Being a busy parent means mastering the art of compromise. One area you never want to compromise, though, is the safety of your children. The main thing is to take care of the basics so you can be confident your children will be protected in and around cars.
Specific Car Seat Safety Items to Review
Types of Car Seats for Kids
Infants & Toddlers Rear-facing only, Rear-facing Convertible:
All infants and toddlers should ride in a rear-facing seat until they are at least2 years of age or reach the highest weight or heigt allowed by their car seat manufacturer
Toddlers & Preschoolers Convertible, Forward-facing with harness:
Children who have outgrown the rear-facing weight or height limit for their convertible seat should use a forward-facing seat with a harness for as long as possible, up to the heighest weight or heigt allowed by their car safety seat manufacturer.
School-Aged Children Booster Seats:
All children whose weight or height exceeds the forward-facing limit for their car safety seat should use a belt-positioning booster seat until the vehicle seat belt fits properly, typically when they have reached 4 feet 9 inches in height and are 8 through 12 years of age. All children younger than 13 should ride in the back seat.
Older Children Seat Belts:
When children are old enough and large enough for the vehicle seat belt to fit them correctly, they should always use lap and shoulder seat belts for the best protection. All children younger than 13 years should ride in the back seat.
Child Seat Safety
Did you know…
Studies conducted in 2007, 2008, and 2009 found that only 3% of children between the ages of 1 and 3 who were restrained in a car seat were properly positioned?
About 73% of car child restrains aren’t used or installed correctly. In one year, more than 618,000 up to the age of 12 rode in cars with out sitting in a child/booster seat or using their seat belts at least some of the time.
Why is This Important?
Because using a restraint saved 303 children ages 4 and younger in 2010!
Even if you’ve researched car seats and chosen the best one, do you know how to safely transport your child in the car?
Proper installation is key.
It is important to place infant seats in the back seat and make sure they’re rear-facing and should be installed using either the seat belt or LATCH system.
Seat Belt – Check the vehicle owner’s manual to see if you need a locking clip to lock the belt in position. You mght have to extend the seat belt and let it retract to make sure it’s tight.
LATCH System – Most passenger cars manufactured since September 2002 come with the LATCH system. Anchors are in the back seat where cushions meet, and tether anchors are behind the seat. Use the attachments on your car seat to fasten the LATCH anchors. Check your vehicle owner’s manual to find weight limits for anchors and tethers.
It is important to ensure that the seat can’t be moved more than an inch from front-to-back or side-to side. Read your vehicle and car seat manuals for complete installation instructions.
Child Car Seat Rules Mostly Ignored, Study Finds
Child Passenger Safety Practices in the U.S.
Safe Kids Worldwide: Child Passenger Safety
Car Seats: Information for Families
Not At Fault? Here’s How The Insurance Claims Process Will Work
Insurance Institute for Highway Safety: Keeping Children Safe In and Around Cars
How to save on car insurance
Insurance in most cases is the second biggest expense people have, and because the initial steps in getting car insurance at a good price can be so frustrating, most people tend to ignore it once they have it. That could be costing them considerable sums of money each year.
While it's easy to mistake auto insurance as something that's a relatively fixed cost, it's not. It can be lowered -- often easily -- to help you save money, the Insurance Information Institute says. Your savings will vary greatly depending on your driving record, vehicle and location, but it could add up to hundreds of dollars per year.
1- Boost your deductible
Generally, when someone decides on a deductible amount for car insurance, he or she sticks with it. But increasing the amount you pay for fender benders is the best place to look when trying to lower your annual out-of-pocket expenses, according to the Insurance Information Institute.
Admittedly, it's a gamble. A car wreck will cost you more this way, but if you and everyone else on your car insurance policy have a history of safe driving, it's a way to save money. And if the threat of a big deductible payment worries you, put the money aside. Use your annual savings as an auto emergency fund so you'll never be caught by surprise.
