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Eco Stop: a worthy attempt to reduce harmful emissions or a complete waste of time?

  • 21-12-2021 7:57pm
    Registered Users Posts: 5,297 ✭✭✭ Snickers Man

    I drive a three year old Dacia Sandero, bought new from an approved Renault/Dacia dealer.

    By and large, we're very pleased with it but the one thing that drives us bananas is the damned Eco Stop feature. As we had exchanged a 2000 reg saloon (which still had a cassette player 🤪🤪🤪) for our shiny new 900cc Romanian muscle car, new-fangled items like built in Sat Nav and Eco Stop were a source of wondrous novelty to us!

    Three years later, I don't know how we ever managed without sat nav, but Eco-Stop is a pain in the hole.

    Just before our three-year warranty expired, so did our starter motor: at traffic lights at a major junction during what would have been (pre covid lockdown) peak rush hour. As it was, the other half was stranded at the head of a long queue of traffic before some knights in shining armour came to rescue her, er, pushing her over to the kerb and leaving her there but hey, the age of chivalry ended a long time ago.

    Fortunately we were still in warranty so the main dealers sorted us out free of charge but we are most reluctant to put the starter motor to all the unnecessary effort of engaging every time we stop at a junction or a traffic light. So we try to remember to keep it turned off at all times.

    Sorry Polar Bears!

    Is this a common experience or are the starter motors/Eco stop mechanisms in other more upmarket models more reliable than our inexpensive Eastern European runabout? I mean, I want to save the environment and all that but not if our starter is going to burn out every three years. Or less.



  • Registered Users Posts: 12,943 ✭✭✭✭ Toyotafanboi

    I wouldn't be too worried. Cars with stop/ start have batteries and starters with the additional workload in mind.

    Stop/ start has been mandatory since 2013(?) and in the last decade i wouldn't say starter failure is any more or less prevalant than it ever.

    You were unlucky but nothing more than that IMO. If you don't like stop/ start you could code it out but i dont know would i even bother.

  • Registered Users Posts: 7,403 ✭✭✭ FintanMcluskey

    Always found it a pain in the hole when you forget about it at a junction your pulling away from, and end up waiting a few seconds for it to start.

  • Registered Users Posts: 4,608 ✭✭✭ mikeecho

    It's second nature now to switch it off, along with putting on a seatbelt... On every car I get into

  • Registered Users Posts: 72,762 ✭✭✭✭ colm_mcm

    First thing I did to my car was map out the stop-start function.

  • Registered Users Posts: 6,142 ✭✭✭ Flinty997

    Unless I was in very heavy slow moving traffic I turn it off as it's a complete pain.

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  • Registered Users Posts: 131 ✭✭ [Steve]

    Auto Stop/Start is the first thing I switch off after starting the car. Beyond irritating at junctions.

    It’s just the standard routine now when starting the car. At least Ford make it easily accessible next to gear stick. I’ve seen it be a pain in other cars.

  • Registered Users Posts: 25,918 ✭✭✭✭ Buttonftw

    I'm glad to see people with the same opinion as me. :D

    It's well-intentioned and all but it just seems like way more of an inconvenience when you're constantly crawling anyway.

  • Registered Users Posts: 72,762 ✭✭✭✭ colm_mcm

    It’s purely a means of reducing fuel consumption on emissions testing cycles which have idling periods.

  • Registered Users Posts: 12,943 ✭✭✭✭ Toyotafanboi

    Agreed, my engine is running by the time i have the clutch fully depressed. There is virtually no cranking in stop/ start mode.

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  • Registered Users Posts: 6,142 ✭✭✭ Flinty997

    It takes a few seconds on every (non hybrid) ICE car I ever drove with it.

  • Registered Users Posts: 5,416 ✭✭✭ highdef

    Agreed with regards to my ford focus. There's no delay at all. Press clutch, and by the time I've got the gear stick into 1st, the car is ready to go

  • Registered Users Posts: 2,971 ✭✭✭ User1998

    We can thank the greens for stop/start

  • Registered Users Posts: 5,536 ✭✭✭ Leonard Hofstadter

    I also turn it off on any car that has it, unless it is a six cylinder or larger engine. On three cylinder petrols, or any sort of diesel in particular, it's horrible the way it makes the car shake and rattle. A better advert for EVs I cannot think of.

