Vehicle idling

What is vehicle idling?

Idling is letting a vehicle's motor run when the vehicle is not moving. Vehicle idling is harmful to health and the environment, and to the vehicle itself. Here a some situations where vehicle idling can be avoided:

  • In the winter to warm up the vehicle, or in the summer to run the air conditioner
  • During short errands (convenience stores, service stations, etc.)
  • While waiting for a passenger
  • In a drive-through waiting line
  • When using a remote starter

Since vehicle idling is harmful, why not join our efforts in conserving energy, protecting our health and preserving our environment!

The advantages of reducing vehicle idling

  • We breathe better and we protect our health
  • We reduce greenhouse gas emissions and help meet the Kyoto Protocol's objectives
  • We protect the environment
  • We save gas and money
  • We reduce engine wear

True of false… discover the myths

  1. Idling… is good for the engine.

    Excessive idling can damage engine components, including cylinders, sparkplugs and the exhaust system.

  2. Turning off and restarting an engine damages the engine and increases fuel consumption.

    Frequent restarting has little impact on the engine. Also, an engine that idles for more than 10 seconds uses more fuel than if you turn it off and restart it.

  3. The engine should be warm before driving off.

    In the winter, 30 seconds of idling is more than enough. In fact, driving slowly for the first 4 km is the best way of warming an engine.

The consequences of vehicle idling

  • An idling vehicle pollutes twice as much as a vehicle driven at 50 km/h.

  • Exposure to the various pollutants emitted by cars is higher inside the vehicle than outside.

  • During one year, if the 129,000 drivers who travel throughout Longueuil's territory decreased their idling time by 5 minutes per day…

    • we could save:
      • 4.9 million litres of fuel
      • $4.9 million if fuel cost $1/litre
    • we could also reduce nearly 12 million kilograms of greenhouse gases, which is the equivalent to:
      • removing more than 8,486 vehicles from circulation;
      • planting 77,400 trees to absorb those greenhouse gas emissions.

Longueuil and the green shift

Since Ville de Longueuil makes a point of being attentive to its population's concerns, it is always striving to improve its environment. The adoption of a by-law regulating vehicle idling is another step in this direction.

It is through our collective awareness that we can reduce greenhouse gas emissions. Through our efforts, we will not only save on fuel costs, but mainly protect our health.

Ville de Longueuil is therefore counting on the cooperation of all its citizens and motorists to limit the harmful effects of vehicle idling. To this end, the city has implemented several initiatives to raise awareness on this issue among its employees and its citizens.

For more information

For more information, please consult the city's vehicle idling by-law.

The measures that Ville de Longueuil is implementing are also part of the Québec government's action plan to address climate change. For more information on Québec's "Coupez le moteur" program, please visit the website of the ministère du Développement durable, de l'Environnement et des Parcs.