I know it’s late at night but I want you to think about something for a moment. I want you to think of how many places you have to go tomorrow and the car that’s been so willing and reliable to get you there *knock on wood*. What if, oddly enough, you stepped into your car this morning and attempted to start your car as you usually do to only discover a check engine light that doesn’t seem like it’s going to turn off anytime soon? Or it begins to smell like rotton eggs? You stop and wonder: What did you do? Okay, how about what are you going to do?
This is just an example as most people don’t envision the worst scenario or don’t care much about caring for the car beyond feeding and washing it – but if you’re a licensed driver, it can save you money to learn about the inner workings of how your car and how you can keep it running smoothly too. An old-fashioned tip that I’ve picked up from my father is allowing your car engine to warm up anywhere from 30 seconds to five minutes before you drive away. Some newer cars or recently used cars may not necessarily require this because they use electronic fuel injection. As the engine warms up, the injector uses less fuel and everything runs smoothly. Modern cars are equipped with many devices to help them run clean, including a catalytic converter (sometimes three of them) or a device in the exhaust system that works to burn off unburned hydrocarbons in an exhaust steam.
A caveat is that the average catalytic converter (whether your car is new or not) cannot 100% process unburned hydrocarbons even if it purrs like a kitten. The catalytic converter needs high temperature to function properly otherwise a cold engine emits higher unburned hydrocarbons and you may end up with a plugged converter that doesn’t function after awhile. Early symptoms hint with poor gas mileage and a dirty exhaust.
FACT – So, performing this little trick almost every morning can save you from a costly expense. All you need is 30-60 seconds and in that time, you can check your calender on your phone or change a cd. This will be enough to get the fluids circulating throughout the car before you can drive off gently.
Warming up your car is not the same as idling your car – the latter which is not suggested. While you sometimes just want to “wait in the car”, it’s good to turn off the car. You can damage your engine components, cylinders, spark plugs and exhaust systems. . Thisleads to the build up of fuel residues on cylinder walls that can damage engine components and increase fuel consumption.