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Old 04-30-2002, 05:57 AM   #1
IggDawg
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Default How long do you guys let your car warm?

I usually let it warm at least till the needle is at the mottom line on the scale. Normal operating temp is where I like it to get. Its "wicked bad" to just turn it on and drive, but is it just as bad to let it sit and idle? I can only think of a thing or 2, but nothing an Italian tune-up won't fix.

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Old 04-30-2002, 06:06 AM   #2
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Everything I've heard lately pretty much rebukes this theory on newer cars(at least non-aspirated, let's not bring turbo into this forum).

In theory, newer engines should have the oil flowing freely right after ignition. Most mechanics I've talked to say from the time you turn the ignition, get situated, then are ready to go, is plenty. I'd say it takes me less than a minute to do my stuff(i.e., I put on my seatbelt after I start the car, lock the doors, turn on the radio, etc...).

However, I don't go above about 4500rpm until the temp guage is at least a quarter of the way up. I doubt that's necessary either, but it makes me sleep better at night

Neil
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Old 04-30-2002, 07:41 AM   #3
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I've also heard that you only need to warm up the car for about a minute. I usually let the car sit for about 30 seconds and then shift it into D or R (I have a 4eat) and let it sit for a few seconds in gear before moving. I've heard that you should let the transmission get some of it's aft flowing before taking off. I keep the revs below 3.5K until the car has warmed up, though.
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Old 04-30-2002, 07:57 AM   #4
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99 - Never heard of that technique. I guess it would do the trick. I just drive 100% granny till I've gone 5 miles or so. By then I'm on the highway, and I still take is easy for a while for good measure. All these little bits of techno-worship probably do more to put us at ease than anything.

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Old 04-30-2002, 09:06 AM   #5
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I get in, pull on my seatbelt, start my TS and drive away. I do keep the shifts under 4000 til it's warm. When it is below 35 deg I try to let it warm up a bit before going. These are fi motors, they really don't need to warm before going. Now a carbureted motor, they need to warm up because the choke flap closes and cuts off the air going into the motor. You push on the gas pedal and flood the oil and motor with gas. Which in turn can damage and clog the catalytic converter. On a fi car, the computer just enriches the idle circuits to compensate for the air. No flooding at all. And with everyone using synthetic oil these days, the oil still flows whether it is 30 or 130 degrees.
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Old 04-30-2002, 10:13 AM   #6
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I warm my car between 2 and 5 minutes when it is very cold.

When anything other than that, I let it warm about 30 seconds before driving off first thing in the morning or at the end of the workday. Any other time of the day I hop in and drive right off.

I use Mobil1 10w30.
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Old 04-30-2002, 11:19 AM   #7
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I'm with STEALTHBMBR.. I let it run about 10 seconds before driving, then under 3500rpm or so until fully warm.

In the winter, no point in letting it sit to warm up (unless you have to clear the windows), because the car doesn't much warm up until it's driven a few miles.

I think the most important detail is being nice to the car until it's fully warm, no matter what the season.

lb
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Old 04-30-2002, 01:23 PM   #8
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I think that you guys might be right... I read somewhere that BMW has a car with some sort of tach light that warns you when the car is still warming up. As the engine warms, you can rev higher and higher without the light coming on.
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Old 04-30-2002, 01:25 PM   #9
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I usually let her warm up for about 5 minutes, unless the windows are frozen over, which happened most mornings this winter. By the time they were thawed or scraped, she was fine. I think a lighter weight oil in the winter is a good idea, too. I used Mobil 1 5W30 all winter and just switched to 10W30 a couple of oil changes ago. Keep the revs down until she's idling under 1000 rpm is the advice I've always gotten, but I think I just do it to make my wife think I know cars.
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Old 04-30-2002, 01:34 PM   #10
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peter,

many very high RPM engines have secondary rev limiters that are activated by coolant temp. all Honda/Acura engines that have VTEC won't engage it below a certain temp, and they also rev lower at the same time. BMW is probably the same way.

as far as WHEN it's safe to flog it-- unless you have an oil temp gauge you have to go by coolant temp. wait at LEAST 5 minutes after the coolant reads normal before getting serious with the engine, this allows the engine itself and the oil to come to full temp.
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Old 04-30-2002, 02:01 PM   #11
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Quote:
Originally posted by PeterJ
I think that you guys might be right... I read somewhere that BMW has a car with some sort of tach light that warns you when the car is still warming up. As the engine warms, you can rev higher and higher without the light coming on.
You may be thinking of the Tach on the newer M3's -- they have an 8000 rpm redline. The tach "redline" is really a bunch of green and red LED's. When the car is still "cool" the "redline" starts at 6500/7000k or something like that, then as the engine warms up, the prior red LED's switch to green, and the redline "magically" grows to 8000 RPM.

