How long does it take for an engine block heater to warm up a cold engine?

Discussion in 'Off Topic' started by ddeder, Jan 28, 2004.

  1. ddeder

    ddeder Golden Member

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    It is 18 below zero out and my truck will not start. I plugged in the engine block heater over an hour ago and it still will not start. It barely turns over. I suppose the battery needs a jump but I wonder if is just because the engine is so cold...
     
  2. NutBucket

    NutBucket Lifer

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    Well, I'm guessing the cold may have gotten to the battery as well. I would look into getting a blanket to keep the battery warmer.

    EDIT: I know little and am just offering some common sense advice as it never goes under 40 here;)
     
  3. GalvanizedYankee

    GalvanizedYankee Diamond Member

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    In trucking a plastic covered heating element is used under the battery at those temps.
    Sometimes they never shut em' off. A battery is a chemical reaction as I'm sure you know.
    Take the battery out and charge it in the house, put it in while still warm, if you can.
    Cover the engine with a blanket over cardboard and put the heating element on a
    properly rated timer. If you have an electric hot stove place it close to the oil pan and
    check the dip stick temp every once in awhile, till its warm. I've seen pics of the Brass Monkey m/c meet and thats how they heat the oil. DO NOT leave it unattended.

    I haven't seen frost yet this year.....

     
  4. MacBaine

    MacBaine Banned

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    You should plug it in before it get's that cold
     
  5. PowerMac4Ever

    PowerMac4Ever Banned

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    I'm glad I have my NOS fogger kit... prevents these kinds of problems.
     
  6. RU482

    RU482 Lifer

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    I'm sorry, but how does a blanket help the battery out?
     
  7. WinkOsmosis

    WinkOsmosis Banned

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    Makes it cosy? Yeah I don't see how a blanket will do much since batteries don't produce any heat.
     
  8. Scarpozzi

    Scarpozzi Lifer

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    When batteries get cold, the voltage will often drop. If you've ever heard battery ratings of CCA or Cold Cranking Amps.... This is what determines the output of your battery while the alternator isn't assisting. If the battery sits in the cold for extended periods of time and it's not strong enough, it won't get the required voltage to the starter. At 18 degrees below zero, the metal on the starter motor may even be frozen stiff.

    A battery blanket is usually something sold by the car manufacturer. It's not REALLY a blanket, though it would get a similar effect. It's simply an insulator to protect the battery from the elements and to keep the core from freezing up.
     
  9. Scarpozzi

    Scarpozzi Lifer

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    Just a suggestion: For those conditions, build an igloo and park your truck in there.
     
  10. IamElectro

    IamElectro Golden Member

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    I thought you were supposed to leave them plugged in when parking during cold really weather (overnight).
     
  11. db

    db Diamond Member

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    Right, keep plugged in at all times. The engine turns easier, but as mentioned above, the battery is still compromised by itself being cold.
     
  12. Eli

    Eli Super Moderator<br>Elite Member
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    What kind of oil do you have in 'er?

    That's a sign that you aren't using the right viscosity.

    Switch to synthetic.
     
  13. db

    db Diamond Member

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    Yeah, synthetic definately makes a difference for cold-starting.