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Old 01-13-2013, 10:08 AM
 
8,799 posts, read 11,559,545 times
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Hah? You just answered your own question. 60-70s? Maybe. NOW? Kidding me? Run her all you want to. Just keep in mind, idle 1 hr = 30 miles driven. GM fleet calculation.
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Old 01-13-2013, 10:08 AM
 
Location: Miami, FL
8,089 posts, read 6,574,478 times
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Strangely enough the 2013 BMW in our family turns off when the engine is at idle for a few minutes. Entirely normal according to the dealer and sales literature. Re-starts immediately upon depressing the accelerator.

It is called Start Stop

here is a link: http://www.motorauthority.com/news/1...t-reprogrammed
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Old 01-13-2013, 10:37 AM
 
Location: Northern MN
3,869 posts, read 11,524,762 times
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cut and paste

all concern a GAS engine
Myth 2: Idling is good for your engine. Excessive idling can actually damage your engine components, including cylinders, spark plugs, and exhaust systems. An idling engine is not operating at its peak temperature, which means that fuel does not undergo complete combustion. This leaves fuel residue that can condense on cylinder walls, where they can contaminate the oil and damage parts of the engine. For example, fuel residues are often deposited on spark plugs. As you spend more time idling, the average temperature of the spark plug drops. This makes the plug get dirty more quickly, which increases fuel consumption by 4 to 5 %. Excessive idling also lets water condense in the vehicle’s exhaust, leading to corrosion and a reduction of the life of your exhaust system.
When not actively driving, people tend to idle their cars largely for one of two reasons: either to warm up the engine before driving or to avoid wear and tear on the engine in situations that require frequent restarting, such as drive-through service lines, rail crossings, car wash lines, carpool lines, and departure from concerts and sporting events, or while talking to friends or using the cell phone. By understanding the effects of idling and reducing the practice, you can improve your car’s performance, save money, and reduce needless carbon dioxide emissions.
Fuel residues can condense on cylinder walls, contaminate oil and damage engine components. With more engine idling these residues tend to deposit on spark plugs. The resulting plug fouling can increase fuel consumption by 4 to 5 %. Excessive idling can also cause water to condense in the vehicle’s exhaust. This can lead to corrosion and reduce the life of the exhaust system. On the other hand, frequent restarting has little impact on engine components such as the starter motor and the battery.




Idling Myths & Facts | LEaP




Idling Causes Excessive Engine Wear
• Running an engine at low speed (idling) causes twice the
wear on internal parts compared to driving at regular
speeds. According to the American Trucking Association,
such wear can increase maintenance costs by almost
$2,000 per year and shorten the life of the engine.


Myth #2: Idling is good for your engine. Reality: Excessive idling can actually damage your engine components, including cylinders, spark plugs, and exhaust systems. Fuel is only partially combusted when idling because an engine does not operate at its peak temperature. This leads to the build up of fuel residues on cylinder walls that can damage engine components and increase fuel consumption.Idling Your Car


Prolonged idling is also one of the worst things the owner can do to an engine. Excessive idling can contaminate the engine oil, which will lead to premature, and very costly, engine wear down the road. It also allows excess moisture into the exhaust system, which promotes corrosion and premature replacement.

Read more: Stop pointless idling this winter

Last edited by snofarmer; 01-13-2013 at 10:45 AM.. Reason: added, all concern a GAS engine
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Old 01-13-2013, 11:28 AM
 
3,465 posts, read 3,893,227 times
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Again, I ask any people who say it cant damage a motor how many 50's and 60's cars you've owned or if you drove cars from the 50's or 60's, 70's regularly. How about a VW beetle or Corvair?
Metallurgy was way different, hydro-lifters, mechanical oil pumps etc . . . For many reasons people of a different gen knew idling was not good.

Snofarmers post (above)is just a little of what can be found anywhere on the subject.
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Old 01-13-2013, 01:16 PM
 
Location: Texas
4,733 posts, read 10,112,264 times
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KanHawk, a carburetor was hardly a precision piece of equipment and loading of the cylinders was common while idling. It would load the cylinders with gas which ended up in the oil. It wasn't until 1964 we had positive crankcase ventilation otherwise there was only a down draft pipe that allowed the gas vapors to escape. There were far too many engines that would load the oil with gas and it would blow the valve covers off an engine when it finally got the right air/fuel and a spark. But actual mechanical damage of a 60's an earlier engine due to idling-no. Mostly because the engines hardly lasted 75,000 miles. That was mostly due to the lead in the gas. Oil analysis would show lead in the thousands back then and lead was a wear agent. Our gas was basically wearing the engines out. With unleaded gas, engine life took off. It's not uncommon today to see gas engines at 300,000 miles still going strong. With our improved gas and highly improved oils, wear, for most engines, is not an issue. Most folks won't keep a car til it wears out. They're tired of it after a few years and move into something else.

