That’s the question.
And it really boils down to another question: Should you warm up your car in the winter? Let’s see if we can figure this out.
Winter has arrived on our doorstep, and you’re either a) excited about it, or b) depressed about it and mad at your weird, winter-loving friends. Whether you like cold weather or not, your car doesn’t like it- until it’s warmed up. Then it loves winter. We know this, so we warm up our cars before we go anywhere.
Okay, it’s really so the cabin will be warm when we embark, but that’s a good thing, too, right? Avoiding hypothermia and all that?
Now, if you’ve read The Internet before, you’ll know there’s a huge debate raging back and forth about warming your car. Is it better for the car to warm it up? Is it just a waste of fuel and harmful to the environment? Should you just suck it up and wear a heavier coat?
Arguments against the practice can usually be summarized by saying that the idea of warming a car up was birthed in the carburetor era, when cars actually needed to warm up to get a good fuel mixture. Warming your car now is useless thanks to the wonders of fuel injection. Plus, modern engines are strong enough to just start up and go without damage, and modern motor oil is stable, even at very cold temperatures. Also, it wastes a bottle cap full of gas.
Arguments for warming, however, assert that letting the carb adjust up was not the only reason for warming, and that the metal in your engine needs to be given time to expand with heat before undergoing the pressures of driving. It may be especially true, they say, for engines with iron blocks and aluminum heads. These metals expand at different rates, and trying to heat them quickly could be hard on the engine as a whole. Also, it’s nice to climb into a warm car.
But could the remote starter just eliminate the argument altogether?
May pro-warming advocates say that you only need to warm your car for a couple of minutes, tops, before you’re ready to roll. Anti-warmers are most upset about drivers who start their cars, go back inside, and read a novel before heading out. No one wants to go to all the trouble of going outside in the cold, starting the car, then coming back inside for just 90 seconds while the car warms. You might as well sit there and freeze, but that’s miserable, too.
You can see where we’re going with this. If you could start your car while, say, putting on your shoes, coat, and gloves, you could walk outside, get in, and take off without harming the engine. This would help warm the car faster, too, since a car you’re driving will always heat its coolant, and therefore its cabin heater, faster than a car just sitting there idling.
Yes, a remote starter in every car could end this vicious, bloody feud. Check out our complete selection of remote starters (like this one), many of which also do other cool things like car security, remote locking, and more.
Andy Sheehan is a blogger, aspiring novelist, and relentless hoon. He plans to will his 2002 Subaru WRX Wagon to his firstborn, plans his daily commute around the swoop of its roads, and doesn’t plan to ever buy an automatic. A cool-car omnipath, he loves the common Mustang or Chevelle, but hunts for the weird and wonderful Velorexes and Cosmos of the autoverse. And when he can afford a garage, he’s going to turn an MX-5 into a race car.