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Suggested tips for cold weather driving?


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52 replies to this topic

#21 OFFLINE   ptjones

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Posted 28 November 2013 - 07:56 PM

You could put a small electric heater in the car for 15-30minutes before you go so you won't need to use the car's heater.

Paul
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#22 OFFLINE   userw014

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Posted 28 November 2013 - 08:46 PM

The car seems to run the ICE on cold (< 20F) mornings even when I don't use the defroster - and not having clear windshields is dangerous with my in-city commute going past a public school, downtown, and various parts of a University campus.

 

(I like that Ann Arbor is a pedestrian friendly town - but University students are completely heedless of physics and visibility and driving with a fog impaired windshield is too risky.)



#23 OFFLINE   ptjones

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Posted 29 November 2013 - 01:34 PM

The car seems to run the ICE on cold (< 20F) mornings even when I don't use the defroster - and not having clear windshields is dangerous with my in-city commute going past a public school, downtown, and various parts of a University campus.

 

(I like that Ann Arbor is a pedestrian friendly town - but University students are completely heedless of physics and visibility and driving with a fog impaired windshield is too risky.)

I still like my heater in the car idea if you can pull it off. Also I like Grill Covers to heat up the ICE  faster  and if you are driving faster than 35mph you might get an aero MPG improvement too. :)

 

Paul



#24 OFFLINE   jmckinley

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Posted 29 November 2013 - 03:10 PM

"(I like that Ann Arbor is a pedestrian friendly town - but University students are completely heedless of physics and visibility and driving with a fog impaired windshield is too risky.)"

 

Could the inattentive Ann Arbor pedestrians possibly have anything to do with the fact that in Ann Arbor, marijuana possession is still a misdemeanor with only a $10 fine? I've stood in the Quad on a summer evening and almost got high just standing there breathing in the "atmosphere".



#25 OFFLINE   mlaurence

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Posted 08 December 2013 - 10:20 PM

I want to thank you guys for the cold weather tips. At the beginning of November I was proud to be getting over 46mpg, but lately Boston has gone into the 30s and 20s. My current running mileage is about 10mpg below where it was a month ago, so I turned here for some tips.

Tonight I tried turning the heat off, and what a difference that makes! The engine warms much faster and I saw the blue EV light come on so quickly. It also took so much more time for the engine to cool down when I was coasting on EV or waiting at a traffic light. I never would have thought that blowing warm air into the cabin used so much engine heat.

My trip tonight gave me over 42mpg for a short 15 mile round trip in sub-freezing weather. It's not a route I usually take but I'll get a better comparison tomorrow on my way to work. Hopefully this will keep me out of winter depression, watching the lifetime mileage plunge month after month until April. One thing for sure: I'm glad I insisted on a model with heated seats!
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#26 OFFLINE   Laurel

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Posted 09 December 2013 - 03:26 PM

I frequently drive around with no heat or fans on and just use my seat heat and I'm pretty comfortable, but hubby hates it when I do that.  Last year when I asked him if he wanted to go look at Christmas lights in the evening his response was "only if you promise to put the heat on!" LOL.   We put snow tires on this year and the mileage dropped with them too, but I must say I really like the traction with them even though we only have a dusting of snow and usually don't get much snow at all here (south coast of BC).


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#27 OFFLINE   fotomoto

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Posted 09 December 2013 - 04:03 PM

Tonight I tried turning the heat off, and what a difference that makes! The engine warms much faster and I saw the blue EV light come on so quickly. It also took so much more time for the engine to cool down when I was coasting on EV or waiting at a traffic light. I never would have thought that blowing warm air into the cabin used so much engine heat.

My trip tonight gave me over 42mpg for a short 15 mile round trip in sub-freezing weather. It's not a route I usually take but I'll get a better comparison tomorrow on my way to work. Hopefully this will keep me out of winter depression, watching the lifetime mileage plunge month after month until April. One thing for sure: I'm glad I insisted on a model with heated seats!

 

And it works the other way around too.  If the radiator is clogged or the thermostat is stuck or the cooling fans stop running, etc and thus the engine begins to get hot, turning on the cabin heat and cranking the cabin fan will help shed BTU's which may protect the engine from overheating till one can get out of traffic or make the next exit.   If you don't have a temp gauge but only a "HOT" warning light, it will most likely be too late to try this trick by the time that comes on.

 

Although it doesn't get really cold down here, I've found that I can drive my NRG in the mid-30's with just the seat heaters so I don't need the ICE heat.  It helps that I have a partially insulated garage too.   I totally forgot about the rear passenger ac receptacle till today.   I'm going to let my rear passenger try the use of an electric heating pad as a poor mans rear seat heater.   


Edited by fotomoto, 09 December 2013 - 04:04 PM.

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#28 OFFLINE   ptjones

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Posted 09 December 2013 - 04:09 PM

And it works the other way around too.  If the radiator is clogged or the thermostat is stuck or the cooling fans stop running, etc and thus the engine begins to get hot, turning on the cabin heat and cranking the cabin fan will help shed BTU's which may protect the engine from overheating till one can get out of traffic or make the next exit.   If you don't have a temp gauge but only a "HOT" warning light, it will most likely be too late to try this trick by the time that comes on.

 

Although it doesn't get really cold down here, I've found that I can drive my NRG in the mid-30's with just the seat heaters so I don't need the ICE heat.  It helps that I have a partially insulated garage too.   I totally forgot about the rear passenger ac receptacle till today.   I'm going to let my rear passenger try the use of an electric heating pad as a poor mans rear seat heater.   

