How bad to idle my brand new Toyota/Scion tC for 8 hours?

i

Messages
152
Location
southern
The car is just more or less broken in. 1800 miles. 2AZFE engine (more or less the same 2.4L 4cyl in the Camry. Still on factory fill oil (5w30), which I've decided to run out to 5000 miles before switching to 5w30 PP. So let's say I pulled into a rest area and wanted to sleep in the car at night in the hellacious southern summer heat,(yes I am aware of carbon monoxide issues -- it's a new car with new exhaust and I'd leave the outside ventillation blowing fresh air in) , so I left it idling 6-8 hours. Just how bad would this be for the motor, and why? I read here a while back while all modern motors don't depend on the old "splash" (Model T type) of lubrication, they still more or less count on a "cloud of oil droplets" that the sump is filled with when the motor us running at operating RPM range, and that at idle the motor therefore wears more. Other than that, and I don't even know if it's true, I can't see why a gasoline motor with good oil and filter would wear a heck of a lot just idling for a few hours. Also, if "cloud theory" is true, wouldn't some oils (e.g., synthetics) form far less of a cloud, and therefore make the engine wear more?
 
Messages
2,387
Location
Chicago area
Camshaft lobes, valve stems, and pistons, are lubed/cooled by splash. Cam chains also. Without air flow, it's gonna get real hot in the engine compartment, under those conditions. Will it really hurt anything? Probably not - modern engines are designed to be able to idle indefinitely. Cop cars regularly have similar situations - maybe not as long, though.
 
Messages
651
Location
la jolla, ca
I would imagine it's not the best thing to do with lack of fresh air into the engine and no load on it but cops do this everyday and those 4.6's still last a decent amount of time. I would imagine in the long run it won't really matter as the rest of the car will be trashed before the engine. Though say it burns ~1 gallon an hour and fuel is say $3.00 or whatever your paying (sure is expensive in CA) so $20-25 for resting in your car or for a bit more you could get a cheap room in a motel which is far safer for numerous reasons.
 
Messages
11,378
Location
Florida, Cape Coral
I'm with michaelc80. Get a cheap motel. I don't have data but, have read many times that idleing is one of the worst things you can do to an engine. The pistons and some other parts depend on oil being throne onto the cylender walls by the fast turning crankshaft. You don't get clean oil constantly on the cylender walls while idleing. JMO Ed
 
Messages
1,979
Location
Dallas, TX
Having worked in a GM dealer in the frozen north (Wyoming), we saw a lot of cases of clogged catalytic converters where folks were letting their cars run overnight. At idle, exaust temps weren't high enough to keep the carbon burned off, and the cats filled up and plugged...the cars wouldn't even start. Cat replacements on all of them.
 
Messages
47,791
Location
Everson WA - Pacific NW USA
This thread is destined to be a classic. GM and fellows, feel free to jump in. I'll say something stupid like, how did people ever sleep before there were air conditioners? Cheap hotels! Gotta love it............sorry. Carry on.
 
Messages
1,779
Location
Central Iowa
quote:
Originally posted by Pablo: This thread is destined to be a classic. GM and fellows, feel free to jump in. I'll say something stupid like, how did people ever sleep before there were air conditioners? Cheap hotels! Gotta love it............sorry. Carry on.
Here's a cheap motel that should be right on the way....  -
 
Messages
11,284
Location
Spring HIll
quote:
Originally posted by CBDFrontier06: Having worked in a GM dealer in the frozen north (Wyoming), we saw a lot of cases of clogged catalytic converters where folks were letting their cars run overnight. At idle, exaust temps weren't high enough to keep the carbon burned off, and the cats filled up and plugged...the cars wouldn't even start. Cat replacements on all of them.
Would FP/LC help keep carbon out of the picture and help make the cats last longer? [I dont know]
 
Messages
1,979
Location
Dallas, TX
I'm not sure what FP / LC are....additives? I ran the best gas money could buy back then, and left several of my cars idling in the parking lot overnight (you have to understand Gillette, WY to know why this was safe) and never had a problem....so that may be a attributed to burning a good quality gas. I also used BG Supercharge fuel system cleaner regularly which might have also helped with deposits.
 
Messages
1,627
Location
Timberline
Have traveled many many highways and roads in my time, travel times - on the road - lasting as long as 36-48hrs depending on where we were going. If it were for an hour, I'd say go for it. But 6-8hrs, in my opinion, you're gonna loose just as much $$$ in gas idling as you would if you found a cheap motel. Not only that, but the fear of overheating the engine while you're sound asleep, that'd be one heck of an expensive bill on a brand-new car. Yes, it IS brand-new, and theoretically the car should cool efficiently, but realistically there's no telling. And, let me tell you, there's nothing worse then having vehicle trouble out on a long lonely stretch of highway. I personally wouldn't dream of doing it. Yes, that often meant for us, a very sweaty, miserable sleep - as we'd climb into the camper that only allowed you to open so many windows. Generally, those hot/humid drives only allowed us 2-3hrs of sleep at most while enroute to our vacation spot. But, I always felt worse for the alaskan malamute/Dalmatian mix 80# girl that traveled with us. She was definitely hotter.
 
Messages
2,698
Location
Silicon Valley
quote:
Originally posted by windnsea00: Though say it burns ~1 gallon an hour and fuel is say $3.00 or whatever your paying (sure is expensive in CA) so $20-25 for resting in your car or for a bit more you could get a cheap room in a motel which is far safer for numerous reasons.
It won't consume more than 0.2 gallons per hour, so the cost is negligible. But still not safe for him or good for the car. I also think a rest stop security officer won't let him idle all night and will come knocking on the window...
 
Messages
10,909
Location
Nokesville, VA
I remember seeing a police video where a guy apparently fell asleep in his car with the engine running, and the car caught fire. Apparently, his foot hit the accelerator pedal (causing the engine to rev up, of course) and the engine overheated as a result of being revved in neutral for a long time, causing the car to catch fire. The police were able to get him out of the car just in time.
 
Messages
5,762
Location
North Texas
quote:
Originally posted by i: The car is just more or less broken in. 1800 miles. 2AZFE engine (more or less the same 2.4L 4cyl in the Camry. Still on factory fill oil (5w30), which I've decided to run out to 5000 miles before switching to 5w30 PP. So let's say I pulled into a rest area and wanted to sleep in the car at night in the hellacious southern summer heat,(yes I am aware of carbon monoxide issues -- it's a new car with new exhaust and I'd leave the outside ventillation blowing fresh air in) , so I left it idling 6-8 hours. Just how bad would this be for the motor, and why? I read here a while back while all modern motors don't depend on the old "splash" (Model T type) of lubrication, they still more or less count on a "cloud of oil droplets" that the sump is filled with when the motor us running at operating RPM range, and that at idle the motor therefore wears more. Other than that, and I don't even know if it's true, I can't see why a gasoline motor with good oil and filter would wear a heck of a lot just idling for a few hours. Also, if "cloud theory" is true, wouldn't some oils (e.g., synthetics) form far less of a cloud, and therefore make the engine wear more?
Driving that long will cause you to fun your gas tank empty. Now if you let it idle im sure your gas will run out much faster.
 
I have done this many times. I have never had a problem. Have slept in rest stops for six to eight hours on some accations. I make sure the tank is always topped off first. I know this is not much to use to justify my choices but I raise the fact that many if not all OTR trucks idle for hour upon hours everyday while on a long hual to keep the air cooled or heat warm while sleeping and what not. These trucks see this type of operation for most of there life spans and still provide many times a million miles of service.
 
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