Why is there no block heater indicator

Discussion in 'Dodge Ram Eco Diesels' started by Daniel Ragland, Nov 9, 2018.

  1. Daniel Ragland

    Daniel Ragland Member

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    I searched the forums and can't find any way to ensure the block heater is working until it's time to start and the temp gauge reads 80. Why isn't there a small indicator on the dash display or anywhere to let you know if it's working when you plug it in?
     
  2. MADDOG

    MADDOG Cummins Driver Staff Member Super Moderator Supporting Member Military

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    I guess the Ram engineers and designers didn't ask us about that specifically.

    It would be nice to have for sure.
     
  3. Big Terry

    Big Terry Senior Member

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    I just turn the key and see what the EVIC says. Mine will get up in the 130+ degree range overnight, when temps are in the 30s. Without it, temp stays in the 50s.

    I really don't see a need for an indicator, until they actually put a thermostat on the heater. Plug it in when I get home, unplug it when I leave. All I need to know. /shrug

    Sent from my Pixel 2 XL using Tapatalk
     
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  4. crash68

    crash68 Senior Member

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    I use an Aeotec Smart Switch 5 on my home automation system to control my block heater, it also shows the power consumption. There are WiFi version of this type of smart switch which work stand alone through an app on your phone.
    The block heater is not connected to the truck electronics in anyway. Without something that has power meter, watch you coolant temp at start up.
    For the EcoDiesel the block heater draws about 420 watts when its on, for you Cummins owners it will be up around 750 watts.
     
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  5. Typetwelve

    Typetwelve Senior Member

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    You know...I wish it did have some display, but it doesn't.

    One thing of note, on my display, all it tells me is "<122F" for coolant or engine temp. A few hrs with the heater running, still says the same thing.
     
  6. crash68

    crash68 Senior Member

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    If I'm not mistaken, the block heater is self regulated to about 100°F. It is an immersion heater in the coolant on the side of the block. Even with mine parked in a garage and running the block heater for 2-3 hours, once the truck starts the coolant temp is about 80°F, oil is >122°F
     
  7. sbarron

    sbarron Senior Member

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    Talk about first world problems - here in Alaska we know whether our block heater is working or not when our cars start in the morning.

    Seriously though, I don't think in all my years I've ever seen a block heater fail, they are basically like a super low wattage water heater element rather than the circulating pump heaters.. The only reason they would likely fail is if they are run dry and if you have no coolant at the bottom of the block - where the freeze plugs are - you have much bigger problems than a non-functioning block heater. Plenty of bad extension cords or non-functional outlets, but these can be checked with a simple lighted-end extension cord.
     
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  8. gary87xj6

    gary87xj6 Junior Member

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    Please excuse my ignorance, first modern diesel, in the 2018 User Guide for my 6.7L it mentions plugging in 2 hours prior to driving. Right now Eastern WA has 12"-16" of snow and low 20's. Based on the post above, I assume it is "OK" to keep it plugged 24-7? Thanks
     
  9. ErnieBoling

    ErnieBoling Senior Member

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    Yup. Keep it plugged in as long as you want. It is self regulated. Sometimes mine is plugged in 8 hours, sometimes 3 days. The plug it in 2 hours is the recommended minimum to allow the heater to have max effect.
     
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  10. Old Fart

    Old Fart Senior Member

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    Isn't the block heater a cartridge style that does not go into the coolant?... Goes into a cavity near the starter?
     

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