Is it okay to leave a Honda Civic 2008 non operable for 5 months?

I need to travel to the east coast and work from there for a duration of 5 months. I can leave my car in covered parking here and ask a friend to start the car for a few minutes every week.
What possible issues could I face with the car maintenance when I return? Or what issues can arise since the car will be non-operable for a long period?
The car is a Honda Civic 2008 in good condition.
Also, I have the option of shipping the car to east coast - but it would cost me anywhere from 850 - 1000 dollars.
Thanks in advance, Vivekian
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On 11/07/2011 08:45 PM, vivekian wrote:

running it for a few minutes regularly can be very problematic - it won't get hot enough to self-clean and it'll quickly coke up. not to mention exhaust moisture accumulating in the oil and high gasoline mixture diluting the oil film on cylinder walls.
personally, i'd run it until the tank was near empty, change the oil so you're leaving it clean, disconnect the battery and just leave it. when you come to re-start, fill the tank with fresh gas, and maybe change the oil again [although personally, i probably wouldn't], reconnect the battery, and drive away.
you'll also be best advised to put the battery on a smart charger that de-sulfates. if you google this group, you'll see different brands recommended based on users personal experience.
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Why not drive to the east coast? I've driven across the country more than twenty times and I always prefer it to anything else. I used to drive from Dallas to Sacramento for the Traditional Jazz Jubilee every year. Dallas to St. Louis for the Ozarks Jazz fest. Sacramento to Columbus, Ohio, etc. My company shipped my car (they get group rates,) so I let them ship one and drove the other. My son graduated from the USMC boot camp in San Diego and we flew. Pack the car, go down to the airport. Unpack the car. Wait for the bus. Pack the bus. Gio to the terminal. Unpack the bus. Truck to the check-in. Walk to the gate. Take off the shoes, the belt, the cellphone, the change. Go through the scanner. Pick up the stuff, make it to the gate, wait, wait, wait. The plane is always late to be loaded. Just try to pack something in the overhead before Joe Blow and Sally Schmoe fills it with three bags, which is a no-no, but no one cares. Shuffle over some fat person, who has already put the seat divider up so they can spread their fat over your seat, then get kicked by the kid in the back. Late taking off, only a little turbulence which makes them not serve anything, and late landing, late to the gate, late for the baggage, toe them bags then late to the shuttle to the rental car, which is, of course, several miles away from the San Diego airport. Tote those bags, Wait in the line. Get some non-nondescript car. Tote those bags. Note all the dings on the car, which is hard because it is now night. Try to exit. Wait in line. Get on the exit from the airport and just try to get out. Get out on the freeway and try to find the motel. Find the motel. Tote the bags.
On the other hand, when we went down for his advanced graduation, we packed the bags in the car, and drove down Interstate 5 directly to the hotel. It took less time and we felt a whole lot better.
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Not really an option. I am the only driver and its a 2600 mile distance. Also I can't get a vacation right now.
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On 11/8/2011 9:55 AM, vivekian wrote:

If you need a vehicle at the other end, you really should take a closer look at driving. 1) it's a lot cheaper and less hassle than renting a car at the other end. 2) the cost of gas + accomodation + food for such a trip works out to be about the same as plane fare in my experience 3) having been on several long business trips, I found I've been much more confortable with my own Civics than what rental agencies have. 4) if you include a weekend, and don't play tourist on the way you are only talking about using 2-3 days of vacation each way. (less if you would have flown on a week day). 5) In eight months (next year), perhaps you can take some real vacation and take a more leisurely trip back and play tourist on the trip.
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On 11/8/11 1:41 AM, billzz wrote:

twenty times and I always prefer it to anything else. I used to drive from Dallas to Sacramento for the Traditional Jazz Jubilee every year. Dallas to St. Louis for the Ozarks Jazz fest. Sacramento to Columbus, Ohio, etc. My company shipped my car (they get group rates,) so I let them ship one and drove the other. My son graduated from the USMC boot camp in San Diego and we flew. Pack the car, go down to the airport. Unpack the car. Wait for the bus. Pack the bus. Gio to the terminal. Unpack the bus. Truck to the check-in. Walk to the gate. Take off the shoes, the belt, the cellphone, the change. Go through the scanner. Pick up the stuff, make it to the gate, wait, wait, wait. The plane is always late to be loaded. Just try to pack something in the overhead before Joe Blow and Sally Schmoe fills it with three bags, which is a no-no, but no one cares. Shuffle over some fat person, wh o has already put the seat divider up so they can spread their fat over your seat, then get kicked by the kid in the back. Late taking off, only a little turbulence which makes them not serve anything, and late landing, late to the gate, late for the baggage, toe them bags then late to the shuttle to the rental car, which is, of course, several miles away from the San Diego airport. Tote those bags, Wait in the line. Get some non-nondescript car. Tote those bags. Note all the dings on the car, which is hard because it is now night. Try to exit. Wait in line. Get on the exit from the airport and just try to get out. Get out on the freeway and try to find the motel. Find the motel. Tote the bags.

