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Cold starts, theory of engine wear #391378 Feb 3, 9:29pm Feb 3, 9:29pm
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GTS_Rosh OP
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Cold starts, theory of engine wear
Ok, here's one for us to discuss. When I was in mechanics school, my teacher said its bad to idle your car for a long period of time. It will wear down more. Now when we start our cars in the morning, should we let it idle for like a 1-2 mins before we drive it, or is it better to drive it right away? Some people say that driving it right away is the REAL way to warm it up, and letting it idle is bad. So what's the deal on that?

Re: Cold starts, theory of engine wear [Re: GTS_Rosh] #391379 Feb 3, 9:33pm Feb 3, 9:33pm
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let the car idle first until its warm. thats what i do.. grin


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Re: Cold starts, theory of engine wear [Re: GTS_Rosh] #391380 Feb 3, 9:34pm Feb 3, 9:34pm
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If its really cold, I would run it for a couple of minutes before driving. If the windows are frosty, let it run while you scrape the frost, that's what I always did when I lived in colder places. I think a little idle time when you first start it is better than just driving, but you can also do the start and drive think without too much worry; just don't rev it too much until its warmed up.


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Re: Cold starts, theory of engine wear [Re: ExNihilo] #391381 Feb 3, 9:39pm Feb 3, 9:39pm
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run it for a few minutes to let the oil circulate... then you can drive, but never rev high untill the engine is fully warm.

also, its a good idea to turn your key to the on position for a few seconds before you actually turn the car on, this lets all the electronics get power first... such as the fuel pump ect...

Re: Cold starts, theory of engine wear [Re: spaztikid] #391382 Feb 3, 9:46pm Feb 3, 9:46pm
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Originally Posted by spaztikid
run it for a few minutes to let the oil circulate... then you can drive, but never rev high untill the engine is fully warm.

also, its a good idea to turn your key to the on position for a few seconds before you actually turn the car on, this lets all the electronics get power first... such as the fuel pump ect...

Re: Cold starts, theory of engine wear [Re: spaztikid] #391383 Feb 3, 9:47pm Feb 3, 9:47pm
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my theory is that when cold the engine oil is thick and all in the oil pan. so i let the engine idle till it goes up two lines, which is about 4 mins. then i drive it slowly for another mile. i don't think it would be too nice to just drive on cold, uncirculated oil.


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Re: Cold starts, theory of engine wear [Re: Kim] #391384 Feb 3, 10:01pm Feb 3, 10:01pm
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Yeah, it was on the news the other day about letting your car run for about 2 mins b4 driving. It was also said that if your car dosen't warm up within two mins. then U should go get it checked out. I've been letting mine warm all along. Also they were saying , don't stand on the gas to get the car to warm up faster, DEFFINATELY WEAR... thumbsup

Re: Cold starts, theory of engine wear [Re: DSGB4LYF23] #391385 Feb 4, 12:20am Feb 4, 12:20am
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Agree with all the posts above...let it idle for 2-4 minutes and then roll-out thumbsup

Re: Cold starts, theory of engine wear [Re: BaTMaN_4] #391386 Feb 4, 1:40pm Feb 4, 1:40pm
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Yup, warm it up for a few minutes before hitting the highway.


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Re: Cold starts, theory of engine wear [Re: spaztikid] #391387 Feb 4, 1:53pm Feb 4, 1:53pm
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this is what i do too, and my brother who is a mechanic recommends this too!


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Re: Cold starts, theory of engine wear [Re: toysport_celica] #391388 Feb 4, 1:58pm Feb 4, 1:58pm
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shouldnt be a problem if you turn on and drive off, it would be a problem though if you were to throddle your car while motor is cold, not good for your valves, and its a bitch to fix, $400 to adjust, it causes that clicking ticking noise. I learned the hard way :-D


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Re: Cold starts, theory of engine wear [Re: spaztikid] #391389 Feb 4, 2:39pm Feb 4, 2:39pm
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Originally Posted by spaztikid
run it for a few minutes to let the oil circulate... then you can drive, but never rev high untill the engine is fully warm.

also, its a good idea to turn your key to the on position for a few seconds before you actually turn the car on, this lets all the electronics get power first... such as the fuel pump ect...

