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I lived in Kansas City, MO for four years and can therefore understand not wanting to drive a rear-wheel drive, summer-tired vehicle in the winter. That said, I don't understand the fuel concerns.

I had a Ford C-Max Energi before my Lusso. Being a plug-in hybrid, there was a question about gasoline sitting in the tank for long periods of time when the electric motor provided all the motor needed for months at a time. Ford's solution was to cause the gasoline engine to be employed when the gasoline might be in danger of getting stale. However, Ford was not as concerned as you guys are. They were not concerned about the fuel for just a few months. In fact, the fuel could sit for more than a year before the computer forced use of the gasoline engine. My personal experience was that I went for 3 or more months on electricity alone, with no ill effects.

Now, I would never recommend allowing gasoline to sit for over a year, but I doubt that leaving it in the tank over the winter would be a problem.
 

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I would be concerned about the oil draining out of the top of the engine long before I'd worry about the gas. And I wouldn't even worry about that for the better part of a year.
 

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One more winterizing tip. If you really won't drive it for three months, you can suspend the insurance for that time and pay just a small monthly charge ($5) to cover the car in case the garage catches on fire or if it is stolen.
Of course you won't be covered if you drive the car! Make sure the insurance is reactivated before you drive again in the spring.
As far as gas, I top off the tank. The alcohol in the gas attracts moisture, topping off the tank reducing the potential for water vapors condensing in the tank.
 

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Hey, that's the right way to winterize!!! :D
I've got a couple of Jerry cans which have had unleaded in them for at least 3 years out in the shed and it seems to work just fine in chainsaw, mower etc. and inside of Jerry can is still clean as a whistle, no rust.:)
I have heard a number of stories of petrol 'going off' over the years but I can only think that relates to the additives they now put in. It does leave a residue on surfaces when evaporated.:(
Old fashioned 'full fat' petrol never seemed to go 'off' ....
 

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I don't even have my 124 yet, just put a deposit on an incoming car yesterday. But here is what I've done with my modern fuel injected motorcycles at MN winter shutdown over the past 12 years.

-About a month before winter layup, I'll ride the gas tank down very, very low, then refill with alcohol free (clear) gasoline. Yep, more expensive, but alcohol likes water, and old alcohol gas can get funky, so I won't risk using it in storage situations averaging 5 months. When I need to refill in those last riding weeks, I just keep buying clear gas, assuring as much ethanol as possible has been diluted and run out of the system. This website, and it's mobile apps, does a pretty good job of helping you find clear gas around the USA and Canada. http://www.pure-gas.org/
-Here is some reading on ethanol gas- http://www.mcnews.com/mcn/editorials/2012SeptOpenRd.pdf
-A little more ethanol fun, based in Brazil, and a Fiat is even mentioned- http://www.mcnews.com/mcn/editorials/2013JanOpenRd.pdf
-Back to my story... A couple days before the first forecasted snowfall, I will flush the motor oil and replace the oil filter, refilling with new motor oil. Old motor oil can be a bit acidic, and dirty, and I don't want that stuff sitting in the sump, or filmed on engine parts, over the winter.
-After the oil change, I add Seafoam fuel stabilizer to the gas tank at the ounce per gallon rate recommended on the can. Then I ride to the gas station and top it off with clear gas.
-Then I'll take a slight detour around the neighborhood to get home, making sure to get that fresh motor oil through the engine and getting the gas treatment into the fuel lines and out the injectors.
-Back home, I pump up the tires, roll the bike onto plywood squares to get the rubber off the concrete (under the sidestand, too, to compensate for added lean angle), and either pull the battery and store in my heated workshop, or for the first time this winter I'm using a Battery Tender Junior to maintain the battery without removal. I'll put it on the charger for a couple hours, a couple times a month.
-At spring startup, I adjust the tire pressure, reinstall the battery (if needed), double check the fluid levels, just in case, start her up, and ride. Easy peasy.

