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Author Topic: Warming up the car Back to Topics
JamCoope
Rookie Author
Maryland

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Message Posted: Jan 26, 2011 10:21:52 AM

Most people agree that cars run more economically once they're warmed up... especially in the cold winter months.

Here's a question: has anyone tested whether it is more economical to let your car warm up by idling in the driveway, or by just letting warm up as you drive?
REPLIES (newest first) Post a Reply
drgeeforce
Veteran Author Los Angeles

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Message Posted: Feb 28, 2015 12:59:30 PM

@borsht, most factory oil pumps are mechanical, just bypass the mechanical oil pump with an electrical one. Turn the key, program a 2-3 sec delay to get the oil flowing, then start.
borsht
Champion Author Oakland

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Message Posted: Feb 28, 2015 12:11:53 PM

A simple ,non-rocket science method, would use An accumulator installed on the engine to run parallel with the main oil pump.
When the engine is running the accumulator charges with oil from the oil pump in the engine. When the engine is shut off a solenoid valve is closed trapping the oil, under pressure, in the accumulator. When starting the engine the next time all you do is turn the key to the on position a second or so before starting to release the oil to pre-lube the engine.

The only moving additional part would be the solenoid valve. Just fire the solenoid when the key is turned on.
In fact just fire it when the gasoline pump does it initial run when starting up to pre pressurize the fuel injectors.
borsht
Champion Author Oakland

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Message Posted: Feb 28, 2015 11:46:32 AM

The engine needs oil flow to all bearing surfaces before placing a load on the engine for max engine life. It's not the warm up per-se.
It would be good if the oil companies designed in a pre-start-up oil pump
to get the oil flowing before one starts his engine>

[Edited by: borsht at 2/28/2015 11:46:53 AM EST]
twt
Champion Author Virginia Beach

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Message Posted: Feb 28, 2015 11:21:27 AM

A waste of fuel.
carinthuist
Champion Author San Francisco

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Message Posted: Feb 28, 2015 10:51:04 AM

no
drgeeforce
Veteran Author Los Angeles

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Message Posted: Feb 27, 2015 6:07:36 PM

Dipstick oil heaters and magnetic oil pan heaters are cheaper options.
xtremecheap
Champion Author Arkansas

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Message Posted: Feb 27, 2015 5:36:23 PM

Cars are designed to drive, not idle.
blk911
Champion Author Colorado Springs

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Message Posted: Feb 27, 2015 4:11:28 PM

Big Waste!
MsPeachi747
Veteran Author Cleveland

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Message Posted: Feb 27, 2015 1:05:56 PM

Warming up the car so auto fluids get dispersed throughout auto is the best way to save auto engine and auto parts.
ChiefNolarama
All-Star Author Nebraska

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Message Posted: Feb 27, 2015 10:51:38 AM

Warm up the car for comfort - there is no other reason to do it.
b899
Champion Author Connecticut

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Message Posted: Feb 27, 2015 8:18:55 AM

no
jitsu
Rookie Author New York

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Message Posted: Feb 27, 2015 6:54:44 AM

I start the car and drive off. There is no sound reason to have to warm up a car prior to driving away. If one wants to have a warm vehicle to enter install a remote starter. Remember you are using gasoline if you allow vehicle to idle in driveway for the ten minutes or so it takes to warm up. It is each of our choices to make....
dontuknowOH
Champion Author Ohio

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Message Posted: Feb 27, 2015 6:42:07 AM

Yes I have some "WOSSEY" Days called older age, and mild so far, I'll blame it on the Weather! My vehicles have heaters, that actually work much better on modern vehicles.

The big BUT is they could be much better on quicker heat production time interval to the cabin areas/vents. Like 45 seconds for results... NICE !
Hemond
Champion Author Providence

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Message Posted: Feb 27, 2015 6:41:41 AM

In reality poorly said. Ignores the reason to warm up. Which is for comfort.
hoopitup2000
Champion Author Virginia

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Message Posted: Feb 27, 2015 6:13:43 AM

"repeat, mechanically there is zero need to warm the car..."

Well said & enough said . . . . . .
Hemond
Champion Author Providence

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Message Posted: Feb 27, 2015 4:32:50 AM

Seat heaters are pretty much useless in the initial warming of the car's interior. First you have to actually get in the car, sit down, and turn them on. Second, by the time they kick in, you have already driven 5 to 7 minutes.

Nonetheless, I like the heaters, and they do feel good, but they do not address the problem of getting in a cold car.

