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rh77 10-28-2006 06:17 AM

"Idle" Chat (rant)
 
OK, 2 things to balance out this rant.

First, I love driving on Saturday mornings. I basically have the streets to myself, and I don't have to worry about some arse on my bumper. OK, there's the :)

Now for the :mad:

I generally stop at the coffee shop in the mornings to get my fuel for the day. Since it has gone below 50 degrees in the morning, there is someone in a gas guzzler, letting their vehicle idle while they go in for coffee.

Every day this week there's been a different vehicle.

Here I am this morning, CODFISHing in the parking lot and drift into the parking space, and lo and behold, theres a '07 Yukon SLT running with no one in it.

Ethical considerations:

It has to be unlocked. I'm so tempted to just to shut it off and put it back into ignition mode. Ignoramus comes out, "Huh, it must've stalled". The drawback -- is it legal? If so, I'm sure the owner wouldn't be too happy if they were to come out as this was happening. Just random thoughts this week...

RH77

Silveredwings 10-28-2006 06:36 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by rh77
The drawback -- is it legal? If so, I'm sure the owner wouldn't be too happy if they were to come out as this was happening. Just random thoughts this week...RH77

Most places now, it isn't legal to idle more than about 5 minutes with longer exceptions in cold weather. Not that the owner is likely to care about that.

The other consideration is whether the owner is big and ill-tempered...and armed. :eek:

Look, you can't change the world, but if you work really hard at it, you might be able to change just one guy or gal. :)

nonnef 10-28-2006 06:55 AM

Screw ethics. Steal the thing! Just playing. :cool:

I havn't done it myself because I'm too afraid of getting shot. But I know of plenty of people who pull the keys out and toss it in their backseat. Cue havic when they get back and can't find them.
Bet the people never leave their car running agian. ;)

Legally though, I can't imagine any charges sticking. You saw a car idling and thought you'd help the owner out. Any judge should drop the case(long as you didn't take anything, and only turned off the car).

Of course, it is illegal to put money in someone elses parking meter, so who knows anymore. :(

Silveredwings 10-28-2006 07:04 AM

I like the key in the back seat thing.

I wish I had am EMF pulse generator with enough stength to kill the ignition in another car. :cool:

Then again, there's the old tried and true idaho in the tailpipe (kids, don't try this at home). ;)

onegammyleg 10-28-2006 07:22 AM

I sometimes used to teach people to drive in Australia (friends) and one of the things cops look for in the test is that you must buckle up before putting the key into the ignition.

Get it wrong and you fail the driving test immediately.

So I take it , in Oz , that you would not be legally allowed to leave a car unattened for any time with the key in the ignition , running or not.

MetroMPG 10-28-2006 08:15 AM

Until I read this thread, it never would have crossed my mind to be concerned about getting shot by switching off someone's idling car! :eek:

How about: make up a little flyer. Stick it on their windshield.

Edumacate them. Hit them with the cold hard facts (the list of cons about idling is lengthy), or see if you can find a creative way to make the point - since the owner's rational facilities are already suspect and the logical approach possibly futile.

I was riding with friends in their car yesterday (always interesting to see how people drive in the real world, but that's another story). When we stopped for a bottle of wine to take to dinner, the driver left the car running. (So I switched it off.) I find people are more likely to leave a parked car running when passengers are inside, out of some kind of bizarre "courtesy" which has nothing to do with need: the 2 of us remaining in the car weren't cold, or hot, or even listening to the radio.

rh77 10-28-2006 09:16 AM

Flyer
 
Yes, here Missourah, the "Concealed Carry" law means anyone could have a gun -- so there's concerns there. But, I like the idea of of a flyer. But the problem is, most people don't care and would likely forget about it. Their vehicle choice for example -- probably lucky to get 15 mpg.

I'll come up with a list of cons and maybe print a page or two and see what happens. Maybe do a little Sociological Experiment like park out of view and watch their reaction as they read it.

-RH77

Quote:

Originally Posted by MetroMPG
Until I read this thread, it never would have crossed my mind to be concerned about getting shot by switching off someone's idling car! :eek:

How about: make up a little flyer. Stick it on their windshield.

Edumacate them. Hit them with the cold hard facts (the list of cons about idling is lengthy), or see if you can find a creative way to make the point - since the owner's rational facilities are already suspect and the logical approach possibly futile.