Unless I see a reason to do otherwise (research here, vehicle owner's manual), this is how I intend to treat my new jalopy next winter. Fresh motor oil, full tank of non-ethanol gas with fuel treatment, tires on plywood.

Thoughts?

Steve.
 

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When I lived in the midwest I still never truly put my car away for the winter...put a trickle charger on the battery...then I would start it about every 2 weeks and let it run for 30 minutes or so and at least drive it around the 1 mile block and back in the warm garage....if the roads were clear I would take it out for a drive...
 

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I don't even have my 124 yet, just put a deposit on an incoming car yesterday. But here is what I've done with my modern fuel injected motorcycles at MN winter shutdown over the past 12 years.

-About a month before winter layup, I'll ride the gas tank down very, very low, then refill with alcohol free (clear) gasoline. Yep, more expensive, but alcohol likes water, and old alcohol gas can get funky, so I won't risk using it in storage situations averaging 5 months. When I need to refill in those last riding weeks, I just keep buying clear gas, assuring as much ethanol as possible has been diluted and run out of the system. This website, and it's mobile apps, does a pretty good job of helping you find clear gas around the USA and Canada. http://www.pure-gas.org/
-Here is some reading on ethanol gas- http://www.mcnews.com/mcn/editorials/2012SeptOpenRd.pdf
-A little more ethanol fun, based in Brazil, and a Fiat is even mentioned- http://www.mcnews.com/mcn/editorials/2013JanOpenRd.pdf
-Back to my story... A couple days before the first forecasted snowfall, I will flush the motor oil and replace the oil filter, refilling with new motor oil. Old motor oil can be a bit acidic, and dirty, and I don't want that stuff sitting in the sump, or filmed on engine parts, over the winter.
-After the oil change, I add Seafoam fuel stabilizer to the gas tank at the ounce per gallon rate recommended on the can. Then I ride to the gas station and top it off with clear gas.
-Then I'll take a slight detour around the neighborhood to get home, making sure to get that fresh motor oil through the engine and getting the gas treatment into the fuel lines and out the injectors.
-Back home, I pump up the tires, roll the bike onto plywood squares to get the rubber off the concrete (under the sidestand, too, to compensate for added lean angle), and either pull the battery and store in my heated workshop, or for the first time this winter I'm using a Battery Tender Junior to maintain the battery without removal. I'll put it on the charger for a couple hours, a couple times a month.
-At spring startup, I adjust the tire pressure, reinstall the battery (if needed), double check the fluid levels, just in case, start her up, and ride. Easy peasy.

Unless I see a reason to do otherwise (research here, vehicle owner's manual), this is how I intend to treat my new jalopy next winter. Fresh motor oil, full tank of non-ethanol gas with fuel treatment, tires on plywood.

Thoughts?

Steve.
I have followed the exact same procedure for at least the last ten years. Never had any problems. My 2003, still has the original battery. Nice write up. On the car, I also open the hood and trunk (no auto trunk light on our cars) and put the windows down for air circulation and unlatch, but leave the top up.
 

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A concern about the periodic starting of an otherwise winterized car. And I bring this up because it is always a point of contention on the motorcycling boards. Some would argue that periodic starting is unnecessary, and maybe not good, because the engine may not be getting the oil up to full engine operating temperature to bake out any moisture accumulation, or it might lead to condensation in the oil and/or engine afterward. Also, if starting it once every x-number of weeks or months simply to put oil up through the engine, as though cams, lifters, etc. may have drained dry of oil film over that period of inactivity, would it not make sense that starting the engine a few times over those months is adding excessive wear vs. doing that same thing only once, at springtime start-up?

Really, I don't know the answers to these questions, but over those months of inactivity the internal engine parts never drain off that oil film 100%, something remains clinging to the wear surfaces. A lot more drains off compared to daily or weekly use, I think, but after 5 months the parts are not devoid of some film of oil. Following that rationale, I'd rather start that engine under that (for the lack of a better term) oil starved condition only once, at the end of winter, rather than 4, 5, maybe 6 times throughout the winter. And that may be one more reason to justify replacing the oil and filter right at winter layup, so the oil film on the sleepy parts is at least clean, fresh, and not in an acidic state to cause corrosion.

