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Old 02-01-2006, 03:05 PM   #1
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Time to Wake Up...

Hi,

By request, here is a list of things to do to bring your car out of Hibernation in the Spring. This list assumes you performed the Hibernation list I posted a while back, if not, adjust accordingly. I have attached this list in checklist form for you to Download and Print if you choose.

1.) If you havenít kept the battery on a maintainer, put it on a charger and insure itís at full charge.

2.) Remove Car Cover and inspect Body for any Dirt, Scratches, Rust, etc. Check all Locks, Latches for proper, smooth, operation. Remove Desiccant Bags from Car Interior Ė You can place these in a Microwave for 4 min. to drive any accumulated moisture out of them and place them directly in a ZipLok Bag to be reused the following year.

3.) Remove any Wheel Chock(s), Rodent Traps, etc. Using a Tire Gauge, release Air from Tires until theyíre at the proper pressure. Remove any Plastic sheeting placed under the Car.

4.) Get in Car and press on the Brake Pedal to insure that your Master Cyl. and Calipers are loose and operating properly (donít be surprised if the Pedal feels spongy or goes to the Floor. This is because your Vac. Booster has lost its vacuum charge over the winter. This will replenish once the Engine is started.) Also, set and release the Parking Brake several times to insure itís operating properly.

5.) Press Clutch Pedal and run the Shifter through the Gears to insure that all is working properly.

6.) Set the Car in either 5th Gear or Reverse (Depending upon which direction youíre going to move the Car). Key in the #2 position (to unlock the Steering Lock). Now, with the gear engaged, push the car several feet (either forward or back depending upon where you have room). Once youíve run out of room, put Car in Neutral and push back, re-engage the gear and push it again. This will rotate the engine and Insure that no rings have seized over the Winter. You use 5th gear or Reverse because these will give you the greatest Mechanical Advantage. Using the Starter without 1st doing this will have sufficient torque to tear the rings in the event they are seized. Unfortunately, Tip S equipped Cars do not have this option.

7.) Place Fully-Charged Battery back into Car, but do not hook it up. Tighten down retaining Bracket.

8.) Go through the Car and be sure that all Switches and Ancillaries are in their OFF positions, be sure to close Doors and Trunk too. Then attach Battery leads.

9.) Place Key in the Door and Lock/Unlock once to wake-up the Remote Locking Feature.

10.) Check Brake Fluid Reservoir Level (if it's been 2 years, this is a good time to Flush and Bleed the Brake System), Washer Fluid Level. Open Trunk and check Coolant Level and Oil Level (if equipped with a DipStick). Also, Air can dissolve into the Coolant and be released over the winter creating Air in the system. Itís a good idea to open the Bleed Valve located under the Plastic Trim piece under the Coolant Fill and Oil Fill. Place a Towel around it and the Trunk Floor to prevent any Coolant which may overflow from messing this area.

11.) Do a Safety Walk-around the Car and make sure that the area is free from obstructions. That nothing is under the Car or in itís way. That there are no puddles under the Car from leaks which may have occured.

12.) Place Key in Ignition and turn to the Run position and leave there for 1 min. This is to start the Fuel Pump and allow it to get up to pressure. Your Malfunction lights will light, but should go off within a few seconds. Also, use this time to check the Oil level meter.

13.) Turn the Key back to OFF, wait a few seconds and turn to the Start position. Do not pump the accelerator and allow engine to crank for no more than 20 sec. If Engine fails to start, repeat procedure.

14.) Once Engine starts, allow to warm enough to come off the Fast Idle. You may notice some smoke from the tailpipe, but this is normal and should subside once the Engine warms up. Engine will run rough the first few minutes because the DME has lost itís Adaptive Memory. It will take several minutes Idling and several miles Driving for it to relearn.

15.) While Engine is warming, check all Lights, Indicators, Horn, Insert Radio Code (if pre-í03), reset Radio Pre-Sets, Central Locking, Washers/Wipers, Manual Spoiler Deployment Switch, for proper operation. Listen for Radiator Cooling Fans to Cycle ON. Get out and check underneath for any drips or leaks.

16.) Turn on AC (lower Temp on Climate Control) to activate Compressor and circulate Oil.

17.) Standardize and Set One-Touch Control on Side Windows.

18.) Check Temp Indicator and if fully warm, run Engine up to 2500 RPM and hold for one minute. Listen for any unusual noises, vibrations, etc.

19.) Check Coolant Level (Top up if necessary), Close Bleed Valve (VERY IMPORTANT) and replace Trim Piece.

20.) Check operation of Power Top. Take care to avoid cracking the Plastic Window (if so equipped) by running the Heater beforehand, using a Blow Dryer, placing a Wet Towel which was put in a Microwave for 4 min. (careful it will be HOT) over the Plastic to warm it, or placing a Heat Lamp or Flood Light over it (at a distance, but sufficient to warm it).

21.) Put Car in gear and drive it gently for several minutes. Be sure to drive it through one complete Drive Cycle, that is: Start Cold and Idle for 2 min., Accelerate to 20-30MPH and Maintain Speed for approx. 3min. 15sec., Accelerate to 40-60MPH and hold steady for approx. 15min., Decelerate and come to a Stop and Idle in Gear for approx. 5min. (Plan your route ahead of time to meet these requirements). This will allow the System Diagnostics to Run and detect and Signal any System Faults. It will also allow the DME to relearn its Adaptive Memory as well.

Good Luck!...

