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BMW 3-Series and 4-Series Forum (F30 / F32) | F30POST > 2012-2019 BMW 3 and 4-Series Forums > General F30 Sedan / F32 Coupe / F36 Gran Coupe Forum > How long can the car sit between drives?
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      01-06-2013, 02:23 AM   #1
Agamemnon
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How long can the car sit between drives?

With a brand new car, how many days do you think you could leave it between drives before you would run into battery problems.

With the inclement weather, it can be 5 days between drives. The drives tend to be a good hour long so the battery would be pretty topped up. Ideally, I would put a battery tender on it but my one car garage is taken up by a collector car that is currently not insured. I may have to move cars around to keep the batteries both in tip top shape.
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      01-06-2013, 02:46 AM   #2
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Agamemnon
With a brand new car, how many days do you think you could leave it between drives before you would run into battery problems.

With the inclement weather, it can be 5 days between drives. The drives tend to be a good hour long so the battery would be pretty topped up. Ideally, I would put a battery tender on it but my one car garage is taken up by a collector car that is currently not insured. I may have to move cars around to keep the batteries both in tip top shape.
Once a month
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      01-06-2013, 10:56 AM   #3
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Good question. There's a ton of parasitic drain these days. I DON'T think I'd go a full month without a tender. Under normal conditions, the F30's alternator only charges during decelleration or coast, not 100% of the time as we're used to. Perhaps this changes if the battery is low, but I don't know for certain.

I personally wouldn't go past two weeks without a trickle charger. At least until there's more feedback about how well they manage their charge.
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      01-06-2013, 11:06 AM   #4
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Originally Posted by BavarianFanatic View Post
Under normal conditions, the F30's alternator only charges during decelleration or coast, not 100% of the time as we're used to.
Sure about that?
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      01-06-2013, 11:14 AM   #5
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I believe the condition under which the alternator only charges on deceleration is in Eco-Pro mode, so if you drive in that mode a lot, you would have to drive further to get the same amount of charge as with other modes. With a new battery, you could easily go 2+ weeks without needing a charge. When the car passes the 3-year mark, that interval could shorten, as our batteries have tended to last roughly 5 years. That's when my E92's battery needed replacing.
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      01-06-2013, 11:42 AM   #6
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Unless a BMW is crappier than a Ford, I doubt there needs to be concern about this. I've left my 2002 Ford for well over a month at a time without driving it, no problems with battery at all...
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      01-06-2013, 12:13 PM   #7
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Left my F30 sitting for over a month without driving. Started up with no problems.
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      01-06-2013, 12:37 PM   #8
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Thanks for the replies everyone. It looks that I don't really have to worry as long as I'm taking the car out for a good drive once a week. And it looks like I could go a couple of weeks without worrying. That makes sense as the car would be sitting idle if I am on vacation for a couple of weeks.
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      01-06-2013, 12:43 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Agamemnon
Thanks for the replies everyone. It looks that I don't really have to worry as long as I'm taking the car out for a good drive once a week. And it looks like I could go a couple of weeks without worrying. That makes sense as the car would be sitting idle if I am on vacation for a couple of weeks.
Oh absolutely. I leave mine for weeks at a time when travelling and have never had an issue.
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      01-06-2013, 03:34 PM   #10
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The only things you really have to worry about are the battery and the tires. The battery charge can be stabilized using a battery maintainer and the tires can become out of round if left for too long. It's best to leave the car slightly raised on jack stands to relieve the pressure on the tires. I'd say you can go about a month or two without any fear of damage, but any longer can cause problems with the things I just mentioned.
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      01-06-2013, 03:45 PM   #11
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I wouldn't worry about it - if anything the RFT's will give you the most hassle, flattening out and requiring a few miles to become round again before you'd have to worry about the battery.
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      01-06-2013, 03:48 PM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by roundel335 View Post
I believe the condition under which the alternator only charges on deceleration is in Eco-Pro mode
Mine charges in all modes. You can see the curved blue bar extend towards the battery icon during coasting & braking. When that happens, the battery is being charged.
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      01-06-2013, 08:53 PM   #13
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Quote:
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Quote:
Originally Posted by roundel335 View Post
I believe the condition under which the alternator only charges on deceleration is in Eco-Pro mode
Mine charges in all modes. You can see the curved blue bar extend towards the battery icon during coasting & braking. When that happens, the battery is being charged.
Isnt this exactly what bmw efficient dynamics is? Charging in coast and braking??!!
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      01-06-2013, 09:31 PM   #14
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. . . the tires can become out of round if left for too long.
Fortunately, this is not an issue with modern tires and has not been since bias ply. A few miles and the tires are up to temperature any minor issue is gone.
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      01-07-2013, 01:14 PM   #15
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Originally Posted by Tsuyoi View Post
Unless a BMW is crappier than a Ford, I doubt there needs to be concern about this. I've left my 2002 Ford for well over a month at a time without driving it, no problems with battery at all...
There's been quite a few times over the past few years when there have been issues with high parasitic drain among several BMW lines. I have personal experience with an early E83 X3 which was notorious for this. The body control module would routinely "wake up" and interrogate all of the other modules in the car every once in a while to verify status and also to check to see if the car had been flagged as stolen. There was a bug in the software that would randomly prevent the modules from going back to "sleep". When active, they had a high drain rate that could flatten a battery in short order. More than once it happened over night.

Since the F30 is a very new model (with many new technologies), I personally would err on the side of caution "just in case". Once bitten, twice shy I suppose. Batteries don't like being fully drained and recharged too many times.
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      01-07-2013, 04:01 PM   #16
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Just make sure you lock your car properly and it'll put some of the functions to sleep, reducing battery drain.

A month shouldn't be a problem for anyone however.
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      01-07-2013, 05:31 PM   #17
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I had to leave my 335i at the airport for six weeks, when I came back everything was working excellent, also I checked the tire pressure and no problems at all.
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