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Just reduced pollutants(and savedmoney,besides)

Posted by joyfulguy (My Page) on
Sat, Jul 31, 04 at 16:50

Hi again,all,

Severalmonthsago myold step-uncle died and at the time some of his friendswere wondering about having someone around thehouse, for if it were empty there'd be a good chance of break-ins.

So I said that I could help and have been making the 25 mile round trip almost daily since early March.

I often go out late at night, so there islittle traffic on most of the roads.

We had a smog alert for several days, recently. We produce quite a few pollutants in our own area and about half of the ones that we enjoy come from the coal-fired electrical plants down in the Ohio valley, etc. south of the border.

I have found that my eyesitchfrom time to time,whichIrather blame on the pollutants in theair, sometimes pollen, also, Ithink.

Anyway,I've found that, with my car with the standard transmission, I can turn off the engine and coast for over 2/3 of the way from my place to my uncle's house.

Moree later - I'm about the be logged out.

Bye.

Ole Ed.


Follow-Up Postings:

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RE: Just reduced pollutants(and savedmoney,besides)

Hey Ed,
Is that good for the car coasting, I would check that out

Stella


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RE: Just reduced pollutants(and savedmoney,besides)

If you have power-assisted brakes, you might find that, should you require them in an emergency, they won't work very well or very quickly when the engine is shut down.


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RE: Just reduced pollutants(and savedmoney,besides)

Interesting idea. You do usually get 2 or 3 more applications of power assisted brakes after shutting the engine off just from the residual vacuum left in the system. Power-assisted steering will be lost, but as long as you're moving at a decent speed, that would probably not be too big of a problem.

This practice could be illegal in some areas, but I doubt anyone would get caught. (You could just claim the engine died, I guess.)

This would cause excess wear and tear on the starter, but most of the newer ones use a gear-down system where they don't usually fail too often. (The geared-down ones sound more "tinny" than the traditional U.S.-made ones, so that's how you can tell if you have that type or not.) Other than that I can't see any problem with this. I'd be interested to hear what your gas mileage is with this versus leaving the engine running. I'd say you could at least see a 25 to 40 percent improvement.

Just be careful not to turn the key too far and lock the steering column. :-)


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RE: Just reduced pollutants(and savedmoney,besides)

Hi again.

With a standard tranny, all that I need do is push in the clutch, then turn off the ignition. Can either take vehicle out of gear, let clutch out - but I seldom do that, as starting again takes more time, and I may need to restart quickly in case some unforeseen emergency crops up.

I have two (sometimes three) power-assisted braking actions available when the engine is off. I can apply adequate braking without power-assist, except in extreme emergency. And I can restart the engine in a second, especially if I am running with the car in gear and the clutch pushed in.

Power-assisted steering means that I must use more force to turn the wheels, but I'm a strong fellow, even at age 75.

When running my van with the automatic transmission, I don't turn the engine off, but I habitually take my foot off of the throttle when I see a traffic light go yellow half a block ahead. I believe that makes a lot of sense in winter under slippery conditions, for when vehicle gets to slow speed, transmission is pushing but brakes are trying to stop.

Sometimes slip transmission control to neutral and take foot off of throttle when running down a hill, but not often.

Don't turn engine off, as I must use starter, which takes much longer to restart in case of emergency - and will mean that I must buy an expensive starter sooner, and pay a mechanic to install it (which sometimes I used to do myself - as my kids say, when considering my frugal ways, "Spoil yourself, Dad"). Ain't it great to have kids that aren't deeply committed to preserving as much as possible of their (potential) inheritance?

My car has close to 300,000 km. (180,000 m.) on the odometer, so, even after some major work on the engine recently, is getting rather tired.

When I turn it off, there are a number of parts that would be working if it were running, so it is thankful for the rest.

I do try to avoid turning the key back on a substantial period before I am ready to start, for if the ignition is at the point of shooting a high-voltage spark to a cylinder to fire it, it may be damaging to the ignition points.

Don't know of any other potential downside to the habit.

By the way - I am usually returning during the day, so have someone coming up behind me more frequently. Even if the road is clear, I can't get as much coasting distance travelling that way - usually something under half of the distance.

