Idle time?

Messages
3,542
Location
Colorado
Idle time is hard on an oil so what is concidered long idle time? I start my cars in the morning in the winter and let them idle for no longer than 4 or 5 minutes befor I drive away. In the summer I let them Idle for a minute or 2 at most befor I start to drive away. is this time length ok or too long or short?
 
Messages
2,095
Location
IL
Too long. Definitely NO idle necessary in summer. And in the winter I wouldn't let it idle longer than it takes to clear the windows. Even that is not necessary. Just drive gently if very cold. 90% of population drives gently anyway all the time so there really would be nothing to change. Just go.
 
Messages
418
Location
OR
Start the car and then just drive it. You want it to get to normal operating temp quickly. An idle period of more than 60 seconds is not wise. The only exception is a turbocharged car and a few minutes of idling is good but only at the END of a hard drive in order to let the turbo bearings cool down.
quote:
Originally posted by Chris B.: Idle time is hard on an oil so what is concidered long idle time? I start my cars in the morning in the winter and let them idle for no longer than 4 or 5 minutes befor I drive away. In the summer I let them Idle for a minute or 2 at most befor I start to drive away. is this time length ok or too long or short?
 
Messages
6,388
Location
Washington St.
Drive the car easy as soon as it will drive. If the winter is very cold and the car won't drive until it idles for a minute or two, so be it. In the summer, just drive away easy. The sooner you can gently get up to operating temperature the better it is for your engine. Ken
 
Messages
115
Location
Aldergrove, B.C.
This must be the same guy that now lives across the street from me! Like clockwork, every morning at 5 AM he starts his old Mustang, NO MUFFLER, revs it hard for a few minutes and roars down the street for everybody to hear. I can still hear him 5 blocks away. [ April 11, 2003, 02:52 PM: Message edited by: highmiler ]
 
Messages
1,565
Location
palm beach
what qualifications do any of you have to state that idling for a couple minutes is a bad thing? anyone here a engineer who builds engines for a living? because on the contrary, most engine builders i know say its a good thing to idle the car for a couple minutes.
 
Messages
4,478
Location
Southern California
I worked with a guy a long time ago who loitered in his Ford Torino (told 'ya it was a long time ago...) for a full 5 minutes, warm weather or cold, before he roared off. Fortunately, extended idling wasn't his biggest problem. THAT, instead, was reserved for his routine of high-revving the engine the whole time to warm up the engine. He insisted it worked, but he never made the connection why his cars left a trail of blue smoke after only about 20,000 miles... (All you Canucks - just be glad that Sam didn't immigrate to Mooseland after he retired.)
 
Messages
404
Location
Palatine, IL
I always thought you should wait at least a minute to get the oil warmed up a tad before putting stress on the engine. Not to mention, idling will warm up your transmission too a tad. Driving gently will then warm up the differential fluid and everything inbetween. Correct me if im wrong but i think it is good to allow it to warm 2-3 minutes.
 
Messages
342
Location
Limon, Co
In temps below 20f I idle 10 minutes.. I only work 3 miles away. If I just drive off right away the truck never warms up at all. above 20 and I just idle for 3 - 5 minutes while I get things organized. Summer no idle. Truck still never warms up though...LOL Thats why i change oil every 3k miles even if I use syn's. I only go to town once a month and thats a 150= mile round trip.
 
Messages
404
Location
Palatine, IL
quote:
Originally posted by Starbreaker666: In temps below 20f I idle 10 minutes.. I only work 3 miles away. If I just drive off right away the truck never warms up at all. above 20 and I just idle for 3 - 5 minutes while I get things organized. Summer no idle. Truck still never warms up though...LOL Thats why i change oil every 3k miles even if I use syn's. I only go to town once a month and thats a 150= mile round trip.
in colder weather a put peice of cardboard in front of the grille. Makes it run right in the middle. In the summer i take it off but it still runs alittle on the cool side.I have a 1995 Ford Econoline 150 w/ the 351 CID V8. [Big Grin]
 
Messages
3,593
Location
Outside smalltown, IL
quote:
Originally posted by cryptokid: what qualifications do any of you have to state that idling for a couple minutes is a bad thing? anyone here a engineer who builds engines for a living? because on the contrary, most engine builders i know say its a good thing to idle the car for a couple minutes.
I don't build engines for a living, but I have build a few in my life and I agree with the real engine bulders. The harder you run an engine before it's warm the worse it is and I can't see how a short warmup would do anything but good. Clearances can become more correct before loading the engine, oil temperature will be closer to operating temperature, etc...
 
