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      05-31-2011, 07:34 AM   #1
Rivenscyr
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Driving short distances

Hi guys,

As its winter and the weather has turned pretty sour, I've been forced to drive to the gym instead of my usual walk.
The distance is less than 1KM, I dont have a Temp guage (or know of one) among the usual set of dials.
So the question is, Am i doing serious damage from driving such little distances on a cold engine?
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      05-31-2011, 09:08 AM   #2
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seeing as you only go to the gym like once a fortnight I think the car will be fine??
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      05-31-2011, 09:34 AM   #3
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Take it easy on the drive over and you will be fine imo.

I think short distances are only a cause for concern when it's the only type of driving the car will be subject to
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      05-31-2011, 10:08 AM   #4
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No joke but you should take a few loops just to prevent the damage and carbon buildup caused by short distance driving.

And WTF dude 1km is like a 10min walk man it up
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      05-31-2011, 10:11 AM   #5
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I drive to/from work depending on how I feel, but I also make it a little drive around the suburb too. In the end driving takes 20 mins longer than walking
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      05-31-2011, 06:58 PM   #6
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Do it 5 more times and your engine is kaput! WTH Arren?
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      05-31-2011, 07:12 PM   #7
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Seemed like a good idea last night.
Anyways I'll probably just drive around the block a few times before
Getting there and same on way home.

Just don't want to run into engine problems in the future
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      05-31-2011, 07:37 PM   #8
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Could someone please explain why short distance is bad for your car?
Sorry noob here.
I thought as long as you keep it under 2500rpm in a cold engine, it should be fine?

I drive alot of short distance for my work so this is a concern for me.

Cheers
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      05-31-2011, 07:48 PM   #9
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Originally Posted by bmroxm5 View Post
seeing as you only go to the gym like once a fortnight I think the car will be fine??
Comedy gold
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      05-31-2011, 09:03 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by playwithonehand View Post
Could someone please explain why short distance is bad for your car?
Sorry noob here.
I thought as long as you keep it under 2500rpm in a cold engine, it should be fine?

I drive alot of short distance for my work so this is a concern for me.

Cheers
When you just start the car, none of the parts are yet running efficiently. Fuel consumption is a lot higher, the engine oil is not up to temperature and is too viscous to provide adequate lubrication, the gearbox fluid isn't warmed up etc.

Since the engine is at such a low temperature, there tends to be a lot of carbon buildup at this time as there is not enough heat to burn it off. When you keep driving after the engine has warmed up (like on a normal, moderate length journey) this buildup is usually burned off from the heat. Having the engine never reach optimal operating temperature means you will never get rid of the buildup and have massive issues a lot sooner than normal.

In newer cars, the catalytic converters need to reach a certain temperature from the exhaust gases to function. Pollutants that collect in it need heat for them to react, if that's never allowed to happen then the life of the cat will be severely reduced.

What's relevant to you diesel owners too is the diesel particulate filter. Again, that requires quite a high temperature to operate in order to remove the particulates emissions that collect in the filter. If you never reach normal operating temperature, that's going to ruin the filter.

As for brakes, parking outside and always driving a short distance can cause rust to buildup on the rotors since there's never enough distance driven to take it off.

There's a tonne of shit that can go wrong if you never drive an adequate distance.
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      05-31-2011, 09:31 PM   #11
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fark

looks like....



im going to start driving my mums car to gym
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      05-31-2011, 09:52 PM   #12
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Jeff valid points there, but with regards to your earlier post I reckon if you're driving short distances just drive the short distance and don't worry about doing the happy laps.
I guess that really only applies if you're never doing long distances but in the OP's case I'm sure the car get's up to operating temperature rather frequently so he should just drive the short distance and forget about it?
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      05-31-2011, 10:23 PM   #13
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do you still live at home? how cute
only the cool kids get to live with their parents
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      05-31-2011, 11:05 PM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Rivenscyr View Post
only the cool kids get to live with their parents
Same here, i would be selling blood if i have to pay rent.


Thanks Jeef, your information is really awesome.
Can you please define what you mean by adequate distance for the engine to warm up? 10mins of driving, 10km of driving?

Cheers
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      05-31-2011, 11:23 PM   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by M3Rossi View Post
do you still live at home? how cute
The guy's barely 18, unless he sold a kidney he wouldn't be able to pay for any sort of outside home living.

Quote:
Originally Posted by playwithonehand View Post
Same here, i would be selling blood if i have to pay rent.


Thanks Jeef, your information is really awesome.
Can you please define what you mean by adequate distance for the engine to warm up? 10mins of driving, 10km of driving?

Cheers
It's a shame most BMWs don't have an oil temp gauge, but from my experience looking at mine, about 10mins driving is enough to bring the car to operating temps.
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      05-31-2011, 11:24 PM   #16
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Quote:
Originally Posted by M3Rossi View Post
As soon as you start the engine, while in P or N hold it at redline for 1 minute. This will get the engine up to temp quicker reducing engine wear/damage everytime you drive.
That...also works. Impresses all your friends to boot!
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      05-31-2011, 11:28 PM   #17
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Quote:
Originally Posted by M3Rossi View Post
Bullshit! Is Rivenscyr really only 18?
...and he's already rocking a 330d. UJELLY?

When I was 18 I was just stealing drives outta my mum's awesome A class.
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      05-31-2011, 11:30 PM   #18
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Quote:
Originally Posted by M3Rossi View Post
As soon as you start the engine, while in P or N hold it at redline for 1 minute. This will get the engine up to temp quicker reducing engine wear/damage everytime you drive.
Me thinks your just being silly with this post
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      05-31-2011, 11:33 PM   #19
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Quote:
Originally Posted by WOPALX View Post
Me thinks your just being silly with this post
Yeh, what a ridiculous post.

We all know that you're meant to stick it into D, hold the brake and then crank the engine up to redline. That way you warm up the engine, transmission, BRAKES AND TYRES.
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      05-31-2011, 11:49 PM   #20
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Quote:
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I guess thats the difference between an M3 and the 335 engine. We actually have a real performance engine made at the BMW F1 facility... 335 THIS biatch!

Question though, the M3 manual does state to drive the car as soon as you start it and to not let it idle to warm up. Is that the same for you guys?

I remember my college days when i had a 200sx i used to start it up each morning and let it idle to operating temp before ever driving it.
Yeh for new cars, it's recommended that you drive off straight away at low engine speeds and with moderate throttle input in order to warm it up. This way, not only is the engine warmed up, but the transmission, differentials and brakes are too.

Older vehicles tend to need to sit after starting, but nowadays it's better to just be on your way. Must be because of the cats or something. It's always the cats.
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      05-31-2011, 11:50 PM   #21
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Quote:
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that reminds me, does anyone use turbo timers these days? lol
Pretty sure the Evo/STi guys still do but our cars run an electric water and oil pump that continues to cycle fluids through the turbos until they cool down even after engine is switched off.
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      06-01-2011, 12:27 AM   #22
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Damn this forum is awesome. Log on and in a couple of minutes you learn so much.
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