Re: Cold starts, theory of engine wear [Re: celicajonz] #391390 Feb 5, 4:12am Feb 5, 4:12am
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OK. Pretty good info here. But I noticed that most of the replies on this thread came from people in California. What the hell do you guys know about below zero weather? 1st of all, if you park your car outside in winter pray to God that you do not get below zero temperatures. That way, with the grace of God, your radiator won't be completely frozen(I've seen cases when even the freakin' antifreeze gets frozen). If your car is fuel injected, you may want to wait at least 10 minutes before even thinking about hitting the fuel pedal. Turn on your defrost & get the hell inside the house. What you want to do is wait until your car drops in rpm's...letting you know that the engine is getting warm. After a while go outside & start getting the layer of ice off your car. Even in warm temperatures I would let it run for a few minutes(if I haven't drove it for a while) just to get the juices flowing. I look for smooth idleing before I take off. Sorry to be blunt but weather here in the Windy City can be gruesome.


I say all this because the person that started this thread is from B.C. Canada

Re: Cold starts, theory of engine wear [Re: xmangt1] #391391 Feb 5, 8:03am Feb 5, 8:03am
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It says in the celica manual that you shouldn't warm the engine up by just letting it run idle. You should start driving right away, keeping the revs down. And that's from the people who made your car...

Re: Cold starts, theory of engine wear [Re: celicat23] #391392 Feb 5, 6:55pm Feb 5, 6:55pm
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Originally Posted by celicat23
It says in the celica manual that you shouldn't warm the engine up by just letting it run idle. You should start driving right away, keeping the revs down. And that's from the people who made your car...


hmm i didn't know that

I live in PA and we haven't seen subzero weather in a while...but it's hit single digits a few times here before...and what i do is start it up, come back inside...put my shit in my backpack, put on a coat, go out and scrape my windshield off...and drive slowly. I never drive it hard until the temp gauge is halfway up though...

Re: Cold starts, theory of engine wear [Re: celicat23] #391393 Feb 5, 7:04pm Feb 5, 7:04pm
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Originally Posted by celicat23
It says in the celica manual that you shouldn't warm the engine up by just letting it run idle. You should start driving right away, keeping the revs down. And that's from the people who made your car...
Well, spending most of my life here in Chicago, you just can't turn on your car & drive off without it being warmed up for a while 1st. I speak from experience. Things will get damaged if you do.

Re: Cold starts, theory of engine wear [Re: sbocaj55] #391394 Feb 5, 7:06pm Feb 5, 7:06pm
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when your engine is cold, it doesn't burn gas efficiently, thus if you drive a lot while your engine is gold you get a decrease in gas mileage. i'm sure idle burns less gas than a cold engine at 45 mph.


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Re: Cold starts, theory of engine wear [Re: combatc87] #391395 Feb 5, 7:13pm Feb 5, 7:13pm
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^^^true

Re: Cold starts, theory of engine wear [Re: xmangt1] #391396 Feb 5, 7:27pm Feb 5, 7:27pm
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Just rule of thumb and its been around! Warm up the damn car before you drive it. My dad has been doing that all his life and the cars he owns have lasted for a really long time.

Re: Cold starts, theory of engine wear [Re: combatc87] #391397 Feb 5, 7:57pm Feb 5, 7:57pm
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Originally Posted by combatc87
when your engine is cold, it doesn't burn gas efficiently, thus if you drive a lot while your engine is gold you get a decrease in gas mileage. i'm sure idle burns less gas than a cold engine at 45 mph.
exactly!!! under cold temperatures large amounts of the fuel condensates on the inside of the Intake manifold, forcing the injectors to pour as much fuel as possible into the manifold. If you drive while this is happening, this causes the worst fuel economy condition possible. Let the damn car warm up.


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Re: Cold starts, theory of engine wear [Re: xmangt1] #391398 Feb 5, 8:55pm Feb 5, 8:55pm
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Originally Posted by xmangt1
OK. Pretty good info here. But I noticed that most of the replies on this thread came from people in California. What the hell do you guys know about below zero weather? 1st of all, if you park your car outside in winter pray to God that you do not get below zero temperatures. That way, with the grace of God, your radiator won't be completely frozen(I've seen cases when even the freakin' antifreeze gets frozen). If your car is fuel injected, you may want to wait at least 10 minutes before even thinking about hitting the fuel pedal. Turn on your defrost & get the hell inside the house. What you want to do is wait until your car drops in rpm's...letting you know that the engine is getting warm. After a while go outside & start getting the layer of ice off your car. Even in warm temperatures I would let it run for a few minutes(if I haven't drove it for a while) just to get the juices flowing. I look for smooth idleing before I take off. Sorry to be blunt but weather here in the Windy City can be gruesome.


