Honda Insight Forum banner

1 - 15 of 15 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
295 Posts
Discussion Starter #1
A thing for me to think about,

Are the engine block heaters which are for me only available in the US, 110 volts, converted to 12 volts ? We in Europe have 220 volts.
I am trying to order one but I don't know how and where. I've tried Hondamajestic but they have cancelled my order because thy don't sell out off the US :evil:
Can someone discribe the built-up of a block heater ?
Thanks.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
489 Posts
windmill said:
A thing for me to think about,

Are the engine block heaters which are for me only available in the US, 110 volts, converted to 12 volts ? We in Europe have 220 volts.
I am trying to order one but I don't know how and where. I've tried Hondamajestic but they have cancelled my order because thy don't sell out off the US :evil:
Can someone discribe the built-up of a block heater ?
Thanks.
Basically a block heater is just a coil of wire, not unlike a toaster. It is highly unlikely that it would be converted down to 12 volts to run it. Just like a toaster, one designed for 110 volts probrably won't tolerate 220 volts. However, if you're dead set on using a 110 volt block heater on a 220 volt line you could probably just make a voltage divider and use half that voltage to run an interior heater for the car..
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
498 Posts
Hi, Windmill,

I have the engine block heater. It's a resistive coil heater. Does the German word "Tauchsieder" ring a bell?

Anyway, you definitely need a transformer to run it. It takes about 400 Watts at 115V. Make sure the transformer is capable of that!

But the heater is the same as for Civics. Maybe there is a European version available? Just ask for the Honda-Civic engine block heater. The installation instructions won't be correct, but you can probbaly figure that out. Maybe I even find the sheet that came with my heater...
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
295 Posts
Discussion Starter #4
Maybe a stupid question :oops: , is there a picture available or a drawing ?
I have absolutely no idea how something like this looks like, we don't use blockheaters that much in the Netherlands, never seen one in my life, but I think it is a good idea of using it. It is giving the engine more lifespan. :wink:

Thanks !!!
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
4,942 Posts
I don't believe it will help in increasing the life span of the engine. And unless the climate in the Netherlands is cooler than what I am lead to believe you won't get much MPG improvement either. Unless you see temps around 0 C or do many short trips. It simply aids in engine warm-up.

The biggest drawback it it will confuse the onlookers when you tell them you don't have to plug it in. There will be a power cord plug-in hanging out at the front grille. <g>

I searched the factory service manual and ETM for a sketch or picture without success. However, if you look/feel on the back of the engine, low on the block, in the #1 cylinder area, you should find a 13 mm square socket head removable plug that opens into coolant jacket. That is what's removed for installation of the heater.

HTH!
 
G

·
Guest
Joined
·
0 Posts
Hi Windmill:

___I ordered the Insight Cargo Area Carpet/Mat and the Engine Block heater from Hondacuraworld just last Friday. I have purchased many accessories for the MDX from them in the past and they are first rate. The guy that runs the parts areas name is Tim and he ordered the Block Heater from the catalog even though he doesn’t list it on Ray Lak’s parts and accessories site. The total was something like $101.00 USD including shipping. This pdf will let you view the 2002 instructions which are not any different than our 2000’s IIRC …

Honda Insight Engine Block Heater installation instructions

___As everyone above has mentioned, do make sure you use the proper transformer however …

___Good Luck

___Wayne R. Gerdes
___Hunt Club Farms Landscaping Ltd.
___[email:2213h8gc][email protected][/email:2213h8gc]
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
295 Posts
Discussion Starter #7
Wow, thanks guys,
I've never realized that the coolant was heated. I always thought that it was something wrapped arround the oil-pan of the engine which heates up the oil.

Thanks for the fast reply guys :wink: !!!
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,032 Posts
Is there a way to put the block heater in without draining the coolant?

Something like "Do this really fast and only about a pint will drain down your arm." :?:
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
4,942 Posts
Its a pretty big hole that must be opened for the block heater and you'd have to be -really- fast.

Don't see how its humanly possible to do without loosing most of the coolant. No reason not to catch this spill in a pan made for such and re-use it though.

HTH! :)
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
152 Posts
The owners manual calls out the interval and procedure to change out the coolant.
Good time to do it while installing a factory block heater.
Use the 150 K mile coolants available and there is a Honda water pump lube available. Expensive but Honda used to reccomend on certain models with noisy water pump seals. A buddy with 1,250,000 miles on a '92 Accord wagon swears by it.
It comes by the pint , way more than an Insight needs , so maybe you could share with a fellow Insighter.

Starting up in the morning with a quiet, slow idle and immediate heat
makes the $0.15 - 3 hour electric warm up worth the hassle and of course there are other benefits too.

