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This is my first year owning a diesel vehicle (2016 Promaster) and I need to leave parked for six weeks this winter in upstate New York. I am a little uncertain about the steps I should take ensure that it will start after sitting in the cold. Any advice?

Additional Info; I can have someone start the vehicle once a week (or more if super cold), I will be leaving it between December and late January, Winter temperatures vary widely, but are usually between 20F and 32F with cold snaps well below zero possible.
 

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The most you would have to worry about is a low/dead battery. Make sure you fuel tank is full and forget it. You could always leave a trickle charger on it if you are afraid of a dead battery.
 

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+++ on the battery maintainer- it’s a MUST. These vehicles all have a small phantom battery draw.

YELLING HERE, no offense just emphasis- DO NOT HAVE IT STARTED UNLESS IT IS DRIVEN FOR ABOUT A HALF HOUR+! DAMHIK!
 

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wow ...not what i would do.

I wouldnt run it at all until the time you need it. Im in NYS and have run diesel engines. I suggest you go to local store like advanced auto or walmart and pick up a white bottle called power service. do NOT pick the gray one. you want the white bottle. the white bottle is for winterizing your diesel fuel. This helps to keep the fuel from gelling when the temps drop. just read the instructions and pour the amount needed in your tank. diesels likes to be run, they hate to be run for short time so when its time to use , put it to work. dont start up in middle of winter just because you wont be home for awhile. leave it alone. I would not put a battery tender on it, i would install a cutoff or just disconnect the positive side from battery. if you pull the cable, leave the floor off so you know its a reminder to hook back up so no senior moment later.

If you park the diesel thru the winter and never use it till spring, no need for the *********** service bottle. it will ungell when it gets warm again. however i would add it anyways to be safe because you never know if you need to move the van in middle of winter and a plugged filter is no fun. the power service 911 will help but the filter will need to be changed, so adding white bottle stuff is a ounce of prevention and when it gets warm and you didnt need it - it only takes 6-7 hours of driving to empty the tank and its back to regular diesel.
 

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I would not put a battery tender on it, i would install a cutoff or just disconnect the positive side from battery. if you pull the cable, leave the floor off so you know its a reminder to hook back up so no senior moment later.
My thoughts are similar. A battery tender is great for local storage for occasional use. But if you are going to walk away from it for months at a time in a cold climate, I'd be inclined to disconnect the battery or remove it all together and bring it inside. Has some minor theft-deterrent value too.
 

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Put some mouse traps under the hood and check them frequently. Mice love to eat the black material on the hood and firewall insulation.
 

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I have 5(6 until this year) vehicles in NH that sit for 6 months each year and 3 that sit for the other 6 months in SW AZ. Want theory or experience? In NH The Tractor has no saprophytic draw and neither does the CT90. All the rest do and must have the battery disconnected or a battery tender left on all the time. If they are disconnected or have no draw, a maintainer can be run for about a week each month or two. Leave them with less charging at your own risk. Batteries freeze and do discharge slowly on their own. The Miata is AGM but still needs the intermittent tender. My son does the charging by turning on a couple of power strips. In AZ I do not have power on when I am gone, all the batteries are disconnected. Heat is a problem for batteries but the batteries will not freeze when discharged like NH. When I return none of the batteries are dead but I don’t try to start vehicles until I have attached a good charger (not a maintainer) and recharge them. One is AGM and sees the same treatment. Typically I get almost twice the life out of the batteries in NH as they never really get discharged, and cold is more forgiving the chemistry as long as they do not freeze. Have I always done this- no. I used to believe they would be fine in the cold if I just disconnected them. Then I used to leave them attached to the vehicle and the maintainer on all the time. Both resulted in premature death from freezing or drying out or other unexplained issues.
Batteries need to be clean to prevent electrical losses, a reason I don’t like the idea of hanging them below the van. By disconnected I mean I remove the negative terminal. Why negative? Because the wrench won’t short out when it touches the vehicle as you remove the terminal. Take this for what you will. I am a firm believer that the best education is experience..... it is also the most expensive.
 

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Put some mouse traps under the hood and check them frequently. Mice love to eat the black material on the hood and firewall insulation.
A propper building is mouse proof. I have three storage buildings for vehicles, one in AZ and two in NH and I have never had a mouse in any of them. I did build them myself and I hate mice.
For vehicles left outside you will have mice living in them (snakes in AZ too) there is no stoping them from getting into everything. They love that insulation, the wire coverings (which are now often soy based) and your air filter. I did post a fix for the PM air filter. Admit defeat and buy a good pair of gloves and a respirator to clean them out. Hantavirus is not a joke. Dryer sheets are better than Paradichlorobenzene or naphthalene and neither is harmless to you. Whatever you do do, not put out Warfarin in a vehicle outside as it will be taken everywhere by the mice, they will die all around the vehicle and predators will eat them. Warfarin thins blood to the point it spontaneously leaks from the body. Mice and rats are becoming immune to it anyway. Give up, mice will be living in your vehicle.
 

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A proper building is mouse proof. I have three storage buildings for vehicles, one in AZ and two in NH and I have never had a mouse in any of them. I did build them myself and I hate mice...
I totally agree with the need for a building and built this after dealing with mice for two seasons:

 
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