A nickel in my pocket? "Lobrid" - Page 2 - Fuelly Forums

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Old 10-20-2007, 11:54 AM   #11
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Yah, I need to look a little more closely at the kwh to lbs of CO2 conversion factor. It might be more like 1.5 lbs CO2 per kwh to the socket in the wall in the states, more like .5 lbs CO2 per kwh in ontario.

Are you assuming that the .5 gallons of warmup does not include any driving?
That's driving.

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The conversion using kWh *should* yield the same results as using BTU's.


So converting 1 million BTU to kWh = 293kWh which means that's:
0.77lb CO2 per kWh anthracite coal
0.39lb CO2 per kWh methane NG

which, I will admit does seem low, but I couldn't tell you for sure....

For comparison a gallon of gas has 125,000BTU = 36.6kWh which means:
.546lb of CO2 per kWh

Given the numbers above, that does seem reasonable - it's between coal and NG.

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But all that said -- you're probably right about warm days... I'll pay attention the next time I drive to see how much fuel it takes to warm up given the temps outside haven't yet gotten cold (but it's a far cry from the 90 degree summers ).

Of course, I've always been under the impression that power plants are more efficient (in both emissions and production) than our ICE engines I wonder if anyone has done a study on engine wear in the winter with and without a heater....
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Old 10-20-2007, 12:19 PM   #12
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Fossil's a small part of the mix here...


Does the energy used by the heater offset the drop in mpg you see during the first couple minutes of driving?

That's the question... although, I'll include the full morning commute in my analysis since it's pretty short and engines probably keep heating up for 30 minutes when it is cool out even though I'm driving far less than that. When it's cool, not even cold, I'm barely at operating temp by the time I get to the train station.
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Old 11-02-2007, 06:44 AM   #13
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First morning at 0?C

Outdoor temp 0.7?C - full frost

Initial SG water temp 29?C (2? hours @ 400W @ $0.10/KWH = $0.10)

After starting SG water temp 26?C

After 2? KMs to school dropoff full 80?C temp

So had full temps for next 5? KM trip to train station


Normally in this situation, I'd have run the engine 3 to 5 minutes while scraping the windows clean (only needed a quick wipe and there was enough dash heat not to have the wipers make it worse).

Rich idle is 3.5 LPH (vs 1.3 LPH warmed). So @ 3LPH/60min x 3min x $1 per Litre = $0.15, less the $0.10 to power the EBH and I've made my nickel before driving up the street!
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Old 11-02-2007, 07:28 AM   #14
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So Pablo's plugged in tonight with a new engine block heater. The dealer has to remove a sub-frame member to install it because the manufacturer doesn't want to add $5 to the manufacturing cost. So it's 3.5 hours labour making for about a $400 total all in. Youch, but I knew that going in. $1 per watt ironically, as confirmed by the WattsUp meter.

Anyway, I'm hoping to save 13 cents worth of gas each weekday morning by spending 8 cents worth of electricity to do so. My mother used to mention pennywise - pound foolish or something like that, well this certainly is. I reckon the payback is about 40 years assuming 75% seasonal usage.

Anyway, tonight there's no timer involved so it's 32 cents and 11,000 BTUs of warmth for the engine. Watch me get the typical 18 LHK on my first leg tomorrow and see no difference.
Well...don't forget...you are also saving wear and tear on the engine startup by the motor being warmer, your catalytic will last longer...and you will have toasty warm feet sooner (hard to put a price on that one).

What are the environmental costs of a car wearing-out and either needing an overhaul or replacement?
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Old 11-02-2007, 08:36 AM   #15
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Oh yes... the catalytic converter will really benefit, and therefore the resultant emissions. Good point!

The Accord's getting an EBH soon as well. That could cause big changes because we've always backed in so that we can drive out. I drive in now since I can coats ICE-Off down our little street and roll up to the house - then roll back down to the street in the morning and start up there and drive up the street.

SWMBO may be reluctant to change habits...
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Old 11-02-2007, 06:58 PM   #16
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SWMBO usually is...

favorite quote from mine: "so can you do stuff to my car to make it all efficient and stuff?"
me: "no" (something about the adjusting the nut behind the wheel)
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Old 11-03-2007, 10:06 AM   #17
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Nice reporting, 2ton.

Another point to consider on the GHG scene in Ontario: fossil fuel generation primarily suppors peak consumption. You're warming your engine in off-peak times using base load generation, which is first nuke, then hydro.

Also, you have the choice of going 100% renewable, non-nuke if you want. But then there goes your nickel
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Old 11-03-2007, 10:29 AM   #18
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Fossil's a small part of the mix here...
I LOVE the separation of oil and state!
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Old 11-07-2007, 06:46 AM   #19
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2TonJellyBean, is your heater the kind that installs at an engine block freeze plug - and heats the engine coolant directly?
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Old 11-07-2007, 08:13 AM   #20
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Bruce, yes...
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