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Due to some unexpected circumstances I am going to have to let my '04 KGT sit out all winter here in Central Pennsylvania. Needless to say I am not happy about this situation.

I do have the BMW cover and a good coat of wax on it too. I plan on riding as much as possible this winter and have already found the heated grips and seat great on the chilly mornings.

Any suggestions about all the exposure to the cold and bad weather when it sits unused? Will starting her up once a week and idling 10 minutes be enough to preserve the battery?

I wish I could "winterize" and put it away for 4 months but this year that just won't be an option.

Thanks in advance for all your good advice. . .

PETER
 

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Get a Battery Tender

I don't think you'll generate enough power to charge battery just by idling the engine. I would invest in a battery tender. Be sure to get one appropriate for your battery type: gel cell, wet, etc.
 

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I assume that you can't bring it to a dealer for storage. How about one of the self storage places? However if you start the bike in the dead of the winter and do not get it up to operating temp(oil at 180 degrees) you would be better off not to run it. You will cause condensation to form and the oil will not get hot enough to get rid of the condensation. Also I have not done this but a friend of mine has sprayed the metal and chrome of his bikes with WD40 for the long winter months. Is a pain to clean in the spring but the bikes do look good. Be careful what type of cover you use. Some covers will keep the moisture in and your bike will be soaking wet under the cover.
Bruce
 

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A couple of thoughts if it were me: 1) Purchase the right cycle cover...one that will protect from rain/snow, etc but will breath...trapped moisture under a cover is not good. Sumbrella is a well know product for boat canvas tops and awnings it does breath....see if you can make one, or find a comparable cover with like qualities. 2) Starting any engine in the cold of winter and not bringing all the fluids up to proper operating temperature is a recipe for disaster....quite simply short engine running time heats some of the oil the crank, and other miscellaneous pieces and parts...but the engine's mass is not hot. Upon turning the engine off, different portions of the engine cool down and tend to create moisture from condensation. This condensation sits low in the engine, and multiple engine on/off just beg for trouble. May this Winter be mild!!
 

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Peter
Is there a place that you can store it with both wheels off the ground?
Bruce C
 

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Winter GT

If your going to ride it when you can I would not worry to much, the battery tender is a good idea I use the accumate. The BMW cover should cover most of it up and still allow some breathing. I made a little garage for my earlier bikes before the big garage was built, used some 2x4's and blue poly tarp covering three sides, only lasted the one year but that was enough. Put it against the house in the back where it was most protected from direct wind etc. cost was minimal. Up there the only big worry is road salt if you ride when its wet. That will have to be washed off asap, in Michigan we had tons of that crap on the road. used to spray it off at the car wash and chamois it dry best I could. Even in the sub freezing temps. just dont spray locks etc.
 

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i live in PA just north of philly and i've had my krs for a little over 3 years and i don't have a garage to park the bike in. i'll ride during the winter unless the temp stays below 40 degrees or there's snow on the ground. the longest i've parked my bike without starting/riding it is three weeks. after three weeks went by she started right up but i would recommend a battery tender if you have one.

i keep the bike covered with a run of the mill cover nothing fancy or special and i don't use the cover unless it rains or snows. after three years my bike still looks brand new except for one scratch on the gas tank. as long as you keep the bike clean and dirt free she'll look as good as she did the day you brought her home. i wouldn't worry at all about not being able to garage your bike during the winter just keep it covered and keep it clean.
 

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speaking of battery tenders, my buddy with a new R1200 GS said that I couldn't use my good'ol battery tender and that I had to get some fancy-dancy BMW unit that costs somewhere around $125. On my '94 K75, all I did was plug in the battery tender to the accessory socket and it provided the charge. This guy told me if I did that, I'd wreck the electrical systems in my '04 K12GT. I use my bike at least once a week, and take it for at least a 20 mile run each time. No hint of battery drain yet.
 

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K75 bat charger works on K12GT '03

I have charged my 03 K12GT with the BMW battery charger that came with my '90 K75RT with no problems.

john mintier
 

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PeterGT said:
Due to some unexpected circumstances I am going to have to let my '04 KGT sit out all winter here in Central Pennsylvania. Needless to say I am not happy about this situation.

I do have the BMW cover and a good coat of wax on it too. I plan on riding as much as possible this winter and have already found the heated grips and seat great on the chilly mornings.