All of the above is assuming that the rest of the engine components are fine. Many of the engines would over heat while idling. We didn't have fan shrouds back then to insure that air actually came thru the radiator. Air could easily circle around just in front of the fan and a lot of the air just didn't go thru the radiator. We didn't have fan clutches either with their ability to draw loads of air thru the radiator. You had a fan that was more designed to be quiet and it was a balance of enough air at the speeds most engines would turn during its life. And that means it wasn't pulling near enough air on a hot day at idle. So if the cooling system wasn't maintained, idling could result in an over heating engine. It was mandatory in the south to flush and change anti-freeze every fall or expect issues. Every 3rd year you changed all hoses.

FWIW, there's a lot of myths about engines from years past. One that won't go away is using a heavier oil when towing. Most folks would like to say it's because of the heat. But if you had any science classes at all in high school you'd know that a thinner liquid will absorb and release heat faster than a thick liquid. Hence the newer, thinner oil specs as the oil can now compromise up to 25% of the cooling of an engine. The actual reason for the heavier oil when towing was due to the carb throwing a lot of raw gas into the cylinders and being washed into the oil. A 40 viscosity oil could become a 20 viscosity within a several hours of heavy pulling. There was no positive ventilation to get rid of the vapors so it just built up. Using the heavier viscosity oil gained you a little more life from the oil. You'll hear about thermal break down but the truth is the heavier oils were more susceptible to it than the thinner oils as they absorbed the heat but couldn't release it fast enough in the pan. Between the fuel dilution and the build up of lead in the oil is why we still have folks that change oil every 3000 miles. They still do it but have no clue why. Old habits are hard to break.
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Old 01-13-2013, 03:23 PM
 
Location: Not far from Fairbanks, AK
15,695 posts, read 25,308,395 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by canadian citizen View Post
I guess all those hundreds of thousands of taxis, Police cars, UPS trucks, and USPS vehicles are all suffering from "damaged engines " as they run for hours at a time.

What sillyness. Provided that the engine has a full crankcase of oil, and proper coolant levels, it can run for many hours, at idle, and be "just fine ".

I put over 500 THOUSAND miles on a Ford one ton cargo van, with a 351 windsor V8 engine, that I ran all over Canada and the USA, as a expedite freight owner/operator. I slept in it, many a night at minus 20 celsius, and it idled along , to keep the heater running. No problem. I changed the oil at 10k kilometres, as my job required at least 20 k of driving, per month. It was typical for me to pick up a load in Toronto, and head off to Texas, to deliver.

Jim B

Toronto.
Agree with you. And just imagine where I live (interior of Alaska), where most times during the winter we have to leave our vehicles idling at the parking lot when shopping and such. Even before driving in the morning when it's -20 degrees and colder we have to start the vehicle and let it warm inside for around 10-15 minutes, and the same at the end of the day when returning home from work. Remote starters are quite popular up here
------------------------

Something else, in reference to another poster:

Extended idling is the North. It makes no difference if the motor runs on gasoline or diesel fuel, except that if it's -20 degrees or colder it's not a good idea to turn off a diesel running motor unless you have the means to keep the vehicle relatively warm ( turn off for a short period of time, park in a heated garage, or plug it into an electrical outlet if the vehicle is winterized).

No damage to the catalytic converter, no rust, and such tales. In fact, while driving or idling all you see is a very thick plume of water vapor (exhaust) out of the tailpipe, and water droplets turning to ice on the ground almost instantly. It means that the whole exhaust system is covered with moisture inside.

Last edited by RayinAK; 01-13-2013 at 03:46 PM..
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Old 01-13-2013, 03:29 PM
 
774 posts, read 1,831,464 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kanhawk View Post
My dad always told me not to let an engine idle more than a couple of minutes when I was growing up in the 60s and 70s, that it would damage the engine. Was that true then and is it still true for late model cars to let an engine idle beyond a few minutes?

