Engine needs to heat up all the way - truth? - Mercedes-Benz Forum

 
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post #1 of 9 (permalink) Old 12-20-2012, 01:35 AM Thread Starter
pod
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Cool Engine needs to heat up all the way - truth?

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Let's look at fast numbers. The shortest reasonable commute is 10 miles (16 km) each way. (Anything shorter is bad for your car, since it won't heat up all the way and boil off the water that condenses from the exhaust in your cold engine. This water dilutes your oil and rusts your exhaust. Engine wear is far, far greater in the few miles during engine warm up, too.)
How to Afford Anything


Is there any truth to this? One of the things I do with my 1998 W210 is I let it warm up to around 80°C before I drive off, if possible, regardless of the weather here in Miami. My work situation is that I work sometimes from home, sometimes from an office on the Beach (just around the 10 miles each way) and sometimes from an office in Downtown (3 miles or so each way) Miami. And the occasional longer drive for my photo work.

I'm the second owner of the vehicle. The prior owner was the one who advised me to "let it warm up for a bit, since it's older...", and I generally follow that advice unless time is of the essence. She wasn't mechanically inclined, so I'm guessing someone told her to let it warm up as well.

I read a blog post (I think on the AMG driving school site...will check later) where one of the instructors recommended something similar, in that you shouldn't do any harsh driving until the car is at temperature, similar to how if you go for a run, you should stretch and work yourself up to speed.

But, in a nutshell, just wondering if the above statement is accurate? I'm kind of following the guideline anyways by letting my 210 warm up...
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post #2 of 9 (permalink) Old 12-20-2012, 10:21 AM
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You engine has fuel injection, not a carburetor, so no heating necessary unless it drops below -35F.
Prolonged idling does more harm to the engine than short drives.
I think you have too much time in your hands to worry about something like that in FL. Would you drive 2 miles in freezing temperatures, that might be a concern.
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post #3 of 9 (permalink) Old 12-20-2012, 10:43 AM
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In a modern car my rule of thumb, regardless of outside temperature, is to start it and let the idle speed reach its initial drop (this is usually less than fifteen seconds, I don't wait for it to fall all the way down to normal hot idle speed), and then drive moderately for the first several minutes and certainly until after the engine has reached normal operating temperature.

I modify that slightly when it's below freezing; I would do that but also wait an additional thirty seconds after the idle drop. And once I got to single digits I'd probably wait another minute, or at least until I saw some movement in the water temperature gauge.

But as Kajtek1 says, extended idling beyond a basic warmup/stabilization period doesn't do much good.* An initial short warmup/stabilization period followed by moderate driving until the engine has reached full operating temperature is best (your engine will warm up faster this way as well).

The best point of the article is how horrible short trip driving is for your car. I agree you should not drive less than ten miles from a cold start, at least not with any regularity. For example, if you live only six miles from work, then take a circuitous route to or from work to get it more to ten or twelve miles at least every other day.

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* Caveat: If you floor the car as soon as you drop it in drive, then yes, let it warm up all the way before you start the abuse.

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post #4 of 9 (permalink) Old 12-21-2012, 06:28 AM
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I don't think in terms of distance, but in terms of time.

Any engine requires at least 5 mins to warm up to operating temperature. Only then can the condensed water start evaporating out of the exhaust and the engine block. If a drive would take less than 10 mins, I walk instead. But that's just me...




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post #5 of 9 (permalink) Old 12-21-2012, 09:04 AM
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10 minutes of driving puts me 8 miles away... would be hard to walk it both ways.
Each generation of engines have different efficiency and take different time to warm up. My diesels can idle for an hour in 70F weather and will never reach 80C.
CDI engines in cold climates come with aux heaters as they will never reach 80C even while driving.
Still the engine warms much faster when under the load and under the load there is less fuel running down cylinder walls.
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post #6 of 9 (permalink) Old 01-01-2013, 07:09 PM
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I grew up with 1960's cars and 1970's. where you had to warm them up.
( And that was in the North ).

With Electronic Fuel Injection, Modern Computers in Cars, you do not need to
do that anymore.

I think the : "let it warm up for a bit, since it's older...", is a False carry over from
the old days. It is not necessary today.

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Richmond County

United States of America
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post #7 of 9 (permalink) Old 01-04-2013, 05:58 PM
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Lets be frank here (or Sally) warming the engine up is not just about being able to get your fuel and air to mix and fire correctly. EFI or carbied be dammed. All engines require warming up to stop premature wear. Carbied cars were just more temperamental due to the mixing process used.
Its about the whole engine's prime operating temperatures. The oils need to warm up and thin to get everywhere, the metal needs to be at the right temp, the combustion chamber needs to have enough heat to efficiently combust (efi or carby or even an oilier)

Whether you do it from gentle driving or idling is not an issue.
Excessive idling isn't bad for a car. Think it is go and look at farm equipment or prime movers or generators or taxis with over a million miles on the original engine with nothing more than basic services as the major repair or even aircraft engines.

If worried about how to operate the car just follow the Operators manual. Manufacturers have been building cars allot longer than the average user on here has been alive, they might just have an idea of what they are doing.

Repair manuals though, GOOD GOD I wish they knew how to write those. Manufacturers seem to always cut corners when it comes to those.
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post #8 of 9 (permalink) Old 01-05-2013, 02:29 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by pod View Post
How to Afford Anything


Is there any truth to this? One of the things I do with my 1998 W210 is I let it warm up to around 80°C before I drive off, if possible, regardless of the weather here in Miami. My work situation is that I work sometimes from home, sometimes from an office on the Beach (just around the 10 miles each way) and sometimes from an office in Downtown (3 miles or so each way) Miami. And the occasional longer drive for my photo work.

I'm the second owner of the vehicle. The prior owner was the one who advised me to "let it warm up for a bit, since it's older...", and I generally follow that advice unless time is of the essence. She wasn't mechanically inclined, so I'm guessing someone told her to let it warm up as well.

I read a blog post (I think on the AMG driving school site...will check later) where one of the instructors recommended something similar, in that you shouldn't do any harsh driving until the car is at temperature, similar to how if you go for a run, you should stretch and work yourself up to speed.

But, in a nutshell, just wondering if the above statement is accurate? I'm kind of following the guideline anyways by letting my 210 warm up...
I flew old radial engine planes and the blew much faster when you had rapid heating and cooling. But they were air cooler.
Now the worry is the oil (or lack of)
You should make sure the oil is warm prior to any high RPM's being put on the engine.
Just because the water is warm (temp gage) does not mean the oil is warm
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post #9 of 9 (permalink) Old 01-05-2013, 10:43 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by amgrob View Post
I flew old radial engine planes and the blew much faster when you had rapid heating and cooling. But they were air cooler.
Now the worry is the oil (or lack of)
You should make sure the oil is warm prior to any high RPM's being put on the engine.
Just because the water is warm (temp gage) does not mean the oil is warm
That amgrob is a very good point about the oil.
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