A light, airy, effervescent, blog of grave consequence. (NOT!) Dedicated to those of us who must respond to negative stimuli by Chernobyling (entombing in concrete) our innermost thoughts.

Location: Slaughter, Louisiana, United States

A semi-gruntled corporate reliability engineer trying to make ends meet while keeping my wife happy, and myself out of the asylum.

Sunday, March 11, 2012

Freeze Plug Upgrade for Fuel Mileage.

So, not having a lot to do during my two hours of driving every day, I usually try to use several techniques to improve the fuel economy of my Stratus. I shut the engine off anytime I'm decelerating and am generally keeping the speed pretty low.

I've started to think about other cheapish ways to improve economy. The Stratus, effectively being a Mitsubishi Eclipse, has a crummy engine control unit. Upon cold startup the engine runs near 2000 rpm until the temperature gets up to nearly 140F. This means several minutes of driving every morning and throughout the day when the engine is trying to run much faster than it should and certainly at a less than necessary mixture.

So, I decided to install a block heater.

I got one from Amazon for $15 shipped and put it in last afternoon. Getting the freeze plug out of the block was a bit pf a chore but after 90 minutes of drilling hammering and snipping, I managed to remove it without barking up the machined surface of the block.

The new heater installed in minutes and this morning, having set my timer to run the unit for three hours before I got up, the water temp was a toasty 165F and the idle was much more managable.

I also found an outlet on the outside wall of my office building so I can keep it warm while I'm at work.

I managed 37.2 MPG out of the last tank I really worked at so we'll see if this makes much difference.


Anonymous Sweet Pea said...

Another incorrigible! Can't leave well enough alone. Just had to get better gas mileage than my Elantra.

1:23 PM  
Blogger 2Evil4U said...

I'm a bit irked. The heater seems to have already shorted out. It keeps tripping the GFCI cord I built to plug it in. Oh well. It worked twice.

8:04 PM  

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