Focus Fanatics Forum banner

Status
Not open for further replies.
1 - 20 of 22 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
412 Posts
Discussion Starter #1
I am trying out my engine block heater for the first time tonight. It is really cold up here, going to get down to 2 degrees by 5 am.
So in the morning I will fire up the car, and have heat, no wait. I'll let you know if it works.
bfocused
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
875 Posts
Make sure you have the block heater plugged in somewhere around waist level. A friend of mine fried his when melting snow ran down the plug wire and shorted the heater and socket out.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
412 Posts
Discussion Starter #3
Thanks for the tip, I checked it out, and the plug is about 4 inches from the top of the radiator support. So I guess it will be ok. but you got me a little parinoid now............lol
bfocused
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
412 Posts
Discussion Starter #7
Well, the block heater on my car came as part of the "Cold Weather Package". A block heater is a electric heater that warms the oil and/or coolant in the car. There are several types. Some aftermarket types work by installing a warmer to the radiator hose, usually the upper hose. They keep the coolant warm with a small electric probe. Another aftermarket type is installed to keep the oil warm. And yet another is the electric blanket type that only keeps the battey warm for a quick start. Extrem cold robs the battery of it's cranking power. I bought a solor powered trickle charger for the battery at Radio Shack. You plug it inti the power outlet/cigar lighter during the day and the sun provides a slow charge for the battery.

Which type of heater the SVTF has, I reallly don't know. There is a male three prong plug attached to the top of the radiator support. I tried to follow the wire to see, but really can't tell. I know in the morning just how effective it is. Right now it is 11 degrees out, and falling fast.
bfocused
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
875 Posts
bfocused said:
Thanks for the tip, I checked it out, and the plug is about 4 inches from the top of the radiator support. So I guess it will be ok. but you got me a little parinoid now............lol
bfocused
As long as the plug wire isn't running Downhill from the car to the wall, then you're fine.[:)]
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
75 Posts
i use mine everyday here, and every morning my car fires right up... no slow starts or cold drives to work
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
412 Posts
Discussion Starter #12
Well, it works.... not quite what I expected, but it was not a cold start. I checked the temp gauge before I started it and it did move off the total cold left position. Car started right up, and I had heat within 3 mins. I was expecting it to be warmer. But, hey it works and saves wear and tare on the engine. And the heated seats are real nice. It was 1 degree when I started the car this am.
bfocused
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
11 Posts
bfocused said:
Well, it works.... not quite what I expected, but it was not a cold start. I checked the temp gauge before I started it and it did move off the total cold left position. Car started right up, and I had heat within 3 mins. I was expecting it to be warmer. But, hey it works and saves wear and tare on the engine. And the heated seats are real nice. It was 1 degree when I started the car this am.
bfocused
a block heater can't economically keep your engine block at operating temps all fricken night long :)

its only to keep the temperature of the block at a reasonable level (probably somewhere above freezing).

cool, just saw that you're from saratoga county. i'm originally from burnt hills (actually charlton), but am out here working.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
875 Posts
bfocused said:
But, hey it works and saves wear and tear on the engine.
THAT's the real benefit.[thumb]
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
571 Posts
knightm3 said:
Make sure you have the block heater plugged in somewhere around waist level. A friend of mine fried his when melting snow ran down the plug wire and shorted the heater and socket out.
just outta curiosity, if it was warm enough for melting snow, why the hell was it plugged in in the first place? [hihi]

last night was the first night we've had here where i felt the need to plug the car in. it was -17C yesterday, and went down to about -25C lastnight (not takin into account the windchill..). yesterday afternoon the car was parked in my driveway for about 4 hours in the -17C, and it took a little bit to get it started, so i figured leavin it overnight in the -25C probaly wasnt gonna be a good thing. left it plugged from about 10pm lastnight till about 7 this morning when i left for work, and it started fine[thumb]
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
875 Posts
dave30 said:
just outta curiosity, if it was warm enough for melting snow, why the hell was it plugged in in the first place? [hihi]
Snow doesn't melt in your garage?
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
571 Posts
if the car wasin the gareage, and it was warm enough in the garage for snow to melt, it was totally pointless having it plugged in at all.. the block heater only keeps it from freezing. for snow to melt the temp had to be already above freezing......
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
875 Posts
Really? I wouldn't mind having the coolant as warm as possible overnight. And a block heater does more than keeping the block from freezing, that is what coolant is for.

Does anyone know approximately what temps a block heater keeps the coolant at?
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1 Posts
Block Heaters

Hello everyone,

I've been reading these posts and would like to offer some info and "tips" on block heaters.

First off, I live in Canada in place called Prince George, and in the Province of British Columbia. (it's about 8 hours northeast of Vancouver)

I have experienced cold winters and block heaters my entire life and I'd like to add some info to this post.

Block heaters are NOT meant to provide heat to the interior of your car when you start it up on a cold morning. For those of you who are disappointed in the amount of heat you seem to get upon first starting your car (in ccccold weather) your mistaken. That's not the job of a block heater. A block heater is merely a means of keeping the engine from getting "tight" from cold weather. Then... when you start it, it should start easier. THAT'S IT. If you're getting any heat at all it's because you live in an area of the world where it doesn't get THAT cold.

Here in my hometown we have recently experienced tempuratures nearing almost -40 (or 40 below zero) in the last 3 weeks. When you plug your block heater in here at those temps your lucky to just have your car start.

Last night it was -26.

At 2 degrees (or even zero degrees) most of us don't even plug in our cars. It's simply NOT cold enough.

If you're looking for an engine heater that provides heat for you when you start your car then I have a tip for you. Go to a local auto retailer and ask about an "In-Line Circulating" engine heater. These circulating heaters are spliced right into the radiator hose where they heat the antifreeze, and then circulate it. Then heat it, then circulate it... and so on! These work better for providing instant heat because our cars get their heat from the water (or antifreeze) circulating throughout the radiator. So when you start your car, and the water is ALREADY warm... you have instant heat.

Block heaters only heat one small area of your engine and ONLY on one side. So they are inefficient for providing warm air upon starting your car.

Lots of people where I live use BOTH kinds of engine heaters just to give themselves that added boost when they start their cars.

Well... that's my two cents. Hope some of you either learned something or were enlightened by this.

I have to go now... I need to patch a hole in my igloo... brrrrr.... Just kidding!

Have a GREAT day eh... and Hello from CCCCanada.......brrrrr....
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
110 Posts
OK I'll chime in here with my fellow Canadians. MAN, It is frickin' COLD here right now. Although "wind chill" has no meaning for a car, for us humanoids it was -50 degrees over the last few days. My Focus is garaged at night and is never plugged in as the garage seems to do a fine job of keeping the cold off the motor. I leave the car outside during the work day for eight hours at a crack and if it is colder than -25 I will park it in an underground heated parkade (at great personal expense!). Plugging the block heater in does nothing more that keeping the engine block at a temperature that will allow it to roll over without distress after a cold night. At our current temperatures it takes about ten minutes of highway driving before the antifreeze/water temps are appreciably warm enough to put some heat into the car.

Cheers from the Great White North!

Mike
 
1 - 20 of 22 Posts
Status
Not open for further replies.
Top