Joining a car pool has benefits beyond helping the environment. If you carpool with three other people, with each driving one-week shifts, you can cut the miles you drive by up to 75 percent. And the less you drive, the more you save on car insurance.
"Most companies track mileage," says Art Scott, a retired insurance agent who worked for State Farm for 30 years. "Anything under 7,500 miles is considered the pleasure rate -- and that's the lowest. Up to about 13,000 miles is a medium rate, and anything over that is a higher rate."
The amount you save will vary depending on several factors, but J. Robert Hunter, insurance director for the Consumer Federation of America, says the difference could be as much as 25 percent.
3- Buy what you need
The car insurance you need when your car is brand new is often considerably different than what you need later on. Initial rates are generally higher, since you're required to get both comprehensive and collision coverage if you took out a car loan to pay for the vehicle. Comprehensive pays for the repair or replacement of your car from damage that doesn't result from an accident, and collision covers damages if you're in a wreck.
Once it's paid off, most people forget to save money by exploring their car insurance options. Check the value of your car through the Kelley Blue Book or NADAguides.com. You might have more collision insurance than you need. And in some cases, it might be worth dropping it entirely, especially if your car is an older model.
"It's often smart to drop collision on older vehicles," says Mike Barry, spokesman for the Insurance Information Institute. "Comprehensive is so inexpensive, and you're giving up a coverage you might need -- that's worth hanging on to, though."
Among the reasons you might need comprehensive coverage: damage from storms, vandalism and theft.
4- Combine your policies
If you've got your car insurance through a different company than you did your homeowners insurance or renters insurance, you may be paying more than you should. It's called "multilining" in the industry. It means that by combining policies with a single company, you can stack discounts and save money.
Car insurance is the biggest risk for policy writers. You're more likely to get in an accident or have your car stolen than to have something catastrophic happen to your house. By combining policies, you lower some of the insurance company's risk.
"Multiline is where they make their money, rather than just picking up a loser like auto insurance," says Scott. "The more lines (of insurance that insurance companies) can get, the more they're willing to give discounts for it."
5- Keep track of your mileage
Have you changed jobs recently? Maybe you've moved to an area where your favorite stores are a lot closer? Keep an eye on that odometer to save money. Just like with carpooling, reduced driving mileage means reduced car insurance rates, says Scott, the retired insurance agent. But people often don't reach out to their insurance agents when their residence or driving habits change, and they end up sticking with unnecessarily high rates.
6- Consider a tracking device
If you know you're a careful driver, you might save money with a new car insurance policy from Progressive Casualty Insurance Co. called MyRate. A small wireless device is attached to your car, letting the company monitor your driving habits, including distance, most frequent travel times and driving habits, such as sudden stops or speeding.
After the first year, you could save as much as 60 percent, according to Progressive. But you will be sacrificing some privacy for the savings. And in some states, such as New Jersey, if the company doesn't like your driving habits, it could raise your rate by up to 9 percent.
Concerns about the device's intrusive nature have slowed the rollout of MyRate in several states. In Pennsylvania, Progressive ultimately withdrew its filing to introduce the coverage, says Melissa Fox, deputy press secretary for the Pennsylvania Insurance Department.
Other insurance companies offer similar devices that track your mileage. Allied insurance offers 10 to 15% discount on your auto policy premium if you agree to install a device that tracks your mileage or if you agree to report your mileage whenever you service your auto such as oil change or smog check.
7- Profession discounts
Lot of insurance companies offer profession or affinity discount based on your profession.
For example Nationwide insurance (Allied Insurance) offer up to 15% discount off your auto insurance premium if you are an Engineer, Scientist, Police Officer, Firefighter, Attorney, Registered Nurse, Doctor, Teacher, Pilot .... Make sure you ask your agent if there are any discounts based on your profession.
Due to lack of driving experience and risk-taking behaviors, young drivers’ car insurance premiums are among the highest insurance rates. Teenagers are also the most likely to be involved in accidents, with 16-year-old drivers over 2.5 times more likely to be in a crash than 20- to 24-year-old. Racking up tickets or accidents can quickly drive up your teen’s insurance costs with higher rates, classifying them in a high risk auto insurance group.
