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    Engine warmer for a 997 please!


    In prairie Saskatoon, 52N, temps from Nov-March do not go above 0C at noon and are lower at night. Block heaters are widely used, although with better engines and oil, owners are increasingly lazy and many only use them for -20C an colder.

    I believe in warm engines for every start, and my engines always are smooth and powerful and long-lived. A plugged-in engine (2-4 hours of 600W) starts quickly and immediately settles in a warm-engine idle---less wear, less emisions, faster warm-up, and therefore quicker to a 'hot-oil' engine which you can drive vigorously.

    My 1995 NSX is plugged-in each night, and on a weekend day, between driving intervals, it is plugged in so it is warm and ready for performance at short notice...

    Well---the 997 is a problem. The Canada PAG engineers say do not bother with any electric heating---with 40-0W it is OK etc etc-----well not true, and it takes too long for the 8l of oil to get hot and allow strong driving in short order on these cold days.

    SO what to do? There is no 'block' heater possible as far as we know----but earlier 911 could use a coolant heater, that circulated the then warm fluid ( have seen in UK adverts. A surface heater pad ( as used on VWs) is not easy to use, as there is no engine surface that is flat enough to 'glue' the pad onto the engine---and I also do not wish to cause metal stress by locally heating any parts of that rather complex engine structure!

    I would welcome ideas on this, especially from northern European owners who have found a heating solution-----my garage is not heated (with some salt around in winter that is not favoured here anyway].

    Thus far I put a convection electric heater under the engine, with a rug over the back end, and after 3 hours the whole engine area is quite warm----which is very acceptable actually, but likely wasteful of energy, as much hot air is lost.

    Merci KiwiCanuck

    Re: Engine warmer for a 997 please!

    Wow, living in Cali, you never think of what someone would have to do in snowy zero like freezing cold weather with their Porsche.

    A heated garage, now thats a wowy cool idea.....
    I am sure many people have ideas that live in cold areas, goodluck. and hello from San Francisco Bay Area

    Re: Engine warmer for a 997 please!

    Vincenzina said:
    Wow, living in Cali, you never think of what someone would have to do in snowy zero like freezing cold weather with their Porsche.

    A heated garage, now thats a wowy cool idea.....
    I am sure many people have ideas that live in cold areas, goodluck. and hello from San Francisco Bay Area

    Rub it in why don't ya..

    Re: Engine warmer for a 997 please!

    I remember the days of block heaters all too well. With global warming and better cars they are not used around here very much anymore. I don't have any magic answer to your questions but can offer some thoughts/musings on this issue.

    In our household we have the luxury of a large heated garage where are cars live all winter long. This solves the problem of engine wear in very cold temperatures. But as you mention, the downside of heated garages is the accelerated corrosion of the melting snow and salt. After careful consideration of the issues I just store the sports car for the winter. The other cars get a quick wash on a regular basis, rust proofing and a lot of annual maintenance.

    The only suggestion that I can suggest to your dilemma would be to heat your garage (space heater) to about -10C. At that temperature, with modern oils, there will be very little wear on the engine on startup and a reasonable warm-up period (10km or so). Salt (sodium chloride) stops working effectively below -10C. However, it is very possible that your local road authority also uses calcium chloride, which, when mixed with sodium chloride keeps the salt working to -15C. At that point all oils are starting to get rather slow to move around the engine. From my experience, the real problem with engines and winters is when the temperatures drop below -25C. The sound at startup is truly depressing. So as long as you keep the garage cold, but not very cold it would offer a workable solution, albeit not a perfect one.

    Your solution that you have come up with is a good one, but I would be concerned about the heat causing the snow to melt and the salt to start doing its job on your drive train and engine casings. You might want to give one of the Quebec Porsche dealers a call, particularly the dealer in Quebec city. They may actually have crafted a solution for some of their customers that live in the northern and very cold parts of the province. French Canadians have been known to be very creative in taming winter and finding solutions that are not exactly by the book.

    Good luck and let us know if you find a solution.

    Re: Engine warmer for a 997 please!

    Thanks TheOldMan,

    I forgot to mention that I also have a kerosine heater that I put on for an hour or two before troubling the 997, and that helps also.

    I actually do not allow any snow-ice to stay on the car for more than a day----the 997 is a weekend car and if it snows/is slushy on a weekend, it does not move. If it is so cold that everything is ice then we do play.

    Actually the 997 is not easy to keep clean in snow as the snow/water/slush is thrown back over the exhaust and the engine....where everything is hot, so a rare mess results. The NSX stays much cleaner in winter----

    Cheers KiwiCanuck



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