What Is Auto Start/Stop, and Should I Use It?


More and more vehicles are being released with the Auto Start/Stop feature included, even in base model trim levels. This is the feature that shuts the engine off when you're at a red light or stop sign and starts the engine back up when you take your foot off the brake pedal. Auto makers love this feature because it cuts back on vehicle emissions and increases fuel economy.

Below is a video that explains the technical and mechanical side of ho Auto Start/Stop works, and I recommend you check it out.

I hear somewhat often that some people don't like the Auto Start/Stop feature. Here are some objections I hear to using the system.

"It feels like the car has stalled out when it's shuts down at a stop light and it stresses me out!" I understand how the feeling might feel similar, but is is a system that's been in years and years of development and is incredibly reliable. Your engine WILL come back immediately once your foot is off the brake and back to the gas pedal. A little adjusting to the experience will save you significant gas money over the life of the vehicle. 3% to 10% savings!

"I'm going to go through starters more often!" Vehicles with the Auto Start/Stop feature have stronger, reinforced starters that are built to handle the workload of more frequent starts and stops. No extra maintenance should be required.

"Sometimes the system works and sometimes it doesn't. It's unreliable technology!" Auto Start/Stop Will only work in specific situations. It's designed to not engage when the battery doesn't have charge enough to handle the workload of your vehicle's electronics and climate control system. Also in situations when it is extremely cold or extremely hot outside, Auto Start/Stop will not engage in an effort to keep you safe on the road and keep the cabin at the desired temperature.

Most vehicles will have a button that allows Auto Start/Stop to be disabled, or "defeated". The one brand that doesn't include this on a regular basis is General Motors. A disable button cannot be found on most vehicles from this manufacturer, but given all the benefits of the system many would argue that it's better to leave it on all the time anyway.

I hope that was helpful and informative for you. Any additional questions, let me know!



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