Cab heater

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Cab heater

Postby HenryJ » Tue Dec 06, 2005 3:25 pm

A question came up on my cab heater, so here's the information.

I used a Zerostart interior car warmer part number: ZRO 260-0900 heater $51 . It was hard to find and not listed on the Temro or Zerostart websites. Any Zerostart dealer should be able to order one.

This heater measures 4.5" wide x 3" high x 7" deep.

Image

This heater does not come with a thermostat , or the LED shown. I disassembled a small space heater for those additions. The LED lights when plugged in, so I can look through the window and know I have it ready. The thermostatic switch was an easy addition and allows me to adjust the temperature where I want it as well as a nice safety feature , since it shuts the heater off to prevent overheating.

This all runs on 120 volts, and the cord plugs in right where I have my engine block heater cord next to the front tow hook.

I have been using one of these for the last eight years. Before I was able to find this compact unit I did mount one of the small cube shaped ceramic heaters. It worked fine , but took up more space. This one mounts with a slide on clip and has a connector not far from the unit so removal for the summer months is easy. I usually just leave it in there though.

It really is nice to have a warm truck to jump into, and no windows to scrape :mg:
Last edited by HenryJ on Sat Jan 21, 2006 10:00 am, edited 1 time in total.

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Postby c schoelen » Thu Dec 08, 2005 6:03 pm

its sounds pretty neat. does this heater run right off of your battery?
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Postby HenryJ » Thu Dec 08, 2005 6:11 pm

No. It is 120 volt and plugs in just like the engine freeze plug heater.

I checked Balkamp today and NAPA's interior car warmer runs $87 :shock:

I'd say keep looking for the Zerostart.

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Postby HenryJ » Sun Jan 08, 2006 1:46 pm

Stumbled across the interior car warmer that I have in JC Whitney today-

COMMERCIAL-STYLE METAL-CASE HIGH-OUTPUT INTERIOR WARMER

Image

Commercial-style Metal-case Interior Warmer Each SV478184R $79.99
Last edited by HenryJ on Sat Nov 10, 2007 2:39 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Postby rlith » Mon Jan 09, 2006 4:55 am

I dunno... Not really sure I like something with a burning hot coil inside my interior... Something in me screams firehazard (regardless of any safties that might be there) That's just me though. With my seat heaters that's usually good enough for me. And since I use an e-fan, the truck warms up quicker since the fan won't come on till 198...Again that's just me though.
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Postby HenryJ » Mon Jan 09, 2006 7:33 pm

I have used one for at least eight years. The fire department has used them for twice that. Fire does not seem to be an issue ;)

Keeping the interiors temperature warm and the windows defrosted is the idea here. I have no time to wait for the defrosters to start working when responding and I must say I am a "weenie". I have been spoiled by jumping into a warm truck. I'll never go back!

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Postby F9K9 » Mon Jan 09, 2006 7:35 pm

HenryJ wrote:I have used one for at least eight years. The fire department has used them for twice that. Fire does not seem to be an issue ;)

Keeping the interiors temperature warm and the windows defrosted is the idea here. I have no time to wait for the defrosters to start working when responding and I must say I am a "weenie". I have been spoiled by jumping into a warm truck. I'll never go back!


I used to belittle heated seats as "wussyfied" but, I love them :D
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Postby rlrnr53 » Sat Jan 21, 2006 8:31 am

Hats off to you HJ,and anyone else that is a member of a fire dept. or rescue service! After spending 22yrs on a volunteer fire dept. I salute you. I would like to have had a heater like you have on many of those cold frosty or snowy West Virginia nights.
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Postby HenryJ » Sat Jan 21, 2006 8:53 am

Thank you :bow:
I am sure that you , as I , feel privledged to serve with such a fine group of people.