I was riding with friends in their car yesterday (always interesting to see how people drive in the real world, but that's another story). When we stopped for a bottle of wine to take to dinner, the driver left the car running. (So I switched it off.) I find people are more likely to leave a parked car running when passengers are inside, out of some kind of bizarre "courtesy" which has nothing to do with need: the 2 of us remaining in the car weren't cold, or hot, or even listening to the radio.


MetroMPG 10-28-2006 09:20 AM

Or you could just stuff a potato in the exhaust pipe. :)

rh77 10-28-2006 09:24 AM

Whodaho
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by MetroMPG
Or you could just stuff a potato in the exhaust pipe. :)

And waste a perfectly good potato? ;) In some cases, we're talking DUAL exhausts here. I'd need to carry a sack of 'taters all over town!

RH77

JanGeo 10-28-2006 10:09 AM

Just be careful that there isn't a baby or a dog inside - isn't it illegal to leave a running vehicle running unattended? They could also have a remote door lock not attached to the ignition key. Hey once you stall the engine you could take back the potato this assumes that they don't have a leaky exhost system and it keeps running.

nonnef 10-28-2006 10:22 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by rh77
And waste a perfectly good potato? ;) In some cases, we're talking DUAL exhausts here. I'd need to carry a sack of 'taters all over town!

RH77

Waste? Heck no, they're just cooking it for you! :D

Course I'd let them eat it... not sure I want one covered in the stuff coming out of a car...


Oh, and I'm from the south. If someone doesn't have a gun on them they have two in the car. Or in the baby stroller... needless to say, there is one hiding SOMEWHERE.

thisisntjared 10-28-2006 10:23 AM

so wait you guys havent heard that starting the motor consumes a considerable amount fuel? this of course depends on the car.

anyway, it is wrong for you to shut it off. thats like me walking into your house uninvited, and shutting off all the other lights in your house while you are in the kitchen, coincidentally, getting your cup of coffee.

JanGeo 10-28-2006 02:29 PM

Just so you know my xB uses 0.1 gph at idle and that comes out to half a penny a minute. shutting it off and starting again bumps it back up to .3gph for several minutes so keeping it running when I want a little A/C or HEAT is not so bad but most V6 engines burn .4-.5 gps so not as efficient and a V8 must be a bit more than that!

JanGeo 10-28-2006 05:02 PM

Not really the "leave the key on" without running is a bad idea for the Scion since Stability control and ABS brakes and Power Steering all require engine running properly as Toyota does not even recommend bump starting the engine even though I have on several occasions. I generally just let it idle when coasting and believe me the 3 turns stop to stop steering is very hard to turn without power steering even while moving and any emergency maneuver would be impossible witout power steering.

cfg83 10-28-2006 08:59 PM

theclencher -

Quote:

Originally Posted by theclencher
Oh Man, you touched a raw nerve of mine!!! :eek:

It's EVERYWHERE, ALL THE TIME... people leaving their vehicles idling while filling up at gas stations- clearly illegal and unsafe but they do it anyway. People in parking lots coming/going then they run in to someone they know and gab for half an hour with their vehicle(s) idling. Unattended kids or people sleeping/reading/zoning out/doing whatever in vehicles in parking lots, vehicles left idling- why? Heat? A/C? Radio? People in slow drive-throughs- idle idle idle idle idle. Same thing waiting for long trains at RR crossings- idle idle idle idle idle. On a few occasions I have been out for a walk when all of a sudden a vehicle (9 times out of 10 a full-size pickup) starts up with nobody around- auto start. Never do they come out and get in it in the time I'm around to see it. Auto-starts = worst invention ever!!! When I see them advertised on TV I want to call the business up and tell them so! They should be OUTLAWED. Diesel owners are even worse!!! Some (many?) of them idle all day long! I'm not kidding! All those millions of pistons around the world at any given moment going up and down and up and down while going nowhere and producing no useful work- makes me crazy(er)!!! :mad: Here's one trailer park people are famous for: "tuning" their POS by constantly revving the engine. Like that accomplishes anything. :rolleyes:

I too have been tempted to shut their engines off, or better yet if it's unlocked re-park it a block or two away. Extended idling is criminal, but we all know who the criminal on the wrong side of the law would be in that scenario... :sad:

