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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Over the past week here in MI we've had the coldest temps so far when starting my car.
I had -17F last week and the car barely started. I had a Stanley jump battery go dead while trying to get it to start and finally had to have the wife jump the car with her 3/4 ton truck. (car started just fine this am at 11f)

I suspect a block heater is in order if we have another really cold winter.

So any experts on this in the forum?

I know there are three main types block heater (bolt on and sticker), oil warmer, and coolant warmer.
Which one is recommended for our cars?

I can have the local mechanics shop install one I just wanna know which one works best.
 

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FWIW: Factory offered an oil pan heater.
 
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I'm confused, is that installed by default or is it an option?
It was a factory option. The vehicle had to be ordered with it.
 
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I'm of the opinion the block heater is pretty worthless... what is needed is a heating element on the fuel filter assembly. I believe they added this to the 2017 model.
 

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I would guess your diesel gelling is the issue, not your car needing a block heater. GM has stated the car should start at -30 degrees F without assistance from a block heater. It was a cheap option add on, only $100, but is over $200 in parts to add after the fact, not including labor.
 

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I'm of the opinion the block heater is pretty worthless... what is needed is a heating element on the fuel filter assembly. I believe they added this to the 2017 model.
how will that heat the rest of the fuel lines?

it wont.

so it wont work

buy good fuel
 

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I would guess your diesel gelling is the issue, not your car needing a block heater. GM has stated the car should start at -30 degrees F without assistance from a block heater. It was a cheap option add on, only $100, but is over $200 in parts to add after the fact, not including labor.
it starts just dandy at colder temps than that on a 4yo battery.

its not the car.
 

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i would love a block heater for more heat at start up.

100%

im concerned aboot the car throwing codes because of a block heater (reported in other cars, no one has done it on a ctd yet, they all gave up on the emission systems iirc)

maybe this summer ill throw one on when i do the delete.
 

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It was a factory option. The vehicle had to be ordered with it.
correctamundo.

it was like $100 option

someone on the forum said the parts were way more expensive to do it afterwards.

i really cant tell much of a difference between plugged in/unplugged starts.

i havent even dug out the cord from under the hood this year, just went thru a week of -36f
 

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Over the past week here in MI we've had the coldest temps so far when starting my car.
I had -17F last week and the car barely started. I had a Stanley jump battery go dead while trying to get it to start and finally had to have the wife jump the car with her 3/4 ton truck. (car started just fine this am at 11f)

I suspect a block heater is in order if we have another really cold winter.

So any experts on this in the forum?

I know there are three main types block heater (bolt on and sticker), oil warmer, and coolant warmer.
Which one is recommended for our cars?

I can have the local mechanics shop install one I just wanna know which one works best.
As others have pointed out, a oil pan heater was an option.. I never used mine on the car that had it, but it's not that cold here.. Having said that.. if the issue is not getting power to turnover.. that may be more battery related. There are epic threads on early batter failures for the Gen 1 Diesels, if you have your original battery, I'd replace that first before you start adding a heater.. just my thoughts..

I don't know where a block heater would go, there was no place for one on my 2012 TDI Jetta, but I installed a coolant heater on that car, not for the ease of starting, more for rapid interior heat for comfort (that car did not have remote start that is standard on the Gen 1 CTD).
 

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I would love to figure out if I could add a block heater in one of the freeze plug holes like on my Dmax. Might be something to work on for next year.
 

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I think the primary advantage of the oil pan heater was to heat the semi-synthetic dexos2 oil that was factory fill. There’s a thermostat in the heater’s plug that would activate at 0f or -18c. Of course there would also be some secondary convection benefits, as well.

It goes without saying that if you’re running fully synthetic dexos2 oil than the advantage of that oil pan heater may be reduced.
 
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I think the primary advantage of the oil pan heater was to heat the semi-synthetic dexos2 oil that was factory fill. There’s a thermostat in the heater’s plug that would activate at 0f or -18c. Of course there would also be some secondary convection benefits, as well.

It goes without saying that if you’re running fully synthetic dexos2 oil than the advantage of that oil pan heater may be reduced.
i did the free oil changes with the semi syn and since have paid them to do one oil change with same stuff, and since used total full syn

cant tell the difference seat of the pants-wise starting....but holy moly the semi syn and the full syn start way easier than my cherokees if unplugged at -15c with dept store brand dino oil ROFL

one cold start in my cherokee i didnt see oil pressure for 20 seconds ROFL....that was 4yrs and 30,000kms ago, so guess wasnt soooo bad
 

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Discussion Starter · #18 ·
Yup could be fuel. I put in some diesel 911 and put some fresh fuel in the car after the hard start and it has been starting better since then. I figured if gelling was an issue then putting in some ground temp fuel would help defrost things a little.
I also just filled up with Meijer brand stuff which is supposed to have all kinds of additives and anti-gel already in the fuel for winter.
I got caught flat footed since it got cold so fast that I had not switched over and was still using what I think is straight diesel since I get slightly better highway mileage.

I agree on it possible being battery related since keeping the headlights turned off when starting really seems to help. I dunno how old the battery is in the car. I guess it's time to get a new battery and getting the one with the most CCA I can find.

Thanks for your help guys!
 

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how will that heat the rest of the fuel lines?

it wont.

so it wont work

buy good fuel
Fuel filter is where water separates, and where the water drain is. Even good diesel fuel can absorb water from the air. Funny how you ignored my comment about the new model Cruze diesels having a heater built into the filter. Apparently GM thought it was needed.
 

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Fuel filter is where water separates, and where the water drain is. Even good diesel fuel can absorb water from the air. Funny how you ignored my comment about the new model Cruze diesels having a heater built into the filter. Apparently GM thought it was needed.
He was actually addressing your comment about the heater in the fuel filter.

The fuel filter is towards the rear of the car. He is saying, if the fuel is gelled all in the lines going from the filter up to the motor, a heater in the filter won’t really affect the lines if they’re gelled to the point there is low or no flow. Also correct me if I’m wrong, but I believe there were heaters built into the fuel filter all the way back to 2014?

But back to the original post, there’s a lot going back and forth about weak batteries or bad fuel. Is your hard start issue due to slow cranking, or due to sufficient cranking, just no start? A slow crank issue is a battery problem. A crank but no-start is a fuel problem. Without knowing definitely which issue you have, everyone is just guessing.
 
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