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  1. #1
    rlhmax
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    First start in 6 months

    My 1999 Z3 has not been started in 6 months. I've been out of country. It's been in the garage, but not heated. Any precautions prior to starting it? Only has 54,000 miles.

  2. #2
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    I would strongly suggest that you. . .

    do some facial stretching exercises to prepare your mouth for the broad smile that will surely stretch across your face when you fire her up! :o)

    In all seriousness, after 6 months of sitting it's possible that your battery may need some help with a little charging. Otherwise, I wouldn't be too concerned about firing her up after 6 months. Once fired up, keep in mind that your tires may have some flat spots from sitting still on the same spot for so long. Those may even out with some driving, but you won't know that until you start driving. Just don't be too surprised if you have some thumping/wheel shimmy at first.

    JTP
    '00 Bright Red II, Black, Black 2.3

    PERFORMANCE: Dinan Stage II suspension, Dinan strut tower brace, Porterfield R4S brake pads, Goodyear Eagle F1 GS-D3 tires, UNGO MS8300 alarm, Doug Whalen Seat Bushings, Sylvania Silverstar headlights and fog lights. MAINTENANCE: Peake Research R5/fcx-II and SRS Reset Tools, Mity-Vac oil evacuator w/ brake bleeder, BMW Battery Tender. COSMETICS: Dinan Badge, OEM chrome exhaust tips, Magnetic stone guards, Roundel valve stem caps, Trunk-mounted Dragon sticker, WI plates: RES IPSA. COMFORT: Premium Package, Heated sport seats, “Z3 Roadster” heated vest (for wife), In-dash CD, LeatherZ MarkII armrest, OEM mesh windscreen. CAR CARE: Porter Cable random orbit buffer, Meguiars car care products, NOAH car cover, Plexus, Raggtop. EXTRAS: Z3Solutions warning triangle.

    My Home Page

  3. #3
    NC02Z3
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    Re: I would strongly suggest that you. . .

    6 months is nothing. Just no hard driving for the first 10-15 minutes or so while everything warms up and circulates. Good points about the battery and tires. If the tires were on the 'older' side to start with, the flat spots may not go away. I had another car sit for 10 months once and the tires only had 3,000 miles on them but were 5 years old. They never recovered to a smooth ride.

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    Next time you store it, put it on blocks...

    and that will prevent the tire flat spots. Do not, however, let the wheels hang. Put some support under the tires (it relieves the hanging and only lightly puts pressure against the bottom of the tire) or you can put jack stands as close to the inner wheel as possible.

    Scott Pettit

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    I store with tires at 45 psi...

    ...and after a long Buffalo winter I rarely get any thumping on the first drive in the spring- after dropping pressure down of course. I store with a full fuel tank with a marine fuel stabilizer added, and use a battery tender for a day every 2 weeks or so to keep the battery charged. I bought my Z in '02 and no storage troubles so far. I don't like supporting the car on blocks since to me its too much work to go through. One trick I've heard about that I may try is to have the tires sitting on 2 layers of sections cut from an old carpet to reduce flat spotting while in storage.Doug

  6. #6
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    Easier solution

    As you mentioned, you don't want the tired to just hang as that is a lot of load on the suspension parts (and in the opposite direction than they are designed to hold load) for an entire winter. Plus, it's just a pain to have to jack the car up in the first place, much less try to find some way of maintaining some light degree of weight bearing.

    Instead, I run my tires up to 50psi and then pull the wheels onto sections of foil-lined polystyrene insulation squares. The poly hugs the tires so that they don't flat spot. I have done this for several winters now and it has worked like a charm.

    Make sure it is foil-lined, though, or you will end up with poly stuck to your tires. It will burn off, of course, but why go through the hassle?

    JTP
    '00 Bright Red II, Black, Black 2.3

    PERFORMANCE: Dinan Stage II suspension, Dinan strut tower brace, Porterfield R4S brake pads, Goodyear Eagle F1 GS-D3 tires, UNGO MS8300 alarm, Doug Whalen Seat Bushings, Sylvania Silverstar headlights and fog lights. MAINTENANCE: Peake Research R5/fcx-II and SRS Reset Tools, Mity-Vac oil evacuator w/ brake bleeder, BMW Battery Tender. COSMETICS: Dinan Badge, OEM chrome exhaust tips, Magnetic stone guards, Roundel valve stem caps, Trunk-mounted Dragon sticker, WI plates: RES IPSA. COMFORT: Premium Package, Heated sport seats, “Z3 Roadster” heated vest (for wife), In-dash CD, LeatherZ MarkII armrest, OEM mesh windscreen. CAR CARE: Porter Cable random orbit buffer, Meguiars car care products, NOAH car cover, Plexus, Raggtop. EXTRAS: Z3Solutions warning triangle.

    My Home Page

  7. #7
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    I would consider pulling the fuel pump fuse

    So you can crank it a bit to circulate the oil before starting.

    You're probably going to have to charge the battery first. If you try to crank it with a dead battery you'll make the radio forget its codes.

    Tom M.

    "All of us get lost in the darkness
    Dreamers learn to steer by the stars
    All of us do time in the gutter
    Dreamers turn to look at the cars" - N. Peart

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    Re: First start in 6 months

    I bought my Z on October 23 and in mid-November laced her up for the winter. Then, I dumped my Yaris and got a MINI Clubman which I started driving when I put the Z3 up.

    I went out to start the Z today ( a weekly ritual) and man, I'll tell ya, it's gonna be something to get behind the wheel again.

    What a perfect combo - the Clubbie and the Z3. +1 for the Clubbie vs. the MINI Cooper if you have kids... that clubdoor and few extra inches make all the difference in the world.2000 BMW Z3 2.8 5-speed stock; Oxfordgruen/tan/black
    2008 MINI Clubman 6-speed stock; Hot Chocolate/black

  9. #9
    Ted R.
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    I routinely store my baby for 6 months at a time..

    I don't drive my Z over the winter months. Therefore I put it in the garage with a cover and zipped up in an auto bag as in the photo at http:[email protected]/5034105806/in/set-72157624929700911/

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