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Old 11-24-2013, 11:01 AM   #1
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Default Testing Out the Block Heaters

Hey guys,

Today is one of the coldest day yet up here this season its around 13 degrees with a wind chill of 5 degrees, Today would be a good day to test out those heaters and see how they do, Im plugging them in now, ill report back in about an hour and a half to see how they did.
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Old 11-24-2013, 11:44 AM   #2
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Default Re: Testing Out the Block Heaters

I run mine on a timer. The other thing you want is one of these, http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B00...?ie=UTF8&psc=1

You cut a piece of 1/4 plywood to fit the bottom of the battery tray and put the heater on top of the plywood and then a nice sheet of .020" stainless steel shim stock on top of the heater. Then the battery. Will warm the battery up to about 60-75F in a couple of hours. Does wonders for starting.
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Old 11-24-2013, 12:48 PM   #3
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Default Re: Testing Out the Block Heaters

Why are you guys convinced you need a block heater ?

My sl2 started fine in 0 degree weather.
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Old 11-24-2013, 01:28 PM   #4
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Default Re: Testing Out the Block Heaters

Because it is much easier on the engine if it starts warm.
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Old 11-24-2013, 01:29 PM   #5
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Default Re: Testing Out the Block Heaters

Ditto. I've started mine in colder temperatures than that even and she always turned over right away. I've actually never been in a situation where the SL2 wouldn't start....**knock on wood**

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Originally Posted by jesse8931 View Post
Why are you guys convinced you need a block heater ?

My sl2 started fine in 0 degree weather.
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Old 11-24-2013, 01:39 PM   #6
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Default Re: Testing Out the Block Heaters

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Because it is much easier on the engine if it starts warm.
^^^ Exactly, warming the coolant prior to starting the engine allows for easier starting, faster oil flow and faster heater output, When you dont have one its hard on the engine to start the oil is thicker and you literally have to warm the car up and wait 10-15 minutes for your heater to get warm in that time your waisting gas, Starting the car stone cold and pulling out right away literally is muder on the valvetrain due to the oil taking extra time to get to the top end until it begins to warm up and flow better, As I said idling the car to warm up is waistful on gas and gas isnt cheap these days...
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Old 11-24-2013, 01:59 PM   #7
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Default Re: Testing Out the Block Heaters

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^^^ Exactly, warming the coolant prior to starting the engine allows for easier starting, faster oil flow and faster heater output, When you dont have one its hard on the engine to start the oil is thicker and you literally have to warm the car up and wait 10-15 minutes for your heater to get warm in that time your waisting gas, Starting the car stone cold and pulling out right away literally is muder on the valvetrain due to the oil taking extra time to get to the top end until it begins to warm up and flow better, As I said idling the car to warm up is waistful on gas and gas isnt cheap these days...
Well cars have been running in michigan weather for over a 100 years so I'm not going to believe some hype about a block heater for 0 degree and higher weather.
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Old 11-24-2013, 02:16 PM   #8
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Default Re: Testing Out the Block Heaters

mines got a nice knock when shes cold i just dont rev the snot out of it and slowly inch out driveway with moderate acceleration block heates work for cold startups and wear but so does adding lucas oil which doesnt affect your hydro bill
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Old 11-24-2013, 02:26 PM   #9
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Default Re: Testing Out the Block Heaters

That Lucas additive makes your oil even thicker yet, Did you notice how thick it is coming out of the bottle????
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Old 11-24-2013, 02:47 PM   #10
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Default Re: Testing Out the Block Heaters

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Originally Posted by jesse8931 View Post
I'm not going to believe some hype about a block heater for 0 degree and higher weather.
What hype?

