Author Topic: How often to run engine?  (Read 5223 times)

yolfer

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How often to run engine?
« on: November 26, 2012, 01:11:41 PM »
My family has a car and a 125cc scooter. My wife uses the car for deliveries, but the scooter has been collecting dust. Yesterday, I used it to run an errand and it was chugging along sort of clumsily. I realized I hadn't used it in a month or two, which got me thinking: is there a maximum period that a car or scooter engine should sit unused? In other words, should I do a scooter trip every once in a while, just to run the engine?

Thanks!!

michael

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Re: How often to run engine?
« Reply #1 on: November 26, 2012, 01:24:39 PM »
I've always heard every two weeks, just around the block a couple of miles. It will keep the juices flowing in the engine block, as well as charge the battery and work the tire rubber. For extended periods of away time, I'll put my car on stands and take the wheels off, then add some fuel stabilizer and disconnect the battery. I haven't had any trouble with these two methods of keeping a vehicle ready when I need it.

Forcus

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Re: How often to run engine?
« Reply #2 on: November 26, 2012, 08:06:04 PM »
I've read that fuel nowadays goes bad in as little as 4 weeks. I'd run some marvel mystery oil or seafoam along with some fresh gas to help get her going. Also if it is an older scooter (as in 15+ years old), you may have an older style fuel line that the alcohol in newer fuels tends to eat up. This can lodge chunks in the fuel filter or carburator.

yolfer

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Re: How often to run engine?
« Reply #3 on: December 02, 2012, 08:47:23 AM »
Thanks guys! I'll make sure to run her every 2 weeks. The tank is only 1 gallon, but at 85MPG it lasts a while. Maybe I'll do the MMM trick of only filling it half way.

SilverSoul

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Re: How often to run engine?
« Reply #4 on: December 02, 2012, 09:15:23 AM »
When I winterize my motorcycle, I remove the battery and place it on a trickle charger to maintain its strength.  I also fill up the fuel tank and add a bit of fuel stabilizer to the tank.  Then, in the spring, I put the battery back in and the bike starts like it had never been sitting!

So, essentially, use fuel stabilizer to keep the gas fresh, and for longer term storage, remove the battery and make sure the fuel tank is full.

Blackbomber

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Re: How often to run engine?
« Reply #5 on: December 17, 2012, 11:17:05 AM »
Out of curiosity, why is the scoot going unused? In my case, I have one sitting because there are several small nagging issues (one being the front brake sticks), and I want to do a full teardown and rebuild. Of course I'm doing a full teardown and rebuild of my kitchen, and therefore the bike is sitting. Otherwise I'm an advocate of riding / using something regularly. I run my chainsaw, blower, and tractor at least once per month, and that is using, not just starting up. I can't really find a use for the line trimmer or tiller in cold months, and snowblower in warm, so those I winterize / summerize as appropriate. I'd sell the scooter if it had recurring costs, but one of the few neat things about CT is that no insurance, reg, or M endorsement (although I do have one) is required to ride the sub 50cc scoots on the road. So with the bike being fully depreciated, I'm not loosing anything but space by holding on to it.

yolfer

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Re: How often to run engine?
« Reply #6 on: December 17, 2012, 05:51:20 PM »
Out of curiosity, why is the scoot going unused? In my case, I have one sitting because there are several small nagging issues (one being the front brake sticks), and I want to do a full teardown and rebuild. Of course I'm doing a full teardown and rebuild of my kitchen, and therefore the bike is sitting. Otherwise I'm an advocate of riding / using something regularly. I run my chainsaw, blower, and tractor at least once per month, and that is using, not just starting up. I can't really find a use for the line trimmer or tiller in cold months, and snowblower in warm, so those I winterize / summerize as appropriate. I'd sell the scooter if it had recurring costs, but one of the few neat things about CT is that no insurance, reg, or M endorsement (although I do have one) is required to ride the sub 50cc scoots on the road. So with the bike being fully depreciated, I'm not loosing anything but space by holding on to it.

Good question! Actually, that's an amazing question! My girlfriend (at the time. Wife now!) had it when we moved in together. She used it to commute but now she works from home and/or a Food Truck. I used it a bunch after an accident left me unable to bike. Now we use it occasionally when we have to get to a dense (i.e. no parking) area quickly.

In other words, we don't really need it. I pay a couple bucks a month for insurance, yearly for the tabs, and an extra $20 or $30 each time I need my license renewed. I guess it's time to sit down with the Mrs. and decide if it's worth the $3k or so we'd get for selling it (+ the money we'd save by not owning it).

Thanks for the wakeup call!

chucklesmcgee

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Re: How often to run engine?
« Reply #7 on: December 17, 2012, 05:57:42 PM »
I've read that fuel nowadays goes bad in as little as 4 weeks. I'd run some marvel mystery oil or seafoam along with some fresh gas to help get her going. Also if it is an older scooter (as in 15+ years old), you may have an older style fuel line that the alcohol in newer fuels tends to eat up. This can lodge chunks in the fuel filter or carburator.

How does fuel go bad?

yolfer

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Re: How often to run engine?
« Reply #8 on: December 19, 2012, 03:10:13 PM »
I've read that fuel nowadays goes bad in as little as 4 weeks. I'd run some marvel mystery oil or seafoam along with some fresh gas to help get her going. Also if it is an older scooter (as in 15+ years old), you may have an older style fuel line that the alcohol in newer fuels tends to eat up. This can lodge chunks in the fuel filter or carburator.

How does fuel go bad?

http://www.straightdope.com/columns/read/2668/why-does-gasoline-go-stale-so-quickly

chucklesmcgee

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Re: How often to run engine?
« Reply #9 on: December 19, 2012, 05:39:26 PM »
I've read that fuel nowadays goes bad in as little as 4 weeks. I'd run some marvel mystery oil or seafoam along with some fresh gas to help get her going. Also if it is an older scooter (as in 15+ years old), you may have an older style fuel line that the alcohol in newer fuels tends to eat up. This can lodge chunks in the fuel filter or carburator.

How does fuel go bad?

http://www.straightdope.com/columns/read/2668/why-does-gasoline-go-stale-so-quickly

Thanks! Good to know.

Blackbomber

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Re: How often to run engine?
« Reply #10 on: December 19, 2012, 05:44:50 PM »
I use StaBil in anything (including my truck) that I might not go through a full tank in a month with. It's pretty cheap, and they claim it keeps fuel fresh for 6 months.

OP - Your scooter sounds like my pickup truck. Except that at this very moment, I am using it quite a bit. But once my home renovations are done, it's going up for sale.

TomTX

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Re: How often to run engine?
« Reply #11 on: December 19, 2012, 09:17:28 PM »
I use StaBil in anything (including my truck) that I might not go through a full tank in a month with. It's pretty cheap, and they claim it keeps fuel fresh for 6 months.

OP - Your scooter sounds like my pickup truck. Except that at this very moment, I am using it quite a bit. But once my home renovations are done, it's going up for sale.

I always use StaBil in the spare gas can - mostly used for the mower. I've had gas for over a year, still worked fine.