Radiator Blocking in Cold weather

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Jun 19, 2002
Upper Midwest
Any thoughts on the merits of blocking air through the radiator during "very" cold weather? I'm talking -20 to -50 degrees f. I would think the thermostat would do its best keeping the engine at temp. Regarding the oil pan, there must be a tremendous amount of heat lost; an invitation for sludge buildup?
Sure. But I wouldn't do it unless you have a coolant temp guage. Not idiot light. Oil temp would be nice too. I actually blocked mine off partly year round. Less frontal open area=lower drag= higher highway mpg for one.
Actually european models of my car without A/c have different grilles that are already partially blocked. I replaced the center one with that part but I havent been able to locate the side grilles.
I will also be blocking my oil cooler opening and the brake ducts this winter once it gets colder for even less drag.
Doesn't look the best, using black duct tape(NASCAR style) but it's free money on the highway. I don't care...
i had to do the same few weeks ago in my VW. Since i lowered it and removed the AC condenser the water temps drop fast when i am crusing in the highway. I completely blocked the grill with mediocre results. I think i will cover the radiator with insulation. There is more air moving under the car and it absoluetly kills the oil temp. Even at summertime with temps around 100F, my oil temp would barely reach 102 C (215 F). the thermo is stock, but I installed twin copoling fans. i guess i will drop the oil pan and check for sludge although the insides of the valve cover look clean.
More air moving under the car after lowering?? How did you manage that

215F is not cold, in fact it is getting towards the hot side. My car is running 180F OT and in the summer it's only 190 only getting close to 210 if I really beat on it for a long time.

So if you have sludge, it certainly isn't from running too cold.

Though I have to say, air hitting the oil pan makes quite a difference in oil temps. The other day after flushing my coolant I ran without my front lip spoiler and the engine bay sheild on and my oil temps were at least 15F lower than with them on.

Anyway sounds more like your thermostat is shot or maybe you have air in system if you temp drops drastically when moving.
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