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Short trip tips?


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I recently moved and with that took my trip to work from +/-15min to +/-5min to work. Even with the 15 minute drive, I would just be pulling into the parking lot at work and the temp gauge would just be getting into the normal op temps, if that. Now with my drive so short, it's practically impossible to get everything warmed up before I get to work. So other then the obvious, just drive around until its warmer then go to work, are there other viable options to get the truck warmed up as to not be shutting down a cold engine?

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With the nature of my work I sometimes have to make a lot of short trips, summer or winter. Combined with the 5th wheel parked close to the job sometimes, I never really have time to get to operating temp. I have driven the truck for 13.5 years and 345k miles and she still humming along nicely. I am not trying to disagree with anyone on the benefits of getting up to temp, just sharing my experience with my truck.

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Thanks for the input Dave. I certainly agree with you, as I understand the benefits of getting the truck warm. I'm just looking to minimize or band aide the problem as best I can. I think I'll add grill covers since I live in a fairly small town, so any driving I do already is a pretty short trip, as well as plugging in when it does get colder in the winter.

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I'm worse yet. Get a fire call start the truck cold and run hard with high boost at 60-65 MPH for about 1 mile and shut down. The fire up the Ford 7.3L diesel and transfer gear from my truck to the fire truck and run the hell out of the Ford (3k RPM) getting to a fire call. So when I do get a chance to hitch up the trailer I'll haul trash or maybe just haul the RV for a gentle pull to build heat then get into and cook the carbon out. Then come back and idle to cool down.

 

As for block heater use year round is fine. It will get to about 110 to 130*F worth of coolant. The element is a 750w heater so its like a space heater running 24/7 non-stop.

 

Winter front will help but if all your travel is stop and go traffic it will take more to warm up. You not producing any EGT's to get temperature built up.

 

3/6 Cylinder high idle would work better. You could set 3 cylinder high idle and then have it warming up a bit and then leave. But in any case this will cost fuel.

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I'm worse yet. Get a fire call start the truck cold and run hard with high boost at 60-65 MPH for about 1 mile and shut down. The fire up the Ford 7.3L diesel and transfer gear from my truck to the fire truck and run the hell out of the Ford (3k RPM) getting to a fire call. So when I do get a chance to hitch up the trailer I'll haul trash or maybe just haul the RV for a gentle pull to build heat then get into and cook the carbon out. Then come back and idle to cool down.

 

As for block heater use year round is fine. It will get to about 110 to 130*F worth of coolant. The element is a 750w heater so its like a space heater running 24/7 non-stop.

 

Winter front will help but if all your travel is stop and go traffic it will take more to warm up. You not producing any EGT's to get temperature built up.

 

3/6 Cylinder high idle would work better. You could set 3 cylinder high idle and then have it warming up a bit and then leave. But in any case this will cost fuel.

 

Does the 7.3 rev that high.................3,000rpm????  Just axing.  The ones I've driven wouldn't/couldn't come close the 3,000rpm.

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I use me e brake all the time and it does help with initial warm up. It cuts off at 118* and if I am staying a short distance from the job it still never gets to full temp. The e brake only works at idle and I usually idle out of the rv park to get some heat in it before hitting the highway. I dont see the low temps a lot of the members here see. High teens and low 20's are about as low as I would see in the areas that I work. I have seen 0* and a little below but is pretty rare for me to see it that cold.  

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In the winter time when I was working at my fire station on vehicles I would drive away from the house another 5-10 miles to turn around come back home. This provided two things... One a good charge on the batteries because once the engine temp came up the batteries charge better. Also getting the engine to full operational temperature. 

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  • 3 weeks later...
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Short trips are hard on any engine but it is worse on diesels as they warm up so slow.

Take my VW Jetta with a 2.0 that warms up VERY fast compared to my truck or wifes 4Runner. We moved this past Decemeber and made a bunch of short trips, about 2 miles, between the houses. The engine never really got warm. When I changed the oil in February the short trips were very evident as soon as I took the oil cap off. There was cold oil vapor sludge about 1/2 thick. In the previous 40K miles I had never seen it which means it was due to the short trips.

The block heater is a good idea but the exhaust brake is not. An exhaust brake on a cold engine pushes a lot of soot into the oil before the rings/pistons warm up and fully seal. I have seen this on a UOA. The 6.7 allows it but I am almost 100% positive that it doesnt go to full brake mode but rather just a little bit of restriction. The 6.7 also builds boost when exhaust braking so there is more intake flow than on a 5.9 with a standard exhaust brake.

My dad has several clients with diesel engines on their yachts. He advises them all not to idle the engine between trips as even a warm engine without a load wont heat the oil to the point where the moisture evaporates. He tells them to take it for a cruise if they want to run the engines.

So I would use a winter front, a block heater, and save for a beater car... in the long run your truck will thank you.

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  • 1 month later...

So I finally got around to ordering a new block heater cord from Geno's and much to my surprise, I already had a cord on there! :doh:

 

I never would've thought that a California truck would've even had one so I never even bothered checking, just assumed it wouldn't have it!

 

All in all, plugging in makes her run a lot better in the morning and I can definitely tell a difference so it'll be nice once the temps really start to drop.

 

Does anyone have any recommendations on a good/cheap winter front?

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