Any suggestions about all the exposure to the cold and bad weather when it sits unused? Will starting her up once a week and idling 10 minutes be enough to preserve the battery?

I wish I could "winterize" and put it away for 4 months but this year that just won't be an option.

Thanks in advance for all your good advice. . .

PETER
......Gee, that sounds too familiar.....are you trying to hide that bike from your better half? :p

The BMW cover is a great cover, since it does have vent pockets it will help air out the moisture. Keeping up batteries and fluids are the least of your worries.

Just a word of advice, make sure you tie up the bottom opening as best as possible, because if you don't, you'll find your neighborhood Johnny Cat living under the tent :D . Also my little friend squeeky the Rat, loves them German bikes. Believe me, they do taste better than the cheaper brand :thumb:. Also makes a real nice place for Zzz's :sleep:
 

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Our UK Winters are not as hard as yours, my K lives outside all year round. However, after every ride my K is covered with a canvas wax proofed cover and the tender is plugged in on a long output lead. The tender is aftermarket and cost around $40. As long as its maximum current is limited to less than 1/2 amp your electrics should be OK. I see some condensation on the screen and topside plastics, but nowhere else

I agree that starting and short running will not put much back into the battery, but it does keep oil on all the moving parts.

The killer for our bikes here is road salt. During winter if I ride the bike I always hose it down more often. Make sure you're anti-freeze strength is OK.

Many years ago I read an article on motor vehicles stored in garages, auto shelters and outside. Keeping any vehicle sheltered from the weather but at lower temperatures outside is better because corrosion rates are lower. Warm humid garages are the worst, which is why marine winterising facilites have controlled environments for temperature, and humidity.



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One more, related question

I have the "BMW Advanced Battery Charging System, Manufactured by Deltran," otherwise known as Battery Tender 2, with 1.25 amp, which plugs into side adapter on the GT, purchased form Sierra BMW for $79...
Among other things, instructions say, NEVER charge a frozen battery...
My question is: once it's charged and 'tending' that charge, do I have to worry about an unheated - subzero - garage?
 

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bluejay said:
speaking of battery tenders, my buddy with a new R1200 GS said that I couldn't use my good'ol battery tender and that I had to get some fancy-dancy BMW unit that costs somewhere around $125. On my '94 K75, all I did was plug in the battery tender to the accessory socket and it provided the charge. This guy told me if I did that, I'd wreck the electrical systems in my '04 K12GT. I use my bike at least once a week, and take it for at least a 20 mile run each time. No hint of battery drain yet.

If it's an 04 GT it has a gel battery and requires a gel battery charger. BMW sells one. I can't remember the reason but there is a difference and a normal charger can damage the battery.
 

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K1200 Winter Storage

This is the second year I am keeping my K1200GT outside for the winter. I keep it covered at all times when not in use and I normally have a Gell Batery Tender connected. Clean bik after each run in the winter to remove road salt, etc. Bike in great shape.
 

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Nice colour Hanshi!!
What seat is that?
I have the Givi E52 on mine,with the brake light kit.I don't even know it's there.

I keep mine in the unheated garage,and the problem I have is with the really wet,not damp,environment.It stays above freezing but the wind bloows rain under the door until the entire floor is saturated.I keep fans running to dry it out.I don't worry about the battery;I wouldn't idle it just to keep up the battery. I think that would do more harm than good.
 

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Peter,
I stored my bikes outside for a number of years before moving into a house with a garage. I kept the bikes covered with a soft non-scratching bike cover then a Dow waterproof cover. I rode them whenever possible which for me was whenever the roads weren't covered with salt. If they went more than a couple of weeks without being ridden, then I would put them on a charger for a couple of hours to top off the batteries. I would do this on a day that I was off so that I could keep an "eye" on things for security purposes. My bikes always did fine with that routine. YMMV!

Jim
 

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Is your question about your battery freezing? Charged batteries will not freeze in normal winters. I do not know at what temperature they do freeze, but I do know a charged battery will not freeze a -20 F. A discharged battery freezes very easily.
 

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Peter,

If you don't know of it you may wish to join the mail list for MacPac, a PA based group of riders:

http://www.mac-pac.org/

You may find it of interest for the kinds of questions you are asking.

Erik

Velomaxx
 

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I see you have the SEXY color, Hansi! My wife calls it "money green". How much to get the rear lid case color matched? And is it GIVI or BMW? Looking for one this spring, when I start longer road trips.
 
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