Vehicle storage

Vehicle storage  - Maintenance and Specifications - Lincoln MKZ Owners Manual - Lincoln MKZ

If you plan on storing your vehicle for an extended period of time (30 days or more), refer to the following maintenance recommendations to ensure your vehicle stays in good operating condition.

All motor vehicles and their components were engineered and tested for reliable, regular driving. Long term storage under various conditions may lead to component degradation or failure unless specific precautions are taken to preserve the components.


Store all vehicles in a dry, ventilated place.

Protect from sunlight, if possible.

If vehicles are stored outside, they require regular maintenance to protect against rust and damage.


Wash vehicle thoroughly to remove dirt, grease, oil, tar or mud from exterior surfaces, rear-wheel housing and underside of front fenders.

See the Cleaning chapter for more information.

Periodically wash vehicles stored in exposed locations.

Touch-up raw or primed metal to prevent rust.

Cover chrome and stainless steel parts with a thick coat of auto wax to prevent discoloration. Re-wax as necessary when the vehicle is washed. See the Cleaning chapter for more information.

Lubricate all hood, door and trunk lid hinges, and latches with a light grade oil. See the Cleaning chapter for more information.

Cover interior trim to prevent fading.

Keep all rubber parts free from oil and solvents.


The engine oil and filter should be changed prior to storage, as used engine oil contain contaminates that may cause engine damage.

Start the engine every 15 days. Run at fast idle until it reaches normal operating temperature.

With your foot on the brake, shift through all the gears while the engine is running.

Fuel system

Fill the fuel tank with high-quality fuel until the first automatic shutoff of the fuel pump nozzle.

Note: During extended periods of vehicle storage (30 days or more), fuel may deteriorate due to oxidation. Add a quality gas stabilizer product to the vehicle fuel system whenever actual or expected storage periods exceed 30 days. Follow the instructions on the additive label.
The vehicle should then be operated at idle speed to circulate the additive throughout the fuel system.

Cooling system

Protect against freezing temperatures.

When removing vehicle from storage, check coolant fluid level.

Confirm there are no cooling system leaks, and fluid is at the recommended level.


Check and recharge as necessary. Keep connections clean.

If storing your vehicle for more than 30 days without recharging the battery, it may be advisable to disconnect the battery cables to ensure battery charge is maintained for quick starting.

Note: If battery cables are disconnected, it will be necessary to reset memory features.


Make sure brakes and parking brake are fully released.


Maintain recommended air pressure.


Make sure all linkages, cables, levers and pins under vehicle are covered with grease to prevent rust.

Move vehicles at least 25 feet (8 m) every 15 days to lubricate working parts and prevent corrosion.

Removing vehicle from storage

When your vehicle is ready to come out of storage, do the following:

Wash your vehicle to remove any dirt or grease film build-up on window surfaces.

Check windshield wipers for any deterioration.

Check under the hood for any foreign material that may have collected during storage (mice/squirrel nests).

Check the exhaust for any foreign material that may have collected during storage.

Check tire pressures and set tire inflation per the Tire Label.

Check brake pedal operation. Drive the vehicle 15 ft (4.5 meters) back and forth to remove rust build-up.

Check fluid levels (including coolant, oil and gas) to make sure there are no leaks, and fluids are at recommended levels.

If the battery was removed, clean the battery cable ends and inspect.

Contact your authorized dealer if you have any concerns or issues.

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