Should You Warm Up Your Mercedes Engine in the Cold?

Giancarlo Perlas June 20, 2016

mercedes engine warm up

The common notion during winter is that one should let his car be idle in the cold to warm up the engine. How many times did you leave your Mercedes-Benz out in the cold, believing it will somehow make the engine run smoother when it is warmed up?

This is completely and utterly wrong based on reliable sources. Not only are you putting your car under harsh winter conditions, you’re doing more harm than good, too, because of this myth that it should be warmed up.

According to former drag racer Stephen Ciatti, who also has a PhD in mechanical engineering from the University of Wisconsin-Madison, said that idling one’s car not only wastes fuel, but also strips oil from the critical components such as cylinders and pistons.

An internal combustion engine, like the one found under the hood of a Mercedes-Benz, works by using pistons to compress air and vaporized fuel within a cylinder. This mixture of air and fuel is ignited to create a combustion event, which then results to a little explosion that powers the engine.

When your engine is cold, the fuel compensates by creating the right air-and-fuel ratio for the combustion engine. In fact, engine with electronic fuel injection have sensors that instructs the engine to pump more fuel into the mixture.

When you let your car be idle, it puts more gasoline into the combustion chamber, which can then get on the cylinder walls. And because gasoline is an “outstanding solvent,” it can wash off oil from the walls when the engine runs for an extended period of time.

Stripping away the lubricating oil from your engine’s important components can reduce their life. The best way to warm up your Mercedes engine is to drive it. When it reaches the temperature of 40 degrees Fahrenheit, it can switch back to a normal air to fuel ratio.

About Author

Giancarlo Perlas

Giancarlo Perlas is an economist by profession with a career spanning nearly two decades. His professional journey has seen him assume vital roles in various government and private organizations, particularly in the blockchain and cryptocurrency sectors. Alongside his civic and corporate pursuits is his love for cars, particularly those made by Mercedes-Benz. In 2012, he found himself with like-minded individuals within BenzInsider. From then on, he used the platform as a way to share his passion with the automotive community. Follow his Facebook page at, X (formerly Twitter) @giancarloperlas, and IG @benzinsider. View all posts by Giancarlo Perlas →

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