Covid procedures for maintenance and vehicle well being

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North of Toronto
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2019 CX-9 Sig
Odd title I know, but a bit ticked so didn't bother to overthink it.

First, more of a reminder...if anyone made the mistake of thinking the time schedule for oil changes was a year in Canada, it's 6 months. Very annoyed as I looked into this in detail a while back, but I obviously misread the poorly laid out online service schedule. My bad. More a poor User Interface than layout I guess, either way I'm over on time (and obviously way under km) and I usually am very meticulous with that stuff. Ticked at myself.

But more of what I'm looking for feedback on, the car I need to use to take the CX9 to dealer is dead. A 2017 CRV, second time in Covid its died. Battery I assume, CAA coming shortly.

How often do people run cars that aren't being used? I was doing weekly, was I too long on timing that?
 
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North of Toronto
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2019 CX-9 Sig
How old is the battery? And I think cold weather can affect the state of the battery, too.

2017 CRV, original battery. Guy connected the doohicky and said it's fine. He actually said run it for half hour even if in garage. Driving not needed.

I was doing 15 min runs, at most.
 
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‘17 CX9 & ‘19 3 GT
2017 CRV, original battery. Guy connected the doohicky and said it's fine. He actually said run it for half hour even if in garage. Driving not needed.

I was doing 15 min runs, at most.
Happened to my CX-9 last month...sitting in garage for a while driven only once a week on short trips and with extreme cold weather we’ve had the battery died. Had to plug my battery booster/charger for 20mins to get car started! Once I got to work, left the charger plugged in to charge battery in full after 6hrs and all good now as we use the CX-9 daily even on short trips. The extreme cold, occasional use and short trips are what gets your battery to drain and eventually die as not enough time to run engine for alternator to recharge the battery. I suggest investing in a cheap battery booster/charger ($50-75) I’ve had mine for over 10yrs - a very useful, cheap and worthy investment!
 

sm1ke

Work In Progress..
Moderator
Contributor
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Canada
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'18 CX-9 Signature
Tekbis nailed it I think. I read somewhere that 20 mins is long enough for the alternator to charge the battery, but I can't find the source, so take that for what it's worth.

My CX-9 is a 2018 - just turned 3 years old last month, and I think it already needs a new battery despite driving it for at least an hour every day. Its probably because I accidentally let the battery run down a few times due to forgetting to turn my dashcam off when letting the car sit for long periods of time (vacations). Need to buy a battery tester just to be sure.

If I was working from home, I think I'd just start the car once every couple of weeks and let it run for 20-30 mins. Plug the block heater in about 2 hours before starting if the temps get colder than -20c.
 

singlemalt_18

My Way IS the Highway
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18Sig9/07GT7AWD
I was doing 15 min runs, at most.
Short runs like this, especially when combined with infrequent use in cold weather, will make any battery weakness more of an issue. Its kind of a perfect storm, no pun intended for those in Texas.
 
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2019 Mazda CX-9 Signature, Machine Grey Metallic
Due to an old Snapper riding lawn mower that I bought that had a dodgy battery, I bought this Battery charger from Costco when it went on sale. The amount of times I've used it between my 3 vehicles and my riding lawn mower (which has a new battery now) has made it worth every penny.
 
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2010 CX-9 GT
Odd title I know, but a bit ticked so didn't bother to overthink it.

First, more of a reminder...if anyone made the mistake of thinking the time schedule for oil changes was a year in Canada, it's 6 months. Very annoyed as I looked into this in detail a while back, but I obviously misread the poorly laid out online service schedule. My bad. More a poor User Interface than layout I guess, either way I'm over on time (and obviously way under km) and I usually am very meticulous with that stuff. Ticked at myself.

But more of what I'm looking for feedback on, the car I need to use to take the CX9 to dealer is dead. A 2017 CRV, second time in Covid its died. Battery I assume, CAA coming shortly.

How often do people run cars that aren't being used? I was doing weekly, was I too long on timing that?

Lead acid car batteries are really meant for frequent short high current usages, like starting the car several times a day. They also really don't react well to their state of charge dropping much at all, which is why most cars constantly recharge the battery the entire time the engine is running. Sitting for a week is kind of the worst of both worlds for a car battery - a low current constant load which slowly depletes the charge. This damages the electrodes.

