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Keeps your car warm while you're shopping, checking the mail, sleeping, etc.
  [vote for,

You've been at the mall shopping for hours. It's freezing on the way to your car and you think how great it would be ifyour car was already warm. However, that's impossible because you've been in the mall for at least 3 hours.

With Insta-heat, you can have warm heat as soon as you start your car instead of having to freeze for 15 minutes until your car heats up.

Insta-heat is a small device that stores up solar energy (enough for 3 days without sun) and uses it to keep your car warm even when the ignition is off, it's dark, you've been shopping for hours, etc.

You no longer have to worry about defrosting your windows, or letting your car warm up. Insta-heat does all that for you by keeping your windows above freezing and keeping the important parts of your engine warmed up and ready to go.

Insta-heat would be a fairly affordable device, however, installation may be a chore. It would be obsolete in warm climate areas of course, but those deep freeze winter wonderlands would surely find it convenient.

waxingpoetic, Jan 06 2003

bit like mine? http://www.halfbake..._20blooded_20motors
[po, Oct 04 2004, last modified Oct 05 2004]

Red Dragon Heater http://www.sportys...._Dragon_Heater.html
"The propane gas heater generates 49,000 BTUs of heat and a 12 volt fan blows the warmed air into the engine compartment" [Klaatu, Oct 04 2004, last modified Oct 05 2004]


       Not sure if your solar battery is going to have enough juice to do the job. Someone else might know better.
snarfyguy, Jan 06 2003

       I would avoid solar energy. It's really unreliable especially at high northern lattitudes in winter, when you need this most. Residual engine heat should work fine.   

       Some models already have residual heaters. This takes engine heat (it's surprising how long an engine will stay warm) and distributes it via the car vents system. Combine this with a winter radiator jacket and you've got a winner.   

       This would be no good if you want a warm car in the morning. I suggest a DC auxillary car heater (carefully located to avoid fire hazard) and a digital on-off timer set to complete its cycle 10 min before you normally leave the house. You could combine it with a thermal window blanket for maximum effect. Of course, it only works if you've got a good alternator and battery.   

       Alternatively, if your electricals are less than ideal, you might consider a portable thermal storage system like they have in many central heating systems. This idea uses several vacuum thermos bottles in the trunk/boot of the car filled with hot water from a central electric heater unit that is powered only when the car is running (or if the voltage is above 13V). At the appointed time, the hot water is circulated through a surplus motor-cycle radiator in the passenger compartment. (Using residual engine heat to store hot water is of course better than electricial heating, but it's beyond the abilities of most home builders to build and adapt a heat exchanger) A simple prototype could use hot water from a kettle.   

       Another possibility is a timer or remote device on the electric starter. Simply set the heater to come on at start.   

       I agree that these ideas would be a chore to install, except those that could simply be plugged into the cigarette lighter socket.   

       I don't agree that the device would be redundant in hot weather. A cooling version of the system would work (instead of residual heat, small amounts of coolant could be drawn from the A/C unit, or an electric fan could come on.   

       With regards to long-distance remote triggering, a pager (simple, cheap) or other mobile device could be used.   

       If you need help, contact me via the email address on my profile page.
FloridaManatee, Jan 06 2003

       The easiest way to make what you would call instant heat, would be to take a "Thermos" like bottle that would store up to approximately 2 gallons of heated coolant inside of the firewall and when you start the car, and turn on the heat, the coolant that is in the thermos enters the heatercore, and produces heat stored from the engine that was ran the day before.
theThinker, Mar 15 2003

       Liquid salt systems stores a lot of heat energy efficiently !- These are used in industrial petrochemical-plants.   

sirau, May 15 2003

       ...or you could just install a keyless ignition, most of which let you start the car, but lock the transmission and steering wheel until you put in the key. In the winter when you turn off your car, you leave the heater on, so starting the ignition a few minutes before getting in the car would give you a warm car to get in to. And hey, if you're weird, you couls put a timer on it, so it would heat up when your ready to leave your house or whatever you weird people like to do. It would cost you a little more on gas, but given the thoughts i've seen on SUVs at this site,you probably have one of those gay hybrids anyways, so no worries.
NVadirZim, Jul 08 2003

       In northern climates the most efficient would be a gas burner. It would be a very small device located inside your engine compartment that runs on the vehicles fuel, and is simply cut into the water line running to your heater coil. The same technology as insta-heat water heaters would do fine. The only concern after that is the electricity to turn the fan and pump the water. The added benefit would be the block heating affect that could be used and/or bypassed.
zantriq, Dec 10 2003

       The old VW bug's had gas burners for heaters, it turned out to be a terrible idea for them. They were hard to start and a bad tendency of blowing up durring collisions.   

       BTW you can set some remote car starters to "warm" your car up every 30 minutes or so when it's below a certain pre set temperature.
SystemAdmin, Dec 10 2003

       //Not sure if your solar battery is going to have enough juice to do the job. Someone else might know better.//   

       It won't. If the sun provided enough energy to warm your car you wouldn't need this device.
Worldgineer, Dec 10 2003

       I think some small engined diesel cars have a heater powered off the engine electrics 'cos the engine itself doesn't produce enough heat for a one run off the coolant or a jacket around the exhaust pipe. Can't remember where I read that tho.
squigbobble, Jan 15 2004

       Red Dragon heater <link>
Klaatu, Jan 15 2004


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