How long do you let your truck warm up, and how low of temp for block heater??? - Diesel Forum - TheDieselStop.com
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1999-2007 General Questions General questions related to 1999-2007 Super Duty trucks. If it doesn't fit the other categories, post it here. Gas engine discussion that pertains to all models is allowed. Specific gas engine questions should use the Gas Engines forum.

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Old 05-25-2008, 11:27 AM   #1 (permalink)
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How long do you let your truck warm up, and how low of temp for block heater???

First of all, on mornings that around 40* to 55*, how long do you let your truck warm up in the morning before you start driving???

Will keeping your engine block heater plugged in at temps f 45*-50* and below hurt anything???

Sometimes when it's cold out, but not real cold, say 40 to 50* I will plug the block heater in just so the engine will be warm in the morning before I leave to work and wont have to wait for the truck to warm itself up much. Doesn this cause any damage or is it bad for it?

I'm talking about 2003 F250 with the 7.3.
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Old 05-25-2008, 01:38 PM   #2 (permalink)
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Between 10 and 0 F is where most guys feel the "need" to plug in (even this isn't really "cold" - more like "nippy"). All of these guys have remote starters so they will likely start driving in about 15 minutes. Good - the motor is well on it's way to being warm.... Bad - the rest of the power train is still cold.

Plug it in in weather we ride scooters in? Ummmm, OK. 50, for sure, is shirtsleeve weather...

OK. you win - "cold" is a point of view. At those temps, start the thing and drive gentle for the first few miles.... no waiting (other than for oil pressure to rise and idle to stabilize).

I'm beginning to wonder if some problems aren't caused by being overly cautious?
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Old 05-25-2008, 02:26 PM   #3 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 90pioneer View Post
First of all, on mornings that around 40* to 55*, how long do you let your truck warm up in the morning before you start driving???
None. Zero. Nada. Zip.

Crank it as soon as the glow-plug light goes out. Then immediately put it in gear and move out - gently. Baby it until the coolant temp gauge begins to move. Then be nice to it until the coolant temp gets up to normal operating temp. Then work the hound out of it.

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Will keeping your engine block heater plugged in at temps f 45*-50* and below hurt anything???
Only your electric bill. It uses one killowatt per hour, so if you pay around a dime per KWH, then it costs you about a dime an hour when it's plugged in.
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Sometimes when it's cold out, but not real cold, say 40 to 50* I will plug the block heater in just so the engine will be warm in the morning before I leave to work and wont have to wait for the truck to warm itself up much. Doesn this cause any damage or is it bad for it?
It won't hurt a thing except your pocket book.

Those guys who live in the icebox in Alaska and northern Canada with Grampy Jim do have a different definition of "cold" than we do. Down here in the desert Southwest, I'd think about plugging mine in at any temp below freezing. Thankfully, that's only a few days per year.
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Old 05-25-2008, 07:08 PM   #4 (permalink)
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Ditto what Smokey said. Even in cold weather I don't let it warm up more than the few seconds. I just take it easy the first few miles.

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Old 05-26-2008, 11:27 AM   #5 (permalink)
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In the morning, I start the truck then go back in the house to pour a cup of coffee. When I come back out, I am on my way. Just like Smokey said, I baby it until it is up to normal operating temp.

Plugging it in is a whole different story. I plug mine in for comfort rather than necessity.

In Monument, the town where I do my snowplowing, the average yearly temp is 51*F with a record low of -38*F.

If I have to go out to check contracts I try to have my truck plugged in for atleast three hours prior. That gives it a headstart and helps me get the windshield defrosted faster.

I usually plug it in if the temp is going to be 30* or lower. IMHO, it helps the batteries out.

I have started the truck without the aid of the block heater in -14* weather. It started just fine. I havent been in anything colder yet.

As a side note, why would Ford even offer leather seats without a heater? The engine can be up to temp all it wants but when your backside is a block of ice, you dont seem to care about anything else!
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Old 05-27-2008, 07:53 AM   #6 (permalink)
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I have never used the block heater (exept to test it out), we have temps down to 0 F. I have found that under 35 deg F, that the truck is harder to start, I dont let it warm up, just drive slowly til warmed up.
I really don't drive my truck too much in the winter because I hate diesels in cold weather, I do everything possible to not drive it in cold weather. But not afraid to start it and drive it in cold weather either, if you have good glow plugs you will not have a problem starting.
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