Your teen driver can lower his car insurance rate by:
In California, persons under age 18 must be accompanied by a parent/guardian or other person specified by law when:
Here are what you need to apply for the permit:
Driver Education and Driver Training Form RequirementsIf you are 15 ½ to 17 ½ years of age, you must provide a:
A parent, guardian, spouse or adult 25 years of age or older, who has a valid California driver license, must be with you when you drive. He or she must sit in a position close enough to take control of the vehicle, if necessary. It is illegal for you to drive alone at any time.
Before being eligible to take your driving test you must:
While many states don’t require liability insurance coverage for teens who have a learners permit, all states, with the exception of New Hampshire, require various types of auto insurance coverage for licensed drivers—and it’s a good idea to adequately protect yourself with full coverage insurance.
Contact us today for a free car insurance quote, we'll show you all your options and how you can save.
If you’re lucky enough to have a trusted mechanic with whom you’ve done business for years, you know he’s worth his weight in gold. Unfortunately, most of us don’t know an “Honest Abe” we can turn to every time we have car trouble. Consequently, that often puts us at the mercy of a stranger who pops open our hood – only to give us instant bad news – true or not.
Dealerships can be expensive
Anyone who’s ever taken their car into the local dealership for major repairs that weren’t covered by the manufacturer’s warranty may have been brought to tears when the service writer announced what the parts and labor would cost. That’s why so many people seek out an independent mechanic to do the work in hopes of getting a better shake when it’s time to pay up.
However, you should be cautious when shopping for a new mechanic to take care of your four-wheeled pride and joy. While there are plenty of professional, trustworthy mechanics in your area who will treat you and your car right, the trick is finding one who won’t gouge you with a smile after creating more problems than you started out with because the repairs were above his pay grade.
Because today’s cars have become highly-complicated machines that require specialized equipment to complete necessary repairs – and most of us have no clue whether we need this or that fixed – we’re forced to take the word of a so-called expert with grease on his elbows.
Below are just a few of the ways to make sure you’re not taken for a financial ride or risk having your vehicle ruined:
From qualifying for a mortgage to closing on my new home.
Owning a home is supposed to be part of the American Dream, but the buying process can seem more like a nightmare at times. As my husband and I prepared to buy our first home last year, I was shocked by how little I knew about it and how few definitive answers I could find online. As I bumbled through the process, learning on the fly, I developed a new understanding of the saying, “You don’t know what you don’t know.”
Setting Up for Success Before You Begin
Before I started the process, I researched meticulously — or I tried to, at least. I looked into traditional and Federal Housing Authority (FHA)–backed mortgages, finding out the down payment amount and minimum credit score we’d need for each program.
My husband and I made sure our credit scores were above 580, the minimum for the FHA program that we hoped to use. We paid down credit cards in order to make our debt-to-income ratio more appealing to lenders. As soon as we met the minimum requirements, we made an appointment with the bank — and we were sorely disappointed.
First, we learned that many individual banks have their own requirements on top of the regulations that the FHA put in place. In our case, the federal program required a score of 580, but the bank and mortgage agency that we spoke with required minimum scores of 600 and 620, which can be a significant difference when you’re working hard to repair credit.
We also learned that underwriters want to see that your deposit and closing costs have been in your account for at least two months, to track where the funds have come from and to confirm your ongoing financial stability. This was a hindrance to an impatient buyer like me.
The Home or the Mortgage: Which Came First?
When we began meeting with real estate agents, they always asked if we had approached a lender. When we met with lenders, their first question was always whether we had a property in mind. This left us totally confused.
