Monday, January 12, 2015

Warming your car up on a winter's morning.

I watched a report on my local news channel a couple of weeks ago where they had an 'expert' tell everyone that the advice to warm your engine up before driving was out of date and that for any vehicle made since 1996 it was a fruitless exercise. He explained that the various sensors and other parts of older engines that benefited from being warm to work properly had been superceded by OBD-II and its ability to finely monitor and adjust all the functions of your engine under pretty much any condition.
That's true, but what he spectacularly failed to mention was that if you drive it like you stole it right after turning the key, your engine oil is still cold and thick and even with a decent 5W40 oil, you won't be getting the benefits of really good lubrication right off the bat. Ok sure you might not need to let the engine run for 10 minutes before driving it in the winter, but don't just start it up and blast on to the motorway. Have some mechanical sympathy and give your engine a chance to get some temperature in it before you start. After all - it's why people in northern climates have sump heaters and core heaters to pre-heat their oil and coolant before driving.

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