Do you know this ten second rule?
With today’s engine technology, it makes sense to turn off your car engine when your car is standing idle for 10 seconds.
Why? because it only takes about a thimble full of gas to start an engine with fuel injection technology, which is used in nearly every car built since about 1990. And while more frequent use of the ignition might cause some wear-and-tear, the gas you’ll save far outweighs the maintenance cost.
It may seem excessive to turn your car off at every stoplight. In some states, shutting off your engine while in street traffic is frowned upon. But there’s little debate that it’s a good idea to turn off the motor when waiting for a train or drawbridge, reading the map, picking up kids from school or waiting in line at the drive-through.
Break an old idling habit, and you can save about a tank of gas—around ten gallons—over the course of a year. But even better, you’ll cut pollution that harms our lungs and hearts—and even our brains.
We’ve long known that exposure to tailpipe pollution can trigger an asthma attack or make it harder to breathe for people with lung disease. But now we also know that pollution can actually increase the chance of developing asthma, increase risk of lung infections, interfere with the development of children’s lungs and increase risk of heart attacks and stroke. New studies also suggest that people who live near highways have greater risk of dementia.
You can help spread the word! Check out the anti-idling kit and tips from the City of Portland.
$180. That’s the fine Oregon truck drivers could pay for allowing a heavy-duty engine to idle for more than five minutes in an hour. Why? Because diesel exhaust is especially toxic. Anti-idling fines are one solution to cut pollution; but what if all heavy duty diesel engines were as much as 95% cleaner? There’s a plan in the works in the 2017 legislative session! See more about Oregon’s Senate Bill 1008.