So what’s the right plan? “Potential homebuyers should always meet with a lender before they start their home search,” says Peter Jennings, a lender with Merrimack Mortgage in New Hampshire who has worked in the industry for more than 30 years. This helps you decide which mortgage program is best for you. Mortgages are originated either by mortgage brokers or traditional banks. Because the industry is so heavily regulated, it doesn’t really matter who you choose for your mortgage — the qualifications will be largely the same, Jennings says. However, small banks are likely to offer fewer mortgage options, while larger lenders usually offer more.
When you’re ready to buy a home, you can strengthen your offer with either a pre-qualification or a pre-approval letter from your lender. A pre-qualification, where a loan officer reviews the applicant to make sure that they meet the minimum requirements, is the most common, Jennings says. If your income and credit qualifications are well above the minimum range and your employment history is steady, many lenders will feel comfortable providing a pre-qualification letter. “In the industry it’s known as a slam-dunk borrower,” Jennings says.
However, if your application is on the cusp of qualifying because of credit or income issues, you may choose pre-approval. “The file is actually formally approved subject to the borrower finding a home,” Jennings says. “I do these on occasion when I don’t feel comfortable signing off on a pre-qualification letter.” Although a pre-approval takes longer up front, it can actually cut time between your offer being accepted and closing, because much of the review is already done.
Read More: How to Save for a House and Tackle Your Debt
Finding an Agent
Once you know that you qualify for a mortgage, it’s time to start shopping. At first my husband and I searched on our own, reaching out to listing agents on properties we were interested in. But once we realized that a buyer’s agent is actually paid for by the seller when a home is sold, without any out-of-pocket expenses to the buyer, we got an agent immediately.
Not realizing that there is no out-of-pocket expense for a buyer’s agent is common, says Liz Murphy, an agent with Berkshire, Hathaway, Fox and Roach Realtors in Jenkintown, Pennsylvania. “Usually the conversation goes faster once the buyer realizes they don’t pay the buyer’s agent,” she says. “The home-buying process is so daunting, and then you’re thinking, ‘I have to pay this person too.’”
Real estate agents streamline the process by finding properties that may not be listed online and helping buyers navigate regulations and laws. When our buying process was interrupted by unexpected hiccups, including an issue with the home’s title, our agent explained to us exactly what was happening and advised us on what to do.
Emotional support is no small part of a buyer’s agent’s job, Murphy says. “You want someone who can work with you through the ups and downs, and carry you emotionally through the process.”
Read More: How Much Should I Spend on a House?
Making an Offer
Once you find a home you like, your agent should help you to put together an offer that will be formalized in the purchase and sales agreement, a binding contract between you and the seller.
Consider how aggressive you want to be in negotiations and how competitive the market is (after all, until your offer has been accepted, the seller can take other offers). If you’re hoping to conserve cash, then consider making a stipulation that the seller contribute to closing costs — the amount varies depending on the type of mortgage and down payment amount, but can range from 3 to 9 percent of the sale price.
Also decide whether you want your offer to be subject to the home passing inspection, and what type of inspection. A traditional home inspection covers any flaws in the property so that you know exactly what you’re getting into. You can also include a pest inspection, radon testing, and a bunch of other options.
I was prepared for an endless back-and-forth with the seller (maybe I watch too much TV), but our negotiation was short. We made an offer, the seller countered, and our agent advised us to come back with our “best and final” offer to let the seller know that we were done negotiating. They accepted.
Read More: A Glossary of Basic Mortgage Terms: From Escrow to Title
Meanwhile, at the Mortgage Office
Next comes the waiting. Typically it takes about 35 days from when your offer is accepted to when you can close on the house, although it could be longer, according to Neena Vlamis, president and co-founder of A&N Mortgage Services in Chicago. The wait can seem arbitrary and feel frustrating, but things are happening the whole time behind the scenes.
After your offer is accepted, the application enters the Attorney Review Period, Vlamis says. This is when the buyer does due diligence by getting an inspection and making any requests for repairs or closing cost credits. “This is the time to make sure this is the property you thought it was,” Vlamis adds.
