Wildsight Kimberley/Cranbrook is again urging people to think about idling their vehicles. In an article published at wildsight.ca, Community Coordinator Ali Hadikin reminds people that idling is really just a bad habit.
“An average vehicle with a 3L engine idling for 10 minutes burns over one cup of fuel and produces 690g of CO2. The emissions from vehicle exhaust are toxic to both the environment and our collective personal health,” she says.
Pollutants contained in exhaust have been linked to asthma and other lung diseases, and more, she writes.
Vehicle exhaust is a large contributor to smog (low-level ozone), acid rain, and climate change. Transportation alone emits more than half of the nitrogen oxide in our air, the gases that contribute to smog and acid rain. While this concern does apply to both moving and idling vehicles, we know that we still need to get around our vast regional landscape, so we might as well try to do it as cleanly as possible and cut back on idling.”
She offers the following points.
• It doesn’t matter how good your vehicle is on gas, it still gets zero kilometres per litre while you’re idling.
• Modern engines require less fuel to start. Idling for 30 seconds wastes more fuel than restarting the engine.
• This one is a bit more daunting — even personally it is hard to break this habit — you don’t need to pre-heat your vehicle unless it is below -15°C (0°F). The engine takes about 30 seconds to circulate the oil and become fully lubricated, and from there the best way to warm up the engine is to just drive slowly for the first few minutes. Of course, this is only if you can see through the windshield!
She says the general rule of thumb is to turn your vehicle off if you will be idling for more than 30 seconds (except in traffic). Not only will this cut pollution and greenhouse gas emissions, but it can also even save a few dollars.
Idling also occurs in locations like drive-throughs. Hadikin advises that it’s best to park your vehicle and go inside.