Any note left on the vehicle will be either disregarded or met with a bad/angry response. I left a note on a truck that parked in the motorcycle parking lot at work one time, leaving no room for any motorcycles- the guy was furious when he found it! These sort of people- auto-start equipped gas hogs always left idling, then when they go they speed like hell- simply don't have FE on their "minds". Oil being a finite resource, pollution, cost, geo-political factors, stewardship of the earth- none of that exists in their worlds. A note or a lecture won't do it. They won't get FE on their minds until the cost of their waste hits them in the wallet. And it has to be a cost great enough to really leave a mark, as using the arguement of saving $100 or $200 or x amount of gallons of fuel in a year will have no effect. They are either wealthy or live on credit and so don't know the value of a dollar.

What can be done? Perhaps raise the price of fuel so high- like in Europe- that they have no choice but to take notice. Of course that penalizes the conscious people too. Perhaps, somehow, the gas guzzlers in addition to already paying more in fuel taxes by virtue of their greater consumption, also need to pay guzzler penalties at the pumps. Or maybe motorists who can demonstrate 30+ or 40+ or ? mpg get a rebate of some sort- wouldn't that be sweet! Extra money from gas pigs being taken from their wallets and going into ours!!!

100% agreement. I won't use any drive thrus for that reason. I still idle too much from habit, but I am getting better. I do my own "subliminal fightback" by putting a gas ration card in my rear window :

https://home.earthlink.net/~cfg83/gas...ation_card.jpg

When a person asks me what the heck it is, I tell them. The idea is to get them to think from a different POV. I went looking for this a long time ago and found a picture from a website similar to this :

https://www.prewarbuick.com/features/...r_is_a_war_now

The idea is, I think a mileage card on an economy car is more patriotic than a yellow ribbon on an SUV.

CarloSW2

kickflipjr 10-28-2006 09:18 PM

I like gas ration card in the back window cfg. Did you just print that off the internet?

cfg83 10-29-2006 01:04 AM

kickflipjr -

Quote:

Originally Posted by kickflipjr
I like gas ration card in the back window cfg. Did you just print that off the internet?

I found the A symbol at a site that I can't find right now. At the URL I posted above, the B and C are "good enough" quality images. I might change to a C because that's my first initial. From what I have learned, they were 4" high and 3" wide. I printed the A on a color printer at the 4" x 3" scale, laminated it, and put it in my car.

I loved what the article said :

The national maximum “Victory Speed” was 35 miles an hour.

35 MPH means that the car doesn't have to overcome air friction. They knew what they were talking about back then!

CarloSW2

rh77 10-29-2006 07:38 AM

Intriguing
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by thisisntjared
so wait you guys havent heard that starting the motor consumes a considerable amount fuel? this of course depends on the car.

anyway, it is wrong for you to shut it off. thats like me walking into your house uninvited, and shutting off all the other lights in your house while you are in the kitchen, coincidentally, getting your cup of coffee.

This is an intriguing idea -- that I think we should investigate further.

Let's say the SUV's V-8 idles at 0.7gph and the time spent idling is 5 minutes or 0.05 gallons. How much fuel does it take to start a vehicle...

Does anyone have any data on warm startup fuel usage rates, on average?

We may have a myth to bust here.

BTW, I like the WWII ration stickers -- I bet a lot of old timers around here would get it.

RH77

thisisntjared 10-29-2006 12:58 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by rh77
We may have a myth to bust here.

i agree!

Quote:

Originally Posted by JanGeo
my xB uses 0.1 gph at idle and that comes out to half a penny a minute. shutting it off and starting again bumps it back up to .3gph for several minutes

this is an interesting fact.

DRW 10-29-2006 09:45 PM

I believe MetroMPG has a graph on his website showing fuel consumption as the engine warmed up. https://www.metrompg.com/posts/warm-up-idling.htm

Here's a clip from my ecu:
enrichment multiplier at startup (similar to a carburetors 'choke' function)
1.14 1.20 1.26 1.40 1.60 1.80 2.2 3.00
Corresponding Engine Coolant temp F
186 176 125 95 69 46 19 3
So the colder it is, the more enrichment is used to start the engine. Some enrichment is used even when the engine is fully warm.
Luckily the ecu decreases this enrichment very rapidly once the engine is started, but a little enrichment remains for up to two minutes after starting. One technique to defeat it is to bump start and coast engine off for a few seconds until the enrichment timer counts down some. Keep in mind this is just from the ecu in my car, tho I think it may be similar to the way fuel is handled in other fuel injected cars.

