Many of you may think that idling your big rig is harmless, however, in all actuality it is not. If you are stick sitting in traffic, idling is unavoidable. However, if you plan to sit for a while idling is truly unnecessary. Idling your truck for long periods of time could lead to potential engine problems, is a waste of money, pollutes the air and is illegal in many jurisdictions (in some states fines are as high as $25,000!).
It is particularly important to not idle while you are sitting for long periods of time – sleeping or loading and unloading. Sitting in a truck that has been idling exposes you to the toxic exhaust and pollutants your truck is putting off. The benefit of warmth or a/c may not be worth the damage you are doing to your health. Additionally, idling when it is not necessary will cost your extra money. Did you know that idling for just over 10 seconds will use more fuel than if you shut off and restart your engine?
That being said, of course if the weather is below 0 or rather 100 degrees, then may just have to idle away. In the event of extreme weather conditions, idling your truck is completely acceptable. However, you should do so with caution. If you must idle your truck, here are some things to keep in mind to ensure your safety:
- Do not leave your vehicle unattended, that is how theft happens
- Check for any exhaust leaks
- Roll the window down for fresh air to get inside the truck
- Park across from the wind so that the wind may help blow away the fumes from sitting under the truck
- Make sure to roll the window down to keep from inhaling the fumes
The truth of the matter is, the benefits of not idling are pretty substantial. By shutting your engine off when it is not necessary to keep on you save the life of your engine, obey laws, save diesel fuel and help protect the environment by preventing to put those toxic pollutants into the air. Be careful when you choose to idle your truck. Idle with caution and only do so if it is necessary, and make sure to follow the tips above.
At North Dixie Truck and Trailer, we offer 24/7 emergency services (1-800-440-9523) and the top mechanics in the business (419-221-3750). Be sure to call us for all your trucking needs and you’ll never be disappointed.