After that, it’s time for the buyer to take a back seat and let the mortgage agent do their job. “Validation is the No. 1 process that’s happening during that time period,” says Vlamis. “It’s very important.” During the time that your application is in review, the lender is making sure that all the documentation you’ve provided, from tax returns to pay stubs, is truthful and accurate.
Because the mortgage industry is so heavily regulated, the bank takes many steps to make sure that the information it has received from the buyer is correct. The bank sends the tax transcripts to the IRS to make sure that they match what the IRS has on file. It also confirms employment information and pay before sending the application to underwriting, where everything is confirmed again, in greater detail.
This is also when the lender will appraise the house to make sure that the value of the property matches or exceeds the sales price. If you go with a federally backed FHA mortgage, the appraisal must be done by an FHA-certified appraiser.
During this time, you probably have more money in your account than you’ve ever had, but it’s extremely important not to make any financial changes during the time that your application is in review. Credit and employment are confirmed again at the end of the application process just before the financial commitment is made, and it’s crucial that there are no major changes, which could delay the process or jeopardize your chances of being approved. “Don’t switch banks, make big purchases, or change jobs,” Vlamis says. If you do, you could compromise your debt-to-income ratio, which lenders use to determine the likelihood that you’ll be able to make on-time payments. (During this time, my husband and I mostly stuck to the necessities — paying bills and shopping for groceries.)
Preparing to Close
Once everything has been approved by the bank, buyers will receive a financial commitment letter. “That is saying that you have the ‘all clear’ for your financing,” Vlamis says. “Everyone, start packing.”
However, the waiting often continues — with about a week between the financial commitment dates and your closing. “That time allows the preparation of your closing package, you to do final walk-through, cashier’s checks to to be ordered, or a wire organized for closing costs, the deed to be prepared, etc,” says Vlamis.
When it finally is time to close, you’ll likely be able to breathe easy. You will sign a massive stack of papers, exchange checks and keys, and be on your way as a new homeowner.
Minimum Fire insurance is required for any home purchase, the lender wants to make sure their investment is protected prior to funding the loan. Casablanca Insurance work with a large variety of insurance carriers and lenders, we know the process and we can help making the purchase of your home as simple and quick as possible.
Click here to request your free home insurance quote!
Los accidentes de auto pueden provocarnos grandes consecuencias de salud y hasta económicas. Ya que si no cuentas con un seguro tendrás que romper tu cochinito o utilizar el guardadito que tenías debajo del colchón para pagar los daños. Lo más recomendable es contar con un seguro de auto que se haga responsable de todos los daños que pudieras llegar a ocasionar, si chocas.
Pero de todos modos, no está de más mantenerte alerta y saber cómo puedes evitar un accidente.
1.- ¡No te distraigas! Es importante tener la mirada bien fijada al camino. Evita comer, utilizar tu cel y andar de chismoso con las personas que ves pasar por calle.
2.- ¡No son carreras! Recuerda que eres una persona común y corriente que va manejando por la ciudad, no un corredor de la serie Nascar. Así que maneja con calma.
3.- Si estás borracho, no manejes. Si vas a salir de fiesta no manejes, mejor lleva a un conductor asignado o resignado.
4. ¡Alto! Has vivido equivocado toda tu vida, si piensas que la luz amarilla en el semáforo significa que tienes que acelerar más para alcanzar a cruzar, no es así, la luz amarilla actúa como preventiva, es decir te avisa que está por ponerse la luz roja y por lo tanto debes de frenar.
5.- Cambio de carril. Si eres un poco hiperactivo y te gusta pasar de un carril a otro, ten mucho cuidado. Cada que decidas cambiar de carril hazlo con precaución.
6.- No manejes en sentido contrario.
7.- ¡No te pegues tanto! Mantén una distancia considerable con el coche de adelante.
8.- ¡No te pongas loco! Controla tu carácter, aunque te hagan enojar otros conductores, créenos nada se solucionará si le das cerrones.