I remember hearing a long time ago that it's not worth it to shut the engine off if you have to restart it within 15 seconds. It might be an old myth, but the sentiment is there. What's the minimum time an engine should be off in order to save gas when re-starting?

Metro MPG, (or anyone) could you perform another consumption test when the engine is started at different temperatures? It would be interesting to see if the high consumption rates you see in the first two minutes of startup are from this 'choke' function, or if it's just extra enrichment needed to run a cold engine. Maybe try starting with a colder and warmer engine temp, and see where the graphs match? This should show the difference in startup enrichment.

GasSavers_Brock 10-30-2006 11:27 AM

Ya, I can tell you in a VW diesel idling does nothing. My wagon consumes .25L or .05gal / hours once warm. So there isn't enough heat to keep it warm. You have to drive it to make heat, no point in idling; it actually will cool the engine faster since it is sucking a lot of cold air through it.

Here in Wisconsin it is illegal to leave a car idling without a person in it. Which really struck me as odd since they can sell those remote start units. Wouldn't you technically have to break the law to even use them?

When it is really cold, like below 0F or -17C I let the car idle until the louder knocking stops, about 5-10 seconds before driving slowly away. I do drive slowly until I get some movement on the thermometer.

LincolnW 10-31-2006 09:05 AM

You should have taken the keys and thrown them out the window a few miles down the road! lol

No really, like already stated, these types of people don't care about anything but themselves. People like that really bug me. I can't stand wasteful people.

rh77 10-31-2006 03:12 PM

Engine-Off Coast
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by theclencher
So p&g doesn't work for you?

I can efficiently engine-off coast in the Integra, but for some reason, the TSX just guzzles the gas on startup. It generally drops the overall MPG average displayed by 0.1, which would negate the whole purpose. The 'Teg is much different -- once it's warm, it's in closed-loop and you can Engine-off coast all over the place. I've been trying to figure out how long of having the engine off vs. idling. I kinda like the 15-second idea...

RH77

Spule 4 10-31-2006 03:29 PM

Long idle, in cold, to allow proper warm up is OK and is beneficial in the long term, but you are right on the letting things sit once warm, why bother?

Many years ago, two friends did find a warm running car when returning home from a night of drinking. Figured why not, and took it home....then a voice comes up (radio) and they notice it is an unmakred police car. They quicly bailed out of it....but one did leave a warm and wet surprise in it.....and a detective wondering where is car went.

Also, in Athens Ohio around 1990, there were a rash of pizza men that would leave their cars running and run to the door with the pizza. The pranksters (that called the guy) would jump out of the bushes and then drive the cars to the intermural football fields of south green and "launch" them in the Hocking River. Several reports of this in the Athens News at that time.

rh77 10-31-2006 06:26 PM

I would agree
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by theclencher
Now that there is pretty much 100% wrong. :(

I would agree there -- anything more than 5 seconds of idle time, even at 15F or colder, is wasting a LOT of fuel. The trick is to slowly drive until everything warms properly, then drive as normal.

Fuel maps support the theory.

RH77

Spule 4 10-31-2006 08:19 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by rh77
I would agree there -- anything more than 5 seconds of idle time, even at 15F or colder, is wasting a LOT of fuel. The trick is to slowly drive until everything warms properly, then drive as normal.

Fuel maps support the theory.

RH77

Maybe, I should be more clear, not a fuel issue, (but even then with choke on older cars) but engine wear, espeically diesel and turbo. Having torn down a few motors in my day that did not see this and those that did, you can tell, especially top end wear.

You can buy a lot of fuel for the cost of a motor.

Spule 4 10-31-2006 08:25 PM

Actually, the average car at idle takes around 1/2 gallon per hour of fuel, so even at 10 minutes to warm up, you are not approaching anything that would be a large negative impact on fuel and the benefits of a warm car for comfort are added also.

Spule 4 10-31-2006 09:49 PM

Interesting on cold temps in that one link, the coldest I have ever started a car and drove around (without problems I may add) was about -32F. The car? Volvo 122S. Yes, with SUs.

