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MINI VANILLI
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203 Posts
Discussion Starter #1
i have a brand new mini. i am currently driving 10 miles to work, so it gets nice and warmed up. but... i might get a new job that is 2 miles away. it getting super cold here in cleveland and there is no other way to get to the job but drive or walk in sub zero temps. and i'm not walking. so if i drive my mini in the morning 2 miles to work there is no way it will be warm all the way. is this really bad for the engine, and if so what am i supposed to do about it. help!
 

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*
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I'd be interested in information on this as well. I live in Southern California and I live about a mile from my workplace. I will be picking up my mcs in the next week or so. I would assume that a few minutes of warm up time would be beneficial, but would taking a longer route to work help out? Thanks in advance.
 

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The Silverado
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800 Posts
don't really know too much on this..

But i'd guess that you will be fine guys.. i think its just a case of loving your car to be too much :p
 

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MINI VANILLI
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203 Posts
Discussion Starter #4
i just ask because i have heard somewhere that not allowing the engine to fully warm up is not good. if the engine is repeatedly only allowed to warm up halfway and then cool back down it could cause severe damage. anybody else heard this.
 

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Mini Mod
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9,227 Posts
flav said:
i just ask because i have heard somewhere that not allowing the engine to fully warm up is not good. if the engine is repeatedly only allowed to warm up halfway and then cool back down it could cause severe damage. anybody else heard this.
It is , not good, would be the best description.
Car runs more rich
Catalytic convertor doesn't heat properly
Oil doesn't heat properly and is more likely to retain moisture

Add stop&start traffic to that and you have what is often described as heavy or even severe duty.
Your MINI will also "learn" this usage and perform slightly less well.
 

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Hi Flav I could help here I have a Mini One here in the UK my commute is about 3 miles and in 18 months I have had no problems ;) . I also used to work with a guy who had a Lotus Elite and used to live literally 3 mins walk away and still used to drive :D anyway I once asked him why he bothered driving? By the time he had got in the car, started it, driven down the road, stopped at the traffic lights, parked up and got out he would have already been there?? Plus I said isnt it a bad way to treat a Sports car like that?

He simply replied ''you think I drive straight to work?'' well obvious really :D :D
My point is you could perhaps leave for work earlier and warm the car up a bit every now and then as I said I have been doing short commute's for years now in different cars and have never had major problems :) .
 

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Registered
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I have been thinking the same thing.

I only have about 15 min to work and now when it is soon winter, the engine will never get warmed up as it should. Maybe it can affect the engine in a bad way so I just take my MINI on a longer trip once a week or so to compensate for this. I have no idea if it helps but it makes me feel better and it is fun too!
 

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MINI defector
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13,698 Posts
With the engine and especially the oil not been allowed to fully warmed up will cause damage faster in an engine :(
The oil is the main protection in an engine against wear and tear. When cold it's less effective so therefore by only driving short distances you will be running you engine at less then optimum temperatures for more of it's life.

I don't know what everybody elses expectaitions are but I wouldn't want a car with more the 50-60k on the clock, they start to feel "tired" by then.
 

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One more thing.

If u take short trips, keep the rpm low (max 3000rpm) and it will help the engine to stay in good shape.
 

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Mini 2 Slap Head
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304 Posts
The facts

Hi guys

A few points about short journeys in your mini:

a) Obviously, the oil will not be getting to temp so less protection for your engine
b) Greater oil/fuel dilution. More unburnt fuel will find its way into the oil and break down the oil faster = less protection for your engine
c) The engine is running richer for the first minute of driving in order to get the catalyst up to temperature, after that the engine returns to stiochiometric fuelling
d) Worse fuel economy since oil is cold and engine/gearbox friction is higher
e) Worse emissions
f) Worse heater performance

The service indicator should detect degridation of the engine oil and you will be reminded to have your service earlier. Long term damage from short journeys would be no worse than continuous high load/speed operation of the engine.

Cheers

C_P
 

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Sitting on a park bench..
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1,183 Posts
one of the issues w/ regards to the catalytic not getting heated up properly is that one of the key by-products, water, will not get evaporated. As a result, the life of the exhaust system (assuming it's not stainless) will be shortened dramatically.

This happened a number of times to my wife's car, as all she was doing was zipping around town. The mechanic suggested getting it out on the hwy or a slightly longer trip to ensure that the water was properly evaporated.
 

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owt else is just traffic
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1,462 Posts
I only live three miles from work and all of my journeys(well 99% of them) are relatively short.It does state in the manual that you should not warm the car up i.e sitting with the engine running cos apparently thats bad for the engine too.Caught between a rock and a hard place.
 

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MINI VANILLI
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203 Posts
Discussion Starter #13
well i LOVE this car, so i would like to get at least 100,000 - 150,000 out of it. so yes, i'm abit paraniod about short trip driving in it. i do alot of long trips on the weekend. do you think that will help even out the short trip damage during the week.
 

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As long as you are taking it for longer drives every once in awhile, it will be fine. Most of the issues that have been problematic in the past have been resolved with better tolerances in the engine, development of computer controls and synthetic oil. No need to worry about it. Even a 10-mile drive isn't usually enough to get the oil up to critical tempratures anyway - it typically takes 25-30 minutes of operation for an engine to get up to normal operating tempratures.
 

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Addicted to Speed!!
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I only live 4 miles from work and that journey goes straight through town, so it's stop start all the way. 12 min to work in the morning, 35 min home in rush hour traffic!! :eek:

Not good for the car at all. :(

This is the reason I don't use my MINI in the weekdays as I bought a 50cc two stroke scooter for work! :D 12 min there and 12 min back now (using the backroads). :D
 

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Shiredweller's Wife
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2,732 Posts
Most wear is done to an engine on start up. No way to avoid that. Don't worry about short trips, just don't rev. too high when cold. As others have said here, just take the car out on weekends and drive for a while. Any small amount of fuel or water in oil will evaporate out.
 

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Shiredweller's Wife
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2,732 Posts
R1 said:
I only live 4 miles from work and that journey goes straight through town, so it's stop start all the way. 12 min to work in the morning, 35 min home in rush hour traffic!! :eek:

Not good for the car at all. :(

This is the reason I don't use my MINI in the weekdays as I bought a 50cc two stroke scooter for work! :D 12 min there and 12 min back now (using the backroads). :D
Now that sounds cool. Would be fun to get an old Honda 50 or 125 to drive to work.
 

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A Total Mini Convert
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923 Posts
I have seen a unit which is fitted in the engine bay on cars, in-line with a coolant hose. You plug it in to the mains when your car is at home, on a time switch, so that it comes on X amount of time before you go out. It contains a heater and a pump, and it heats the coolant and pumps it around the engine, so when you head off on a cold morning the heater will work straight away, and the engine/oil etc will be warm.
This does rely on you having access to power where your car is parked, preferably in a garage. I guess in most climates this is a bit over the top, but in very cold areas when people do short journeys it could help

Matthew
 
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