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Old 11-01-2008, 06:17 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Lightbulb good/best engine block heater?

winters fast approaching in new england soooo i'm looking to invest in a engine block heater. alas, i have no knowledge of good/bad brands, appropriate wattage, etc etc. any and all recommendations and comments are welcome!

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Old 11-01-2008, 09:30 PM   #2 (permalink)
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I always thought a oil pan heater to be a better heater now that fuel injection dominates cars. It would be an easier mod for you to do to and they generally use less electricity.
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Old 11-01-2008, 09:36 PM   #3 (permalink)
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I'd say the best heater is the one that raises the engine temp the highest over ambient. That probably means one in the cooling system.

EDIT: seen this? http://metrompg.com/posts/block-heater.htm
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Old 11-02-2008, 10:50 AM   #4 (permalink)
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Our company trucks all have the BLUEHEAT sytem. It warms the engine and defrosts the windshield without running the engine. Very nice!

BlueHeat® Main

It's expensive ($1800 installed) and it does use a little gasoline to create the heat.
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Old 11-02-2008, 11:20 AM   #5 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SuperTrooper View Post
Our company trucks all have the BLUEHEAT sytem.
I install these at my work, they are sweet, but as mentioned very pricey.

Here is the one I used, I am very pleased with it. Block heater

I highly recommend reading MetroMpg's documentation of his testing, that guy does his homework. Always has great info.

Temro Zerostart is a good brand as well, used by a lot of OEM's, and fleet companies.
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Old 10-30-2010, 02:46 PM   #6 (permalink)
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Has anyone seen a heater that replaces the oil pan's drain screw?
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Old 10-30-2010, 05:02 PM   #7 (permalink)
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I've seen the oil drain plug type heater... not on a car though. Some airplanes have them and generally speaking they are too small to heat up the oil very much. Heating pads JB welded to the pan are much better. They heat up the whole engine to 100F+ in a few hours. But that is in an inclosed hangar with an engine cowling that does not let much air out. I think a coolant heater would be a better choice. A coolant heater will warm the inside of the car too.
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Old 10-30-2010, 05:08 PM   #8 (permalink)
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I recently installed a 550W coolant heater, but thought that a 100-150W heater for the oil would also be a good supplement.
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Old 10-30-2010, 08:40 PM   #9 (permalink)
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I have a Zerostart coolant heater. I don't think anyone who drives a TDI uses anything else.
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Old 11-01-2010, 01:31 AM   #10 (permalink)
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When we lived in western AK (arctic climate) an oil pan heater (jb or high temp silicone) was sufficient to keep oil in a very liquid state without blankets and what not and we were seeing -20* temps. Ideally I like a oil pan heater (glue on type), coolant heater (with a pump is best) a battery blanket or trickle charger, and cabin heater.

Oil pan heater
pro oil is very liquid which means that it will lubricate quickly
con does not warm the rest of the engine much

coolant heater
pro heater core is warm fast, the engine is warm for effecient opperation
con oil may not be heated very well and still thick

Battery blanket or trickle charger keeps the battery topped off in the very cold

Cabin heater is a luxury, but it is nice to have a warmish car to get into.

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