You don't need a block heater to start your car in 0 weather, just like you don't need padding in your seats. You can sit fine on a couple sheets of plywood. It's just a whole lot nicer and easier on your back to sit on something plusher

Likewise, it's a fact that a given weight oil flows better the warmer it is, and the batter works better when at normal temps as well. You may never notice the difference, doesn't mean it's not there. Oil flow, valvetrain wear and battery output can be measured even if you can't tell from the outside

Most people don't keep their cars long enough to notice valve train wear. Our saturns are already old cars with miles on them, though.
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Old 11-24-2013, 04:06 PM   #11
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Default Re: Testing Out the Block Heaters

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Well cars have been running in michigan weather for over a 100 years so I'm not going to believe some hype about a block heater for 0 degree and higher weather.
What oil viscosity are you using? You must be taking good care of your engine to rely on below zero starts without a heater. Many wanting some insurance against slower starting/poor cold weather battery use rely on a combination of engine and battery heater to have something resembling summer engine temps for starting in freezing weather. Without a heater, some will try a lower viscosity oil like 0w20 during the winter months to take advantage of better low temperature oil flow.
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Old 11-25-2013, 12:04 AM   #12
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Default Re: Testing Out the Block Heaters

I've never had a vehicle with the contact type block heater like the Saturn uses. I've had a few with the in coolant type heaters, and they certainly can help with the warm up period and heat. In all honesty though, even if you get heat quickly if it's really cold it takes a while for the cabin areas to get decent.

I'm glad I live where it's really not an issue.

Personally unless it was dipping into single digits for weeks on end I don't think I would bother with any pre heating of anything. I'd just garage the car and keep everything warmer at that point.
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Old 11-25-2013, 08:09 AM   #13
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Default Re: Testing Out the Block Heaters

Yep here if we are under 15 for more then a week at a time I would consider it but its almost always above 20.
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Old 11-26-2013, 10:20 AM   #14
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Default Re: Testing Out the Block Heaters

I was looking forward to hearing how the block heater worked.....It would have to have a positive impact on fuel economy, not to mention getting the interior heater working quicker.
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Old 11-26-2013, 10:31 AM   #15
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Default Re: Testing Out the Block Heaters

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I was looking forward to hearing how the block heater worked.....It would have to have a positive impact on fuel economy, not to mention getting the interior heater working quicker.
After 2 hours of having them plugged in they had the coolant temp on both cars around 55-60 degrees according to my scan tools live data, Which might not seem like alot but when its 15 degrees out and windy, They worked well, The cars both started up easy and the heater after a minute of the car running started producing heat, I give them an A+.
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Old 11-26-2013, 11:07 AM   #16
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Default Re: Testing Out the Block Heaters

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My sl2 started fine in 0 degree weather.
Because it gets down to -30C (-22F) where I live.
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Old 11-26-2013, 01:31 PM   #17
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Default Re: Testing Out the Block Heaters

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Because it gets down to -30C (-22F) where I live.
Cool but the op lives in pa if it gets -10 its extremely rare.
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Old 11-26-2013, 01:48 PM   #18
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Default Re: Testing Out the Block Heaters

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Cool but the op lives in pa if it gets -10 its extremely rare.
Ah I see: color me a dolt.
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Old 11-26-2013, 06:55 PM   #19
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Default Re: Testing Out the Block Heaters

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After 2 hours of having them plugged in they had the coolant temp on both cars around 55-60 degrees according to my scan tools live data, Which might not seem like alot but when its 15 degrees out and windy, They worked well, The cars both started up easy and the heater after a minute of the car running started producing heat, I give them an A+.
Nice to see someone putting up numbers associated with engine heaters. This is the opposite with air conditioning; cooling down the interior in summertime heat by 40 degrees makes everyone feel cooler. Warming the engine above outside freezing temps makes the engine feel better about starting up instantly as if it were spring time.
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Old 11-26-2013, 07:16 PM   #20
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Default Re: Testing Out the Block Heaters

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Well cars have been running in michigan weather for over a 100 years so I'm not going to believe some hype about a block heater for 0 degree and higher weather.
Most vehicles will start at 0F or below; the engine just won't last as long if started regularly (without heat) under those conditions. Of course, in Michigan (esp. SE MI), most cars rust out before their engines have worked half their potential lives. Generally, people don't bother plugging them in because they know the rest of the car won't last long enough for it to matter.
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