the bags in the car, and drove down Interstate 5 directly to the hotel. It took less time and we felt a whole lot better.
Ya' gotta love guys like you!
The OP asks a straightforward question about long-term vehicle storage and you reply with a self-centered, rambling, off-topic diatribe about what you did on your summer vacation. Sheesh!
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Okay, okay. I got carried away. Sorry. I'd still drive. Then I would have a car. Just me. Fraternities? Society of the Pen and Sword. OCS Hall of Fame. US National War College Alumni Association. All military stuff. I'll be quiet now.
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I would not recommend starting the car for a few minutes every week. Just park it and leave it. But if you MUST have your friend start the car regularly, let it idle for at least a half-hour before shutting it off again.
If you decide to leave the car un-used for 5 months: 1) fill the gas tank completely full, 2) make sure the tires are properly inflated 3) leave the parking brake OFF, 4) disconnect the battery negative cable.
Other than that, the car will be just fine when you get back.
The reason you need to disconnect the battery is that modern cars draw a lot of power even when un-used, and the battery will eventually go flat if it's not disconnected.
The parking brake needs to be left off because sometimes the shoes will stick to the drums if left on for a long time.
Filling the gas tank all the way reduces the amount of oxygen available to the fuel. The more oxygen, the faster the spoilage. If you have access to a gas station that sells non-ethanol gas, that would be best.
--
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On 11/8/11 12:08 PM, Tegger wrote:

What about adding stabilizer to the gas?
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On 11/08/2011 09:16 AM, Douglas C. Neidermeyer wrote:

sure, that helps too.
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"jim beam" wrote

At least with regard to gasoline-powered machines such as lawn tractors and snowblowers, there seems to be two schools of thought for seasonal storage. One is to run the gas tank completely dry (as cited in this thread), and the other is adding stabilizer to the gasoline (actually the process is putting stabilizer into an empty gas can and then adding the gasoline for good mixing). I've chosen the latter and all's been well.
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Not by me. /I/ said to fill the tank completely, and gave a reason why.
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On 11/08/2011 01:04 PM, Tegger wrote:

and if your "reason why" is based on [two pieces of] incomplete information, then what? dig your heels in and insist anyway? much better to stay in the comfort zone of ignorance than learn something new!
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Like Sta-Bil? Good idea.
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On 11/08/2011 09:08 AM, Tegger wrote: <snip for clarity>

oxygen doesn't "spoil" fuel. things like water [ethanol containing fuels], evaporation and even fungus can spoil fuel.
the first two are largely academic for this time frame in the typical modern sealed tank. fungus can be a serious problem though and is something the airline industry has fits over. check out cladosporium resinae.
best leave the tank empty and fill with fresh fuel when returning. the fresh fuel dilutes any gums, residues, the ethanol re-absorbs any moisture [rust is not an issue in modern hdpe tanks], and when pumped [injection fuel pumps circulate], will ensure the engine has fresh [summer] fuel from which to start.
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gasoline is a BLEND of hydrocarbons with different levels of volatility. for winter blends,refiners increase the level of easier vaporizing HCs for easier cold starting. When the easier-vaporizing HC's evaporate away(absorbed by the emissions control evap canister?),the remaining HCs "gum up",particularly if water is present. Ethanol absorbs water.
what's funny is ethanol is also added as an "oxygenate",besides as a gas substitute or "stretcher".
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On 11/08/2011 03:16 PM, Jim Yanik wrote:

"volumizer" is the word they used to use on the petroleum producers p.r. website.
the oilco's just can't believe their luck with all this ethanol b.s. lower grade fuel can be sold because of the octane enhancement of ethanol, plus they now have the ability to add water [!], all producing lower mpg's and thus increasing sales. and they get extra tax benefits to boot!
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1a) add a good fuel stabilizer to mix in while you fill the tank full
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