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Discussion Starter #1
Hello;

Does anyone have any experience with heating dipsticks to warm up oil in oil pan? I read conflicting reports on other sites regarding how well they work. I bought one today, it's made for cars, not snowblowers, but was willing to give it a try. Any pros or cons from the forum?

Thanks
 

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Would using a synthetic oil be an alternate? Cold flow characteristics are very different compared to petro-based oil.
 

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Would using a synthetic oil be an alternate? Cold flow characteristics are very different compared to petro-based oil.
I agree with uberT synthetic is the way to go if you are working in very cold temperatures.
I have used it for decades.
 

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Discussion Starter #5
Thanks for the reply...Since I'm not mechanically inclined, please explain your comment about the difference between "regular" oil and synthetic oil.

Thanks again
 

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Well, the cold flow characteristics of a 5W30 synthetic oil are very different when compared to a traditional (non-synthetic) 5W30. If the oil flows better at low temperatures, there are a multitude of benefits including the pull starter being somewhat easier to pull when you're trying to get the beast fired up.


here's a video showing the differences. Keep in mind -35F is far colder than most of us have to deal with:




The physical measure shown on a product spec sheet is typically referred to as "pour point". Synthetic oil pour points are quite a bit lower than a dino oil.
 
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Thank you uberT for the very informational video...Much appreciated!

Thanks again
 

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after purchasing one of my toro 521's I got it all set to blow snow then I realized I had not changed oil. my garage is too small and has too much stuff in it to work on a snowblower so I was out in the yard on a 28º day draining oil. the oil was full of water so I went to the auto parts store and got a quart of 5w30 dino oil and a quart of 5w30 synthetic oil. I used the dino oil to flush the water out of the motor, the stuff poured and drained soo slow that I went in the house and warmed up. once I saw oil coming out without water in it I let the last of the dino oil drain out then refilled with the 5w30 synthetic. even after sitting in the cold for a couple hours the synth oil poured faster than the dino oil. i'll use synthetic oil in the snowblowers, dino oil is ok for the lawn mower
 

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On the subject of dipsticks... I'd be concerned that being designed to warm a much larger engine, the unit would put out way too much heat for a snowblower engine.

But +1 on the synthetic... I used it in all my engines.
 

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Thank you uberT for the very informational video...Much appreciated!

Thanks again



My pleasure. I'm trying to think of other things that could help. Is the machine stored in a shed away from the home? Is that the reason for this concern?


I've seen other solutions but they don't really lend themselves very well to a snow blower configuration.


In the case of a car, I've seen people use something like a traditional 60w light bulb under the hood with a blanket covering the engine. The light bulb kicks off a fair amount of residual light when left on for hours.


There are patch style (w/adhesive) oil pan heaters but I don't know if it would work on a snow throw.


There are electric battery warmers that wrap around a battery that might help out.


There are magnetic heaters which stick on the side of the block, assuming it's not aluminum ;)


Kat's makes a little heating pad for engines. Something like that might work.


Again, a change from dino oil to synthetic, assuming it's OK for your snow throw, would be an improvement.
 

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Hello;

Does anyone have any experience with heating dipsticks to warm up oil in oil pan? I read conflicting reports on other sites regarding how well they work. I bought one today, it's made for cars, not snowblowers, but was willing to give it a try. Any pros or cons from the forum?

Thanks
I just now read your post(8:30 am),and agree with the others that a 5w-30 synthetic would be the way to go,heating really isn't necessary.

It's -7 degrees farenheit here at this moment.To prove my point to myself,I went out to my unheated garage and started both of my blowers.Both are 1980's vintage,one's an 824,the other is a 6.5/21.Both have Supertech 5w-30 full synthetic oil in them.They rolled over much easier than if they had dyno oil in them.

I always pull the engine over a few times with the switch off first just to get a little lube on the rod bearing.Might not amount to anything,but it doesn't hurt,either.
 

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I think you could accomplish easier result just shining a halogen light on the thing for awhile rather than the dipstick heater........ not much to heat up on a blower. it rarely snows at temps where you need to worry about starting the thing anyway.......more often than not it's above 10F to snow. Granted you may have drifting to deal with at low temps....... but you can put a blanket over it and a light bulb under there if you get desperate. Dad did that a lot when I was a kid and it worked like a charm.
 

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I grew up on a farm and we had a couple of those heated sticks for the ol' 8n. It wouldn't start with out them.
 

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I think you could accomplish easier result just shining a halogen light on the thing for awhile rather than the dipstick heater........ not much to heat up on a blower. it rarely snows at temps where you need to worry about starting the thing anyway.......more often than not it's above 10F to snow. Granted you may have drifting to deal with at low temps....... but you can put a blanket over it and a light bulb under there if you get desperate. Dad did that a lot when I was a kid and it worked like a charm.
Just hope he did not start any fires doing that.:biggrin:
 

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I use 5w-30 mobil 1 in all my 4 stroke machines, it definitely makes starting easier, even at temps higher than the -35*F in the vid. I use Echo syn blend 2 stroke oil for all my Echo 2 stroke machines and Pennzoil Marine full syn TCW-3 2 stroke oil in the Toro 2 stroke (Toro, Lawn Boy and Tecumseh all recommended TCW-3 oil in their slower running, cooler running 2 strokes vs other air cooled 2 stroke equipment).
I tried starting the Toro with the electric starter at 18*F today and it started instantly. Not much smoke either.
 

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I always heard.. but can't verify it myself but that synthetic leaves a light 'film' on the moving parts so on cold starts less friction thus reduces wear and easier turn overs. For that reason I use synthetic in everything including the vehicles. I personally use mobil one but I'm sure their are several good ones out there like Amsoil, ect.
 

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Me too, I have been using synthetic oil for abut 25 years in everything , mowers, blowers, vehicles, boats.
Sid
 
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