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  #11  
Old 01-29-2008, 05:55 PM
giantquesadilla's Avatar
Ridiculously Active Enthusiast
 
Real Name: Colby
Location: San Diego, CA, USA
Hybrids: 2007 White Honda Civic Hybrid, 2013 Fit EV
Posts: 941
Default Re: Pipe Insulation in Grill

Hey I have a question about this. My commute is only 7 miles, so I get about 42 mpg in the winter. It's only 45-65 here, so I didn't think I needed to block the grill. Would blocking the lower one make a difference, or is my commute not even long enough to make a noticeable difference?
Thanks
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  #12  
Old 01-29-2008, 07:07 PM
Bobs Metallic Pearl's Avatar
Pretty Darn Active Enthusiast
 
Real Name: Bob
Location: Spokane, Wa.
Hybrids: 2007 Honda Civic
Posts: 397
Default Re: Pipe Insulation in Grill

I am thinking the highs would maybe cause you more problem than would be solved, you would need to insert the blocks in the am, remove them in the pm I think at 65 with the blocks you might run too hot....for reference, I am seeing temps of 10-25 here...our friends in Minn, Ohio & Canada are seeing lower than that.
A block heater might still be marginaly useful for your morning communite.

.

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  #13  
Old 01-29-2008, 07:20 PM
Active Enthusiast
 
Real Name: Jess Montgomery
Hybrids: '06 Honda Civic Hybrid
Posts: 195
Default Re: Pipe Insulation in Grill

giantquesadilla, I have about the same mileage in commute as you. I block the grill as long as it's below 55 degrees.
In the morning it's in the 20s and 30s and even though the commute is short it is still worth blocking it.
If it's above 55 in the afternoon, which lately it has not, I would remove the insulation.

.

Hybrid Cars Mileage
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  #14  
Old 01-29-2008, 07:53 PM
msantos's Avatar
Eco Accelerometrist
 
Real Name: MSantos
Location: Winnipeg, MB
Hybrids: 2006 HCH, 2007 Prius x 3, 2007 HCH
Posts: 1,191
Default Re: Pipe Insulation in Grill

Well, I'll add another 2 cents here then:

The only way to truly be sure that we are not overheating the engine is to plug-in a ScanGauge II and watch the engine and in-take temps. In other words, if the temps reach 90C (194F) and stay there or even move higher than that, then it is time to remove one row of blocking or more.

Now, I realize that not everyone is going to be buying a scangauge just so that they can watch the temps. Of course, a Scangauge (SG) can do far more than just watching temps, but it still costs $160+ shipping and some may not be able to make a case for it.

Anyhow, for those that do not have a scangauge and hence cannot tell the temps accurately (forget the dash temp gauge), there are other ways to tell when to start stripping the grille blocking. First, listen to your radiator fan.
I know, when you're in motion you can't really tell if it is running, but if you are not in motion or you put the car in "N" after turning off the gas engine and having the ignition in II, you should be able to hear it better.
In other words, if the fan runs, then the grille blocks comes off. Simple enough, eh?

In the name of prudence I only use grille blocking when the temperatures fall below 10-15C (50-56F) and I do so gradually by inserting the blocks in the lower row first. As the ambient temperatures sink, I insert more blocking. By the time the temps are below freezing I already have the entire intake blocked.

That's it in a nutshell.



Now the other interesting detail: I use a block heater all year round !!!

The only difference between a summer time plug-in and winter time use is the amount of time the block heater is actually on. That is why I use a timer. In the hight of summer I need less than two hours of plug-in time. In the cold winter days I need 6-8 hours.

Now, why would I use a block heater in the summer? Because the block heater raises the temps of the engine roughly 30C-40C above ambient. So lets say the ambient temps are 25C (77F) then the engine will have a temperature of ~60C (~140F).
Guess what that last temperature is?
Yep, many times I'll be EV gliding as soon as I am out my garage until I reach the main access road.

So using a block heater helps a lot in the winter but also in the summer as it helps bring the engine temps closest to its optimal operation range sooner.

Cheers;

MSantos

Last edited by msantos; 01-29-2008 at 07:58 PM.
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  #15  
Old 01-30-2008, 10:56 AM
Enthusiast
 
Real Name: Keith Pitts
Hybrids: 06 Civic Hybrid
Posts: 48
Default Re: Pipe Insulation in Grill

I can also testify that the insulation-style grill block has helped substantially in the NJ winter. Last year I couldn't beat 50mpg. Now with the grill block, I can beat 50 even on sub-freezing days.

Keith

.

06 Civic Hybrid, Silver, w Nav and extra loyalty

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  #16  
Old 01-30-2008, 01:16 PM
giantquesadilla's Avatar
Ridiculously Active Enthusiast
 
Real Name: Colby
Location: San Diego, CA, USA
Hybrids: 2007 White Honda Civic Hybrid, 2013 Fit EV
Posts: 941
Default Re: Pipe Insulation in Grill

Thanks for the info. I think I may try blocking the bottom grill and seeing if my radiator fan comes on.
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  #17  
Old 01-30-2008, 08:49 PM
Ridiculously Active Enthusiast
 
Real Name: Harold Wilkie
Location: Grand Forks B.C.
Hybrids: HCH 11 2006/ Prius 2006
Posts: 1,952
Default Re: Pipe Insulation in Grill

I don't think you should block the gril in your area Colby. Never gets cold enough. H
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  #18  
Old 01-31-2008, 04:09 PM
giantquesadilla's Avatar
Ridiculously Active Enthusiast
 
Real Name: Colby
Location: San Diego, CA, USA
Hybrids: 2007 White Honda Civic Hybrid, 2013 Fit EV
Posts: 941
Default Re: Pipe Insulation in Grill

Your right Harold. I think it would be beneficial in the morning, but I do not want to risk damaging my engine in the afternoon on my way home; especially now that it's warming up to about 60F on my way home.
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  #19  
Old 02-01-2008, 07:08 AM
Ridiculously Active Enthusiast
 
Hybrids: 2006 HCHII
Posts: 1,102
Default Re: Pipe Insulation in Grill

So far, I am seeing about a 4mpg improvement with just the upper grill blocked.

Obviously, I am very happy with the results.

FWIW, I also use pipe insulation to pad the e-brake handle for my knee.

Great product!
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  #20  
Old 02-01-2008, 08:14 AM
Ridiculously Active Enthusiast
 
Real Name: Harold Wilkie
Location: Grand Forks B.C.
Hybrids: HCH 11 2006/ Prius 2006
Posts: 1,952
Default Re: Pipe Insulation in Grill

Does that help with the knee discomfort, noflash. H
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Old 02-01-2008, 08:14 AM
 
 
 
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