My new Escape Hybrid (AWD) does not have an engine block heater. I live in northern Minnesota although I did not purchase my hybrid in the state. Should I have an engine block heater added? In a typical winter, the lowest temperature here is about -20 to -25 degrees F. The car is garaged, but the garage is detached and unheated. The temperature inside the garage (at night or on a cloudy day) is usually 10-15 degrees warmer than the outside air temperature. On a sunny day -- the very coldest days are usually sunny -- the temperature inside the garage might be 30-40 degrees warmer than the outside air temperature.

In the winter, I usually make 4 or 5 trips per week, about 10 miles round trip, so in the very coldest weather I am guessing that I won't be using the battery very much. Considering that electricity is expensive, would an engine block heater provide enough benefit (in terms of mpg) to justify the cost of the electricity?

Any thoughts greatly appreciated.