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Block Heater operation?


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Ok so I’ve haven’t needed to use my block heater but I will before leaving for FL in Dec. I started the generator and turn the Block Heater breaker on in the bedroom panel and didn’t notice any load on the load manager. I also turned on the rocker switch on the shifter panel. I forgot to look in the OM for how to use it and I don’t have it with me.  I guess the load could be so small that it may not register on the load meter or the temp wasn’t low enough for it if it has a thermo switch that turns it on.  So what say you all?

Edited by tmw188
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Is the block heater cord plugged into the outlet in the engine compartment.

My block heater had never been used, cord zip tied in the engine compartment.  When I tested it didn't work.  Check the breaker, it was bad so I had to replace.  All good now.

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Ok well I didn’t know it was corded, I thought it was hard wired so if you had the gen running or was on shore power you only had to turn it on inside the coach. 

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Also.

The switch on the dash actually controls a relay that engages the 120 volt circuit.  The breaker goes to a 6"X6" box behind the main service panel, there is an Ormon relay in there.  From there it goes to the outlet in the engine compartment.

So if you check everything else and it still doesn't work it may be the relay. 

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20 minutes ago, jacwjames said:

Also.

The switch on the dash actually controls a relay that engages the 120 volt circuit.  The breaker goes to a 6"X6" box behind the main service panel, there is an Ormon relay in there.  From there it goes to the outlet in the engine compartment.

So if you check everything else and it still doesn't work it may be the relay. 

I figured that might be the function of the rocker switch, but I still have to manually plug in a cord in the engine compartment or in a basement door? I never noticed a cord back there but have seen the receptacle.

Edited by tmw188
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1 hour ago, jacwjames said:

My cord was/is zipped tied right above the outlet. 

Same with mine. If GFI is tripped which happened when I ran over the extension cord with the zero turn mower, my battery maintainer will also be off line.

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My Block Heater cord is also zip-tied and not plugged in as my coach has Aqua-Hot which includes a Motoraide Loop that goes from the engine into the Aqua-Hot. That is what I use to pre-warm the engine block on cold days before starting the engine by turning on the Engine Pre-Heat switch. When that switch is activated a pump in the Aqua-Hot pumps the warm coolant throughout the engine block.

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I will look for the cord it must there near the receptacle. I didn’t know there was a cord back there, but that seams to be the case. I’ll report back. 

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OK after looking I found the plug for the block heater, I never had the notion to go look for that until I posted about it. It was easy to it find zip tied near the receptacle. I did check its operation and it is operating.  I do not have to have the key on accessory mode just the breaker in the breaker panel and the rocker switch on the drivers console. It was pulling 8-9amps. I’ll look up the suggested temps and length of activation for when to use this. 

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Well there you go, glad you figured it out. 

 

FWIW. I've never used mine.  Coldest I ever tried to start it was in Northern Wisconsin, this was right after a winter storm came through in late March and there was a lot of snow every where.  And worse, I stopped overnight at a Walmart and there were +10' snow banks all around the parking lot, it was like being in a deep freeze.  But the next morning the engine started right up. 

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My 05 Safari Gazelle block heater cord doesn’t reach.  I always use a short extension cord, I guess they didn’t mean for it to be plugged in all the time.

I  used mine several times last winter

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30 minutes ago, Trinidaddave said:

My 05 Safari Gazelle block heater cord doesn’t reach.  I always use a short extension cord, I guess they didn’t mean for it to be plugged in all the time.

I  used mine several times last winter

Well I’m choosing to leave mine plugged in and manage it with the breaker and rocker switch. If you have a receptacle near by it should reach. You may need to cut loose a zip tie. 

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On 11/2/2021 at 3:34 PM, tmw188 said:

Well I’m choosing to leave mine plugged in and manage it with the breaker and rocker switch. If you have a receptacle near by it should reach. You may need to cut loose a zip tie. 

If your planning on leaving it plugged in, you may want to make sure that receptacle doesn't get power thru the inverter!

Could drain your batteries quickly if that switch was turned / left on, by mistake. 

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2 hours ago, 96 EVO said:

If your planning on leaving it plugged in, you may want to make sure that receptacle doesn't get power thru the inverter!

Could drain your batteries quickly if that switch was turned / left on, by mistake. 

Yes, good suggestion I’ll check that.

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On my 2002 Windsor the block heater does not go through the inverter circuit.   Easy to tell, the breaker is in the main service panel.  Those circuits don't get power from the inverter.  The block heater is not controlled by the EMS either so it will take priority over the EMS circuits (AC's, Water Heater, Washer and Dryer).   So if you have it on other power may drop out if you are on a 30 amp circuit. 

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