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Old 02-11-2012, 12:27 AM   #1 (permalink)
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Casey - '11 Mazda 2 Touring
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This is killing me!

Ive been working at some new schools lately. The effect of the incredibly short distances and cold weather are doing a number on my mileage Im at 38mpg for this current tank right now and it's killing me!

Here is the schedule:
Morning: Cold engine - drive 5 miles in school traffic. Barely warm when I get to work
2 hours later - Engine cooled down again - drive 4 miles to next school ... almost warm again. Thankfully there is no traffic.
2 hours later - Engine cooled down again - drive 6 miles to next school ... damn trains!!!
2 hours later - Engine cold - drive home - oh hey, the engine is warm .... AAAAAND there is the driveway.


Could somebody please invent a block heater that runs off a battery? This is driving me nuts.

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Old 02-11-2012, 12:30 AM   #2 (permalink)
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Do you have a front belly pan? It would help keep some of the heat in your engine bay. Also, if you're only driving 5 miles at a time go ahead and block the entire grille.
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Old 02-11-2012, 12:37 AM   #3 (permalink)
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I took all the cheapo mods off while I try to pretty-fy them. We are running stock right now. Last week I was getting upper 40s and before that 50s. Weather sucks!
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Old 02-11-2012, 12:40 AM   #4 (permalink)
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Ok, well I can take a look at them this weekend. The school store sells big sheets of plastic if you'd like to mess around with that. A plastic grille block would look good painted satin black
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Old 02-11-2012, 01:02 AM   #5 (permalink)
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That makes me happy, because it proves that i've been getting horrible mileage because most of my drives are about 3 miles
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Old 02-11-2012, 01:43 AM   #6 (permalink)
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Oh yes, it is crazy the difference in numbers I get on these short trips and when the engine has warmed even slightly.

When I was leaving my neighborhood today my instantaneous fuel gauge registered 34mpg. I headed the same way the other day, same gear and speed, and it was registering 57mpg.

Im debating starting EOC again to try to help. Im trying to take care of my car but my pride needs help too.

Also, Sven, go do your homework! Im not YOUR teacher but I am A teacher. Get on that crap, man!
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Old 02-11-2012, 07:28 AM   #7 (permalink)
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http://ecomodder.com/forum/showthrea...-em-10529.html

With more effort i'm sure you could get something useful for the sides and bottom of the engine too.
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Old 02-11-2012, 07:38 AM   #8 (permalink)
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+2 on blocking the entire grill, upper, lower, belly pan, block it all up!

I recently have been playing with a partial blocked lower and the engine does heat quicker, and the engine bay retains heat longer. Finally went to full block for my 5 mile trip to work, which is all low speed in town and the coolant shows 185 before the 2 mile mark, and 194 as I am parking.
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Old 02-11-2012, 07:46 AM   #9 (permalink)
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Borrow Grandma's tricycle, add rain fenders, and get some coveralls.

You will beat the school traffic and stay warmer than you do in the cold car.
5 miles each trip should take less than 30 minutes and 2 hour between each trip should be plenty to recover for the next one.

Another idea is a mylar lined AC cover (for covering the home air conditioner in winter) trimmed to fit over the engine.
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Old 02-11-2012, 01:20 PM   #10 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BHarvey View Post
+2 on blocking the entire grill, upper, lower, belly pan, block it all up!

I recently have been playing with a partial blocked lower and the engine does heat quicker, and the engine bay retains heat longer. Finally went to full block for my 5 mile trip to work, which is all low speed in town and the coolant shows 185 before the 2 mile mark, and 194 as I am parking.
I have the same problem. Short trips in winter = cold operation = lousy gas mileage.

The most effective solution (that is also easiest and cheapest) is to do a full radiator block. On some cars you can simply slide a piece of cardboard in the space in front of the radiator. I'm lucky in that the cardboard will stay there unsupported, and it is easy to insert and remove, taking only seconds to do it.

Another option is to make a warm air plenum that will route engine heat to the airbox. I'm working on one for one of my cars and will post a thread about it soon.

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