Automotive

Preventing a dead battery when keeping a car parked due to Covid-19

  • Last Updated:
  • Oct 24th, 2020 7:30 pm
[OP]
Deal Addict
Nov 4, 2007
1512 posts
601 upvotes
Toronto

Preventing a dead battery when keeping a car parked due to Covid-19

Hello,

Due to Covid, we have "parked" one of our cars to save on insurance. Because of this, I am unable to drive that car. It sits in our garage. I have been starting the engine and pulling it out to the driveway every few weeks, but 2 weeks ago the car would not start due to not enough juice. I jump started it with my other car and let it run for 5 minutes. Unfortunately, 2 weeks later the battery is again not able to provide enough current to start the car.

What can I do to prevent this? I read that starting the car regularly will actually drain the battery more and that the alternator will not actually charge the car unless it's doing at least 1000 rpm. Since we can not drive the car due to lack of insurance what are your recommendations?

Thanks

EDIT: Ended up getting the Gooloo 6A Charger and Maintainer. See: preventing-dead-battery-when-keeping-ca ... #p33314324
Last edited by kasm on Oct 21st, 2020 8:32 am, edited 1 time in total.
59 replies
Jr. Member
Dec 1, 2014
173 posts
154 upvotes
Burlington, ON
I had the same issue so bought a battery tender at canadian tire on sale. I hooked-up the included pigtails so it's a simple quick connect & release without needing to put the clamps on the battery terminals.

Here's the one I bought: https://www.canadiantire.ca/en/pdp/moto ... 1964p.html
Deal Fanatic
May 1, 2012
9584 posts
8874 upvotes
Markham
Battery tender, it's cheap.
Member
User avatar
Sep 16, 2015
283 posts
546 upvotes
Calgary, AB
Buy a proper battery charger and use it on the 2A setting to periodically charge your vehicle over the winter. It will cost twice what a trickle charger sells for but has the ability to quickly charge a dead battery if you leave the car door open or find some other way to completely drain a battery accidentally.
Deal Expert
Jan 15, 2006
15560 posts
13162 upvotes
Richmond Hill
Starting up the car and just letting it idle is one of the worst things you can do. Either drive the car around till it's at operating temp. or don't touch it at all and of course the alternator does not put out enough voltage to charge the battery either at idle speeds.
Deal Guru
User avatar
Mar 9, 2007
13681 posts
8690 upvotes
Think of the Childre…
Meh, got mines from Costco last year...still under warranty, if kaputz...I get it switched for a new one....free!

WOULD SOMEBODY THINK OF THE CHILDREN!!!
Deal Fanatic
Jun 24, 2006
8934 posts
3252 upvotes
Just disconnect the negative terminal.

My parents go to Arizona for 6 months every year, and I go out to their house they day after they leave, disconnect the batteries. Then, the day before they come, I reconnect the batteries, start them, and take each one for a drive down the corner store and back.

Never once had to boost, or charge before starting, and been doing this for years. Heck, Dad's 2008 Colorado is still on the OEM battery.
Sr. Member
Feb 5, 2007
625 posts
247 upvotes
Mississauga
I bought the genius 1 and top it off every like 2 weeks. Here's a link from y'day prime day. Also make sure to unplug anything that's not needed (dashcam, GPS, etc)
[OP]
Deal Addict
Nov 4, 2007
1512 posts
601 upvotes
Toronto
FilaGuy wrote: More amps, faster recharge. I like the 3A version I got since it only means a few hours hooked-up but 1.5A should be fine.
Thanks, I'm not interested in speed. I just want to hook it up and forget it until we need to drive again.

I'd rather not have to disconnect the battery in case I need to pull the car out onto the driveway, without having to grab my socket wrench to reconnect.
Deal Addict
User avatar
Oct 13, 2008
4343 posts
1439 upvotes
Change the insurance back to CASUAL driving ... what's the difference in money?
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Deal Fanatic
Dec 29, 2005
5389 posts
1156 upvotes
Gutty96 wrote: Just disconnect the negative terminal.

My parents go to Arizona for 6 months every year, and I go out to their house they day after they leave, disconnect the batteries. Then, the day before they come, I reconnect the batteries, start them, and take each one for a drive down the corner store and back.

Never once had to boost, or charge before starting, and been doing this for years. Heck, Dad's 2008 Colorado is still on the OEM battery.
May require resetting options and unlocking radio if you disconnect battery, depending on car.
[OP]
Deal Addict
Nov 4, 2007
1512 posts
601 upvotes
Toronto
jdmfishingonly wrote: Change the insurance back to CASUAL driving ... what's the difference in money?
difference is $800 for the year.
Deal Expert
Jan 27, 2006
15317 posts
8191 upvotes
Vancouver, BC
jaybeeg wrote: Buy a proper battery charger and use it on the 2A setting to periodically charge your vehicle over the winter. It will cost twice what a trickle charger sells for but has the ability to quickly charge a dead battery if you leave the car door open or find some other way to completely drain a battery accidentally.
Realistically, 2A isn't much better in terms of charging times than a 0.8A if you are talking about a dead battery. After all, even the small batteries hold 50 to 60 AHrs so instead of 3 days to charge a battery, you might be looking at a day and a half.
Deal Expert
Jan 27, 2006
15317 posts
8191 upvotes
Vancouver, BC
kasm wrote: Thanks for the replies. What is the recommended Amperage?

Would this work? https://www.amazon.ca/Universal-Maintai ... 07B4V3HC4/
It's 1.5A.
No. Not because of the current but of the brand. If you are going to plug that thing in for weeks or months, then go for a good name brand unit or at least some thing sold by a big bricks and mortar company.
Deal Expert
Jan 27, 2006
15317 posts
8191 upvotes
Vancouver, BC
Gutty96 wrote: Just disconnect the negative terminal.

My parents go to Arizona for 6 months every year, and I go out to their house they day after they leave, disconnect the batteries. Then, the day before they come, I reconnect the batteries, start them, and take each one for a drive down the corner store and back.

Never once had to boost, or charge before starting, and been doing this for years. Heck, Dad's 2008 Colorado is still on the OEM battery.
Don't confuse a battery that starts a car in warmer climates (I'm assuming your parents Winter in Az) as one that is in good shape. Get the battery tested. Better yet, fully charge the battery and then get the battery tested . Car batteries have a self-discharge rate of about 5% a month if left by itself and they like to be fully charged or else they start to sulfate.
[OP]
Deal Addict
Nov 4, 2007
1512 posts
601 upvotes
Toronto
craftsman wrote: No. Not because of the current but of the brand. If you are going to plug that thing in for weeks or months, then go for a good name brand unit or at least some thing sold by a big bricks and mortar company.
Thanks. Looks like NOCO, CTEK and GOOLOO are recommended brands. The first 2 brands are much more expensive.

Of the GOOLOO, the 2A model is $40 ($37 after coupon) and the 6A is $50 ($40 after coupon). I'm thinking the 6A is the better deal for $3 more as it also has an LED display. Apparently the 6A also can be used in 2A mode, though I can't find details on this. Thoughts?

GOOLOO 2A: https://www.amazon.ca/gp/product/B08DKTYV9Z
GOOLOO 6A: https://www.amazon.ca/gp/product/B07WF7J5LV
Last edited by kasm on Oct 15th, 2020 2:05 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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