Messages
7,775
Location
Oklahoma
I've said this numerous times before, engines are spec'ed out at full expansion temperatures. We all know what happens to metal when it's cold. Warming up an engine is nothing but beneficial to your pocketbook.
 
Messages
2,596
Location
MN
In a Minnesota winter, it is not feasible to start and take off. It isn't even safe, unless you have a heated garage. I start the vehicle. scrape the windows and clean any ice and snow off the wipers. When the vehicle is starting to come up to temp, I take off slowly. If you take off right away at cold temps you can't see out of your windows and they fog up really easy even if they are clear. The start and take off thing works in a warmer climate. I few minutes of idling is a lot less damaging that runnig off the road or into someone else.
 
Messages
1,292
Location
Western Washington
I live in western Washington State, it doesn't get very cold here. I start up my car, let it idle for about 15 seconds, then take off. The oil warms up faster under a load. Since I use synthetic, I figure I'm getting lubrication within 20 seconds as long as it's above arctic temperatures. I keep the tach below 3,000 until my water gets up to temperature, usually about 3-4 minutes (I'd give my eye teeth for an oil temperature gauge). I then stay under about 3,500 for five minutes after that. I figure that gives the oil and clearances more than enough time to warm up. If it's cold enough that there's ice on the windows, I let the car idle while I scrape them, then drive off. What do you guys think about this? Think it's a good idea, or am I being excessive? [ March 01, 2004, 10:28 PM: Message edited by: Palut ]
 
Messages
23,591
Palut, your method seems fine. In sub-freezing temperatures, I'll let it idle for maybe 1 minute before driving off. I also keep it under 3k RPM until the oil gauge needle start moving (at 60 degre C). At that point, after about 4-5 minutes of driving, I will increase RPM, but I will not "hit it" until the oil has reached its operating temp of 85 degr C, which is after about 12 minutes.
 

KW

Messages
1,686
Location
Central Arkansas
quote:
Originally posted by cryptokid: anyone here a engineer who builds engines for a living?
Sure what do you need to know? I'll ask my brother who builds one off custom engines. Putting together an engine and driving one are to different things.
 
Messages
39,805
Location
Pottstown, PA
quote:
because on the contrary, most engine builders i know say its a good thing to idle the car for a couple minutes.
quote:

Correct me if im wrong but i think it is good to allow it to warm 2-3 minutes.
quote:

Warming up an engine is nothing but beneficial to your pocketbook.
Pocketbook? This is where most of you miss the recommendation. Add up all the fuel ...and the fuel dilution from idling a car (getting ZERO mpg) and even if you attribute ONLY $1 a day (indexed for fuel costs and added oil changes) ..over the average 10 years of ownership ..you've spent more than a non-rebuild (do you know of more than a few engines that have been rebuilt in 10 years of ownership?) ...which you won't need if you just warm it for the factory recommended 30 sec. and drive conservatively for a few miles. All of you would be better served, IF you really want to spend that same money, by installing a block heater. That is, it has been determined that any minor wear attributed to running a cold engine that has reached stable lubrication (30 seconds in all owners manuals that I've read) is less expensive in terms of long term costs/benefits to warming an engine before running it. Now you people of the -40 Minn locations.... ..you have my sympathies [Big Grin]
 
Messages
7,775
Location
Oklahoma
But what if you NEVER have to rebuild your engine for as long as you own it? Surely it'd be worth it then. Also, a dollar a day seems a pretty high guess-timate.
 
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