  • Registered Users Posts: 6,142 ✭✭✭ Flinty997

    Our current one is a auto and if you forget to turn it off it causes significant delay at taking off in traffic. I've got into the habit, of feathering the throttle or giving it a dart before I need to move just so its ready to go when I need it. Also cuts out when manoeuvring at slow speed, like a 3 point turn. I know I am constantly waiting on it.

    Unless I'm sitting in heavy traffic its entirely pointless. If you spend a lot of driving stopped in traffic I can see the point then.

  • Moderators, Business & Finance Moderators Posts: 17,104 Mod ✭✭✭✭ Henry Ford III

  • Posts: 0 [Deleted User]

    Do you drive a Model T where you've to use a crank handle or something?

  • Registered Users Posts: 3,418 ✭✭✭ Wildly Boaring

    I leave it on.

    Have a manual, maybe people with an auto find it more intrusive.

    If you know you'll only be stopped for a couple of seconds leave clutch down and car keeps running.

    Otherwise let it do its thing. Can't say I've noticed a delay on it starting when I press clutch.

    Much more likely to be delayed by the dope in front scrolling through Facebook.

  • Registered Users Posts: 6,142 ✭✭✭ Flinty997

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  • Registered Users Posts: 5,175 ✭✭✭ zg3409

    It's easy to disable permanently on some VW and similar models. There is a small connector next to the 12 volt battery when unplugged disables stop start permanently. Other cars have different easier or harder ways. I find it very dangerous, particularly at entrance to roundabouts in an automatic where engine stops while you wait for a gap at roundabout. When you press go pedal nothing happens for a significant time. By the point you start to move the roundabout gap may have an HGV.

  • Registered Users Posts: 707 ✭✭✭ Rusky rusky

    our automatic Golf 1.0 mk7.5 restarts the engine automatically when the car in front moves forward so no delay. Although people who tend to creep at traffic light do trigger the restart - super annoying!

  • Registered Users Posts: 5,907 ✭✭✭ MrMusician18

    It shouldn't and hasn't on any car I've ever driven. The engine is meant to stop in a way so that it requires minimal starter effort to get it going again.

    Stop start has never bothered me tbh.

  • Registered Users Posts: 1,762 ✭✭✭ Sexual Chocolate

    I have it on my ST as well and knock it off every time I start the car, it's handy the button is right beside the gear stick. Maybe I'm wrong but I have it in my head that it's not good for the turbo and on a diesel it's just a bit on the rough side cranking over compared to a petrol.

  • Registered Users Posts: 10,375 ✭✭✭✭ elperello

    Thumbs down from me.

    I hate a car that tries to outsmart me.

  • Registered Users Posts: 10,135 ✭✭✭✭ JohnCleary

    On my EClass, there is an 'individual' drive setting (i'm sure other cars have it too). On this setting, I disable the auto stop-start.

    The handy thing however with the car is that when you change to this setting, it remains for 24 hours (I don't know if it's 24 hours, but every morning when I set it, I don't need to set it again until the next day). Therefore, I only have to disable auto stop-start once per day.

    Like others mentioned above, even if I didn't have this feature, the button is on the centre console so very easy to find.

  • Registered Users Posts: 6,142 ✭✭✭ Flinty997

    Not every car has that system and not every car starts the same.

    I didn't stay every car has slow start just the ones I've driven.

  • Registered Users Posts: 6,142 ✭✭✭ Flinty997

    Besides if it's was instant there wouldn't be so many complaining about it and disabling it. They didn't wouldn't notice it.

  • Registered Users Posts: 4,608 ✭✭✭ mikeecho

    I hate it, and always disable it.

    But it's a complete pain in the summer, when you're stuck on traffic or at lights, the engine stops, and .... I've no a/c


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  • Registered Users Posts: 5,340 ✭✭✭ jmreire

    Excerpt from a post on a Mercedes Benz discussion forum about Start / Stop issues.

    Quote " Nine times out of ten it's the chain tensioner that causes problems, chain problems aren't common as long as service schedules are kept to.

    Our fleet of OM651 sprinters, have anything between 45,000 miles on the 69 plate vans to 483,000 on the 65 plate ones. We've never had to change a chain on any of the fourteen vans, but we have changed six tensioners, twelve alternator and three starter motors. Ironically all but two alternator were on the 69 plate vans along with all the starters! Go figure..... ****** stop/start!!

    Three oil coolers, two EGR units, and to cap it all, seventeen water pumps. They all seem to go around 100,000 miles, even the new type