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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Okay, I tried searching for a thread that addressed this because I know this has to be a frequent question but...here goes.

Looks like it is nearing the time to store my battery for the winter. I have a Battery Tender Jr as well as a Battery Charger of some sort, I'll have to look at the box again. Anyway, is it okay for the battery if I hook it up to the charger and leave it in the garage? It gets cold out there, it isn't heated so it will get to freezing. Will it damage the battery if it is out there in the freezing cold but hooked up to the charger?

I'm hesitant about hooking it up in my warmer basement because of gases coming from the battery.
 

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Super Duper Mod Man
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Just leave the Tender Jr. on it in the garage. The cold won't hurt a thing. Just a reminder, fill the gas tank to the top (prevents condensation) and add some fuel stablilizer to it so you won't be one of the 100 people that post here that their bike only runs with the choke on.
 

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The Toad
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You don't worry about your car battery do you?

It's got to get AWFUL cold to freeze sulfuric acid solution. Winter battery maintenance is as simple as disconnecting the ground terminal when you park the bike and then charging the battery with a one-amp charger overnight once in the middle of winter. If your battery can't survive that way it's time for a new one anyhow.

More than once I've neglected my bikes completely for 3-4 months of winter. No charging, no stabilizer, half empty tank, etc. Though usually I make a point of going out and running them at the half way point in January. They always start after the float bowls fill up, even after 4+ months. Winter storage is an overblown "problem".

Long term storage, years, is something else.
 

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Aging Cafe` Racer
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The guy I bought my Bandit off had it sitting for three years with stabil in the tank and a battery tender on it. All it took was a couple of tankfuls to flush the system of old gas and the stabil and it ran like a raped ape. I was impressed how well that worked.
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Has anyone used this charger: Vector 2/10/15 Amp Smart Battery Charger - 12 Volt, Model# VEC1089A

It says it goes automatically to float mode. I bought this brand new as a charger last spring for a battery that was too dead to save. I didn't realize it has a float feature.

I called the company just to see if I could leave the battery on for several months and they answered, "Thank you for calling Black and Decker customer service."

The voice response kept trying to steer me towards telling it that I wanted warranty information so I just started insulting it until it gave up and gave me a real person. Childish but effective.
 

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The Toad
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2 amps....

Has anyone used this charger: Vector 2/10/15 Amp Smart Battery Charger - 12 Volt, Model# VEC1089A

It says it goes automatically to float mode. I bought this brand new as a charger last spring for a battery that was too dead to save. I didn't realize it has a float feature.

I called the company just to see if I could leave the battery on for several months and they answered, "Thank you for calling Black and Decker customer service."

The voice response kept trying to steer me towards telling it that I wanted warranty information so I just started insulting it until it gave up and gave me a real person. Childish but effective.
.... is waaay too much to float a motorcycle battery and will boil it dry. 100 milliamps is more like it. How about one of those solar cell chargers?
 

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Super Duper Mod Man
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Winter storage is an overblown "problem".

Long term storage, years, is something else.
I don't think the winter storage thing is 'overblown' here. You can't believe how many bikes that people put away, don't start them for 5 months, and then can't believe that it doesn't start in spring. Gummed up carbs are quite common here, and lack of winter prep is always the problem. Tank corrosion is pretty common here too. It ain't that hard to fill the tank and throw in some StaBil. An ounce of prevention man.
 

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The Toad
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Jeez.

I don't think the winter storage thing is 'overblown' here. You can't believe how many bikes that people put away, don't start them for 5 months, and then can't believe that it doesn't start in spring. Gummed up carbs are quite common here, and lack of winter prep is always the problem. Tank corrosion is pretty common here too. It ain't that hard to fill the tank and throw in some StaBil. An ounce of prevention man.
Maybe we could start a "winter storage service" for the rubes. A squirt of stabil and a full tank and disconnect the ground lead. Show up in January and charge the battery for an hour. Show up in March and reconnect the battery. Charge 'em $100 bucks. BMW suckers spend $2K on a simple service interval. I'd bet we could rake it in and put Buz to shame.
 