Not true. 90% of all wear is done at start up. once and engine is running it's best to leave it running. Letting it idle will not harm a thing. Not back then and not today.

As long as the engine has oil pressure you're not hurting a thing. Sorry but dad was wrong.
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Old 01-13-2013, 03:33 PM
 
774 posts, read 1,831,464 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by thunderkat59 View Post
Again, I ask any people who say it cant damage a motor how many 50's and 60's cars you've owned or if you drove cars from the 50's or 60's, 70's regularly. How about a VW beetle or Corvair?
Metallurgy was way different, hydro-lifters, mechanical oil pumps etc . . . For many reasons people of a different gen knew idling was not good.

Snofarmers post (above)is just a little of what can be found anywhere on the subject.

I've owned a number of 60's muscle cars and one of them I drove daily during the summer for 3 yrs. Almost 50K miles. While it is true that letting them idle wastes gas. It DOES NOT hurt the motor in anyway.... You could actaully be doing more damage by shutting the motor off then restarting it.

Let it run.
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Old 01-13-2013, 03:56 PM
 
10,314 posts, read 38,023,140 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by thunderkat59 View Post
Again, I ask any people who say it cant damage a motor how many 50's and 60's cars you've owned or if you drove cars from the 50's or 60's, 70's regularly. How about a VW beetle or Corvair?
Metallurgy was way different, hydro-lifters, mechanical oil pumps etc . . . For many reasons people of a different gen knew idling was not good.

Snofarmers post (above)is just a little of what can be found anywhere on the subject.
t-kat ...

I started working on motor vehicles in the late 1950's, so I know what I saw ...

The main problem with extended idling was the wasted fuel, fouled spark plugs, and carboned up combustion chambers from the carburetor delivered fuel system and lesser ignitions systems of the era.

But there was no hard parts damage, no greater wear resulting ... from idling. We were doing valve jobs on cars of that era, late 40's-early 50's Fords, Buicks, Cadillacs, Packards, and Chevy's at about the same mileage on all of them. We also did ring & valve jobs on many cars in the course of their normal service lives, and I didn't see a difference in the service life of the components between cars that were idled a lot compared to cars that were driven a lot; the biggest difference was the cars that were driven short distances, never reaching running temp for long enough to get rid of the moisture and volatiles that might have accumulated in the oil.

FWIW, the metallurgy of that era was surprisingly excellent in many car lines. The failing in running the cars high mileage was the oils/lubrication of that time and the leaded fuel issues.

When the PCV systems hit in the 60's, along with the improved ignition systems, better carbs ... and improved oils ... wear was greatly minimized.

VW's air cooled effort was a pre-war design and I'd not include that as representative of the USA car marketplace in the 1960's; their sales rise in this marketplace was fostered by the rise in fuel prices of a later era. VW was famous for having cylinder head issues and burnt valves which far overshadowed any possible wear issues from idling. As well, the Corvair was a highly flawed car in many aspects and never hit it's marketplace as an economy vehicle ... fact is, many of the 6-cylinder lower end price point Fords, Chevy's, and Dodge cars got comparable or better fuel economy with more utility. But, the company my mom worked for at the time in the mid-1960's used a fleet of Corvairs, including the van version, and without any particular problems for all of the extended idling that the delivery units were subjected to.

I'd add that we spent many days at idle power settings on marine application engines ... diesel (many Graymarines, which were a "marinized" Detroit Diesel ... the same engines used in trucking and inner city delivery vehicles), two-stroke outboards (trolling motors) and four stroke inboard engines, many of which were simply marinized automotive engines ... and never had any issues with the prolonged idling on these engines for wear issues. We ran the same fuels, lubricants, filters and systems as the automotive and trucking applications did ... for decades.

Last edited by sunsprit; 01-13-2013 at 04:28 PM..
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Old 01-13-2013, 05:52 PM
 
1,916 posts, read 2,405,867 times
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In Alaska it's fairly typical to leave the engine idling to warm it up in the winter, but if you do that you need to get the engine up to speed long enough to get the oil above the boiling point of water. You need to get the combustion water out of the oil. If you are concerned, take a look at your oil cap and see if it has a milky substance on it, "milkshake", which is water condensing in the engine and will cause the damage folks talk about.

When it gets cold I let my engine run for 10 minutes or so, and then my commute is 45 minutes to an hour depending on where my first call is. I've gone through a few cars over the years and can think of only 1 car that had worn to the point of burning oil, a Escort, and that was at 175K miles.
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