How long should you warm up your car before driving?
In the wintertime, nobody wants to get in their car if it's like a freezer. You climb in, you sit down, the seat is ice cold and then what do you do? You just sit there and wait for it to warm up.
During that cold snap we just had, it was ridiculous it was so cold. I remember last year when I was looking for a new car and I told my girlfriend what I was doing. She said the only thing she wanted was heated seats. That was the deal breaker if I couldn't get heated seats, say goodby.
AAA has an interesting opinion,
“Start the engine and allow it to idle only for the time it takes you to fasten your seat belt. This ensures that lubricating oil gets to all of the engine's vital parts. Driving the car normally and avoiding hard acceleration brings the engine to a warmer temperature faster, and also reduces wear and exhaust emissions. Naturally, a little longer idle time is ok in winter while you clear snow and ice from the windshield and other car parts.”
according to familyhandyman.com,
“several states including California, Illinois, Michigan, New York, and Minnesota, have have gone as far as enacting "anti-idling" laws to reduce air pollution and potentially dangerous situations involving cars running during the winter.”
Think about this question, Is It Safe To Warm Up Your Car In A Garage With The Door Open?
Even if the garage door is still open, my answer would be no. Carbon monoxide is poison. It will kill you. Worse yet, if the garage door is closed And the garage is attached to the home, then you're probably getting carbon monoxide leaking into your house. Not good.
By the way the law in Washington state says,
“No person driving or in charge of a motor vehicle shall permit it to stand unattended without first stopping the engine,” the Revised Code of Washington (RCW) 46.61.600”
Of course, things are different if you own an electric car. You can warm it up as long as you like. I mean, really, it's your electric bill.
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