As winter approaches, some Figaro owners choose to hibernate their cherished Nissan Figaro to protect it from the harsher weather.
We have had a number of you asking for best practices for storage over the winter months, so here at The Figaro Shop we have collated our top tips to ensure your classic car weathers the winter period and is ready for you in Spring.
Here is our comprehensive guide for winter storage of your Nissan Figaro, combining specific Figaro winter care with more general best practice tips:
Begin with a deep clean of your Figaro, both inside and out. This includes removing any dirt, grease, or grime that could cause corrosion or damage during storage. Pay special attention to the areas around the bumpers and chrome trim as trapped debris can cause corrosion and damage paint if left in situ over a long period of time.
After cleaning, apply a high-quality wax to protect the paintwork from moisture and contaminants. This step is crucial in preserving your Figaro’s iconic appearance during its hibernation.
Check for hidden litter – especially anything perishable or edible – which could rot or attract unwanted attention from rodents and other hungry pests. Vacuum the interior thoroughly, and clean all surfaces. Removing debris, spillages and stains is vital to prevent mold or mildew from forming during storage.
Cover with Care
Ideally your Nissan Figaro will be stored inside in a garage or storage unit. In this instance make sure that your bonnet is facing outwards so that it is easier to get to the battery should you need to give it a boost. If you don’t have a garage the use of an outdoor breathable car cover will make all the difference to preserving your Nissan Figaro during the cold winter months. This will protect your Figaro from the elements while preventing moisture build-up, which will lead to rust and costly bodywork repairs.
Moisture is an invisible enemy to your Nissan Figaro – and by the time you’ve discovered the damage excess damp can do, it’s too late. As previously mentioned storing your Figaro in a garage with air flow will help, and so can a dehumidifier. If that is not an option, consider placing silica gel packs, or a container of baking soda, in a footwell to absorb moisture. You can also leave a window slightly open to prevent condensation or a musty smell.
Avoid leaving the handbrake engaged during long-term storage as this may cause your brakes to seize up over time. Instead, leave the gear shift in ‘P’ position. You may feel more comfortable, if there is a slight incline for example, placing wheel chocks in front and behind each tyre to prevent any unexpected and potentially dangerous movement
Disconnect and maintain your battery. If left in the cold for a period of time any car can struggle and the Nissan Figaro is no different. We strongly recommend simply fitting a battery isolator switch on your Figaro. By fitting this switch a simple turn of the dial on to of your battery ensures you are disconnected and able to reconnect and start up with no problems. Such a practical easy solution to this age old problem. If your Figaro is not fitted with a battery isolator switch you can disconnect the main terminals. Using a conditioning, or smart charger is recommended to keep it in good health over the winter months. Nissan Figaros almost always drain the battery when they are not in use, due to ancillary components like the clock.
If weather permits, it’s beneficial to drive your Nissan Figaro occasionally. This keeps the mechanical parts lubricated and in good working order, avoiding issues that arise from long-term inactivity.
Tyre Tread Check
Ensure your tyres have sufficient tread depth, and are inflated. This is particularly important if you plan to take your Figaro out on clear winter days.
Lubricate Key Areas
Lubrication Is Key – lubricate door locks, latches, and hinges to prevent them from freezing and sticking. This can save costly repairs and ensure smooth operation.
Drain Washer Fluid
For longer term storage, It’s advisable to drain the washer fluid to avoid freezing and potential damage to the system. You can do this by unscrewing the reservoir, or popping out the small pump at the bottom of the reservoir. Be gentle though! Both the cap on the reservoir, and the seal on the pump, are plastic. They degrade and become brittle, which causes them to snap or leak.
Check Fluids and Fuel
Ensure all fluids are at the correct level and consider adding a fuel stabiliser if your Figaro will be stored for an extended period. For longer periods, you may consider draining the fuel, and other fluids to prevent corrosion.
Given the susceptibility of the wheel arches and chassis of a Nissan Figaro to rust, a thorough inspection before winter sets in can save a lot of problems, time and expense later on.
When it is time to get back on the road you’ll want to check all your ancillary functions are working correctly:
- Ensure lights, headlights, fog lights, brake lights and indicators are all in working order.
- Let the car warm up gradually.
- Drive cautiously, test the brakes gradually and listen out for anything unusual.
- Take a phone with you and maybe start with a short 20-minute circular route.
- Make a note of anything you feel uncomfortable with and speak to your local garage.
Winter care for your Nissan Figaro is about blending meticulous care with practical steps. This approach not only preserves its classic charm, but also ensures it’s ready for many more adventures for years and years to come. Remember, a little effort now can lead to a hassle-free start to the next driving season.
Stay warm and dream of those sunny days ahead with your cherished Nissan Figaro!