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  #1  
Old 01-13-2012, 08:52 AM
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Dancianne Dancianne is offline
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Default Warm up?

Who warms up before driving off in cool weather?

Environmentalists say "never" warm up because it pollutes and wastes gas. Columnists "Click and Clack" say a warm up is not necessary for the same reasons given above, and to just drive easy for a few miles in really cold temps. The owners manual from my Ford sedan says warm ups are not necessary. My Harley manual says don't rev for at least the first 15 seconds and then ride slowly for a few miles.

Most people in my neighborhood hit the gas pedal hard as soon as the engine fires. "Drive slowly for a few miles"????,...heck, if I did that I'd have a train of tailgaters a foot off my bumper honking and giving me sign language.

Personally I can't get over the notion that it is best to warm up for a couple of minutes or so in my driveway, depending of course on temperature. Myself and only a very few other people I know seem to feel this way. Who is right? Think I"m in the 1 percent minority on this practice. By the way, I use the factory specified 5w20 viscosity, and only full synthetic.
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Old 01-13-2012, 09:20 AM
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I used to let both my Jeep and my truck idle for a few in winter but I've since stopped doing it and no, not to satisfy the "both ends of the ozone burning" folks lol. From what I've read, more people have a concern with the risk of their vehicle being stolen than they're concerned about the environment and I'd have to say I fall in the former category so I just suck it up for the few minutes of driving it takes to get to operating temp and then kick on the heat. Gonna suck a little next couple mornings being below freezing but I have a jacket for that lol.

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  #3  
Old 01-13-2012, 10:15 AM
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Your harley is most likely carbureted (unless it is a very late model) and carbureted vehicles usually need to "warm up" for a few minutes with the choke on until it can hold an idle. This was the main purpose behind "warm ups" in vehicles that weren't fuel injected.

It is not really necessary or much beneficial to warm up a fuel injected vehicle. There will be no operating problems like stalling or stuttering due to the computer fuel management, and it is true that it wastes fuel if you let it warm up. It is, however, a good idea to let the vehicle idle down, or "warm up" for a very short period of time. Every time you start the vehicle the engine will rev higher than idle for some period of time. If it's a cold start it will usually be about 1 minute, if it's not a cold start it may only be a few seconds. IMO it is best to wait for the engine to "idle down" to it's normal idle rpm before putting it in gear. This will make sure oil has reached all parts of the engine (like lifters pumping up), the computer has had a few seconds to adjust for everything, etc. The only time I don't do this is on cold start mornings, as I'd have to wait a while to let it idle down, so I usually will wait about 10 seconds then go off, but I do drive easy the first few minutes.

Really the only thing you need to avoid and should never do is what I see people do sometimes: Start the car, and instantly push the brake, throw it in gear, and romp on the gas pedal. All this within about 2 seconds. You should really give a few seconds after starting the engine, then drive easy for a short period of time.

I hope this helps at all.
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Old 01-13-2012, 11:13 AM
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Well by the time I go to work tonight it's going to be less than 10 degrees outside and windchill values well below zero. I'll let it warm up, say about 5 - 8 minutes. In that time it will be blowing some warm air and the temp needle will be about ready to start moving. You can hear it in older cars how they will sound like they are running awful in cold weather start ups and then once they warm up they sound good again.
Environmentalists need to be more worried about pollutants from erupting volcanoes than from my pickup truck that idles for about 5 minutes on a cold winter day
Oh I also definitely let it idle down every time, even if it's warm outside.
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Old 01-13-2012, 11:43 AM
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I think it depends on what the temperature is outside. In the winter I've always let my trucks run a little bit to warm up the oil before making it try to protect the motor. You can't deny how different a cold motor sounds versus one warmed up a bit .

I'm all for protecting mother earth, but like the post above....they need to worry about bigger things destroying the environment. Air quality is gonna be the least of our concerns once the oil companies destroy your drinking water by fracking the sh*t out of this country. Wait until there is a water shortage....anarchy baby.
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Old 01-13-2012, 11:56 AM
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I agree with Sean on letting the engine complete its fast idle segment. On my Ram it only lasts about 15-40 seconds depending on outside temps. I thought one of the reasons for not allowing longer warmup periods was to reduce contaminant buildup in the oil...water/condensation, combustion byproducts, etc. It sounds odd for combustion byproducts to go by the rings in a newer engine, but the sealing quality at the rings on any engine is not up to full capacity on a really cold engine. The quicker an engine gets up to full operating range, the less buildup in the crankcase, and the quicker any accumlated deposits burn off or dry out. At least a lot of good sources stand by this approach.
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Old 01-13-2012, 11:59 AM
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^That's a very good point. Also true for carbon buildup in the combustion chamber.
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Old 01-13-2012, 12:13 PM
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I let it warm up for about 10 minutes, maybe more if its really bitter. I dont like freezing inside my truck when Im driving. My sled is fuel injected and I always let that thing warm up to 90F (has a digital gauge) before riding it
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Old 01-13-2012, 12:30 PM
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I always do if it's real cold, let the oil get to where it has to instead of taking off "dry".
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Old 01-13-2012, 01:02 PM
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