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Hello

We bought a new Honda CR-V in late August 2009. We love it and have had nothing but good things since taking delivery.

However we have a problem at the moment. The weather has got colder and with minus 40 being fairly standard at the moment and for the forseeable future.

And our CR-V won't start!

We have an appointment to get a block heater fitted next week -- but that doesn't help us in the meantime.

Has anyone any suggestions? It was warmer on Sunday and we left the engine running (with everything else turned off for about four hours, maybe slightly more as I forgot to turn it off until reminded...) Yesterday it wouldn't start at all, I tried six times over the period of eight hours.

Any advice would be most welcome. Thank you.
 

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An old trick that might work until you get your block heater is to put a trouble light in the engine compartment.That is the one with the cage around the bulb,you would not believe how much heat a 60 watt bulb can put out.Just make sure to unplug and remove it before driving away.Fill the tank and put in gas line anti-freeze.
 

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Get a foam\neoprene cover for the battery to help shield some of the cold; and while you're at it it may not be a bad idea to get a larger CCA unit installed if it will fit. Sometimes you have to do stuff to customize a new vehicle to make it work in extreme conditions.
 

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Have you tried pushing the accelrator part way while cranking? The manual recommends this.
 

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Hello

We bought a new Honda CR-V in late August 2009. We love it and have had nothing but good things since taking delivery.

However we have a problem at the moment. The weather has got colder and with minus 40 being fairly standard at the moment and for the forseeable future.

And our CR-V won't start!

We have an appointment to get a block heater fitted next week -- but that doesn't help us in the meantime.

Has anyone any suggestions? It was warmer on Sunday and we left the engine running (with everything else turned off for about four hours, maybe slightly more as I forgot to turn it off until reminded...) Yesterday it wouldn't start at all, I tried six times over the period of eight hours.

Any advice would be most welcome. Thank you.
where are you located? just wondering.
i saw in the news earlier this week that edmonton was in the low -50's C. with windchill. :eek:

do you park outside? maybe park inside the garage if you have one.
maybe try putting one of those heater with fan and place it under front engine area to blow the warm air up towards the engine.

i park my van outside and we've been experiencing some cold weather for the past 2 weeks. so i placed a small home (box) heater inside the van and run an extension cord to the house. turn it on about 1hr before i leave and helps warm up the interior and the starting seemed to be easier too. our temperature was around -10*C with windchill.
 

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We have a 2005 CRV and never had a starter turn as slow as the one on this vehicle ( unfortunately normal ) and the battery with only 410cca amps. Can't put in a bigger battery because on the tray it is in - best I can find is a battery that has 500caa that will fit. We used to have a 92 Plymouth Acclaim with the 2.5L engine and when newer, it would start at -40 C without the block heater plugged in. A lot of car manufacturers do cold testing in Canada and Honda really should do the same. A better starter and a bigger battery are really needed. The Bosch starter on the Acclaim was very good -wish it was on the CRV.
 

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You can get a bigger battery in there. In my second gen I just ripped the battery tray out, and put in a behemoth, and built its own platform for it out of mdf and plastic. It turns over super fast. Try it if you're not afraid of a little bit of electricity. It's only a battery, and way more than enough ccamps. I'll put a pic up later, but it helps a lot. I think the battery was only that small due to efficient space. The larger battery I have sits higher and is a little closer to the hood, but I'll make a cover for it so all the water doesn't wind up dripping onto the terminals and corroding stuff.



 

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Hello

We bought a new Honda CR-V in late August 2009. We love it and have had nothing but good things since taking delivery.

However we have a problem at the moment. The weather has got colder and with minus 40 being fairly standard at the moment and for the forseeable future.

And our CR-V won't start!

We have an appointment to get a block heater fitted next week -- but that doesn't help us in the meantime.

Has anyone any suggestions? It was warmer on Sunday and we left the engine running (with everything else turned off for about four hours, maybe slightly more as I forgot to turn it off until reminded...) Yesterday it wouldn't start at all, I tried six times over the period of eight hours.

Any advice would be most welcome. Thank you.
I would ask the dealer to check everything to make sure you don't have another problem. I have an '07 with the original battery. This is the start of its fourth winter (picked it up new in Nov '06).

Here in Regina we had the same cold snap that was mentioned about Edmonton. Mine sat out on the driveway for the first few days of the cold, not plugged in. I was going to need it later in the day so I went out to plug it in. I thought I'd see if it would start, just out of curiousity. It started without a problem.

The temperature at the time was -32°C with a windchill of -45°C and the car had not been started for at least three days. It turned over agonizingly slow (who wouldn't at that temp??!!) but it started. No reason yours shouldn't if everything is right.

The suggestion about a battery blanket is a good one. It makes a huge difference in winter starting and in the total life of the battery. One with just 60W will do the job nicely and Canadian Tire sells them for under 30 bucks. Those small batteries lose a great deal of their starting power when they get that cold. Keeping them warm is almost as good as a block heater. The combination of the two is unbeatable.

I'm curious how you managed to buy a new vehicle with no block heater when you live some place that has temps of -40 being normal at this time of year? I'll bet you could go to every new car dealer here in Regina and not find a single car on the lots in the entire city without a block heater. And I'll bet you couldn't get a single dealer to sell you one without a block heater.
 

