Hey CNY – How Often Should You Start Your Car In The Cold?
When it's this cold, some worry their car won't start. So how often should we start it to let it idle?
With record-breaking fridged temperatures in CNY, car owners are asking: How often should I start my car to warm it up?
In a USA Today report, AAA motor club says it's not a good idea to warm your car up to keep it from freezing.
"Ninety-five percent of the cars on the road today don't use carburetors, so you no longer need to warm them up on cold days," said Mike Calkins, manager of technical services at AAA. [USA Today]
If your engine does freeze, Calkins suggests getting a block heater installed for under $100. They plug into a standard electrical outlet, warm the engine and fluids before starting a vehicle. An engine block heater will reduce the risk of damage from "cold starts" and idling.
Rainbow muffler says if it's cold enough to gel your antifreeze (check your manual or the antifreeze brand you use) and crack your block, it might be necessary to plug in your heater overnight.
You don't need to use an engine heater on every cold day. It's only necessary on days when temperatures fall below 5 degrees Fahrenheit. A remote starter or very brief idling time will effectively warm the engine in more moderate temperatures. [Rainbow muffler]
According to Calkins, repeatedly starting a car without running it long enough to recharge the battery can lower the battery's capacity over time.