Can You Cover Your Car On The Street In NYC? (Explained)

Covering your car in the streets of NYC is not illegal, but due to certain regulations, the police might need to take a look at the vehicle. This is to prevent it from being towed.

Another reason the police might take a look at the car is to make sure that it has not been stolen or is hiding something illegal.

The cops might even go to the extent of uncovering the license plate to confirm. In general, it is okay to cover your car on the streets in NYC. But you have to be sure that you are not breaking any rules.

Soho buildings facade in Manhattan New York City NYC USA

How Long Can a Car Be Parked and Covered on the Street In NYC?

According to state rules in New York City, a car can be parked on the streets for approximately three days, with or without a cover. This is to make sure that there are no theft cases or that it is being towed.

Many theft incidents are usually carried out on cars, especially those that have been covered. So, one must always be on high alert when it comes to safeguarding their vehicle.

If one wants to park a car on a particular street, they have to abide by the rules. If a car is packed for more than three days, it can be towed.

A Brief Overview of New York City Street Parking

Before you begin parking on the street in NYC, you must be fully aware of the rules that come with the parking slot.

So that you are not caught up in a situation whereby the money you spend on fines is more than that of paying for the slot. This also leads to time wastage.

To be cautious, you still have to watch where you park your car. It might be a slot that has been reserved for a person with special needs, or someone might have paid for that slot, considering NYC is a city that earns a lot of income and proceeds from tickets.

NYC is very serious when it comes to issues based on parking rules.

General Parking Rules in NYC

When it comes to parking in NYC, it is taken very seriously, and the cops don’t play around. Motorbikes, cars, and any type of vehicle can be towed at any time and place if there is any sign of breaking the rules.

But to be on the safe side, they have traffic signs placed everywhere, so you have to make sure that you understand them to avoid paying a lot of money you had not budgeted for.

New York City authorities are very dedicated when it comes to regulating street parking. This is because even the NYPD has plenty of tow trucks.

The primary function of these tow trucks is to tow away cars of the owners who are breaking the rules. It may be hard for visitors at first, but you can ask around, and for sure, you will be directed the right way instead of ending up paying fines.

How to Make Sure Your Car is Not Towed When Parked and Covered on NYC Street?

Ensure that your license is up to date, which comes with the registration sticker. Both must be up to date to avoid being fined.

Another thing that can get you penalized is that if your car is in bad condition, unworthy road vehicles are usually one of the major causes of road accidents and must be towed if found on the street.

To avoid being handed a hefty fine, you must be cautious with the signs that come with the parking lot. In cases of temporary signs, especially those that come with construction sites, they have different parking regulations.

You have to be in a sober state. Fire hydrants are also another major cause of getting towed. You have to be approximately 5 meters away from the fire hydrant.

Parked cars blocking the fire hydrant are usually towed away and freeing your car will cost you time and money. You have to be alert when it comes to side parking rules.

This is mainly because of the New York City parking rule that enforces clearing packed cars to accommodate street cleaning activities.

During special occasions, the NYPD is lenient, and you don’t have to pay for the ticket for the parking slot.

Most of these special occasions are like Christmas Eve and other holidays. For you to be aware of the different holidays, check your calendar.

Reasons Why You Should Cover Your Car on NYC Streets?

Most people avoid covering their cars mainly because they think their vehicles could rust. If used the wrong way, then, of course, your car will rust.

You must be aware that if you cover your vehicle when it is already wet, it will automatically lead to rusting. You must find the correct size and a quality car cover to avoid rust.

There are many reasons why you should cover your car. The car cover shields or acts as a defense for minor accidents.

A cover also acts as a barrier to environmental elements. For instance, some animals, such as birds, release their droppings on the car, resulting in the owner having to wash the car.

Another environmental hazard is trees. Of course, for the car not to overheat, you have to park it under shade. But when a strong wind blows, weak branches from the tree fall off or even some fruits.

And, therefore, results in dents on the car. But via the help of the cover, it cushions the branches falling off, and the impact is very minimal.

The 3rd reason you have to cover your car is for security purposes. Thieves love getting things the easy way, by adding a cover, then it would for sure waste a lot of time when a burglar is trying to burst into your car.

Not only can things not be stolen in the vehicle, but the car itself won’t be stolen, especially if your cover is upgraded and has a lock.

In such a situation, the thief will start by unlocking the cover lock, which will use up a lot of time, making it more challenging.

The 4th reason you should cover your car is to protect it from rain and other harsh weather conditions. A little downpour cannot harm the car in any way, but cars often have scratches that can lead to rust caused by water and oxygen.

And once that begins, the car slowly starts to get damaged from the inside. UV radiation scorches up the vehicle’s paint, and the color begins to fade. But to avoid such a scenario, you should cover your car either on the street or outside the parking lot.

Finally, there are a few good reasons for having the perfect covers. They cover every angle of the car; hence, they are not buggy or too small.

If it is too big, then it does come with many disadvantages like it will scrub on your car, and the result is that some of the paint will start fading off.

Things to Consider When Selecting a Cover

If you don’t use your car very often, you should use durable and lasting covers. Another thing is whereby you got to consider the climate of the area your parking spot is located.

Cars parked in harsh weather conditions without a cover are prone to have a few issues like color fading or corrosion.

The other factor depends on how many times the car cover will be used. If your car is used daily, you should invest in a light cover to remove it easily.

It is also advised to wipe off the dust from your car before putting it on the cover to preserve the car’s paint and prevent stains from forming on the vehicle.

The cover should also not allow water to pass through. This is because when water gets into contact with oxygen, some parts of the car will begin to rust.

Pro Tips to Follow When Covering a Parked Car on NYC Streets

• Make sure that both the license plate and registration stickers are visible.

This makes it easy when the NYPD is on patrol to inspect your car easily.

• Ensuring that cover protects every part of the car.

From mirror to mirror, this is for safety purposes. In most car covers, the rims are usually left exposed, which is terrible, especially if you live in a street with poor security.

• Always inspect the car even if you are not going anywhere.

Incidents happen, and you have to keep a keen eye on your vehicle at all times time. You never know when thieves might strike. New York City isn’t the safest city in the US and every year there are plenty of reports about car break-ins.

• Investing in a durable cover is crucial.

Durable covers tend to last long and act as protective shields under any weather conditions.

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