Random question, but if I'm just stopping into the gas station for say three minutes, should I leave my engine running or stop it and then restart it?
I'd think letting it idle for a few minutes would be easier on the starter and other parts, but at what point does the gas usage make a difference? Because it takes a decent amount of gas to start it, vs not too much at idle. But at some point leaving it running would waste more gas.
And I wouldn't do this in a sh itty neighborhood. (Although I did tonight!)
I. Wouldn't do it period. I laugh at any person who leaves their car unattended running in a lot. In my area u see one of those at every store. It's like 30 seconds of idling is the same as starting it. Just think, you could be the cause of a murderer or robber getting away.
1997 Limited 5.2L Nelly - SOLD
1997 Limited 5.2L - new project
I like to let mine warm up completely before shutting it off. So I leave it run at the gas station a minute down the road where i get my coffee. All other stops I shut it down. I keep a second key on me so I lock my door while it's running and keep an eye on it while in the store. If someone goes to pull on the door handle I'll see it.
I have 95 ZJ 4.0L with 260K.
Purchased with 40K in 1998. I never leave it running when my tail is out of the seat, especially while at any gas station or convenience store.
Replaced the original starter in 2003 with a Lifetime Warranty option from AAP for $113. 2 bolts, 2 nuts , 45 minutes later ... back on the street.
Replaced the replacement starter in 2009 ... free under the warranty 2 bolts, 2 nuts, 45 minutes later ... life is good.
Last weekend - replaced the replacement's replacement ... free once again 2 bolts, 2 nuts, 1.5 hours later (had dinner in the middle) ... rollin' once more.
Keep in mind that my starters are probably only replaced because my block is cleaned about once a month.
All the residual "gunk" flowing down on it, assists the solenoid with a little sticking ... which my wife does not like to smack it with an old ax handle, we carry in the back.
Replaced they get.
So ... $113 and 3 hours of my time ... over a period of 18 years.
I figure the energy drinks I purchased at those stores during those years have wasted me more - than the starters.
Not to mention the greater potential for theft/damage ... when the crime of opportunity is sitting there idling.
In love ...
Last edited by timbo1969; 02-27-2013 at 10:25 AM..
Reason: added love
That's actually a good perspective. I think I'll just continue to leave in running only on the really cold Minnesota days, especially if the engine isn't at operating temp -- everyone does on those days.
And you're right -- I've probably spent thousands on donuts and chocolate milk in the past few years. Such a damn waste!
I've wondered this same thing many a time. And not once have I gotten a straight answer from anyone I have talked to, let alone a similar one from two people. I get a different response from just about every person I talk to. So far, its about a 50/50 split I'd say. I live up in Montana, and the crime rate where I live is minimal. If an idling vehicle got jacked from the front of a gas station, it would be found extremely quickly. I don't live in a tiny town where everyone knows each other, but it's small enough that news gets around when something like that happens. So I'm not too worried when I DO leave my jeep idling in the parking lot on the days where the thermometer drops below 0. As for gas consumption, like Ratmonkey said, very minimal for the 3 minutes you're in the C-Store for your Red Bull. 6, 1/2 dozen the other really. Any more than about 5 minutes unattended, though, and I start to get a little antsy... Just a matter of personal preference and locale I would think. Just my 2 cents.