Storage - Kia Niro Forum
 
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post #1 of 5 (permalink) Old 12-31-2018, 04:54 AM Thread Starter
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Storage

Greetings to other Niro owners! And a post-"Merry Christmas" and (tomorrow) a "Happy New Year!"
We purchased a hybrid Niro this past summer and have enjoyed it though not driven too much at this point. We have been full timing RV'ers for 15 years and decided, due to health concerns, to settle down. Our tow truck for our 5th wheel sold before the RV and thus the need for a different daily vehicle. Wanted a hybrid and assumed it would be a Prius but due to a number of factors, we decided on the Niro. Living in Minnesota and not having a winter-livable home, we put the Niro into indoor (not heated) storage in September with retrieval scheduled for mid-May 2019. Following the (sometimes) mixed dealer advice, we turned off the battery pack via a switch near the left side of the steering wheel (under the dash) and also disconnected the startup battery in the right rear "trunk." Not sure if we did it all right but too late to do anything now. Also used synthetic oil and filled tank with high octane gasoline along with a stabilizer. Some said that is "overkill?" If someone has ideas about potential problems we may run into next May, we would like to hear from you. In the meantime, I am reading about winter heating issues, traction control during snow/slush, etc. Hoping I'll learn from all of you before (if the RV sells) before we need to drive it during that season in the near future.
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post #2 of 5 (permalink) Old 12-31-2018, 10:33 AM
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The batteries will self regulate and hold the charge at or around the 35% mark. The oil side, you have a couple of options to consider. You can either do the highest grade stuff as it is going to sit for quite a while not moving. The other option is to do your oil change right before you put the car away for the winter months and use a lower cost oil (and you don't need to change the oil filter) that will sit in the car over those months. Then when you get back, do a second oil change where you'd put in your normal oil and change the filter. The cheap oil will oxidize but it really doesn't matter as your pulling it out of the car when you get back and start driving. The other consideration is the wheels. Do you jack up the car to take the weight off the wheels? Your tires sitting for a long time can get a flat spot on the tread that will affect the drive and handling of the car. The factory pumps up the tires to a higher PSI to try and offset that while shipping the cars. That is why some here have said they got the car with a 46-48psi on the tires and wonder why it says they should be at 36 on the side door sticker.

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post #3 of 5 (permalink) Old 12-31-2018, 12:53 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Hank View Post
Following the (sometimes) mixed dealer advice, we turned off the battery pack via a switch near the left side of the steering wheel (under the dash) and also disconnected the startup battery in the right rear "trunk." Not sure if we did it all right but too late to do anything now. Also used synthetic oil and filled tank with high octane gasoline along with a stabilizer. Some said that is "overkill?" If someone has ideas about potential problems we may run into next May, we would like to hear from you.

Maybe the "high octane" part was overkill, but this sounds like a pretty good approach. As Roadkill401 mentioned, if you didn't jack up the car or increase the tire pressure, you might find that the tires have flat spots when you retrieve the car. When I've encountered that problem in the past on a different vehicle, it went away after driving for about 20 miles. The only other thing I might have done would have been to introduce something to deter rodents from gnawing on the electrical wires or making nests under the hood. In the past, I've used a mesh bag (such as an old onion bag) with moth balls suspended by a cord under the hood to address that concern.

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post #4 of 5 (permalink) Old 12-31-2018, 11:31 PM
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Rodents and flat spots on tires are bigger concerns than gas in an airtight tank or the traction battery. I agree with disconnecting a 12 V lead acid battery (I didn't think there were any hybrids sold in North America so equipped), but if you had an outlet available, a trickle charger might extend battery life. Unlike most modern cars, my motorcycle has zero vampire drain, but those batteries are really expensive, so I do use a trickle charger for the four winter months I don't use it in hopes of extending its life. So far so good 6 years after purchasing it. It sits on a center stand so tire issues are unlikely (haven't had any).

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post #5 of 5 (permalink) Old 01-02-2019, 07:28 AM Thread Starter
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Storage

Thank you one and all for your response(s) to my questions/concerns re: long time storage of our Kia Niro. We did not jack up the car because: 1) storage facility owner wanted the option to move the Niro if it became necessary; 2) having often had the RV parked in one spot for at least 6 months, any flat part on the tires seemed to go away (as one of you noted pertaining to your car). Fresh oil and filter was part of the pre-storage preparation. Facility owner (regarding rodents) obviously could not guarantee a rodent-free environment, did tell me he had someone come in each month for the purpose of rodent-control AND, to date, there had been no issues of such problems in over 10 years. So - we shall see -. We thought about a trickle charger but did not follow up as Dealer said not needed due to disconnected batteries. Also, not sure if storage unit had outlet - probably did so but, as I wrote, we did not deem in necessary.

Last edited by Hank; 01-02-2019 at 07:32 AM. Reason: additional information
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