On one trip of 20 km. (12.5 mi.) the other night, I travelled 15 km. coasting. If anyone had suggested to me earlier that such might be possible, I'd have laughed at him/her.

As Dad used to say, "The proof of the pudding is in the eating".

Though we North Americans (and Europeans) are a small percentage of the world's people, we've been using a major percentage of the world's resources to support our extravagant lifestyle.

If we think that the rest of the world are going to be willing to have us continue our greedy ways in future, without their having a substantial upgrade in their living standards, as well - we are majorly mistaken. Where are we going to find the resources?

Good wishes all for developing a less polluting lifestyle.

ole joyful


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RE: Just reduced pollutants(and savedmoney,besides)

If I can coast up to 3/4 of the mileage, I should get over double the gas mileage, right? Upwards of 100 mpg.? Almost as good as a (small) motorcycle! But I'm inside, out of the rain.

But I find that sometimes, after I restart, I speed up rather quickly in order to get speed up before arriving at the next high ground - so get lower gas mileage during that rapid acceleration period.

Life ain't all sweetness and light, after all.

Have a great week, everyone.

ole joyful


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RE: Just reduced pollutants(and savedmoney,besides)

Shutting the engine off and coasting will not reduce your fuel usage quite as much as the proportion of running vs. coasting time would lead you to think.

Most fuel-injected cars already have fuel cutoffs as part of their fuel injection systems. So, when you lift your foot off the throttle on one of these cars, the fuel flowing into the cylinders is completely stopped. It is restored only when the engine speed drops to a point where it is close to idle, when the fuel is needed to keep it from stalling.

Also, just looking at the basic physics of a car moving down the road, it requires a certain input of energy to move a vehicle a certain distance. By shutting off the engine you do improve your fuel economy, but you do not change the amount of energy it took to move the car X number of miles/kilometers. The improvement comes from the fact that an internal combustion engine is not very efficient, and most of the energy in the fuel it burns shows up not as forward motion but instead as waste heat. By periodically cycling the vehicle's engine on and off, you improve the engine's efficiency by cutting its running time and therefore reducing the amount of waste heat it produces.


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RE: Just reduced pollutants(and savedmoney,besides)

I know a gal that likes to speed up when the light is yellow to see if she can't make it through...and then slam on the brakes if she guessed wrong LOL I like your way better! My motto...slow and sure and I'll get there just the same. My kids think I am a hazard because someone is going to run into me from the rear...LOL


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RE: Just reduced pollutants(and savedmoney,besides)

Hi sus905,

If someone runs into your rear - they're at fault.

Some time ago, when I had a car that was badly rusted around the rear end of the body, I threatened to put a sign back there saying,

"If you follow too close ... you may well fix my rusty trunk lid".

Just a thought.

Tell your kids to be sure to wear their seat belts.

Good wishes for safe driving.

By the way - I've been thinking of writing a letter to our local newspaper along the line of,

Question: How can one get most of the people in town mad at one?

Answer: Drive at the speed limit (and somewhat more slowly if conditions are less than ideal, e.g. at night, if roads are slippery with rain, snow, etc.).

Keep up the frugality system, folks - but remember, it's an interesting and enjoyable game, not a chore.

ole joyful


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RE: Just reduced pollutants(and savedmoney,besides)

doesnt the start up of an engine require more energy than just letting it idle for a certain period of time? ... in addition to the wear and tear on the starter and the battery - i would think you would be better off coasting with engine running rather than shutting it off - due to the initial power required to start an engine ...


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RE: Just reduced pollutants(and savedmoney,besides)

As my little Colt's 1.5 litre engine is attached to a standard transmission, all that I need do is push in the clutch and turn the key off.

When I'm ready to restart, turn on the ignition ... and let out the clutch.

Actually, I usually double clutch, as the truckers used to, to allow the restarted engine to get up to speed without dragging down my ground speed further.

I find that I can restart with very little loss of momentum on the ground.

