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Old 01-17-2021, 12:03 PM   #1
LT4 650
 
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Drives: 2019 ZL1 M6
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How long before I need a trickle charger?

So I searched our forum and most of the discussion about trickle chargers was about how to hook them up and which one to buy.

Here is my situation (thread title)...my ZL1 is a weekend car and DOES NOT get stored for the winter because I live in Scottsdale Arizona. My "plan" is to at a minimum drive it at least every 2-3 weeks to keep fluids/fuel moving, etc.

However, my question is "literally" how long can these cars sit (in-active) before you need to hook up a trickle charger. My thought would be 3-4 weeks so as long as I can execute my plan of driving it every 2-3 weeks I should not need a trickle charger...CORRECT???
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Old 01-17-2021, 12:17 PM   #2
Zl1+911
 
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That’s what I do over the winter and not had any issues
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Old 01-17-2021, 12:26 PM   #3
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There are so many computers on these cars and all draw down minute amounts of power. I lived in the valley of the damned all my life before moving north. My cars always went onto a DELTRAN Battery Tender Plus regardless of season or anticipated next drive. Batteries last a lot longer when they're always fully charged. Once they start to discharge, expect a shortened life. I've had OPTIMA batteries last ten years using a Battery Tender Plus.

I found this site https://www.themechanicdoctor.com/ho...ry-sit-unused/ which might give you some reference. The DELTRAN site used to have an FAQ section but it's not active. https://www.batterytender.com/

If you don't want to use a device, you can simply disconnect the negative side of the battery.
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Old 01-17-2021, 12:32 PM   #4
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All of my cars that sit on a tender have had about 9-10 year battery life. My daily drivers that do not sit on tenders typically last 5-7 years.
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Old 01-17-2021, 12:32 PM   #5
Stevezx900
 
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+1 for the battery tender plus.

I used it on my BMW M5 when not used and the battery lasted me 10 years.

When I traded in the car for my ZL1 battery was still like new.

Anyone who knows how BMW batteries are that is a $500 cost at any dealership because the car needs to be coded for a new battery.
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Old 01-17-2021, 12:34 PM   #6
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Mine is not a daily driver and when it is not being used it is on a trickle charger.
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Old 01-17-2021, 12:45 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by az4783054 View Post
There are so many computers on these cars and all draw down minute amounts of power. I lived in the valley of the damned all my life before moving north. My cars always went onto a DELTRAN Battery Tender Plus regardless of season or anticipated next drive. Batteries last a lot longer when they're always fully charged. Once they start to discharge, expect a shortened life. I've had OPTIMA batteries last ten years using a Battery Tender Plus.

I found this site https://www.themechanicdoctor.com/ho...ry-sit-unused/ which might give you some reference. The DELTRAN site used to have an FAQ section but it's not active. https://www.batterytender.com/

If you don't want to use a device, you can simply disconnect the negative side of the battery.

Note a good idea to disconnect the battery cause there are often default codes after...

I use optima tender 🙂 but the battery really donít like cold weather...
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Old 01-17-2021, 01:48 PM   #8
Coded4SS
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by CW3SF View Post
All of my cars that sit on a tender have had about 9-10 year battery life. My daily drivers that do not sit on tenders typically last 5-7 years.
Well I mean, your using it so ya that makes since.
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Old 01-17-2021, 01:56 PM   #9
hawk02
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My zl1 is over four years old with the original battery. Iíve gone up to five weeks between starts in the winter without any problems starting the car. Iím in Florida until April so I did put the battery on a trickle charger before I left. I firgured between the age of the battery and length of time Iíll be gone, at trickle charger would be a worthwhile investment.

This is the one I bought.

https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B0...?ie=UTF8&psc=1
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Old 01-17-2021, 02:02 PM   #10
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Best auto trickle charger on the market hands down, and I've tried them all https://www.amazon.com/OptiMATE-Ampm...XCE/ref=sr_1_2 Battery tenders have failed me many times and aren't nearly as sophisticated

These cars are notorious for killing batteries and juice required to crank over a 6.2L is significant. If you take shorter trips or the car sits for several days yes you need one. I literally keep mine in the trunk and never remove it, all I have to do its plug it back in after a drive
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Old 01-17-2021, 03:07 PM   #11
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Unless you are storing for several months I would just put it in transport mode.
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Old 01-17-2021, 04:40 PM   #12
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After 2 yrs, 3 months from the car was delivered to the dealer my battery was about half-charged. I drive it at least 2x/week, and at least one 30+ min trip/week

The dealer charged and tested it, told me it passed their load test.

Do I need a charger or is the battery getting worn out? It seems most get 2-3 years out of an OEM battery and the Optima replacement for $300 says to expect 4 years. This seems like a very short battery life!
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Old 01-17-2021, 05:02 PM   #13
arpad_m


 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by LT4 650 View Post
So I searched our forum and most of the discussion about trickle chargers was about how to hook them up and which one to buy.

Here is my situation (thread title)...my ZL1 is a weekend car and DOES NOT get stored for the winter because I live in Scottsdale Arizona. My "plan" is to at a minimum drive it at least every 2-3 weeks to keep fluids/fuel moving, etc.

However, my question is "literally" how long can these cars sit (in-active) before you need to hook up a trickle charger. My thought would be 3-4 weeks so as long as I can execute my plan of driving it every 2-3 weeks I should not need a trickle charger...CORRECT???
~3 weeks was fine every time I left the car alone for so long. The car started like it was new, and battery recharge from the alternator never took surprisingly long.

I only ever hook up the trickle charger for the 3-month winter hibernation.
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Old 01-17-2021, 05:22 PM   #14
Vigilante375
 
Drives: 2018 Camaro ZL1
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My car sits 2 to 3 weeks at a time and it's been fine with no trickle charger. But when I do drive, it's for a minimum of 3 days before it sits again.

I've been doing this for over a year now.
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