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My '02 dealt with the same cold snap in Regina that Ken's did. Although i park in a garage and plug it in at work and home.

It did sit outside for 5 hrs in the -10 billion and was NOT happy when i went to start it. (The battery will be changed soon).

The only problem i have is when it is that cold and i dont plug it in, it will crank slow, start, then sputter and stall. I crank it again and it will start normally (or as normal as it can in -45c).

The one thing i noticed with the CRV is it warms up very fast while driving after being plugged in. I can go from stone cold to the vents blowing hot air in less than 5 min.
 

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The thing I find about a CR-V is that the only way you can warm one up at those cold temps is to drive it. !!

Have to get that efficient little puppy under load to make heat. Both my old '00 and my '07 are the same that way. If you let them sit and idle they'll never warm up. When they're warmed up, if you let them sit and idle they'll go stone cold in about 10 minutes. :eek:
 

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The thing I find about a CR-V is that the only way you can warm one up at those cold temps is to drive it. !!

Have to get that efficient little puppy under load to make heat. Both my old '00 and my '07 are the same that way. If you let them sit and idle they'll never warm up. When they're warmed up, if you let them sit and idle they'll go stone cold in about 10 minutes. :eek:
Are you taking the thermostats out? You should not have coolant going to the radiator when it is cold.
 

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Nope. It's the heater radiator. With such an efficient little motor, the radiator in the heater is more than sufficient to cool the engine in such cold temps when it's not under load, even with the fan speed on low.
I agree, and it's not just Hondas that refuse to fully warm up when idling in frigid temps... < brrr >
 

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I agree, and it's not just Hondas that refuse to fully warm up when idling in frigid temps... < brrr >
I can't speak to other brands because I've been driving Hondas since '92. My '92 and '93 Civics were like that as well as my '00 CR-V. '07 V is the same.

By contrast, the 360ci engine in my B2500 Dodge Ram vans ('85 and '98) were able to make you go looking for your cutoffs and t-shirt at -40, even at idle. 'Course they used a little more fuel than my Hondas. :eek:

...ken...
 

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Exactly. You have to consider that in cold temps, you might need as mcuh as 20,000BTU heat output to heat up the car in 15 minutes. The heater core is probably capable of that with coolant temps above maybe 140F. That's almost 8HP of heat. At idle, the waste heat to the coolant (as opposed to the exhaust and from the engine case) is probably equal to the power generated by the engine. I'd be suprised if the engine needs more than 5-6to overcome the internal friction of the engine running at 900-1100RPM and the load from the alternator.

Ideally in cold climates, cars would have some aux electric resistance coils. That would add some load to the engine and produce some immediate heat for the cabin. I think most elctrical system could handle a 800-1000 Watt heater for a few minutes.
 

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Nope. It's the heater radiator. With such an efficient little motor, the radiator in the heater is more than sufficient to cool the engine in such cold temps when it's not under load, even with the fan speed on low.
Maybe they should put a thermostat before the heater that would alow the coolant to bypass the heater when cold.
 

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Maybe they should put a thermostat before the heater that would alow the coolant to bypass the heater when cold.
Not a chance!!! At those temps I want every BTU that heater can put out when I'm sitting in the car.

Motoguy, I've seen some little 12V quartz heaters. One of those would probably serve the purpose you described .. generate some heat themselves and also add a little more load to the motor. I won't likely do it because it's not something that happens often. But it's an interesting discussion. Thanks.
 

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Not a chance!!! At those temps I want every BTU that heater can put out when I'm sitting in the car.

Motoguy, I've seen some little 12V quartz heaters. One of those would probably serve the purpose you described .. generate some heat themselves and also add a little more load to the motor. I won't likely do it because it's not something that happens often. But it's an interesting discussion. Thanks.

I have a couple of those. The ones I have are really really cheap, noisy (have a small integrated fan), and ultimately, the accessory socket is only good for 10A, so you're limited to 120Watts... which barely makes a dent (400 BTU's) when it's -10F outside. I plugged one into the accessory socket in the rear of the CR-V and even with the cargo tray down and the radio on and A/C blwoer set about 1/2 power, I could still hear it under 30mph.... which is 90% of my 10 minute commute.


Actually, the best set-up would be a heat pump, which would utilize the A/C. But I believe some luxury auto manufactuers have looked at this, and the cost was too high for the percieved benefit. Although I think some living in some colder regions would disagree. A heat pump could provide almost immediate heat, while also putting a sizeable load on the engine causing it to warm up relatively fast. Even ice build-up on the condenser would have the added benefit of blocking some airflow to the engine bay. If would have to cycle frequently between cooling and heating modes to remove moisture.
 

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But the thermostat would open up once the coolant was warm. That's how they work.
.

And at temps below maybe 20F at freeway speeds, it may never even open or only open only a very small amount. The BTU's going to the heater core and the air flowing over the engine are enough to cool the engine.

I had a thermostat stick open on my '91 Toyota Tercel while drivng on the freeway. I had been in stop and go traffic for some icy roads. WHne I got moving again, the thermostat didn't close. The engine got so cold, it went back into the "cold start" mode with the enigne idling at 1500RPM... which mean almost no engine braking (manual transmission) when you lifted the throttle even a 65mph. Even worse, there was very little heat to warm the cabin.
 
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