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The price of defrosting your car this winter? £50 million

A motorist’s routine on winter mornings is a tedious one. It usually involves letting your engine run for ages while it heats up, blasting your ineffectual heating system on full power to make the cabin feel less like an Arctic tent and cursing the fact we’re not tucked up in bed. It’s a time consuming, uncomfortable process that costs us not only time, but also a lot of money.

Motorists are wasting millions every winter by leaving their engines running while they defrost their cars.
Motorists are wasting millions every winter by leaving their engines running while they defrost their cars.

According to Direct Line car insurance, motorists who leave their engine idling for three minutes while they defrost their windscreen will waste almost £50m in fuel this winter. That’s enough fuel, the company says, to drive an average car for 300 million miles, the equivalent of taking an average family car from the Earth to the sun and back, and then back to the sun again (assuming someone were to build an enormous cosmic bridge from here to our nearest star).

Not content with wasting fuel and destroying the planet, 42 per cent of motorists admitted to leaving their car completely unattended with the engine running and the keys sat in the ignition. Making a morning brew or getting the kids ready for school could cost you more than just a teabag with thieves looking for a free ride in the build up to Christmas.

Although your options are limited when it comes defrosting your car, head of Direct Line car insurance Steve Price, says it’s worth exercising caution during the winter months. “With fuel prices having risen more than 40 pence per litre since 2007, it makes more sense than ever to consider alternative methods of defrosting your car on icy days. It is really important that drivers never leave their cars unattended with the keys in the ignition under any circumstances, but particularly when defrosting their cars.

“Many of us are pressed for time in the mornings and so leaving your car to warm up whilst running back indoors to tie up some loose ends can seem like a clever use of our time,” he added. “However, if a theft occurs under these circumstances, policyholders may not be covered.”

Looks like the old ice scraper will be making a comeback unless you are lucky enough to have some of that fancy remote engine start action.

Via: Direct Line Insurance

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