Fact vs. Fiction: should you warm up your car in the winter?

THE VILLAGE, Okla. - When the temperatures dip, we all want the heaters in our cars to be nice and warmed up before we pull off; but what about that engine?

"By letting that oil warm up and start circulating and get pumped up to the top of the motor, it gets everything lubricated well," said Brian Thompson of Brian's Automotive Services. "So it'll help extend the life of the motor."

He says there are a number of benefits, especially if your car sits in a driveway overnight.

Technology in cars has changed over the years, but he says engines made after 2010 need to warm up just as much.

"Having good warm oil circulating through the engine is definitely a lot more beneficial in these newer cars," said Thompson.

While it gets that heater cranked, and is good for the car, if you're too far away, you're actually breaking the law.

"There is a state law here, like in many other states, that you can not leave your car running while unattended," said Chief Deputy Russ Landon with Village Police.

If an officer sees your car running and you're nowhere to be found, you can face a hefty fine.

"We don't want to come across someone in a stolen car, which is a felony, and chase them, and endanger the public, which is going to happen if we come across a car someone is driving that's been reported stolen," Landon explained.

He explains the law was established years ago, before so much technology allowed remote control of vehicles. Still, police say over the years they've seen multiple thefts where someone would be at a gas station or convenience store and leave the car running.

It's an open invitation for thieves, and avoiding those situations is the logic behind the law.

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