I wonder how many watts an heating pad needs. LOL :)

Paul



#29 OFFLINE   mtb9153

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Posted 10 December 2013 - 01:51 AM

Here in Northern California temps overnight have gone as low as the mid 20's in Sacramento area.  Maxus sat outside that night and had a thick crust of ice when I came outside the next moring.  I was wondering if prolonged exposure to sub freezing temps is a risk to our CMax?  I would think that with the factrory anti-freeze in the cooling system should protect the ICE from freezing and possibly bursting a coolant hose or pipe.  Any thoughts?  Not used to these cold temps in CA.  ICE is definitely running more with the heater turned up and the wife has the passenger seat warmer on.



#30 OFFLINE   Jus-A-CMax

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Posted 10 December 2013 - 01:53 AM

Here in Northern California temps overnight have gone as low as the mid 20's in Sacramento area.  Maxus sat outside that night and had a thick crust of ice when I came outside the next moring.  I was wondering if prolonged exposure to sub freezing temps is a risk to our CMax?  I would think that with the factrory anti-freeze in the cooling system should protect the ICE from freezing and possibly bursting a coolant hose or pipe.  Any thoughts?  Not used to these cold temps in CA.  ICE is definitely running more with the heater turned up and the wife has the passenger seat warmer on.

 

Brother Mike, I would not worry, I had Maxine buried in the snow for almost a week and she was fine at Mammoth. Go look at the photos in my album. Plus we have folks in AK like Don.



#31 OFFLINE   mtb9153

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Posted 10 December 2013 - 02:03 AM

Brother Mike, I would not worry, I had Maxine buried in the snow for almost a week and she was fine at Mammoth. Go look at the photos in my album. Plus we have folks in AK like Don.

Brother Jus, thanks for the comment I will not worry but DANG! it's been cold ever since that last system from Alaska blew through giving us our first rain in 90days and into SoCal then across the country riding on the Jet Stream.


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#32 OFFLINE   Jus-A-CMax

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Posted 10 December 2013 - 02:30 AM

Brother Jus, thanks for the comment I will not worry but DANG! it's been cold ever since that last system from Alaska blew through giving us our first rain in 90days and into SoCal then across the country riding on the Jet Stream.

Mate...you're telling me...it was down in the low 30s this morning and that is ABSOLUTELY FREEZING for us Angelinos who don't even know the word "jumper" (US translation: sweater).

 

I saw the effect of that storm as it went thru driving east ward - I pray all our friends in the north east are safe....that was one nasty ice and snow storm that went by.

 

 

PS Be glad that you don't drive in Antartica: http://www.theguardi...a-guinness-book  Aside from the ice, not even Matt's aeromod will save him from the 20 MPGs in these ambient temps....pssss....-135F :drop:


Edited by Jus-A-CMax, 10 December 2013 - 02:34 AM.


#33 OFFLINE   fotomoto

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Posted 10 December 2013 - 09:07 AM

I wonder how many watts an heating pad needs. LOL :)

Paul

 

Well evidently less than 150w as the daughter used it this morning (37f) on the medium setting.  She said it was nice and toasty.  It's only big enough to either sit on (her choice) or use on the back but not both.


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#34 OFFLINE   camelot

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Posted 10 December 2013 - 07:37 PM

I'm getting my cmax sel this week. I have a fusion also that has shutters on the radiator. They got reprogramed on the powertrain update. Does the cmax have them? The fusion warms up faster since then. I'm in ev in a mile and a half with temps in the 30's and heat off. Garage is 50*

f



#35 OFFLINE   fotomoto

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Posted 10 December 2013 - 10:12 PM

Yes, the CMax has active grill shutters too.



#36 OFFLINE   GreenChicago

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Posted 11 December 2013 - 06:55 PM

The biggest gains are found in two areas for cold weather;

First, do not let the engine warm up in the driveway. Turn on the car and start driving to get the most use out of the running engine.

Second, do not use the heater until the engine is warmed up. This keeps the EV driving more useable.

These two things make a world of difference.

So, where are you located? I am Mchenry.

Matt

Seriously? Do not warm the engine before driving to improve FE? I'm totally confused. I also live in Chicago where we are promised ZERO DEGREES tonight. I have been firing the engine up in the garage for a few minutes prior to driving the car. Are you saying I should fire up and drive right away? My FE has taken a major, major hit in this cold weather and I'm also looking for ways to squeeze the most out of it, short of grill covers. Help, please?



#37 OFFLINE   JAZ

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Posted 12 December 2013 - 07:02 AM

Other than the personal comfort factor, does anyone anymore recommend idling an engine before driving?



#38 OFFLINE   JAZ

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Posted 12 December 2013 - 07:02 AM

Duplicate


Edited by JAZ, 12 December 2013 - 07:03 AM.


#39 OFFLINE   ptjones

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Posted 12 December 2013 - 10:08 AM

Seriously? Do not warm the engine before driving to improve FE? I'm totally confused. I also live in Chicago where we are promised ZERO DEGREES tonight. I have been firing the engine up in the garage for a few minutes prior to driving the car. Are you saying I should fire up and drive right away? My FE has taken a major, major hit in this cold weather and I'm also looking for ways to squeeze the most out of it, short of grill covers. Help, please?

Actually I try to get up to speed as much as possible so when the ICE starts you are moving at a significant speed to get the most from each drop of gas. Grill Covers are the best thing you can do to speed up the warm up time. When you get tired of no heat and poor MPG's cover most of the Grill somehow. :) 

 

Paul



#40 OFFLINE   ERPriest

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Posted 09 February 2014 - 12:45 PM

This winter, with my short commute and sub-zero temps, has pretty much killed my FE.  I have also been trying to avoid grill covers, but geez, with MPG averages now in the mid 30s, I may have to do something.


Edited by ERPriest, 09 February 2014 - 12:48 PM.







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