In Brampton, the average car idles for eight minutes per day. Over a year that costs $114 in gas (at current prices) and releases 202 kg of C02 into the atmosphere.
If drivers avoided idling their cars for three minutes a day, over a year Canadians would save 630 million litres of fuel and $819 million (based on fuel costs of $1.30/litre), and they would prevent 1.4 million tonnes of carbon dioxide (CO2) from being released into the atmosphere.
A poorly-tuned engine uses up to 15 per cent more energy when idling than a well-tuned engine. Keeping your vehicle properly maintained is a key to fuel efficiency and reduced GHG (greenhouse gas) emissions.
Warming up your vehicle means more than warming the engine. The tires, transmission, wheel bearings and other moving parts also need to be warmed up for the vehicle to perform well. Most of these parts don't begin to warm up until you drive the vehicle.
For the average vehicle with a 3-litre engine, every 10 minutes of idling costs over one quarter of a litre (over 1 cup) in wasted fuel. Keep in mind that every litre of gasoline you use produces about 2.3 kilograms of carbon dioxide.