Author Topic: Safest way to quickly warm up a car?  (Read 4367 times)

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Safest way to quickly warm up a car?
on: October 21, 2004, 01:55:12 PM
What is the quickest way to warm up a car to operating temperature without actually driving it and without sacrificing safety to life, limb or engine?

(I'm a 13-year-old hoping to become an auto mechanic someday, and I'd like to, for experience and fun, test the radiator heat gradient on my mom's '96 Buick Regal. I ran it for 10 minutes but the thermostat still didn't open, so the rad stayed cool.)

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  • Guest
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Reply #1 on: October 21, 2004, 03:30:24 PM
10 minutes should be sufficient for the car to warm up to operating temperature. if you are saying the car did not warm up in ten minutes it leads me to thing that you either placed the thermostate backwards (if such a thing exists), or the thermostate is defective (slim chance) and or you knocked off the temprature sensor while doing that. take care and good luck in learning the skills to become a mechanic.

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Reply #2 on: October 21, 2004, 03:58:48 PM
I didn't touch the thermostat or temperature sensor. Perhaps it wasn't quite 10 minutes. I'll try again.

When the engine reaches operating temperature will the electric fans start spinning at the same time the thermostat flips open? I need a way to find out WHEN it is at operating temperature.

Thanks for the reply.

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Reply #3 on: October 21, 2004, 04:36:58 PM
Depending on the actual ambient air and engine temps 10 minutes at idle may not be enough time for the engine to reach operating temperature. Running the engine at 2000 RPM for a minimum of 5 minutes should get the engine up to temp. If the ambient air temp is below 70 deg. it may take longer.  
The cooling fan will not come on when the thermostat opens, most cooling fans will not come on until the temp is between 215 and 230 deg. The actual temp that the computer commands the cooling fan on varies with engine size and model year.    

Using a scan tool or an inferred thermometer are the best ways to determine the engine temperature. The upper radiator hose will become hot to the touch once the thermostat has opened, this should be around 190-195 deg.

I?m not exactly sure what you attempting to do but please be careful when working with a cooling system, I?ve seen many experienced people get badly burned by hot parts and coolant.

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Reply #4 on: October 21, 2004, 07:26:49 PM
Hi:

Hey, welcome to the "Wonderful World Of Auto Mechanics" Wink Any-whoo.........how to know if the thermostat is opening up Very Happy

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Reply #5 on: October 21, 2004, 09:29:31 PM
The stat opens when coolant temp in the stat housing reaches 195degrees the coolant fan comes on when coolant at that sensor reaches 215 degrees if it's cool out side the coolant fans might not come on at idle. you may have to rev the engine at 1800-2000 RPMs for two mins after the stat opens to reach the warmer temp.
  Remeber these are hot hot temps dont burn your self be safe don't try to open a hot radiator good luck on your quest to become a Tech stay in school and take all the electronics coarses they offer as you'll need them more and more the way technology is going we're all going to have to be electrical engineers before long .

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Reply #6 on: October 22, 2004, 07:34:23 AM
Don't worry, I'll be careful. Being careful is something I do every second of the day. I'm just want to do a test to see if the radiator is clogged. There's no evidence that this would be the case, but just so I can say I've done it. Laughing  I dislike most the computer aspects of cars. I prefer pure mechanical machines. I sure hope that by the time I get to work as a mechanic, all the cars won't be electric.

Thanks everyone.

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Reply #7 on: October 22, 2004, 08:33:53 AM
Kauty---- there is a GREAT CHANCE that a thermostat is bad..... I had to replace mine 4 TIMES before I got a good one.... My uncle had to replace his 3 TIMES........  I've learned to test them in boiling water before putting them in to avoid having to change them over and over again!!!! Smile

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Reply #8 on: October 22, 2004, 08:57:52 AM
well there you go Zack it is your lucky forum, and there is another valuble tip by Rhonda (boil the thermostat before installing it to obswerve its operation), if need be ofcourse. take care and please do not fix anything if it is not broke, you have plenty of time to learn.  Smile

way2old

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Reply #9 on: October 22, 2004, 10:05:58 AM
Quote from: "Kauty"
well there you go Zack it is your lucky forum, and there is another valuble tip by Rhonda (boil the thermostat before installing it to obswerve its operation), if need be ofcourse. take care and please do not fix anything if it is not broke, you have plenty of time to learn.  Smile


Valuable info there Sam.  Lots of people get into trouble trying to repair a problem that is not there.
« Last Edit: December 31, 1969, 06:00:00 PM by way2old »

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Reply #10 on: October 22, 2004, 10:10:23 AM
Hi:

Like everyone's telling U. Be careful around really hot coolant. It can & will burn U worse than plain water.  Exclamation

If U believe that the car's overheating.....keep in mind that most of today's cars & trucks run at much hotter temperatures than their predecessors & as long as your temp gauge does not go out of the Normal operating range, then it's OK. Also, not all of the factory guages are really all that accurate, so allow a plus or minus 10 degree on the guages. I call factory guages idiot lights with a face.  Wink

Also, Revving the engine while the car's cold (or holding the RPM's up for any length of time) will not harm it, as long as you don't get too carried away. If the outside temp is extremely cold. Just start the car normally & allow it to run normally for a few minutes before doing any Revving & RPM holds. Practice this technique & your car will warm up normally with no problems. Just remember this......the colder the outside temps, the longer your vehicle will take to warm up Wink

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Reply #11 on: October 22, 2004, 11:18:19 AM
Heheh, everyone is still missing my point. Smile

I'm in Canada, by the way, so I doubt there's a UTI location here. But my local high-school does have auto mechanics courses. I'm a homeschooler, so I wouldn't take the course, but if I can get my hands on the textbook then that'll be excellent. I'm used to learning about stuff out of books, I used to be crazy about computers.

Right now it's about 10 Celcius outside. So I'm looking at running the engine at idle for two minutes and then sustaining a 2000 rpm speed for 7 or 8 minutes?

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Reply #12 on: October 22, 2004, 06:30:48 PM
Hi:

Exactly what are you trying to do with the car Question  also, 10 degrees celcius isn't all that cold to do the warm up procedure you're decribing. When the temp falls way below 0 celcius (Like 10 below celcius), then it would be a good idea & a safe bet to warm up the car abit before driving it. But doing it in the way you're describing wouldn't help one way or another. Cool


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