For that, the obvious solution for most of us is to let it idle for 5 minutes. Uses an insignificant amount of fuel and results in a very comfortable cabin.
poetdog73
Champion Author Toledo

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Message Posted: Feb 27, 2015 4:26:29 AM

no
gougedQC
Champion Author Montreal

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Message Posted: Feb 26, 2015 7:08:13 PM

ggg452- there is zero mechanical need to warm up the car and getting the oil and water moving..Modern oils, anti-freezes and computerized controls, injected engines have eliminated the need for any warm up ...
Warm up idea comes from the pre-1960s when the heat risers controlled carburetted engines which could stall before they were warm

repeat, mechanically there is zero need to warm the car...It's been around -15 to -30 every day for over 50 days straight..never needed a warm up..get in my 14 year old car, start and go.

If youre worried about your bum getting chilly, thats another matter..but then again..aren't you already dressed for the cold with gloves hat scarf warm coat, boots? you cant stand another couple minutes inside the car while it warms up ...while driving..as opposed to polluting the atmosphere uneccessarily?
litesong
Sophomore Author Gary

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Message Posted: Feb 24, 2015 2:54:17 PM

Seat heaters help cut down the engine warmup time because people's butts are warmed quickly. It also allows one to set a slightly cooler interior heat setting. I like & have used the heated dipsticks in the past, when my car was parked outside. Let's the engine reduce initial start up wear&tear, because the oil is warmed by only 10 watts of electricity!
diesdown
Champion Author North Carolina

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Message Posted: Feb 24, 2015 12:30:34 PM

Warming up uses fuel while you're sitting still ....it's not more economical, especially with later model vehicles.
retiredssgt
All-Star Author North Carolina

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Message Posted: Feb 24, 2015 9:32:56 AM

No
PC_man
Rookie Author Pennsylvania

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Message Posted: Feb 24, 2015 8:19:22 AM

NO but my gas mileage has suffered in this cold weather
b899
Champion Author Connecticut

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Message Posted: Feb 24, 2015 8:09:36 AM

no
boborobot
Champion Author Michigan

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Message Posted: Feb 23, 2015 6:22:11 PM

yes
RASfuel
Champion Author Ocala

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Message Posted: Feb 23, 2015 11:11:01 AM

Hybrids don't need warming. No.
b899
Champion Author Connecticut

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Message Posted: Feb 21, 2015 9:48:58 AM

no
xmstr
Rookie Author Michigan

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Message Posted: Feb 18, 2015 8:00:27 AM

Never tried it
twt
Champion Author Virginia Beach

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Message Posted: Feb 18, 2015 7:30:25 AM

A waste of time and fuel.
JohnCur
All-Star Author New Jersey

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Message Posted: Feb 16, 2015 1:10:30 PM

It is now 14 degrees....will warm up for 10 minutes for me not car
b899
Champion Author Connecticut

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Message Posted: Feb 16, 2015 9:01:43 AM

no
Hemond
Champion Author Providence

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Message Posted: Feb 15, 2015 5:59:21 PM

There is a phenomenon which occurs in mid February. You get used to the cold. It's been in the single digits lately and the cold simply doesn't bother you as much after a while. I was just outside for an hour at about 10 degrees F. It didn't seem as brutal as 10 degrees in November would be. Funny.


Sometimes I make a quick run outside in just my t shirt when its 6 degrees. To empty the trash, or get something out of the trunk, or to start up the engine. In Nov. I'd put on coat, gloves, hat and sweater. In Feb I just dash outside in a t shirt.

(double check to make sure the door is unlocked and I carry the housekey too. no fun being locked outside in a tshirt in single digits.)
ray44512
Veteran Author Ohio

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Message Posted: Feb 15, 2015 5:47:54 PM

Not normally, but during abnormally winter cold (-8!) I give the car a few minutes to allow everything to get used to moving. I started the car BEFORE ordering the pizza, just wanted to make sure it would indeed start.
Hemond
Champion Author Providence

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Message Posted: Feb 14, 2015 1:11:45 PM

6 degrees F last night. YOu bet I warmed it up. I ran out quickly to start it and ran back in fast. Too cold! Wish I had a remote start. Next car I get, that will be a priority.
ggg452
Champion Author Manitoba

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Message Posted: Feb 14, 2015 11:47:47 AM

running an engine for a short time to circulate water and oil is a good thing...
JohnCur
All-Star Author New Jersey

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Message Posted: Feb 14, 2015 10:15:39 AM

no
b899
Champion Author Connecticut

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Message Posted: Feb 14, 2015 9:18:26 AM

no
Houckster
Champion Author Atlanta

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Message Posted: Feb 13, 2015 8:58:28 PM

One other point, if you have to park on the street, or near it, and you leave your car unattended while it's warming up, you're asking to have it stolen. What better way to have a car stolen than to provide a thief with a warm car so that he'll be comfortable as he drives off.