Steve.

p.s. Stelvio, good to see another Guzzi rider here. Me- '16 V7II Stone, and a former '04 California EV. Do you hang out at WildGuzzi.com?
 

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I recently sent a message to the Fiat Information Center, asking about Fiat's long term storage recommendations. They replied today. After wishing me the best with my new car, they, "do encourage you (me) getting in touch with a dealership of your (my) choice or in your (my) area who can provide you (me) that information with the proper long term storage engine preparation to assure proper engine maintenance and easy spring time start!"


Steve.
 

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A friend who works at a a dodge dealer says that after sitting several weeks that they have had issues starting some of the dart engines. Specifically they must crank it for an extended period of time to build up pressure in vavlve system before it would start. My car had never sat more than 2 weeks before I ran it so not sure how it would respond after months of sitting, but having it on a charger or jumper might be in order to crank it long enough to get it started based on what I have been told
 

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So I've had my car stored in the garage for the last 83 days. I put it away with a little over 1/2 a tank of 91 octane, normal 10% ethanol gas. I periodically charged the battery over that time. With my foot off the brake I cycled the fuel pump twice, put my foot on the brake and hit start. It took less than 1 second to start. I timed it. Idled perfect.

Went for a little 113 mile, top down stroll through the countryside. Topped off the tank with 6 plus gallons (same as above - normal 10% ethanol), got groceries, brought it home, washed it and put it back in the garage for the rest of the winter.
 

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Our hood, front fenders and trunk are aluminum but the doors and rear quarter panels are steel. Having owned two Mazda's and observing the newer models, rust is almost guaranteed to attack your rear quarters where they meet up with the rear bumper in about 5 years time. Mazda does the worst rust proofing on the planet.
Didn't know that about the aluminum parts. That should help some with the rust in CNY.
 

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Does anyone use their 124 in the winter? I was kinda planning to but now I'm not so sure...
I am.

Weather in Denver can obviously get cold and get snowy, but it's generally a pretty dry climate. Snow storms tend to be 24 hour events after which snow on the roads is usually gone within a couple of days or hard-packed down and drivable with appropriate care. I won't take it out during snow storms, and I'll switch it over to winter tires sometime around the end of October, but otherwise I see no reason not to treat it like any other car. I have the advantage of working from home so it's rare I really need to go anywhere if the conditions are that bad and we have a 4WD SUV as our 'sensible' car.

It has seat heaters for a reason...:D
 

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I fully agree. The car is meant to be driven. And it seems to handle quite well in wet or snow, not that we get anywhere near what you get down in louisiana. By the way, happening to be visiting the boulder area at the moment, but, alas, my wife convinced me to take the SUV instead of the 124. I sure wish I'd brought the 124 for these roads. :)


Does anyone use their 124 in the winter? I was kinda planning to but now I'm not so sure...
I am.

Weather in Denver can obviously get cold and get snowy, but it's generally a pretty dry climate. Snow storms tend to be 24 hour events after which snow on the roads is usually gone within a couple of days or hard-packed down and drivable with appropriate care. I won't take it out during snow storms, and I'll switch it over to winter tires sometime around the end of October, but otherwise I see no reason not to treat it like any other car. I have the advantage of working from home so it's rare I really need to go anywhere if the conditions are that bad and we have a 4WD SUV as our 'sensible' car.

It has seat heaters for a reason...
 

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Denver does see snowfall but what we get in Quebec is off the charts - not only snow but the roads get absolutely riddled with potholes AT BEST.

I do have the option to work from home on snow days as long as I have electricity and Internet.
 

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I saw there was a post in this thread and thought I guess Aussies are getting active in this thread, i guessed wrong.
 
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