A really useful ugrade.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
106 Posts
I installed the block heater last week. I thought I had drained the coolant and had a big suprize when removing the plug. Maybe a pint came gushing out. I ended up pouring water all over to try to rinse off the paint remover. The garage floor was more than a little wet... I followed the burping instructions and had no cabin heat the first try so try, try again. I ended up lowering the car a driving it to a hose outlet and hosing down the engine compartment thoroughly. Back in the garage, jack it up again, and replace the underbody covers. Cool, coolant just fine now. I still have yet to install the wiring harness, so no block heater test results yet. What a mess that job was!
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
2,332 Posts
Thanks for the heads up sunhunter. I would like to install one myself. :D
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
1,009 Posts
Thought I would post my experience with installing the block heater. Perhaps it will add something to the knowledge base for future reference. Quite a bit has been mentioned above and I will try not to restate what has been said.

Ordered the factory block heater from:http://www.handa-accessories.com/insight.html~$40 USD plus freight. Found good service there, as I had to talk to them about the freight. Installed per the included directions and also checking with the service manual on refilling the coolant system. The plug in the back of the block was a bit of a struggle, but it finally gave way, and although I had borrowed a clean shallow mop pan from wifee to catch the coolant from underneath the car, more than I would have liked managed to miss the pan. A 15/16 socket works just fine in place of the 24mm for tightening the block heater. Since this socket was in the 1/2inch drive set, the 1/2inch ratchet or break-over bar works great for removing the existing drain plug from the block. It was a little hard to read the torque wrench when installing the heater, but a strategically placed mirror might have been helpful.

Refilling the coolant ( per the service manual on page 10-12.) was the most consuming part of this installation. I used a short piece, ~6 inches of 3/8inch id clear vinyl hose and just happened to find a funnel (on hand) with a small enough spout to fit inside the tubing. The OD of the tubing was just right to use the clamp that came off the factory cap, to keep the tubing tight on the steel tubing coming up from the engine. The clear tubing makes it easy to see the bubbles coming up and the coolant going down. It took quite awhile for the temp to get high enough for the radiator fans to come on, and I did have to throttle up to ~2000RPM and hold for a bit to get it done. Gave the hoses some squeezing (personal preference, not by the book) to help burp the air pockets (caution here as the top hose gets pretty warm before finished, and the bottom hose is in close proximity to a rotating pulley). As things get warmed up and most of the air is purged, the coolant will begin to backflow from the funnel. Removed the funnel and vinyl hose, (lost a little more coolant here), and installed the factory rubber cap/clamp and tightened the bleed fitting again just to make sure. Manual said to let the fans cycle twice, three times is that much better, right :?:. Didn’t plug the heater in as I wanted to drive the car to make sure everything was normal. All went well on a round trip commute last night. I did catch the dash bars up to 8 one time while doing the bleeding/burping routine, but only up to the normal 6 on the commute. Checked the reservoir after returning home and added the rest of the quart of coolant left from the install. The radiator showed full after removing a_COOLED_cap.

I should have bought a quart (or more) of coolant before I started, because I spilled so much during the install that I didn’t want to start the engine until I had coolant on hand to replace what had been lost. One quart appears to have done the trick, but since the Insight only holds ~2.6 US quarts I could have done the coolant change while I was at it, although I only have ~50k on the car. The local dealer charged me only $4.08 USD for a qt., which I didn’t think was too bad.

Tips for the next guy:
1.After removing the factory block plug and letting the coolant drain into the pan borrowed from wifee, move the pan before trying to install the heater, unless you periodically wash your sockets in coolant. (Don’t ask me how I know :D )
2.This coolant is sticky and messy when it gets on your hands. When using digital camera borrowed from wifee, you will probably need to wash your hands_AND_ clean up the camera often. (See parenthetical remarks in tip #1)
3.Do this where you can wash the coolant off any painted surfaces.
4.Keep an eye out for curious pets. Coolant is potentially fatal for them if ingested.

Wanted to get his done in preparation for working on my engine blanket:

http://www.insightcentral.net/forum/viewtopic.php?t=3916

Just sharing my experience-no liability expressed or implied :lol:

Randall
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
88 Posts
Highwater, are you sure you're not writing about my recent adventure with block heater installation?

I dropped my wrench in the pan (old litter box, to be precise) of coolant twice.

I notice now, after taking off from auto stop, a little bit of a liquid gushing sound coming from the engine bay. I imagine I have a little air still in there. My heat works fine, and I must've stood there holding the funnel and hose for a good 10 minutes while the air bubbles slowed to nothing. The coolant level in the funnel didn't drop much at all, so I assumed I'd gotten most of the air out through the bleeder valve.

It is great to be able to start the engine at 20F ambient and have it purr like it was 70F. And heat from the vents in a mile or two is quite nice because my commute is only 6.5 miles one way.
 
1 - 15 of 15 Posts
Top