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I like the Harley Davidson Battery Tender. It's the type that has the transformer built into the plug body, and comes with a wire and plug that you mount on the battery and bike. It's (obviously) built for m/c batteries, will charge and then maintain the battery indefinitely, and has indicator LEDs to let you know the battery state. If I recall correctly, it's under $30.
 

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Super Duper Mod Man
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Maybe we could start a "winter storage service" for the rubes. A squirt of stabil and a full tank and disconnect the ground lead. Show up in January and charge the battery for an hour. Show up in March and reconnect the battery. Charge 'em $100 bucks. BMW suckers spend $2K on a simple service interval. I'd bet we could rake it in and put Buz to shame.
$100 bucks? The dealers here have their 'winter storage program' where they charge anywhere from $50 to $100 bucks a month! Hell, for that I can get about 6 more bikes in my garage and make a killing. To be fair, the local Harley stealer will store you bike for free IF you spend 3 grand on parts or accessories. Some deal eh?
 

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My bike never really goes more than a couple of weeks without being ridden. I don't ride in the snow (any more) and I don't ride when there's ice on the road but pretty much everything else is doable to me.

Assuming you're absolutely unable to ride for an extended period of time (injury, living in an area where severe weather is common at least part of the year) is there any reason you couldn't just put the bike on a rear wheel stand and run it through the lower gears for about 20 minutes once a week?
 

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Aging Cafe` Racer
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Assuming you're absolutely unable to ride for an extended period of time (injury, living in an area where severe weather is common at least part of the year) is there any reason you couldn't just put the bike on a rear wheel stand and run it through the lower gears for about 20 minutes once a week?
Are you kidding? it's cold out in the garage !!!!!

The longest my bikes sit is maybe two or three weeks at it time if it's monsoon or freezing. The rest of the time, even if I don't commute on them I go for an hour ride a couple of times a week to keep my head straight. Anyone can stay warm for a short period.
 

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CTEK Battery charger

Your best bet is to get a CTEK. It utilizes a Pulse Charge which will not overcharge or cook your battery. Once it is up to charge, it shuts off completley until the battery requires more. Multiple models avaliable-0.8 amp or 3.3 amp work perfect for bikes. 3.3 amp model also has a "snowflake" or cold storage mode designed for winter storage. CTEK SWEDEN AB - The smartest battery chargers in the world
 

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My bike never really goes more than a couple of weeks without being ridden. I don't ride in the snow (any more) and I don't ride when there's ice on the road but pretty much everything else is doable to me.

Assuming you're absolutely unable to ride for an extended period of time (injury, living in an area where severe weather is common at least part of the year) is there any reason you couldn't just put the bike on a rear wheel stand and run it through the lower gears for about 20 minutes once a week?
Depending on the bike and on whether it has much parasitic drain, three weeks of non-use could be enough to cause a significant discharge. This is less of a problem in cold weather, because self-discharge is slower than in warm weather. But the idea of using the bike as a battery charger has several drawbacks. The first would be the danger of the rear wheel contacting the ground and then running the bike through the garage wall - less of an issue with a race stand, I agree. Still, because of the way a vehicle's voltage regulator operates, it would take maybe a half hour to replace the amp-hours you'd suck out just getting the bike started. And that assumes you keep the revs well above idle. Don't forget the moisture in the crankcase and exhaust system that condenses in cool weather. It takes at least a half hour of operation after full warmup to burn all of that out. Then there's the issue of energy usage - yours and the bike's. With gas near $4 a gallon, a small battery maintainer is likely far less wasteful of energy than a 100 horsepower battery maintainer. Finally, there's the issue of remembering to charge and when the last charge was applied. Because you can leave a maintainer hooked up for months with no fear of damage, it's just less of a hassle all around to plug it in and then forget about it until the next time you ride.

CM
 

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___Dredged up OLD THREAD Alert___

"is there any reason you couldn't just put the bike on a rear wheel stand and run it through the lower gears for about 20 minutes once a week?"

Not to mention all the nasty exhaust fumes.

From the bike, that is.
 

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Super Duper Mod Man
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Bad idea running the bike that little. Condensation will form in the oil and will not have a chance to be burned out. I'd stick with the 30 buck battery tender. Set it and forget it.
 
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