Kitchen Grease Fire
Kitchen Fire Safety:
At Fire Fighting Training schools they demonstrate this with a deep fat fryer set in an open field. An instructor would don a fire suit and using an 8 oz cup at the end of a 10 foot pole toss water onto the grease fire. (The results got the attention of the students.) The water, being heavier than the oil, sinks to the bottom where it instantly becomes superheated. The explosive force of the steam blows the burning oil up and out. On the open field, it became a thirty foot high fireball that resembled a nuclear blast. Inside the confines of a kitchen, the fireball hits the ceiling and fills the entire room.
Also, do not throw sugar or flour on a grease fire. One cup creates the explosive force of two sticks of dynamite.
Extinguishing a Grease FireGrease fires happen when collections of oil or grease on a stove, oven or fryer get hot enough to ignite. Grease fires are extremely dangerous because the fuel source (the grease) is a liquid, and easily splashed. Grease fires burn very hot and can quickly spread to cabinets or other flammable areas of the kitchen.
The most important thing you can do to prevent a fire in the kitchen is to stay put while cooking. The NFPA reports that unattended cooking is the leading cause of home cooking fires. Stay by the stove and be prepared for flames.
You only have a few moments to either put out a grease fire or escape the house.
Whether you are renting an apartment, home, or condo, you can protect your self and your personal belongings with Casablanca Insurance. Renters insurance covers damages to your possessions when you rent rather than own your home. Renter’s insurance can protect your personal property against fire, theft and vandalism as well as from personal liability lawsuits.
What is Renters Insurance?
If you rent rather than own your home, having insurance protection for yourself and your possessions is still important. Renters insurance protects you in situations that everyone can face: fire, theft, water damage and other unforeseen circumstances–situations your apartment owner’s policy doesn’t cover. Imagine going to dinner or a family get-together, and when you return home, you’re greeted by the flashing lights of police cars and fire trucks. Building fires, floods, and other damage can happen anytime, anywhere.
Renters insurance typically provides coverage, up to the limits you select, for specified items and situations, including:
Renters Insurance Covers More Than Property, Possessions, and Belongings. Renters insurance will protect you from incidents that occur while you’re at home, too, such as a toaster catching on fire or a friend slipping and falling while visiting you. Renters insurance provides coverage for your own items, and it provides coverage for other people’s injuries or damages in situations for which you’re liable, as well. Protect your family and your possessions with Casablanca Insurance.
Tips & Resources:
How do I get renters insurance? Becoming insured by one of the experts at Casablanca Insurance is easy! We offer insurance at our local offices, online at www.casablancainsurance.org and over the phone at (909)547-7242.
Did you know we also offer low cost car insurance?
What Happens If I Don’t Report My Car Accident?
You’ve just had your second fender-bender this year and you’d rather not inform the DMV and your auto insurance company. The other driver has less damage than your vehicle and he’s cool with not notifying either one as well. Or, so he says.
While this may seem like the perfect way to avoid another increase in your car insurance premiums and having more negative points on your driving record, it may actually turn out to be a big mistake.
First, you may want to consider the possible ramifications and penalties that await you for failing to report a car accident in California before making a snap decision. In short, you have a legal obligation to report accidents that fall under certain guidelines.
According to the California Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV), California law requires traffic accidents occurring on a California street or highway or private property to be reported within 10 days of the incident, regardless of who’s at fault. Not reporting the accident within the allotted time period by filing an SR-1 form with the DMV could lead to the suspension of your driver’s license.
Accident guidelines that require the filing of a report
The law states you are required to file the SR-1 if:
Your plans to avoid reporting the accident could also take a turn for the worse, in the event your vehicle becomes disabled – making it no longer drivable – and blocking lanes of traffic. Under this scenario, it’s more than likely law enforcement personnel will be dispatched to the scene to get you towed. And, you can rest assured the responding officer will file an accident report himself, which will automatically go to the DMV.
