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Old 12-20-2017, 09:35 AM   #41 (permalink)
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Block heaters in general don't heat up the oil. The oil sits down in the oil pan and is only connected to the block via the oil pan's fairly thin walls. This may conduct some heat, but not enough to really raise the oil temp much at all. However, once you start the engine and start circulating the oil through the warm(er) block, it will raise temps.

I drove the Mirage for the 2nd time to work today. I've been driving the Civic still because I have had to do the Takata airbag recall, and my driver's seat belt latch switch was bad, and they will replace that under warranty. I also had an issue with the Mirage's heat blowing cool on the passenger side and decided to try flushing the heater core out. Anyway, I plugged in for 20 minutes this morning. The ambient temperature was 22F. When I started up the car my coolant temp was 83F, and by the time I was out of my driveway it was up over 90F. Rough calculations show that the block heater raises coolant temp by about 3F per minute of being plugged in. Obviously that will taper off the hotter things get as the block will loose more and more heat the hotter it gets. But, at 30 minutes of run time, that should get my coolant over 100F in all but the coldest of days.

Also, my commute in was a very nice 47.3 mpg in according to the car's MFD. Not bad for 22F.

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Old 12-21-2017, 12:12 AM   #42 (permalink)
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Originally Posted by Xist View Post
At what ambient temperature do you stop using the block heater? In theory, outside of Arizona, Texas, and Florida, people should benefit from that most of the year.
I've never been in the U.S., but maybe some benefit could be obtained from having an engine block heater even in a warmer climate. I've lived in Manaus when I was a toddler, and even though it's hot and humid I remember seeing my dad leaving the car "heating up" the engine before going out, so maybe plugging in for a few minutes would've still been more cost-effective.
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Old 12-21-2017, 10:55 AM   #43 (permalink)
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The trip in to work today was a nice one. Ambient temp of 25F. Coolant temp got up to about 95F with the block heater. I got to work with 50 mpg on the SG, and 49 mpg on the MFD.
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Old 12-22-2017, 09:35 AM   #44 (permalink)
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It was a bit warmer this morning at 30F. Being Friday, the traffic was lighter and I decided to do some EOC. I pulled into the parking lot at work with 52 mpg on the MFD (it updates pretty slow), and 57 mpg on the SG. I am liking these numbers!
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Old 12-27-2017, 10:18 AM   #45 (permalink)
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Whew, it was cold out this morning on the commute to work. Ambient temp was -9F / -23C. I plugged in my block heater for around 25 minutes, and it got the coolant temp up to 83F according to the scangauge. However, the engine did not like the cold. It took a few extra cranks before firing up, and when it did, it ran rough for a good 20-30 seconds as I scraped the windows. I usually don't idle while I scrape, but at this temp its needed or I get in the car and the windows instantly fog up on me just from breathing.

Surprisingly, I still got pretty decent mileage coming to work. The scangauge showed I got 35 mpg while the MFD said a bit over 37 mpg. Not bad at all!
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Old 12-27-2017, 05:00 PM   #46 (permalink)
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Perfect to try out the 165/65/14 Re92. Hear these are like the best friction coefficient tires in existence. But suck at every other thing as usual lol
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Old 12-28-2017, 10:52 AM   #47 (permalink)
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Quite true, and that is the plan. I'm just waiting for discount tire to have a deal on them.

Todays commute in was quite a bit better then yesterdays. No idling today, but it was still -1F out. Granted, the traffic was pretty light today, but I got a very nice 41.7 mpg on the MFD, and 39.8 mpg on the SG.

Also, this car has an electric PTC heater in the hvac system. I gotta say, its nice on days like this for keeping the windshield defrosted despite low coolant temps. My coolant was only up to about 120F, but my windshield was slowly defrosting. I can only imagine how much power it chugs though. It has 3 40A relays powering it.

In summer, I do plan to do a mod to disable this (put it on a switch) to increase fuel economy. The electric heater kicks in under set conditions, but one of them is until the coolant temp is up to 167F! By then you should have very hot heat coming out of the vents.
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Old 12-28-2017, 11:07 AM   #48 (permalink)
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Quite true, and that is the plan. I'm just waiting for discount tire to have a deal on them.

In summer, I do plan to do a mod to disable this (put it on a switch) to increase fuel economy. The electric heater kicks in under set conditions, but one of them is until the coolant temp is up to 167F! By then you should have very hot heat coming out of the vents.
Have you looked to see how it's programmed? My car only allows it under certain conditions:
temp below 50/ coolant under xxx/Eco mode/ max heat/ low vent. How they're programmed they seem to really only work when there just isn't any heat coming from the heater.

Also fantastic mileage for -1F. Thats some thick air for that mileage.
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Old 12-28-2017, 11:30 AM   #49 (permalink)
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Thanks, I think its pretty great mileage too considering the temperature.

As for the PTC heater, this is how it operates. It seems to me that the programming / logic is highly programmed to provide comfort, not necessarily efficiency.

Quote:
It is called PTC heater (Positive Temperature Coefficient) and it will operate under the following conditions:

-Engine running
-Blower fan on
-Temperature setting: any except MAX cool
-Outside temp 59 degree F or lower (ambient temp sensor is at top of lower grill opening on driver side)
-Engine coolant temp 167 degree F or lower
-Generator output 70% or less
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Old 12-29-2017, 10:07 AM   #50 (permalink)
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Warm air intake helped my Saturn warm up faster.

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