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When to plug it in

Discussion in 'General Discussions' started by Fake-Account27, Nov 15, 2019.

  1. Fake-Account27

    Fake-Account27 Junior Member

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    Just got a new to me 2018 Ram 2500 Cummins with 3k miles. The question is at what temps should I plug it in?

    For the last week I have been starting it with temps in the mid 20's without any issues, in fact the engine started as it normally would. Does that mean it needs to be a lot colder, or am I potentially damaging my engine?
     
  2. SyN

    SyN 6.7L CTD Owner

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    My opinion: FIRST if your NEW Ram sits out in that cold 24/7? - I would run a 5W-40 viscosity oil.

    As for what temp to actually plug it in?
    My 2017 sits in a warm garage (40-50°F) while at home during the winter.
    I say to the anal owner like myself - if you have plans on keeping your New Ram many years past pay off - Plug it in (Any time ambient temps are 20°F & below).

    My question on this matter is: How long does it actually need to be plugged in for - to aid in your next start up attempt? 3-4 hrs before hand?

    Work - just installed (6 new plug in outlets) in the parking lot for us diesel owners to plug into. During 12 hour shifts we see a few different weather changes.
    So I am going to take advantage of it!

    I just bought a new cord & timer as well as a Noco Genius GCP1 adapter plug for the front bumper - for easy fast plug in.
    Putting everything together now as we speak - will install everything this weekend with my winter oil change (Filter removed gives me easy access to the heater element. Also bought a 15Ft 15amp 14 gauge extension cord to keep in the back floorboard.

    Dam Rambling Once again!
    Think about running 5W-40 viscosity oil & plug her in @ any temp below freezing for at least 3-4 hrs before starting.
    Maybe if much colder & if you don't care about the timer option leave her plugged in the whole time while parked.

    Last question: I honestly don't think your doing damage to your 6.7L by not plugging it in.
    But think of all those other smaller/weaker parts that have to work twice as hard turning that big bastage over @ 20°F or colder - Batteries / Starter just as a small example.

    Also: Plugging your 6.7L in will mostly help in warm up for you inside the cab a bit faster & aid in the windshield defroster. (Though this is not my main concern)!

    I have worked in a Plant environment for over 20yrs & believe me the cold & wind chill effects EVERYTHING - Mechanical & Electrical in some way - Heat is your friend! It does lengthen the service life of most equipment during these brutal cold times!

    9E53F829-EF6D-48FE-99B6-2A6835008B20.jpeg

    8BBC78F8-7BA0-4145-8981-A177B656E9C6.jpeg

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    Timer automatically activates when temps drop below freezing!
    6A0263F9-CB57-468C-886B-C3A8A9B07ECE.jpeg

    Truth is - you might be better off getting an answer from a owner who don't care as much & doesn't over think every mod like I do!
     
    Last edited: Nov 18, 2019
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  3. SyN

    SyN 6.7L CTD Owner

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    All done - Winter oil change & New Cord & Plug in Adapter installed!

    2714E6A7-49B7-44A5-B836-5C2A41BF6329.jpeg

    DA8F0F2B-1FF4-4C12-A25D-912C19BCD4ED.jpeg
     
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  4. Fake-Account27

    Fake-Account27 Junior Member

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    Thanks for the I will be adding a plug like your picture this weekend, mine did not have the cold weather package, but the parts I need from amazon should be here on Saturday.

    Do you really think it needs to run for 4 hours, that would be quite a lot of electricity.
     
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  5. Dennis Shellito

    Dennis Shellito Member

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    I don't drive my 2011 Cummins all the time but will probably start driving it virtually every day and I plug it in when the weather here in Colorado sends temps below 35 degrees over night. It will start when the temp is below zero but I don't like doing that. I am retired so I don't have to leave it unplugged while working a shift, so it is plugged in until I drive it again. The block heaters in these will only heat them to about 90-95 degrees, so they don't use a lot of juice. I honestly can't see any difference in electric usage running the heater.
     
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  6. Power247

    Power247 Senior Member

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    I plug mine in when the starting temps are in the low 30s. I have my timer set to turn on 2 hours before I go to work and seems like that's long enough although we don't get near as cold here as it does up north. The best part is that you have heat almost instantly after starting.

    Greg
    2012 | RAM 2500 | CCSB | MM3 tuned by Double R Diesel
    2016 | Heartland Pioneer | DS310
     
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  7. SyN

    SyN 6.7L CTD Owner

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    Watch your temps close @ time of start up!
    Honesty I say 2 hrs is a minimum.
    Adding a timer will save some $$$ on electricity - but it still ALL Depends on ambient temp & Wind Chill factor & time out in these elements!

    Below 15°F I'm believing 4 hrs is the min.
    I have no clue how much electricity/amps = $$$ these oem elements pull.


    I do it for a couple of other reasons - Mostly to warm up the internal fluids & block which will make it easier some what on the starter & batteries - Just 1 example.

    It might possibly help with oil flow & oil pump ability @ start up - but I don't know how much it actually effects the oil temp. Will pay close attention the first few times I plug her in @ work.
    This the main reason I run 5W-40 or Synthetic 15W-40 oil year round.
     
    Last edited: Nov 28, 2019
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  8. SyN

    SyN 6.7L CTD Owner

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    Just read an article - That actually put emphasis on if your truck was going to be out in the elements for more then 15-24 hrs or more before your next start up - it's best to plug your truck in just after you park it - while the coolant & oil are still @ operating temp.

    Makes sense but - would possibly definitely bump up your electric bill.

    For those who need/choose to plug their truck in practically every day during the winter - this might shorten the service life of the heating element drastically. (Don't know just thinking out loud).

    Just another option to think about.
    I know everyone has their own opinion on these situations.

    Happy Holidays to everyone & Stay Safe! God Bess!
     
    Last edited: Nov 29, 2019
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  9. PNW-Ram

    PNW-Ram Member

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    I don't have the ability to plug mine in at the moment, and it's parked outside.

    The other day I fired it up after sitting for 3 or 4 days, with the temps between 30-40. Out of curiosity, I didn't wait for the grid heater - I just put in the key and fired it up.

    It took 1/2 a second longer than usual to fire, and ran rough for a second or two.

    When my house is built, I'll park in a heated garage. Until then, the Cummins never fails to fire. I'll be parked at the airport all next week, and am sure it'll fire instantly. But I'll wait for the heater.
     
  10. OLEJOE

    OLEJOE Junior Member

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    Anyone happen to know what the wattage is for the factory heating element is? I just installed my heating element cord today. I took the air duct from the turbo to the air cleaner out and it was pretty easy. I also put some of the plastic wire loom over the cable to keep it from chafing. It rarely gets below the 20’s here but I don’t drive mine every day.
    I think I read somewhere it’s like 5or600 watts but I’m not sure. 500 watts would only be 4 amps.
     

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