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  1. #1
    Junior Member
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    Jan 2008
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    Cold weather experience?

    I am buying a brand new car shortly and an looking for advice. I have it down to either a 2008 Honda Civic or a 2008 Honda Civic Hybrid. I live in Winnipeg Canada and have some concerns regarding a hybrid in the cold winter months. I would qualify for $4000 in rebates from my Provincial & Federal Government which makes the price difference almost nill but have concerns about using the hybrid at -30. Anyone with experience?

    Thanks in advance

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  3. #2
    Junior Member
    Join Date
    Oct 2006
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    Hi Winnipegguy;

    I too live in Winnipeg. There are absolutely no problems with the Civic Hybrid in our weather. In fact, I enjoyed my 2006 so much that I ended up buying another (a 2007) less than a year later for my wife.

    Of course during the cold season the mileage is not very good, but at 5.8-6.8 l/100km tank average, it is far better than any other car I can think of. During the summer I can easily get commutes in 3.8-4.3 l/100km in the city which again is still far better than most other cars.

    If you are willing to get into the technology, learn about it and use it well, it will work well for you. Check out Tarabell's article for additional and insightful info as well.

    If you need additional info please let me know and I'll send you a personal message with my phone number if you wish to discuss further.

    Cheers;

    MSantos

  4. #3
    Junior Member
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    Jan 2008
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    Thanks for the above comments. I'm in Edmonton, contemplating a hybrid for my next vehicle - probably a Prius or Civic hybrid, so the cold-weather experience is very helpful.
    -Don

  5. #4
    Junior Member
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    Jan 2008
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    MSantos, I read some of your

    MSantos,

    I read some of your posts about using tubing to help keep the engine warm. Can you offer any tips on that? I read on another forum you offered some pictures of what yours looked like.


    Also some other questions:

    - Would anything be different for the 08 model?

    - Is there any type of driving where this would not be recommended? For example, in a couple of days I have to drive to Wisconsin - about 110 miles on the interstate. The temps will be in the 20s. For that long of a trip would this still be ok, or is there a risk of overheating?

    - Can I still run the heat with no issues? Will any parts of the engine be overworked from the additional strain or more difficult air intake? Any other damage risks?

    - At what air temp would you take the tubes out?

    Any other issues you can think of?

    Thanks in advance,

  6. #5
    Junior Member
    Join Date
    Oct 2006
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    kdunaev: Your 2008 is

    kdunaev:

    Your 2008 is basically identical as the 2006 and 2007.

    The Grille blocking job looks pretty much like this:

    http://www.cleanmpg.com/photos/data/...rilleBlock.jpg

    That is my wife's car, and I did the same thing to my HCH and the Prius. What you see is a $2 3/4 inch foam jacket insulation for copper tubing that you can get at any Home Depot. Just buy one segment and cut to fit into the slots you see in the picture. It is safe to have all the slots if the temperatures are well below 0C. Now, if the radiator fan kicks in, then start removing the blocks starting with the top most slots.
    I suggest you take all the tubes out as soon as the temps go above 10C. For me, the main criteria for adding or removing tubes depends on the actual coolant temperature. If the coolant hovers around 90C then I start removing the tubes. I read the coolant and other temperatures via a device called ScanGauge that plugs into the OBD port.

    For a longer trip I would remove the tubing. For short distance driving blocking the grille is the only way to retain the heat in the cold weather.


    Cheers;

    MSantos

  7. #6
    Guest

    I own a 2008 HCH in

    I own a 2008 HCH in Winnipeg. With our recent cold snap (-45 deg C with windchill...brrrrr!), it did not start with the same quickness when you first turn the key, but I am happy to say that otherwise there were no problems starting the car and not once did I have any troubles.

    My mileage is not as good as MSantos. During the cold snap, I only got around 9L/100Km. But I admit that I don't block my grill. The block heater is plugged in overnight. I only warm the car long for the time it takes me to scrap the frost off my windows. My drive to work is relatively short (10-15 mins) and this combined with the cold weather is bad on the FE.