Remember too, he will probably have your house key as well.
Houckster
Champion Author Atlanta

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Message Posted: Feb 13, 2015 8:47:23 PM

30 Seconds Does It.

[Edited by: Houckster at 2/13/2015 8:53:49 PM EST]
twt
Champion Author Virginia Beach

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Message Posted: Feb 13, 2015 7:15:56 PM

runs better when warm
onegassaver
Sophomore Author Detroit

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Message Posted: Feb 13, 2015 4:28:32 PM

it has been bitter cold in metro Detroit area lately, so I have been warming up my car. Engine runs smoother.
contiki
Champion Author Ontario

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Message Posted: Feb 11, 2015 7:07:13 AM

We like to warm up my 2003 Honda Accord and my wife's new 2014 Honda Civic LX in these cold mornings here in Ontario............

We always warm up our vehicles over the many winter months....
StArrow68
Champion Author Oakland

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Message Posted: Feb 10, 2015 3:25:08 PM

What? It's winter and the next week is forecast to be in the mid 70's each day. Be lucky if I don't have to use the A/C by the end of the week.
dontuknowOH
Champion Author Ohio

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Message Posted: Feb 10, 2015 9:25:43 AM

When I start My ICE engines on a very cold day, I expect the oil pressure at all bearings to be flowing under the correct pressure during the first three seconds of run time. The other areas of concern for gentle operation are the piston rings, pistons, mid section of the cylinder wall surfaces of each cylinder.

Those areas only get lubed by oil splash/oil vapors, not by a soaking effect in bath oil. Those areas have extreme pressure contact(sealing pressure) also the highest speed velocity at midpoint of each engine stroke. Engine RPM have a great effect here when the oil is cold V/S much warmer.

The piston rings area is where the intense explosion/expansion of energy work pressure is applied to the many moving engine parts, Dynamite type pressures and heat stress......against the pistons in motion (rocket type pressure).

The other thing is the area at the top of each piston is being heated by each cylinder combustion explosion taking place as the engines runs. While at the same time interval the bottom side of each piston is still subjected to the colder oil temps, still trying to warm/balance with the oil temps slowly rising. Rising toward normal, many minutes later.

Driving away using TLC engine RPM will help these areas to last for a healthy satisfactory performing engine, for longer engine life. Tea Time!
RacksnSpurs
Veteran Author Raleigh

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Message Posted: Feb 9, 2015 11:07:00 PM

no
Houckster
Champion Author Atlanta

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Message Posted: Feb 9, 2015 7:40:03 PM

On very cold days, I might let the engine run about 30 seconds before driving off but most times, I just drive right off taking it easy until the engine reached normal operating temperature. Actually, I always drive easily until the engine has warmed.
Tucsonhomes
Champion Author Tucson

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Message Posted: Feb 9, 2015 12:00:33 PM

No, its not very useful and its not even close to cold enough here
b899
Champion Author Connecticut

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Message Posted: Feb 9, 2015 9:13:50 AM

no
dontuknowOH
Champion Author Ohio

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Message Posted: Feb 7, 2015 8:31:19 AM

The topic question first of all is a bit tricky. There will be a cost to each cold vehicle warming, cost verses the intended purpose for using the vehicle. Extra mileage or none for any reason will add up that cost. The difference here seems related to the comfort efforts of choice habits of the driver only during the initial cold start enrichment engine mode cost.

I think that cost varies with all circumstances involved, just like ownership, meaning just leaving the vehicle sit then turned off on a cold day not driven at all = cost. Convenience = cost aIsi, along with the frills of the plus/minus decisions, after turning the KEY. Stay Happy!
Gabilondo
Champion Author New Mexico

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Message Posted: Feb 6, 2015 2:22:33 PM

no
jl1rp
Champion Author New Hampshire

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Message Posted: Feb 6, 2015 2:18:50 PM

no
rrtruck
Champion Author Austin

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Message Posted: Feb 6, 2015 10:12:48 AM

Hmmm, let's think about this. Does the car get better mileage SITTING, going nowhere or does it get better mileage actually moving? I'll let the OP work on that one.
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