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Old 02-27-2009, 10:00 PM   #1
SalemCat
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Default Does idling cause "SEVERE ENGINE DAMAGE" ??

I just received an email from National Grid, which is Eastern Massachusetts Electric Company.

In their "Safety Tip of the Month" they state "In the winter months, it’s only advisable to “warm up” your car for one minute to circulate oil to all internal parts (severe engine damage may occur if the motor runs for long periods when the vehicle is not in motion)."

Huh ? Yeah, I know if you're running your Engine unattended there is no-one to catch critical Warning Lights, etc. But "severe engine damage" from simply idling ?

Total crap. Or is it ?

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Old 02-27-2009, 10:19 PM   #2
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Default Re: Does idling cause "SEVERE ENGINE DAMAGE" ??

the only thing you're damaging is your wallet

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Old 02-27-2009, 11:18 PM   #3
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Default Re: Does idling cause "SEVERE ENGINE DAMAGE" ??

Quote:
Originally Posted by nababbo View Post
the only thing you're damaging is your wallet
Not necessarily. Long idling with accompanying low oil pressure can cause lubrication problems in the valve train area of the engine. Cam bearings and roller tappets rely on splash lubrication up there. 600 rpm idling may not allow enough splash to get those parts lubed enough. To see for yourself, remove the oil cap in the valve cover at idle. Then rev the engine and see how much oil splashes around in there.

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Old 02-28-2009, 06:50 AM   #4
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Default Re: Does idling cause "SEVERE ENGINE DAMAGE" ??

I have had the temperature gauge go 'high' with long idles (in traffic) in one car. Granted it was Summer and a hot day.

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Old 02-28-2009, 08:19 AM   #5
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Default Re: Does idling cause "SEVERE ENGINE DAMAGE" ??

With a properly designed engine, long idles should only waste gas. On poorly designed engines or an engine with a lot of sludge and varnish buildup (which restricts oil flow) it could spell trouble as some of the posters above mentioned.

Personally, I give it about a minute or two to warm up and then I go. We get a lot of 0-10F weather around here and that has served me well.

Best,

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Old 02-28-2009, 08:48 AM   #6
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Default Re: Does idling cause "SEVERE ENGINE DAMAGE" ??

Quote:
Originally Posted by Ritz View Post
With a properly designed engine, long idles should only waste gas. On poorly designed engines or an engine with a lot of sludge and varnish buildup (which restricts oil flow) it could spell trouble as some of the posters above mentioned.

Personally, I give it about a minute or two to warm up and then I go. We get a lot of 0-10F weather around here and that has served me well.

Best,
Sound advice. As long as you run the PROPER VISCOSITY (as in THIN) oil in cold weather (preferably a good quality synthetic) a minute or two of warm up to get the juices flowing (so to speak) is all that you need. Properly maintained, idling will do no damage at all (except to your MPG) I lived in the frozen North for 20 years...no engine failures, and there, (ungaraged) cars ran often for 15, 20 even 30 minutes on (remote) cold start up at idle in the winter nearly every day just to thaw them out enough to see to drive...

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Old 02-28-2009, 11:23 AM   #7
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Default Re: Does idling cause "SEVERE ENGINE DAMAGE" ??

On cold days i start , let run at idle for 2-5 minutes , shut down and continue morning chores for 5-35 minutes , then start , and drive off. My thinking is to allow the engine/tranny all warm up , and hopefully the fluids too. It seems to get close to nornal temp within 5 minutes .

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Old 02-28-2009, 12:01 PM   #8
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Default Re: Does idling cause "SEVERE ENGINE DAMAGE" ??

Also It is not good to over do it (idling) mostly because of pollution.
But it helps the timing strap or chain to loosen-up a bit when it's very cold

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Old 03-03-2009, 12:39 PM   #9
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Default Re: Does idling cause "SEVERE ENGINE DAMAGE" ??

when the engine idle its not oiling itself correctly.Plus a lot of carbon is building up on the pistons and valves and can cause preignition when the engine heats up and is pushed. Slow idle is very not good for your engine .Thats the reason why they have fast idle in diesel engines

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Old 03-14-2009, 08:53 AM   #10
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Default Re: Does idling cause "SEVERE ENGINE DAMAGE" ??

Hey im in Mass too! yeah..but back to the point..never heard such a thing on a good running engine! ok yea if there is build up and other issues but if ur engine is working the way it should, then nah, only thing ur hurting(like others said) is ur wallet..tho good to know about letting timing chain warm up abit..have always been taught dont start up and drive away in cold..i wait till needle moves a little bit..but with these new engines (esp 2.2l) the warm up (meaning the needle starts to move) within 30secs to a min...love this vue!!!

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