I don’t drive my BMW convertible in the winter because with rear wheel drive it can’t get up my driveway. I leave it in the garage and start it up every two weeks or so, running it for about a half hour. But I don’t drive it. Is that good enough? Meaning, should it be driven every couple of weeks to keep its transmission and brakes and everything else moving and lubricated and all. Or is it okay – in other words, not causing damage down the road – if I just let it idle in the garage?
For a couple of months it would be better to put a battery tender charger on the battery, add fuel stabilizer to your gas before you park it for the winter, wash it, park it, and let it sit - without the starting and idling every couple of weeks. If you do start it, do it on a nice day with clear and dry roads and take it out for a drive.
I garage a T’bird most of the winter. The only time I start it is when I can take it on the road and use it for a day or two between snow storms. If the roads are messy is stays in the garage on the battery tender.
Your BMW would do ok in snow with winter tires. I have winter tires on the bird just in case one of the other cars is out of service so I can use the bird safely in winter.
You would be better off putting the car in storage for the winter and leaving it alone instead of starting it in the garage. Stabilize the fuel and disconnect the battery, charging it every 60 days or so…If you have a “anti-theft” radio, be sure you know the re-set code before you disconnect the battery. Or you can just buy a “battery tender” type trickle charger and leave that connected all the time…
If you’re going to start it, drive it. Otherwise don’t start it at all. Put a battery tender on it to prevent a dead battery and leave it alone. Letting it sit for a month or two won’t hurt it.
You really shouldn’t start it up like you do. You should either drive it or store it. What you are doing is basically the worst of both worlds.
I currently store a class C RV. I put fuel stabilizer in the gasoline and run the engine long enough for the stabilized fuel to make its way into all parts of the fuel system. Then I hook the battery up to a smart battery charger. It routinely cycles through testing and trickle charging phases. Once a month I run the generator for 30-45 minutes to charge its battery, but the only time I start the engine is when I am moving the RV or taking it on a trip.
I currently commute on one motorcycle and store another for long distance touring. The touring motorcycle gets used about twice a month, but when it gets used it is usually either for a weekend cruise or a weekend trip to Miami (about 340 miles each way). Sometimes the touring bike can sit for up to a month between uses. The only precaution I take is to keep it on a smart battery charger when not in use.
With all these toys, my car doesn’t get as much use as it used to, but I try to commute in it at least once a week, so I don’t do anything special except I don’t normally fill the tank all the way up. I usually only fill it up to the halfway mark in an effort to keep the fuel relatively fresh.
You will notice, with the exception of the RV generator, I don’t start the engine just for the sake of starting the engine (or to charge the battery). I keep the fuel fresh or add fuel stabilizer, and I keep the battery charged. That is all you really need to do.