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Successful Install of Block Heater

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Old 11-14-2008, 01:13 PM   #1
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Successful Install of Block Heater

I'm reporting on my successful installation of an engine block heater on a 4 cylinder 2005 Tacoma - for the benefit of future searchers of the archives.

Part Used:

Toyota of Canada Part #00213-02141, available in the USA from trdparts4u.com for $60.

Installation method used:

1. Put front of truck up on jackstands and drained coolant.
2. Removed front passenger wheel to get a little wiggle room and a better view of workspace.
3. Got underneath truck (making sure it's well-supported first!).
4. Located oil filter on passenger side.
5. Looked directly behind the oil filter at the engine block. There's a freeze plug right there. (There's another freeze plug about 6" further towards the firewall, rearward from the filter. Don't use that one, tempting as it may be. There isn't enough room inside the coolant passage for the heater to fit there.)
6. Removed the freeze plug using my preferred method. I used a punch and 2lb hammer. Just hit the plug off-center a few times and it budged. Then I pulled it out with a set of pliers. Cleaned up the hole with 1000 grit sandpaper.
7. Retrieved block heater. Lubed the o-ring with the provided silicone. Pressed the heater firmly and evenly into the freeze plug hole. Made sure the o-ring was seated properly.
8. Tightened the screw on the outside of the heater to 19 inch-lbs per instructions. The heater felt nice and snug.
9. I routed the power cord to the lower air dam.
10. Then added coolant back to the system, ran the engine, and checked the heater for leaks (visual inspection). No leaks!
11. Put the wheel back on, lowered the truck and drove around for a week. Still no leaks.

Other important stuff: The instructions that come with the heater were last revised in 1995. They're helpful for a '94-'95 Tacoma, but not so useful for us. Nonetheless this part is still recommended for Gen2 trucks by Toyota Canada. Also, make sure you pick the correct freeze plug hole. If not, you'll be special-ordering a replacement freeze plug from Toyota! Also, V6 guys: your block heater is a totally different design that plugs into the rear of the block. And, luckily for you, installation does not involve draining coolant.
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Old 11-14-2008, 03:30 PM   #2
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Neat...thanks for the mod write up.
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Old 12-11-2008, 06:33 PM   #4
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VTDave, Good info. I also bought the same block heater from Toyota for my '07 2.7ci access cab and was planning on doing the install myself as well.
Had trouble trying to determine where the correct location should be. No help from the local Toyota dealers. They just want the $400 plus $$ to install it.
Your instructions are pretty clear but just wanted to verify - Is the correct freeze plug just forward (toward radiator) of the oil filter or sl back. Have not gotten under to look yet so might be apparent but thought I'd get additional info before I do..
Again good post. Thanks......... bob...
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Old 12-11-2008, 08:55 PM   #5
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Thanks for that info. I didn't realize you had to drain the coolant in the 4 banger.
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Old 12-12-2008, 04:17 AM   #6
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The correct plug is to the rear (towards the firewall) from the oil filter. I'd take a pic, but my truck is outside in the middle of an ice storm at the moment.
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Old 12-12-2008, 06:06 AM   #7
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This may be a stupid question but why would you want a block heater on a gas powered engine? Is it so your vehicle will warm up faster? I thought those were mainly for diesel engines.
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Old 12-12-2008, 07:51 AM   #8
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That's not a stupid question at all. You're right that gas engines have a much easier time than diesels getting started in cold weather. But, there comes a temperature when even gas engines need help. Just ask someone who lives in northern Canada, and they'll tell you all about their block heater, battery blanket, transmission heater and diff heaters. At -40 degrees, they really help.

