Oil heaters and cold starts.

Messages
11
Location
Eureka, Ca.
People here seem to be very concerned with cold start protection. To the point of useing very light oil that may or may not be giving them the protection they need. Has anyone suggested a oil heater for those cold mornings? Thus allowing a 15-40 diesil rated oil for best protection.
 
Messages
1,027
Location
East Helena, Montana
As I recall, not too long ago we had an extensive thread discussing various types of heating devices. In my opinion, the best is the engine block heater. I've lived in cold country (Minnesota, Vermont, and now Montana) all my life and in those parts the most favored type is by far the engine block heater. I also run synthetic oil in both my vehicles, and one reason is to assist in cold weather starts, since it doesn't thicken up in cold weather like dino oil
 
Messages
777
Location
USAF Museum
Jmacmaster, could you briefly sum up the reasons for and against both heating methods and why you chose what you did? Also, which brand(s) and weight(s) oil are you using? Thanks. For those who would like more information about heating your engine in the cold, check out this link-laden thread compiled by 'TheTanSedan'.
 

RandyBarnett

Thread starter
Messages
11
Location
Eureka, Ca.
I don't think 15-40 is right for all apps. It just was an oil that alot of people here were saying was too thick for cold climates. A block heater will not keep the oil in the sump warm thus not preventing cold start wear. I am just curious as too why people don't memtion this as a option.
 
Messages
99
Location
Canada
quote:
Originally posted by RandyBarnett: Has anyone suggested a oil heater for those cold mornings?
I think the main reason for preheat is for the benefit of the engine metal. The jacket water reaches most parts of the block and not just the bottom of the oil pan. When the engine starts it is closer to the operating tolerances than that of a cold engine therefore causing less wear. On ships we use jacket water preheating and just prelube the engine for 15 minites before starting. I think that if the oil is in good condition then the multi viscosity function should provide the needed flow.
 
Messages
1,027
Location
East Helena, Montana
quote:
Originally posted by XB70: Jmacmaster, could you briefly sum up the reasons for and against both heating methods and why you chose what you did? Also, which brand(s) and weight(s) oil are you using?
As frankiee said above, with an engine block heater "The jacket water reaches most parts of the block and not just the bottom of the oil pan. When the engine starts it is closer to the operating tolerances than that of a cold engine." In addition, since the block is warm, as soon as the oil starts to circulate upon startup it is warmed by the block. With a block heater, you heat the block and the water in it, so you're heating a lot more material, a larger mass of material, than just heating 4-6 quarts of oil with an oil heater. In addition, in really cold weather I think that the main reason that the engine doesn't want to turn over easily is that the block and the various parts in the block (crank, cam, pistons, etc.)are stiff from the cold, not that the oil is sluggish. And since I use synthetic oil, my oil doesn't get stiff anyway. I have nothing against oil heaters; I've never had one. And from what I've read they do a good job. But I've always had such good luck with block heaters, and they're so much more popular than anything else in the cold states that I've lived in, that I stick with the block heater. A bonus is that with a block heater you get instant heat from the heater in the passenger compartment. I drive an 03 Ford Ranger with a 3.0 liter V6 and my wife drives an 03 Subaru Forester with a 2.5 liter 4 cyl. I change my own oil and use the weight recommended by the owners manuals for both, which is 5W-20. In the Forester I'm using Mobile 1 EP and will stick with that on the next oil change. In the Ranger I'm using Mobil 1 and will probably switch to Mobil 1 EP with the next oil change. Each is on its second run of 10,000 miles with the Mobil synthetic. The next oil change for each I'm going to have a UOA done on the used oil. I use a NAPA Gold oil filter in the Forester and a Pure One oil filter in the Ranger, leaving them in for the whole 10,000 mile run on the oil.
 
Messages
783
Location
Austin Texas
We use an oil heater in our 1970 Lola T70 with a 350 CID Chevy rated at 750 HP. The startup procedure runs something like this: 45 minutes before turning the engine over, plug in the oil heater. When oil gets to 95dC, plug in the ancilary oil pump and pump oil until the engine has 65 PSI of oil pressure for 2 minutes. Attach auxilliary starting battery, switch off fuel pumps. Crank engine over until engine oil pump can maintain 65 PSI. Turn on fuel pumps, turn on ignition. squirt 8 ccs of 104 gas into each injector stack (8). And then crank engine to life. Without heating of the oil, the engine would self destrut almost instantly.
 
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