot of customers put their car in storage for long periods. Look into businesses like Sentry Mini-Storage Inc to learn more about your storage options.