Minimum use to keep truck healthy

I have a 1998, automatic, Toyota Tacoma. It is the vehicle I always wanted and I do not wish to sell it. Currently, I am living overseas and only use my truck when I?m in the US; about once every two years for a period of two months or so. I am able to store the truck for free at my brother?s home and he drives it once a week to keep it healthy, which means I have to keep it insured. I would like to lower my insurance bill and am considering suspending the insurance and only having the vehicle driven once a month or so. My question is how little/infrequently can the vehicle be driven without deteriorating? Thanks in advance for any feedback.

It should be run at least once a month to prevent the engine seals from drying out. You really don’t have to drive it per say. If you don’t then you should put it up on blocks to prevent the tires from flat spotting from sitting in one spot for a long time. You could just put storage insurance on it which would be much less expensive.

he drives it once a week to keep it healthy

That maybe or may not be good. First since you are storing it for two years at a time, I would not recommend driving it once a week while you are away. Unless that weekly drive gets the engine up to full operating temperature and driving it far enough to use enough fuel to keep it fresh it is likely going to do more damage than good.

My suggestion for storage is:
  • Find a safe place to park the truck

  • Add fuel stabilizer before the last drive

  • Remove the battery and store it away from the car attached to a battery tender (charger designed for just this use)

  • Call your insurance company, likely you can cancel collision and save most of the cost. You could cancel it all, but then you would not be protected from theft other non-accident damage.

    Personally I believe the real cost of keeping that car is far more than the value you are getting from it. I would suggest selling it and renting something every two years.

    A short drive once a week will likely do more damage than good. (Did I already sat that?)

    Oh yea, putting it up on blocks is not needed with modern radial tyres. Flat spots were a problem back in the 60’s when I got my first car, but not today.

There is no guarantee that driving this vehicle during your absence will stop the aging/detioration process that is a normal event. When you get back all you will have is a car that was driven infrequently for the last two years, no more, no less.