“Warming up the car” is a wasteful myth. Just drive.

Warming-up-the-car-is-a-myth

[image credit: Treehugger]

Idling a car to "warm it up" is wasteful and unnecessary

Most people believe that when it's cold outside, that you still need to idle a car for an extended period of time before driving off to avoid causing mechanical damage. That might have been true once upon a time (in the era of carburetors), but modern engines and modern oil only need a relatively short warm up period; after that, the best way to warm up a vehicle is to drive it (granted, if you're going to immediately jump on a highway and drive at high speeds, you might want to warm it up a bit more, but for regular low-speed driving, there's no need).

Solution: Give your car a 30-second warmup, and then drive

From a Department of Energy report: "Avoid idling. Think about it — idling gets you 0 miles per gallon. The best way to warm up a vehicle is to drive it. No more than 30 seconds of idling on winter days is needed. Anything more simply wastes fuel and increases emissions."

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Category: Environment

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Article by: Dave

Dave Cannon is a Seattle-based entrepreneur and consultant to nonprofits and small businesses. He loves Thai food and takes terrible photographs. You can follow him on Linkedin.
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