When I'm driving my van with its automatic tranny, usually I don't turn off the engine, which would necessitate using the starter. Frequently slip the transmission control to neutral when going downhill, approaching a traffic light gone yellow, etc.

Starters are expensive.

As is paying to have them installed.

Recently, when installing a replacement on the van, with the help of a friend, we got the wrong one at the auto recyclers - and had to travel nearly 20 miles to exchange.

So, even though we evaded the cost of mechanic's labour - it cost us extra gas ... and time.

A dollar saved is $1.33 earned (if you're in 25% tax bracket).

Don't forget to hug your eweetie today - if you take her flowers ...

... she'll wonder what you've been up to.

ole joyful


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RE: Just reduced pollutants(and savedmoney,besides)

As someone said on another thread - if your steering wheel locks when you turn the ignition key all the way off, make sure that you don't turn it all the way off while you're moving.

My ignition key turns the engine off easily by moving just one position (and I can still listen to the radio) but if I want to turn it all the way off to lock it, which does cause the steering wheel to lock, I must push in a little button beside the key.

Be sure that you don't lock your steering wheel if you turn the ignition off while the vehicle is moving.

Some time ago, when my ignition key broke off in the fuel lock, quite a long way from home and I wasn't carrying another, my son suggested that when the station got busy in the morning, we'd have to push the car out of the way.

I said that we could push it straight ahead or straight back - but if we needed to turn it to the side, we'd need a tow truck, as the steering wheel was locked when the ignition key was remocved.

Good wishes for safe and happy motoring, all.

ole joyful.


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RE: Just reduced pollutants(and savedmoney,besides)

Hi Ole Joyful!
I just got back on this thread and saw your reply. Cute. One good thing about my kids not liking my driving is that they offer to drive me. I like that.
The other good thing is that they are grown up so I can listen to them, smile to myself, and know their time is coming when they have children of their own.
Keep the faith.
Sus905


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RE: Just reduced pollutants(and savedmoney,besides)

Hi again Sus905,

Just as long as your kids don't drive you up the wall.

But, as someone said when a person told another, "You make me mad!" ...

... "No one can make you (force you to be) mad ... unless you let them."

It's a good idea to keep yourself in charge of your own life and emotions.

Hope you've been having a happy, productive, helpful day - and have had a visit with friends to enjoy it.

ole joyful


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RE: Just reduced pollutants(and savedmoney,besides)

Sad news, folks.

My little 1990 Doge Colt, with the 1.5 litre engine and standard tranny, has just about had the biscuit.

I've spent more on it during the past year or so than I paid for it, almost 8 years ago.

Now it needs suspension repair, plus a trans-axle (that allows power to go to the front wheels even while they're changing direction).

Plus the other day when I put the brakes on, there was a grinding sound that indicates that the brake pads are worn down to metal and metal on metal is bad news.

Then I got a red light indicating brake trouble, so drove exceedingly carefully in the city and on the 120 mile trip home.

Fortunately, with a standard transmission, it's possible to gear down and let the engine do most of the slowing of the car, so brakes are needed only a little bit at the end - but in that case, it's best not to be following too closely.

One can move the control of an automatic transmission to D2 and D1, to slow it down, as well - but it doesn't work as effectively.

I found out that the reason for the warning light was that the fluid level was low - as much of it had gone into the piston on the wheel where the brake shoe had worn down to metal (and it fell out, at the end).

Temporary repair - so I'm looking for a replacement vehicle.

Along with doing a little crying, due to the loss of a trusty vehicle that has served me well. I bought it almost 8 years ago with 138,000 km. (about 87,000 mi.), it turned over 320,000 km. (200,000 mi.) a couple of weeks ago. Sips gas.

If someone not too far from London, Canada knows of a fairly small vehicle, a few years old, with standard transmission, hatchback, that has fairly low kilometres and isn't too expensive, I'd like to know about it.

Thank you so much.

ole joyful


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RE: Just reduced pollutants(and savedmoney,besides)

I noticed as I read my (numerous) contributions to this thread that I didn't tell what the top level of coasting was while I was travelling to Uncle's farm - I moved out there in the spring.