Although I occasionally travel to northern Quebec, I primarily use the block heater at home when temperatures are in the -20 to +10F temperature range. It reduces engine wear and fuel consumption during warm-up. And, for those of us who make a lot of short trips when it's cold, it's extra good. Plus you get almost instantaneous heat when you start the truck.
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Old 12-12-2008, 08:05 AM   #9
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The folks where I used to live (central MT) didn't like the block heaters, as they tended to leak. We used a heater that went inline with the coolant hose. a Whole lot easier to install also. Not sure if they make them anymore.
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Old 12-12-2008, 08:12 AM   #10
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I just ordered the Toyota block heater for my 4.0L, looks even easier than the 4cyl. I live where it hits 40 below and have always had block heaters on my cars/trucks. We are already going below zero, hope it is as easy to install as it looks/sounds. Any one have any words of wisdom for installing on the V6?
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Old 12-12-2008, 08:19 AM   #11
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I'm pretty sure there's a write-up for the V6 either on here, tundrasolutions or yotatech. I remember thinking that it looked pretty easy when I read the write-up. No draining of coolant involved. You plug the heater into a port on the block and run the wire - that's it.
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Old 12-12-2008, 08:26 AM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by VTDave View Post
I'm pretty sure there's a write-up for the V6 either on here, tundrasolutions or yotatech. I remember thinking that it looked pretty easy when I read the write-up. No draining of coolant involved. You plug the heater into a port on the block and run the wire - that's it.
Your write up made it sound pretty easy, then I read that the heater for my truck just plugged in, I thought, hell, even I can do that, and even better I do not have to make the 2 hour drive to get worked over by the dealer. I found this write up for the 2nd gen v6's:
http://ttora.com/forum/showthread.php?t=52142
Thanks for the motivation to take this on myself.
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Old 12-12-2008, 08:36 PM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by harshest View Post
This may be a stupid question but why would you want a block heater on a gas powered engine? Is it so your vehicle will warm up faster? I thought those were mainly for diesel engines.
Not a stupid question. I grew up in southern Alberta where -30c to -40c (-22f to -40f) is not uncommon. There were several mornings where I had to call in sick to work because I didn't plug in the car, and the temperature dropped unexpectedly over night and the engine simply wouldn't turn over fast enough to start. I'm honestly surprised that a block heater isn't standard in the Canadian trucks... or perhaps it is, except her in Vancouver (the only place in Canada where you don't "need" one).
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Old 12-11-2012, 05:05 PM   #14
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Hi guys, I realize this thread has been dead for a while, however I'm installing a block heater. First Dave says: "Looked directly behind the oil filter at the engine block. There's a freeze plug right there. (There's another freeze plug about 6" further towards the firewall, rearward from the filter. Don't use that one, tempting as it may be. There isn't enough room inside the coolant passage for the heater to fit there.)" From this, I understand to use the freeze plug towards the front of the truck. Then in a later post, Dave says: "The correct plug is to the rear (towards the firewall) from the oil filter." From this, I understand to use the freeze plug to the front of the truck. Does anyone know the proper one to use here? Thanks
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Old 08-17-2014, 07:19 AM   #15
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Pics

Dealer told me first frost plug from radiator that protrudes out. Put block heater in yesterday, no issues!!!
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Old 08-17-2014, 07:27 AM   #16
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More pics

More pics
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Old 08-17-2014, 09:51 AM   #17
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Quote:
Originally Posted by burhead View Post
More pics
What block heater did you use ? Link ? Thanks for the pics and pardon my stupidity but everything looks stock old and slightly dirty in the pics - where is the block heater - thanks for any reply.
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Old 08-18-2014, 11:57 AM   #18
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Dealer block Heater

I bought the block heater from the local dealer for $53 plus tax.

It's the gold coloured plug in my first photo. I don't have the wire plugged into it. But you can see where the 110v wire plugs in.

If you compare to the second photo it is just the frost plug.

The job is very simple to do by following the previous instructions. Take both the wheel and skid plate off to make life easy.
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Old 08-18-2014, 02:40 PM   #19
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Quote:
Originally Posted by burhead View Post
I bought the block heater from the local dealer for $53 plus tax.

It's the gold coloured plug in my first photo. I don't have the wire plugged into it. But you can see where the 110v wire plugs in.

If you compare to the second photo it is just the frost plug.

The job is very simple to do by following the previous instructions. Take both the wheel and skid plate off to make life easy.
Great information - Thanks for the reply.
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