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Old 02-11-2008, 03:59 PM   #1
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Default Aftermarket block heaters?

I started my 93 outside yesterday at -3 F with my hair standing on end, the oil pressure took a few seconds to slowly build pressure out of the "dinger" range, and when I stepped out in front of the car, I noticed a foul oil-burning smell that came from the oil cap/dipstick area.

Im interested if anyone has tried or recommended any aftermarket block heaters. I dont need anything fancy, id like to heat the oil up so it wont be so damn thick at startup.
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Old 02-12-2008, 01:37 AM   #2
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Pretty much any heater that you can attach to your oil pan should work. If you plug it in overnight, you're pretty much set. If you get a magnetically adhering heating block, it might help trap random metal shavings. I assume that it would make for weird oil changes, though.

I like the heating blocks that are magnetic, but if you get one, see if you can route some cable zip ties or something to help hold that on. Also, the oil heaters work best. Heating the engine block instead of the pan or putting a heater inside a radiator tube doesn't seem to work as well, and with those things you might continue to have some strange startups, though not as severely.
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Old 02-12-2008, 02:44 PM   #3
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Ive found this one:

http://www.partsamerica.com/ProductD...egoryCode=3355

I think ill try it out and post my results here.
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Old 02-12-2008, 02:48 PM   #4
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I heard that using synethic oil and lower viscicoty helps too.
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Old 02-12-2008, 04:53 PM   #5
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Im already doing that but it doesn't seem to help much.
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Old 02-12-2008, 06:15 PM   #6
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i definitely notice a difference between 10w-30 and 5w-30
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Old 02-12-2008, 06:45 PM   #7
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If I was gonna buy an engine heater, I would want something with at least 500 watts and preferably more. The dipstick heaters I have tried were worthless. And, the magnetic oil pan heaters I have tried have not been much better - not nearly as effective as the 600 watt copper coil type that replace a freeze plug in the block and apply the heat directly to the coolant. Those do a nice job. Notice the magnetic heater you linked is 200 watts.

If you don't want to go to the trouble of pulling a freeze plug and installing a block heater, the next best bet is a lower radiator hose heater. Those are available from the same store for $25 and will put some serious heat into the coolant in the lower radiator hose where at least some of it will convect up to the water pump and engine block.

http://www.partsamerica.com/ProductL...goryCode=3057A
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Old 02-13-2008, 11:44 PM   #8
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I agree with Bill, you need the wattage.

I don't know if they make them anymore, But I really liked the heaters that you spliced into the cabin heater coolant line. Very easy to hook up, will open the thermostat so that you get flow into the block, makes for fast starts, and you get warm air in the cabin right away. Took about a half an hour to get up to speed. Seems like they were around 800 watts.
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Old 02-14-2008, 01:12 AM   #9
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Try -40 F.
Any block heater is just a winning chance. A good battery and 5w30 is backup.
Personally, ive always used oem ones..
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Old 02-14-2008, 01:54 AM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Slug
I agree with Bill, you need the wattage.

I don't know if they make them anymore, But I really liked the heaters that you spliced into the cabin heater coolant line. Very easy to hook up, will open the thermostat so that you get flow into the block, makes for fast starts, and you get warm air in the cabin right away. Took about a half an hour to get up to speed. Seems like they were around 800 watts.
I have one of those on my 1976 Lemans, it was on there when I got it. It uses 20W 50 oil, 11-1 compression, Wal Mart yellow case battery. When it'* cold, it'* kinda hard to start. When I have the heater plugged in, it starts the same at 0 degrees F as it does at 75 degrees F. When it isn't plugged in, It will barely start before the battery runs down and the starter starts to drag.
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