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Postby ludwis » Sat Jan 21, 2006 9:33 am

Henry, I'm curious how you typically use the cab heater. Do you have an extension cord running into the garage hooked up to a timer? I figured I could do that and set it to turn on mabye 20min before I typically leave for work. Also, where do you have it mounted? I remember seeing a picture some where that looked like it was under the dash.
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Postby HenryJ » Sat Jan 21, 2006 10:09 am

ludwis wrote:... Do you have an extension cord running into the garage hooked up to a timer? I figured I could do that and set it to turn on mabye 20min before I typically leave for work.
I have a heavy gauge extension cord outside my garage. It is one of those with three places to plug in. I plug in both the cab and engine heaters. A timer would be a good idea for someone who has a set schedule. I really haven't been able to get the fire department to only page on a schedule ;) (j/k). I have seen heavy duty timers, and often thought they would be a nice thing to have, but keeping it plugged in whenever it could be below freezing has been working for me.
ludwis wrote: Also, where do you have it mounted? I remember seeing a picture some where that looked like it was under the dash.
Thanks for the reminder. All the photos in the gallery have been resized and no longer need the "normal_" prefix. I removed it and now the above image should post properly.

It is mounted under the dash, beside the right kick panel. This seems to work pretty well and offer the least inconvenience for passengers.

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Postby ludwis » Sat Jan 21, 2006 1:13 pm

HenryJ wrote:... but keeping it plugged in whenever it could be below freezing has been working for me.


Have you noticed any impact on the electric bill? I was thinking about the timer because 900 watts running for a long time could get quite expensive.
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Postby HenryJ » Sat Jan 21, 2006 2:09 pm

I added a thermostat to mine , so it doesn't run all the time. It maintains the temperature that I set it to.

What do you pay for power out there? Ours runs .03-.05 per kWh. I don't know exactly what impact it has on our power bill, but it is worth it for my needs.

Another thing to consider is the savings in fuel for the time required to warm the vehicle up / defrost, wear and tear on the interior, etc. Maintaining a warmer temperature means less contraction and expansion cycles for the plastic parts and less chance of cracking. This may not be as much of an issue for newer plastics , but it sure has been in the past. And I need not wait for the windows to defrost before taking off. Everything is warm and clear.

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Re: Cab heater

Postby WileyHunter » Wed Aug 15, 2012 6:30 pm

I know I'm resurrecting an ancient thread (HJ's fault really), but I'm thinking that if one has the engine block heater, all that is really needed, is putting a fan (or activating the existing one without draining the battery) in the heater duct. Should get the cab nice and toasty for those early winter morning departures.
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Re: Cab heater

Postby HenryJ » Wed Aug 15, 2012 7:45 pm

Kinda. It doesn't work that well. The convection currents don't travel through the heater core. The heater core does get some conductive warmth. A little spot does defrost a small spot on the windshield in cool weather, but little or nothing. I suspect that there would not be enough heat to be circulated by a fan if one was installed.
The Zerostart Little Buddy Cabin haters are fantastic. I have even used a small ceramic heater for a cabin heater. All you really need is enough to keep the interior about 50F-55F. That keeps the windows defrosted. A little warmer may be needed in very cold snowy weather. The snow melts and in very cold weather it can freeze on the exterior. I have been frozen out once where the door seals and handle were iced over. Shoveling it off , or turning the heat up inside helps.

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Re: Cab heater

Postby WileyHunter » Thu Aug 16, 2012 6:25 am

Ok that makes sense HJ. I guess I just figured that since the coolant would be recirculating in the engine, that it would also be doing so thru the heater core. Still, just having the eng core heater in place should reduce the warm up of the cab to 'next to nil' when you do jump in and go, as the majority of the coolant will have been warmed by the heater.
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Re: Cab heater

Postby HenryJ » Thu Aug 16, 2012 7:48 am

It does help. It still takes a little while. The best it gets is about 100F in mild freezing weather. Once you start it the temp drops a little until things equalize. Within five miles or so you get the heat starting.

Another nice thing about the cabin heater is that the interior temperature is kept above freezing. Plastics don't like freezing and most cracks develop in the winter. Summer heat drys them out and winter shrinkage breaks them.

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Re: Cab heater

Postby HenryJ » Sun Aug 19, 2012 2:54 pm

Image

Pic of the ZeroStart Little Buddy Cabin Heater

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