A battery tender is the correct solution as others have said.
 
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Ottawa, Ontario
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17 Mazda 6 GT
Dying batteries in cold weather seems to be an unpredictable occurrence, as has been my experience.
My 2017 6 is not driven much, or far. Maybe once a week, and so far the battery has been fine, despite the cold weather and short trips.
My old Pathfinder on the other hand, is dead after about five days of sitting, no matter what.
I've replaced the battery many times, and the current one is only 3 years old.
I have to start and run it every couple of days, or else I'm stuck.
I really hate winter now.
 
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North of Toronto
:
2019 CX-9 Sig
Ok, battery booster it is. Thanks all for the tip.

I'll still try to do some runs, to be honest it's good to just get out of the house for anything these days.

A Sunday drive is safe, at least. But I'll also start it up occasionally, put some gas in tonight as I was just keeping a small amount in there previously. How sad would it be if CAA had to come to give me gas just for trying to solve the battery problem.

Unless I find some neighborhood kid to drive my car every few days. Maybe post vaccine.
 
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‘17 CX9 & ‘19 3 GT
Ok, battery booster it is. Thanks all for the tip.

I'll still try to do some runs, to be honest it's good to just get out of the house for anything these days.

A Sunday drive is safe, at least. But I'll also start it up occasionally, put some gas in tonight as I was just keeping a small amount in there previously. How sad would it be if CAA had to come to give me gas just for trying to solve the battery problem.

Unless I find some neighborhood kid to drive my car every few days. Maybe post vaccine.
Esp during winter try to top up the gas tank and maintain at least half to full tank to avoid condensation. Leaving it at or below quarter of a tank all the time while not being driven much could spell trouble...
 
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North of Toronto
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2019 CX-9 Sig
Esp during winter try to top up the gas tank and maintain at least half to full tank to avoid condensation. Leaving it at or below quarter of a tank all the time while not being driven much could spell trouble...
Oh for the love of............another thing I messed up, despite having done that very well in the past. But i got used to keeping it low in the summer so it was fresh gas, then I continued to keep it low til now. Lovely. (was my idea to keep putting little amounts of fresh gas in the summer a good idea? I'm not sure what time needs to elapse before gas is stale...)

I've not noticed any issues, are there telltale signs for condensation in the gas tank? Rough idle? Don't say engine seize...

And any tips on what to do besides fill it today? It's not like I can get inside and wipe it away I guess.

I don't know about others, but really basic home and car stuff is slipping my mind. You'd think with nothing else to do, I'd be right on top of things.
 
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‘17 CX9 & ‘19 3 GT
Oh for the love of............another thing I messed up, despite having done that very well in the past. But i got used to keeping it low in the summer so it was fresh gas, then I continued to keep it low til now. Lovely. (was my idea to keep putting little amounts of fresh gas in the summer a good idea? I'm not sure what time needs to elapse before gas is stale...)

I've not noticed any issues, are there telltale signs for condensation in the gas tank? Rough idle? Don't say engine seize...

And any tips on what to do besides fill it today? It's not like I can get inside and wipe it away I guess.

I don't know about others, but really basic home and car stuff is slipping my mind. You'd think with nothing else to do, I'd be right on top of things.
Your best bet and defence would be to drive the car around at least once a week for 20-30mins when really cold outside to let the engine reach optimal temp, burn off any condensation that accumulated within the engine and to recharge the battery...all this while maintaining a higher than normal fuel level preferably with premium gas but cost wouldn’t be a huge deal since car is rarely used. There are additives/products for maintaining the freshness or quality of gas like stabilizers (like the ones used in seasonal equipment like lawn mowers or snow blowers) but the fuels sold in gas stations already have additives that’s why recommended to use premium higher octane when in storage for extended periods
 
Keep gas tank full. 'Phase separation' starts to set in after a few months.

I'd recommend a good quality battery maintainer. Here's what I've been using the last couple years: https://no.co/genius1

I keep my boat's batteries on them through the winter.

I 'top off' my cars that do not get a lot of use once every couple months. Once the battery is fully topped of it seems to hold a charge for quite some time.
 

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