    When the weather was in the -10 to -20 deg range, I got around 7.5L/100Km. OK, but not great. I think I can improve with some work on my driving techinques.

    Otherwise, I am happy with the car and looking forward to the warmer weather to see what it can do!

  8. #7
    Junior Member
    Join Date
    Oct 2006
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    A 10 to 15 minutes commute

    A 10 to 15 minutes commute is not long enough for the engine to warm up, especially if the front grille is not blocked. So blocking it during the cold days will do wonders.

    My daily commute is also roughly 15-20 minutes as well, but I also avoid harsh accelerations especially when it is cold and that means I try to always keep my RPMS below 2000 when possible. Gliding the car is also key to great fuel economy and even though this is not easy in a cold car, it is doable as soon as it warms up.

    The other thing we do when it is too cold for the auto stop to kick in because of the cold: We switch the transmission to "N" when at a stop light. This causes the fuel consumption rate to be halved from 1.2 Liters/hour to roughly 0.6 Liters/Hour. Then when the light is about to go green, we gently switch it back to "D" so as to not damage the transmission.


    I do not idle at all to warm up the car. Idling in "P" or "D" is a gas and pollution hog. Idling in "N" with the hand brake on does not consume as much fuel (less damage to the emissions control package) but it also does not help generate that much heat either.

    Also in the cold days, I also use the DWB, DWL, Fake shifting, cold start P&G and Nice ON at the stop lights and it all helps (it is fun too).

    So here's what my mileage looks like in the different temp ranges:
    In Metric:
    http://www.cleanmpg.com/index.php?pa...Km&viewcar=161

    In US MPG:
    http://www.cleanmpg.com/index.php?page=garage&displayunits=MPG(US)&viewcar =161

    In summary, my best summer average:
    - 3.6 l/100km (65.33 MPG US)

    summer average is:
    - 4.2 l/100km (56 MPG)

    worst winter tank average:
    - 6.9 l/100km (34.08 MPG US)

    winter average:
    - 5.3 l/100km (42 MPG)

    typical worst winter segment average in the coldest days (-40C or -40F) :
    - 7 to 10 L/100km (33 MPG or 23.5 MPG US) yes, it is pretty bad sometimes.

    My lifetime mileage so far is 4.9 l/100km (48 MPG US)

    Also, I humbly recommend the reading of Tarabell's article to anyone who wants to understand their HCH well. This is absolutely "must read" material. You can find the article here:

    http://www.cleanmpg.com/forums/showthread.php?t=1306

    Cheers;

    MSantos


  9. #8
    Guest

    I am impressed MSantos -

    I am impressed MSantos - those are awesome numbers especially in our cold weather!

    I have considered blocking the grill like you suggested, but does wonder whether there are any negative effects on the engine? How does limiting the air flow effect the engine?

  10. #9
    Junior Member
    Join Date
    Oct 2006
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    0

    No, there are no negative

    No, there are no negative effects on the engine provided that optimal operating temperature is not exceeded (90C). If you want to be sure, I advise you purchase a ScanGauge II - it is worth every penny. Also, even if you block the grille there are still many other gaps and openings in the engine bay that still allow a lot of air to enter, especially when the vehicle is in motion. All the blocking we insert does, is reduce the severity of the effects of extreme cold air when the car is in motion, and that is an important part of achieving good mileage and polluting less in the winter months.

    Compared to some well known hypermilers, my numbers are not that great since I really do not pull all the hypermiling stops. Instead, I just focus on giving the car what it needs so that it enters the optimal operational zone sooner. Once there, it is just a matter of driving by the instruments and turning a routine commute into the usual "game gauge" that so many of us enjoy. Winter or summer, it can be a load of never-ending fun.

    By the way, feel free to drop by www.CleanMPG.com and introduce yourself. We also have a group-buy arrangement for the purchase of lots of Scangauge II's for a lower price than what you would pay if you bough one in retail.

    Cheers;

    MSantos


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