It's kinda neat looking actually!
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Old 04-30-2002, 03:08 PM   #12
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That's one question I've been wondering too. Base on my observation, when I start the engine in the morning or when it's cold, it automatically revs up to 1500rpm, and then it lowers gradually until ~5 mins later (longer in winter) it reaches the normal idling speed of 600rpm, and at that time, the temp needle reaches the bottom of the scale too. If the engine doesn't need to be warmed up, why would the computer do this automatically?
And if the engine is not cooled down, let's say I just turned off the car for less than 2 hours, the computer wouldn't do this trick. So I guess the purpose of this is to help the engine warm up faster. Of course, I don't mean we should rev the engine to 4000rpm to help it warm up faster, that's just stupid But again, that's just my observation, I don't know much about the technical stuffs.
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Old 04-30-2002, 03:30 PM   #13
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if it's warm out about a block before i beat on it, if it's cold at least 2-5 minutes
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Old 04-30-2002, 04:28 PM   #14
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my buddy has a saturn, dealers said it only takes 15 seconds till its ok to drive normally. In my RS, I always let it warm up till at least the bottom of the c line. Usually takes 1 cigarette and i dont smoke in my car so i dont mind the 5-10 minute wait.
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Old 04-30-2002, 07:16 PM   #15
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moogoob, I use the cig method too. Start the car...let it idle while I smoke...then get in and drive.

I don't push it "hard" until I've seen the temp climb a bit. Then I have fun.

NC
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Old 04-30-2002, 07:39 PM   #16
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I thought you were quitting, on the patch or gum or something Neil?
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Old 04-30-2002, 07:47 PM   #17
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Ha! If it was only that simple. :P

Seriously though...the patch KICKED MY ASS! It was soooooo strong. I went out the first night I had it on...and I could barely walk by 10 o'clock...and I wasn't drinking!

I gotta do something...

NC
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Old 05-01-2002, 02:27 AM   #18
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usually after I start the car, I will wait for the rpm drop to 1k then I will drive.

Most of my friends and from some magazines recommend that.
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Old 05-01-2002, 08:42 AM   #19
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As far as the rev limiter thingy, I do know that 4eats have a COLD ATF shift map that prevents you from shifting into 4th (and overdrive) when your tranny is cold. Even though you may have it in D, it won't shift into 4. So if you want to drive on the highway, I guess you need to let at least your transmission warm up.
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Old 05-01-2002, 08:55 AM   #20
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I always wait till the needle reaches the white line at the bottom of the gage before taking off and then dont get on it till it's at it's operating temp.

I also do the ciggie method and I'm going to the Dr. this week and getting some ziban or is it zyban? My friends used it to stop smoking and said it was easy. give it a try. I'll let ya know if it works for me.

Jerry
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Old 05-01-2002, 10:20 AM   #21
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letting the car sit and idle is worse for the engine than driving it.

I personally, will start it, put on my seatbelt, do whatever I need to do with the radio, then go. I keep it below 3,000RPM until a couple minutes after the temp needle has hit it's NOT mark.
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Old 05-01-2002, 10:31 AM   #22
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Quote:
Originally posted by JGard18
letting the car sit and idle is worse for the engine than driving it.
Why's that ? I know in older cars cold exhaust would poison cat converters. I thought that problem didn't happen much any mroe. still, why is it bad for the engine?

-IggDawg
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Old 05-01-2002, 10:39 AM   #23
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Well, I do know that having your car idle for more than a minute is bad for your water pump, but since we have all been in traffic jams, I'm sure, it's no worse than sitting on the highway for an hour.
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Old 05-02-2002, 12:01 AM   #24
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Quote:
Originally posted by dcrawford
moogoob, I use the cig method too. Start the car...let it idle while I smoke...then get in and drive.
you too, eh?
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Old 05-30-2002, 03:22 PM   #25
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Interesting twist on the how long to warm up question. When I get in and go (I am always late for work, so I hurry) if it is cold out (45 and lower) if I don't give the car a lot of gas (more than ~2000-2500 rpms) I get a BIG A$$ shudder. Feels like the back end. it will do it if I shift into second a little early and don't give it enough gas too. Anyone else have this happen (I hope.... please don't tell me I have somehow F#@$ed up my car)
Therefore, I try to let the car warm up for a bit (at least 5 minutes) before driving it.
Let me know if you guys and gals have the same issue.
Muchos Gracias!
NUJ

PS GO CELTICS!!!
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