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#31 Jazz OFFLINE  

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Posted February 16, 2015 - 02:06 PM

My truck with the diesel motor has a factory installed block heater so when it gets really cold I just plug it in. I have even found when it is in the lower teens it makes it nice because the warm up much faster. I remember in the early 80s & we had cold snaps like this I had a steel grain scope that I would put charcoal in. I would light this & slide in under the oil for 30 to 45 minutes to get vehicles started. 



Adding a trickle charger will give you a boost. I always permanently mount a trickle charger in my trucks. They are only 1.5 to 3 amp. "Hot" battery makes a world of difference. Not good anytime to get flame near a engine. I use a tiger torch on diesels with a 5' piece of stove pipe with a elbow on the end to send blistering hot air at oil pan.  I used to start tractors/trucks etc this way when I worked in the far north.  We would get stretches -50 for 3 or 4 days...30 minutes of that hot air massage you could start any engine. 

Edited by Jazz, February 16, 2015 - 02:07 PM.

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#32 FixItCharlie OFFLINE  

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Posted February 16, 2015 - 09:30 PM

With the block heater & using synthetic oil I have never had an problem starting my truck. The factory block heater is one of the type that replaces a freeze plug. These are probably the safest engine heaters to use on a vehicle as any possible fire from them is put out by the engine coolant. This truck is equipped with dual batteries so a trickle charger is not going to help much. If I want to add any charge to the batteries it needs to be a minimum of a 2 amp charger.  


The use of charcoal to start vehicles was used when these had not been started for more then a week & had been in sub zero temperature for the whole period of that time. Where the vehicles where parked electricity was not available so that was not an option. This was done back in the 1980s & one of the times was after a snowmobile trip when highs for a few of the days was 25 below zero. At that time getting anything to start unless it was parked in a garage was considered a miracle outside of snowmobiles which always run the best the colder it gets.



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#33 chieffan OFFLINE  

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Posted February 18, 2015 - 09:12 AM

Many years ago when I was a kid on the farm we would take a steel 5 gal pail of corn cobs with kerosene on them, light it and put it under the oil pan of the old Regular Farmall tractor.  It was the one we had a loader on so it had to go.  Hand crank to boot.  It about always started.  Could not pull it when it was real cold as the transmission and rear end would be so stiff the wheels would just slide.


Early 60's when I was in the service I was stationed at Caribou, Maine.  We had one full week were the warmest it got was -45° F.   When the base was built they built underground tunnels between all the buildings and they opened them up so we didn't have to go outside.  I never will forget that.

Edited by chieffan, February 18, 2015 - 09:14 AM.