I say all this because the person that started this thread is from B.C. Canada


I live in the Phoenix which is even hotter than L.A.. But I grew up in Colorado, which gets plenty cold. I've dealt plenty with cold weather driving. Typically, you can expect to have to scrape frost of the windows on a cold morning, so I would always run the car with the defroster on while clearing the windows.

A word of advice. Starting your car and going inside is a bad idea. Two years ago, I got carjacked because of a very strange set of circumstances which began when someone started their car in the morning and went inside while the car warmed up.

The whole story was, someone was warming up their car, and the car thief was just lurking in the neighborhood. When the person started their car and went inside to warm it up, the thief just took the car and drove off. The police pursued him, but he evaded them, and then ended up driving up my street. I was just getting ready to go to work when he drove up and came out of the stolen car with a shotgun, and stole my car (he wanted to get into a different car because the one he had stolen was VERY HOT). So, basically because somebody miles from were I lived decided to leave their car unattended "warming up", I got carjacked at gunpoint. It is actually illegal to leave a car running unattended in Arizona (and possibly where you live as well) because of the risk of an unattended car getting stolen.


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Re: Cold starts, theory of engine wear [Re: ExNihilo] #391399 Feb 5, 9:18pm Feb 5, 9:18pm
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That's a great story. Thx for sharing. This is the reason why you should get auto start with your alarm system. With this system, you can remotely start your car without even leaving your house. The gears will not shift if the key is not inserted. Costs about $100 extra, maybe less.

Re: Cold starts, theory of engine wear [Re: xmangt1] #391400 Feb 5, 9:24pm Feb 5, 9:24pm
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yeah, but it's tough to find one for a manual tranny, or at least some place to install one.


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Re: Cold starts, theory of engine wear [Re: combatc87] #391401 Feb 5, 9:27pm Feb 5, 9:27pm
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^^^that's true

Re: Cold starts, theory of engine wear [Re: combatc87] #391402 Feb 6, 1:01am Feb 6, 1:01am
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Originally Posted by combatc87
yeah, but it's tough to find one for a manual tranny, or at least some place to install one.


some places are pretty cool with it but they need your permission or because they dont wanna be liable for saftey reasons.

Re: Cold starts, theory of engine wear [Re: RookieGTS] #391403 Feb 6, 7:28am Feb 6, 7:28am
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a shop near me said they don't sell 'em or install 'em


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Re: Cold starts, theory of engine wear [Re: combatc87] #391404 Feb 6, 7:46am Feb 6, 7:46am
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in cold weather you can't drive the car right away anyway because you have to wait for the ice to melt or the frost to clear grin I have situation where ice are form on the inside of my Mirror thumbsdown


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Re: Cold starts, theory of engine wear [Re: kevin2] #391405 Feb 6, 11:24am Feb 6, 11:24am
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I think in mild climates where it never tips into freezing, its ok to drive the car after you start it. But in icy/snowy weather, I wouldn't do what the owner's manual says, but rather wait and let it warm up, defrost all your windows etc, then drive off after 5 mins.

Re: Cold starts, theory of engine wear [Re: spaztikid] #391406 Feb 6, 7:48pm Feb 6, 7:48pm
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Originally Posted by spaztikid
run it for a few minutes to let the oil circulate... then you can drive, but never rev high untill the engine is fully warm.

also, its a good idea to turn your key to the on position for a few seconds before you actually turn the car on, this lets all the electronics get power first... such as the fuel pump ect...

I agree with that^^^ I go a full a full 10 plus minutes sometimes 20 minutes when below freezing or sometimes at 10 or below here. There is no harm in letting the engine warm up and idle down these days. Unless you are broke and don't have gas to burn. Much less harm than starting and going.
Some of us sit in traffic for the daily commute for at least 5 plus minutes everyday. Sometimes it's sit a while then stop and go and over again. That's pretty much the same isn't it?
That's much worse than a car sitting in the driveway to warmup.
If you start up and start driving to let you and your car warm up during driving for especially 32% or below, then you are an idiot.
Starting your car takes the equivalent of gas as 35 seconds of idling, by the way and so I read somewhere.

Re: Cold starts, theory of engine wear [Re: hephaestus] #391407 Feb 6, 10:20pm Feb 6, 10:20pm
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my dad's been a mechanic for 50 years... and he's always told me that it's bad to let the car idle... but i don't think that applies when you first start the car on really cold days... it's probably better to let it warm up a few minutes (not too long though) and get some fluids running through it... although i hardly ever actually do that... only on the really REALLY cold days... like everyone else said... just don't drive hard when your engine is cold


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