Of course, certain circumstances could prevent you from making the report within the required 10 days, such as having been injured in the accident. Should that be the case, a passenger riding in your vehicle could file the report for you or have a third party, including an attorney, make it for you.
Penalties for not reporting an accident in California
Should you decide to not report what is considered a “reportable” car accident that takes place in the state of California, you could be charged with a misdemeanor punishable by a jail term of up to six months, or be fined up to $1,000, or both.
And, keep in mind – just because the other driver initially agreed to bypass his or her auto insurance company and not file a report with the DMV, doesn’t mean they won’t have a change of heart, if they find out the damage to their vehicle is more extensive than they originally thought. If you exchanged insurance or driver’s license information along with your cell number, you could be staring at a very scary outcome.
Not only could the driver of the other car lay all the blame on you for the accident, he could report the fender-bender to hisauto insurance company, claiming you left the scene after hitting him. As things continue to spiral against you, your insurance company will undoubtedly find out and could get really grumpy if the “agreeable driver” files a damage claim against you through them for an unreported accident.
As unpleasant as it may be to report a minor accident to your auto insurer and the DMV, it could save you a lot more, including policy cancellation, a fine and/or six months in jail – even a lawsuit. In the end, it really isn’t worth the risk.
Weighing all your options is always important when shopping for car insurance. Finding the best auto insurance rates requires research. So, why not get a free auto insurance quote today?
While some people insist on warming up their car on cold mornings, it may actually be unnecessary and even harmful to the vehicle’s engine. Of course, any damage to your car’s motor would likely be covered by the manufacturer’s warranty, should it still be in effect, rather than your car insurance.
In what has become a bygone era when car engines required a part known as a carburetor, which fed a balanced combination of air and gasoline for them to run, it was common practice to let the vehicle idle for a period of time before hitting the road.
In states like California, although the temperature can reach freezing in some areas during the winter months, snow and frost aren’t as prevalent as they are in the north east or the Midwest. That is – unless you reside in a mountain or ski community prone to measurable snowfall and sub-freezing temperatures.
Damage to internal components
Still, with today’s engines, letting your engine idle for five or 10 minutes does nothing more than reduce the life of the engine by stripping away vital oil from its internal components, such as cylinders and pistons, leading to expensive repairs. In the past, the popular belief was that warming the engine to operating temperature would prolong engine life, but that’s no longer the case.
Because modern vehicles come equipped with electronic fuel injection or direct injection, described as the next generation of fuel injection, found on Ford’s EcoBoost and Kia’s GDI, cars built in the last 20 years don’t require much more than 30 seconds to warm up.
Alternative to idling
As an alternative to a lengthy idle, most mechanics, including Sandy “The Garage Professor” Ganz, automotive expert and editor of GTsparkplugs.com, recommend driving your vehicle gently for the first few minutes.
In contrast to the old carburetor technology of 30 years ago, engines with electronic fuel injection have built-in sensors whose job it is to compensate for the cold temperature by pumping more gasoline into the air-fuel mixture. The engine continues to run rich with the addition of the increased fuel until it warms up to about 40 degrees Fahrenheit.
By driving your car, the engine will warm up to 40 degrees much faster than if you let it idle for a long period of time. Once the proper temperature has been reached, the engine will revert back to a normal fuel-to-air ratio.
That said – it’s imperative to familiarize yourself with your vehicle’s automotive manual to follow any recommendations the manufacture may have regarding engine warm-up in colder climates. This is especially true for high performance vehicles with equally high horsepower.
On the other hand – if you drive a ’69 Boss 302 Mustang with a 4-barrel Holley carburetor in the cold, you may want to wait those few extra minutes you don’t have to give newer cars before you rev it up and peel out. The reason for this is simple – as opposed to their modern counterparts, older engines will last longer when you allow the oil to circulate properly.
So, what’s the best advice? Follow the correct warm-up procedure for your particular engine to protect it from excessive wear and tear. And, be sure to have the right auto insurance for your vehicle to protect it from physical damage.