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Old 12-15-2008, 12:51 PM   #11 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by thefirebuilds View Post
apparently got so hot it melted my bumper.
Is that how you got your nickname?

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Old 12-15-2008, 01:38 PM   #12 (permalink)
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Quote:
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Is that how you got your nickname?
hmm, had I started a fire near the 30 gallons of gas I have stored ahhhh yeah.
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Old 12-15-2008, 02:28 PM   #13 (permalink)
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i think i figured out the problem. I thought this was a heat pump, I didn't know this was convection powered. I have the outlet fed into the engine T, and the inlet coming from the heater core. bass ackwards. I will try reversing this and hope I didn't damage the unit.
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Old 12-15-2008, 06:12 PM   #14 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by fanamingo View Post
My frost plug style heater only pulls about 420 W, and that's plugged directly in the engine block.
Don't think frost plug style heater can be directly compared to tank heater. Frost plug heater only heats the engine block. Depending on how it's installed, a tank heater can potentially heat the entire cooling system.

The previously cited pdf published by the manufacturer includes a table of recommended system capacities for the various watt tank heaters. The system should hold at least 26 quarts for a 1500 watt tank heater. (see attached)

It's covered in the links I previously cited, but still possibly worth noting that flow from the tank heater should not be routed through the heater core if the car uses a vacuum operated heater control valve. When you shut the engine off the - vacuum operated heater control valves are normally closed.
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Old 12-18-2008, 12:21 AM   #15 (permalink)
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would that make tank heaters take more time for plug in because of it needing to heat the whole cooling system as well as circulating the coolant?
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Old 12-18-2008, 06:42 AM   #16 (permalink)
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Could you guys that have problems with the heater tell me what gauge and length of cord you are running? If you are running too long a cord the drop over the line would cook the heater in a matter of moments. I used to repair stuff at Sears and I saw electric leaf blowers that got cooked from people using 2 or 3 100ft 14 gauge extension cords.

I would say that 25ft maximum length, 12 minimum gauge, 10ft and 10 gauge would be better.

Hope this helps. -Funny-
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Old 12-18-2008, 09:15 AM   #17 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DifferentPointofView View Post
would that make tank heaters take more time for plug in because of it needing to heat the whole cooling system as well as circulating the coolant?
If you disregard the usual difference in wattage (500 watts @ 110 volts at best for the frost plug heater, up to 2000 watts @ 110 volts for the tank heater), ... Well, yes - sort of.

A frost plug heater leaves cool/cold coolant in the hoses, heater core and radiator - Which will prolong the time required to bring the engine temperature up from ~170*F to whatever full operating temperature is.

I have known people who used more than one type of engine heater - simultaneously - in the same vehicle.

Lower radiator hose heater + tank heater = fast warm-up to OPERATING TEMPERATURE.
Whole system is toasty.


Frost plug heater(s) = fast warm-up to a reasonable STARTING TEMPERATURE
Protect those expensive moving engine parts.
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Old 12-18-2008, 10:14 AM   #18 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TestDrive View Post
Don't think frost plug style heater can be directly compared to tank heater. Frost plug heater only heats the engine block. Depending on how it's installed, a tank heater can potentially heat the entire cooling system.
Is there a problem with a frost plug block heater? In -5C my car starts off with 35 to 40C coolant temps. That is half way to operating temp.
Also on a cold day, I don't know if 1500W could actually get a rad up to higher temps than a normal block heater, I might think it might even be lower. The rad is designed to lose heat after all.
Ian
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Old 12-18-2008, 11:24 AM   #19 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by IndyIan View Post
Is there a problem with a frost plug block heater? In -5C my car starts off with 35 to 40C coolant temps. That is half way to operating temp.
Also on a cold day, I don't know if 1500W could actually get a rad up to higher temps than a normal block heater, I might think it might even be lower. The rad is designed to lose heat after all.
Ian
I don't think there is anything wrong with a frost plug heater.

Haven't tested, but I believe the 1500 watt tank heater will bring the engine block and heater core to the same or hotter temperature than a 500 watt frost plug heater will bring just the engine block (and in less time). However, unless you plumbed the tank heater from a tee at the lower radiator hose, there won't be any significant change in temperature in the radiator. Assuming plumbing into the lower radiator hose - the radiator will probably still never get even close to as warm as the engine and heater core - no circulation through the radiator - any heating of the radiator is by virtue of conduction. However, since the radiator is designed to loose heat to air flowing though its fins, provided the radiator isn't exposed to wind (garage for instance) heat loss may be less than one might first guess (because air remains trapped between fins).

35 to 40C coolant temps were measured at:
  • the engine block?
  • the radiator?
If the car sits unplugged overnight and the engine starts out at say -15C (5F), when you plug in the frost plug heater, how long does it take the coolant to reach 35C?
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Old 12-18-2008, 03:11 PM   #20 (permalink)
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The water temp was measured using the stock water temp sensor in the block and a scangauge. This was after the car was started but was the first number that popped up on the scangauage. I think water temp from that sensor would be ambient before starting the car even with the block heater but I've never looked to see what it was.
We have a timer set for about 1-1.5 hours before we hit the road.

I don't think the coolant and especially the rad is that critical to pre heat.
There isn't much(maybe zero) flow through the rad until thermostat opens up, the water is going through the engine and heater core if open.
I watch my air intake temp(my car has a WAI) and it shows the engine bay doesn't get heated up much at all until the water temp gets near 80C opening the thermostat, then it goes up about 30-40C depending on how fast I'm going.

Also since the thermostat won't open until the 80C or so, a 1/4 mile drive will put the coolant in the rad back to ambient until the thermostat opens.

I just happen to have block heaters already and they seem to work fine, its seems a katz heater will work fine too if installed properly. I just don't know if its that much better than a block heater.
Ian

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Last edited by IndyIan; 12-19-2008 at 09:49 AM.. Reason: Found where the temp sensor is.
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