I was able to coast just over 16.5 of the 20 km. (about 10 of the 12.5 mi.) trip, i.e. over 80% of the way.

If anyone had told me when I started that I could have achieved that level, I'd have laughed in their face - impossible.

Recent update:

Brakes were fixed - and the trans-axle, or whatever, at the same time.

Recently, I wanted to make a trip to NC (for a reunion of former missionaries to Korea, which meets every three years) and GA (to visit my niece) but was reluctant to trust the little Colt for such a long trip.

Had a short visit with the niece, whom I hadn't seen since the last trip to NC three years ago, a couple of weeks ago, when we all flew to Edmonton for the funeral of her brother's wife. They'd been married less than two years, but she had a brain tumour at age 7, many operations since, suffered seizures, etc., had one in the bath and drowned. Her family were thankful that she'd been able to be with them for as many years as she had - and she thanked God for giving her a second chance when she was married, for she'd doubted that she would be.

Got the car back from repair shop, got my med. ins. and set off. Arrived without trouble in NC - which I chroncicled at the Kitchen Table forum - and had a good visit with former colleagues and friends.

Had a visit for three days with my niece, which I appreciated, for there was little time for serious talk in Edmonton the week before.

Safe and uneventful trip home, as well, despite going on the wrong road a couple of times. Cars, unlike horses, don't seem to know the way home!

I got a bonus, as well - got to meet a "Gardenweb" regular attender, Pooh Bear, with whom I'd interacted for something over two years - we had a lovely evening together in their fairly new house that they largely built themselves, near the river.

I'd hoped to meet a couple of others, but it didn't work out.

Car started leaking oil, so I stopped in N. OH to get some, when I posted to Kitchen Table and sent message to my kids letting them know I was O.K. Got a bonus there, as well - got a gallon of milk (3.78 litres) at Meijer for $1.65 (about Cdn$2.00 ) but pay at least Cdn$3.99, usually Cdn$4.29, for 4 litres in this area.

I wondered about getting a gallon - but thought that if it spoiled and I had to throw a third of it out, I'd still be ahead. Later, I thought that I should have bought limit of 3 jugs, for they'd have kept one another chilly and I was not too many hours from my fridge at home.

I crossed the border a short while after midnight, when my med insurance had run out, so it was too late to call Cherryfizz.

I had to stop for a sleep at a couple of service centres, so didn't arrive home till morning.

It was a great trip, though - about 3,000 km. (just under 2,000 mi).

Car has gone over 325,000 km. (nearly 203,000 mi.).

Looking for a replacement, as mentioned above.

If someone in this area knows of a good candidate, let me know, please.

Good wishes for the weekend to you and yours.

ole joyful


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RE: Just reduced pollutants(and savedmoney,besides)

Just saved more gas, and money, also reduced pollutants last week.

Car in garage from Mon. aft. till Fri. aft., travelled out most days hitchhiking.

On Fri. morn, facing substantial chilly wind that carried some snow pellets, hitch-hiking not so hot - had to walk about 4 mi. before I got a ride.

Later, after visit to bank and to talk to you folks, hitch-hiked again to get car.

Learned a lesson - I've been looking rather lackadaisically for another car.

Guess I'd better get serious, for hitch-hiking in fall weather is not exactly pleasant - and it'll get even less attractive soon.

Had I bought that replacement, I'd have had wheels.

In 1966, when Sue and I and kids were going to settle here rather than return to overseas refugee work, had two old cars, one really rusty. When I took the oldest to garage for repair, as gas tank supports had sagged till it dropped down enough to separate filler tube, so gas went on ground, garage said they had some new last year's model stored for about 9 mos., would I be interested.

I appeared rather uninterested, but was listening.

Talked to Sue over lunch, went down in afternoon and bought one.

Took it home and parked it behind house, drove the old ones.

Garage man said he's been selling cars for (25 years?), had never sold a new one to have client park it and drive the old one(s).

I said as long as the old ones would go, they could go - the new one was backup.

We drove the new one on summer vacation about three months later, to visit Sue's U.S. relatives a few hundred miles away.

Just had lovely dinner in spaghetti house with son and daughter: nice evening.

o j


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