Happy Motoring!... Jimí99

Last edited by MNBoxster; 02-02-2006 at 09:37 AM.
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Old 02-01-2006, 03:10 PM   #2
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Great post, Jim, thanks!
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Old 02-01-2006, 03:15 PM   #3
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yeah this should be a sticky type thing, with those pics of the B&M SSK as well.
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Old 02-01-2006, 06:17 PM   #4
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Spring Check List? It's only February! Sort of like seeing Christmas stuff at the mall in August...Stop it you tease!
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Old 02-02-2006, 08:18 AM   #5
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Hi, xclusivecar can you describe your Lotus Elise experience? And, why you sold it? I drove one recently (stage II) and it was a hoot! Just curious.


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Old 02-02-2006, 02:59 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BoxsterSbob
Hi, xclusivecar can you describe your Lotus Elise experience? And, why you sold it? I drove one recently (stage II) and it was a hoot! Just curious.


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Sure...Had deposit down for 4 years. I was concerned from the beginning that the car would be basically a small, impractical, stripped down go-cart for the street but was advised that the US version would have "creature comforts" not seen before. Now...I DO NOT track cars. I wanted a fun little car that was neat for the streets and was told this would be. WRONG! This is a track ONLY car! Sure it can be driven on the street but you will get punished. It's loud, rattles, shakes, shimmies, and has NO POWER under 6500 RPM. The creature comforts consisted of a piece of carpeting and a radio. Wash the car and the trunk fills with water, touch the car and the paint falls off. DO NOT grab the windshield to get in/out of the car. It's just literally glued on and will snap off. You must get some sort of 3M starshield not only for the front of the car but for the rear quarters as rocks fly off your front tires and absolutely pulverize this area. The brakes had tons of travel before they grabbed. When they did grab it was almost surprising. Other drivers CANNOT see you! Almost died 3 times in parking lots as an SUV thought I was a speed bump. Headlights suck.
Like I said I didn't track the car and believe it would be great as a track car. There were probably other things but can't remember since I bought the Boxster and my memory has been wiped free of the loss I took to get rid of it. The Boxster is the PERFECT compromise between a track only Elise and a reliable, comfortable, sports car. Lotus need another Boxster type model to compete in the States. The Elise is not doing all that well. Only a couple thousand copies are being imported and you can find a year old one with 5,000 miles for under $37,000 now. I just received a flyer in the mail from my local Lotus dealership offering special financing on all remaining '05s.
Finally, check elisetalk.com for a bunch of info on the car. Great site!

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Old 02-02-2006, 03:46 PM   #7
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Forgive my ignorance (don't have much of an issue with winter storage down here in SoCal) but couldn't a lot of that list be alleviated if one were to just start the car every week or so and let it run for a little bit?

I'd think it'd be easier to do this (stick some dryer hose or other such pipe on the exhaust and route it out of the garage--that's what we do when running cars in the shop) than to let the car sit that long without any exercise at all. Again, I've never parked a car for the cold cold winter before though, so maybe my perspective is wrong.
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Old 02-02-2006, 05:14 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by eslai
Forgive my ignorance (don't have much of an issue with winter storage down here in SoCal) but couldn't a lot of that list be alleviated if one were to just start the car every week or so and let it run for a little bit?

I'd think it'd be easier to do this (stick some dryer hose or other such pipe on the exhaust and route it out of the garage--that's what we do when running cars in the shop) than to let the car sit that long without any exercise at all. Again, I've never parked a car for the cold cold winter before though, so maybe my perspective is wrong.
Hi,

The short answer to your question is NO. Starting and running a Cold Car below 30į (the avg. Temp in an unheated garage in the NE and MW) adds significant Wear and Stress to the Car.

I've read reports which attribute 85% of a Car's Engine Wear to cold starts - that period between starting the Car and the time it takes for the Oil Pressure and Flow to rise sufficiently to Float the Crank and Flow to the Valvetrain. This is only exacerbated on a Car which has sat for a period of time in the Cold - it takes that much more time to get the Oil going.

In addition, everything contracts so much more at lower Temps. This means that Seals may not be tight and again, when you start the Car with Cold Oil, the Oil Pressure can spike well above normal until the Oil reaches operating Temp. This can cause some Oil to work past Gaskets and Seals creating leaks which would otherwise not have occurred.

Another issue is by running the Car, your create moisture which is absorbed by the Oil. Later, this can evaporate and condense on Engine Internals causing corrosion and pitting. And the same can be said for the Exhaust System as well.

You also can run down the Battery because you won't run the Car long enough to replace the draw from the Starter, and you will also run down the Fuel level drawing moist Air into the Tank which will later condense creating corrosion issues there as well.

Considering that you stored the Car rather than run it during the Winter, it is unwise to cause this much wear and tear when you're not even driving and enjoying the Car. This will only shorten the miles you can actually put on it in nice weather without having to make repairs which in many cases could have been avoided. Hope this helps...

Happy Motoring!... Jim'99
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Old 02-02-2006, 09:57 PM   #9
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All sensible, thanks, although do things change with the addition of a battery minder and engine block heater?
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Old 02-02-2006, 11:32 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by eslai
All sensible, thanks, although do things change with the addition of a battery minder and engine block heater?

Hi,

Not really. If you properly hibernate the Car in the Fall, there is simply no reason to start it during storage, no benefit is derived from it. Admittedly, many people find this hard - to refrain from playing with their Baby. But it's the Best thing to do for the Car, and the Anticipation makes Springtime so much sweeter...

Happy Motoring!... Jim'99
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Old 02-03-2006, 04:15 AM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MNBoxster
... the Anticipation makes Springtime so much sweeter...

That is the very best reason not to start the car in the winter. Well put.
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