Not sure on the wear comment in the thread there.....have seen the wear and then there is in fact a negative FE from running a car not warmed up, drive one around with a bad thermostat for a while and see what happens even in summer.

Agreed on the idling all day, even the railroads in the US are getting away from it now.

rh77 10-31-2006 09:51 PM

More links...
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by Spule 4
Actually, the average car at idle takes around 1/2 gallon per hour of fuel, so even at 10 minutes to warm up, you are not approaching anything that would be a large negative impact on fuel and the benefits of a warm car for comfort are added also.

On cold startup, the average car will use a LOT of fuel as it is on a pre-programmed "Open-Loop" -- meaning, it is going to run as rich as possible until coolant temps can allow the oxygen and other sensors to provide feedback (closed loop). I mean we're talking some serious consumption. Over 10 minutes, starting at 2.0gph and tapering to 0.7 (cars aren't generally warmed up until moving), you've burnt a considerable amount of fuel.

Taken from https://oee.nrcan.gc.ca/transportatio...nce.cfm?attr=8

"An engine can burn up to 50 % more fuel for a short trip in the winter than for the same trip in the summer.

Fuel combustion is also much less efficient in a cold engine, and the air-fuel mixture is richer (i.e., there is more fuel and less air). The combined effect is a sharp increase in pollutants. To make matters worse, the catalytic converter doesn't work when it is cold. Until the converter warms up, all the engine's emissions pass through the exhaust untreated.

One answer to this cold-engine dilemma is to use a block heater to warm the coolant, which in turn warms the engine block and lubricants. The engine will start more easily and reach its peak operating temperature faster. In temperatures below 0?C, block heaters can improve overall fuel economy by 10 % or more.

Use an automatic timer to switch on the block heater two hours before you plan to drive the vehicle. This is all the time needed to warm the engine.

Warm Up by Driving

Once a vehicle is running, the best way to warm it up is to drive it. With computer-controlled, fuel-injected engines, you need no more than 30 seconds of idling on winter days before driving away. Anything more simply wastes fuel and increases emissions.

Besides, more than the engine needs to be warmed up. So do the wheel bearings, steering, suspension, transmission and tires, and that can happen only when the vehicle is moving. For a typical vehicle, it takes at least five kilometres of driving to warm up these components.

Although it is important to drive away as soon as possible after a cold start (but not before the windows are defrosted!), you should avoid high speeds and rapid acceleration for the first five kilometres or so. The goal is to bring the whole vehicle up to peak operating temperature as quickly as possible while maximizing fuel economy.

To prevent your car windows from fogging up, open a window as soon as you enter the vehicle. Clear snow from the air intake on top of the hood. Otherwise, the defroster will draw moisture into the system and fog the windshield."


This can be cited over and over if necessary...

RH77

Spule 4 10-31-2006 10:22 PM

RH77

Very good article there from the Canadians. Very true on the points of the suspension. You and I can relate especially to Citroens in cold mornings firsthand, I have not experienced that in many many years myself, but can remember "stiff" times. Then, there are other cars that not all functions will work until warm including the older ACC systems in Mercedes and top gear on Toyota automatics from the 1980s on.

But, once again, and I am surprised as the article does not talk about the negatives of engine wear. And ditto too on cool down, especially diesels and turbos. Don't cut the engine when not at idle and give it a chance to "cool".

Ted Hart 11-08-2006 07:46 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Spule 4
Actually, the average car at idle takes around 1/2 gallon per hour of fuel, so even at 10 minutes to warm up, you are not approaching anything that would be a large negative impact on fuel and the benefits of a warm car for comfort are added also.

Note: For your own "safety", do not-under any circumstances-let GM hear / see you say this! They will go ballistic! Irrational, yes. But lawyers / gov't (same thing?) abound! They want you to "drive off"...to conserve fuel. Disregard your poor ring / cylinder wall interfaces being washed down with unvaporized gasoline! Wear, wear, wear out!

Ted Hart 11-08-2006 07:52 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by theclencher
That's pretty much one of the major points: Warm-up time is halved by driving vs. idling.

Hmmm.... I thought engine loading had something to do with ring-loading! Guess I am wrong.... Me? I'll continue to warm up my engines until the water temp. needle moves...like BMC (used to?) recommends! My rings/cylinder walls will continue to love me! LOL!:D


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