Installing a FROSTHEATER coolent block heater

gmcjetpilot

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2010 JSW TDI DSG Matalic Grey
Installing a FROSTHEATER coolant block heater

Anyone install a FrostHeater.com coolant/block heater in a TDI 2009 or later Golf/Jetta Sportwagen? Appreciate any heads up, tricks, tips.....

I just ordered one. It does not get real cold in Tennessee, but I have a new commute, much shorter. I figure this would be a good product to have a warm car in the morning and maybe lessen a little wear and tear.
 

Efchou

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Minnesnowta
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2009 Jetta TDI 6spd
I did this install last year, you will definitely need a pair of angled needle nose pliers to get at the spring loaded coolant hose clamps, especially the ones closer to the bottom. I did not need to remove the driver side wheel well covering to do the install as suggested by the instructions.

Getting to the air box snorkel clips at the bottom can be a little tough, but a narrow and long flat head screwdriver can get at it, otherwise use the angled needle nose pliers again.

Get a couple of good hose clamps or vice grips that can mostly keep the hoses from losing too much coolant, and a drip pan underneath just In case! Don't forget to pick up a bottle of concetrated g21 coolant to refill the reservoir with, since you're adding a new component to the system, it will suck down a bunch of coolant initially.

This is also a good time to clean and inspect the large intercooler hose since it has to come off for the install. Having a second person helps when routing the lower hose so they can guide it for you.

Retighten the clamps after a week or so, then on a yearly basis.

Don't forget to enjoy those m&m's that come with the kit!
 

Efchou

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2009 Jetta TDI 6spd
Oh yeah, a good set of ramps too! Petersen's UR9020 ramps are good since they have the extenders!
 

Onefast66nova

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Fortville
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2014 golf
Also since you have a dsg make sure there is no thermostat in the coolant line that runs to the trans cooler. Your new heater will not work if it is left in there. It's not hard to gut while u have it all apart just taking it all back apart sucks.
 

MonsterTDI09

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2010 Jetta DSG/ up keep on 2009 Jetta DSG 2006 Jetta Pag 2 in North SEA Green
I would buy extra wire ties about 12 inch long.You need them for the hose that goes behind the fan.A 1/4 inch swivel combination socket and a hose clamp tool.Pm me if you want some pictures or any question.


Tom
 

gmcjetpilot

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2010 JSW TDI DSG Matalic Grey
Thanks for the input.... Onefast66Nova Do the instructions mention the removal or gutting of the thermostat?

What kind of hose PINCH tools should I buy, I don't have any. I see Vice Grip kind and how many do I need?

I have some LONG needle nose pliers both stright and angle, but I might as well get some hose clamp tools.
I see eBay has some remote activated hose clamp pliers from $20 to $50..... are they needed and handy or not useful and overkill?
MonsterTDI09, what kind of hose clamps do you recommend?
Efchou, ramps are easier than jacking and putting supports under the wheels. I might break down and pop for some of those.

Thanks! ;)
 
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MonsterTDI09

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atw

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Sun Prairie, Wi
TDI
2012 JSW Platinum Grey Pano DSG
I'm also looking at installing a Frostheater in my 2012 JSW w/DSG but I'm wondering what repercussions there might be in removing the DSG thermostat?(ie. -function and
warranty. Any thoughts?
 

StevenL

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Ireland
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Audi A4 Tdi
Has anyone any experience of putting these on a UK car? I know id need a 110v transformer but wasnt sure if the pipework is the same.
 

Onefast66nova

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Fortville
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2014 golf
Yes I believe frostheater ha updated the instructions since I have installed mine. I went to harbor freight and bought two of the vice grip hose clamp pliers and they worked fine.
 

gmcjetpilot

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2010 JSW TDI DSG Matalic Grey
Yea a reason to buy tools. I have a ton of tools but nothing for working on coolant hose. I went with some Rhino Ramps from Wal-Mart for $43.
The are light, strong and nest in each other to save space. From eBay for $18 to the door, I got remote hose clamp tool. Then a trip to
Harbor Freight to get some hose "pinch" clamps that are supposed to be excellent ($9). I also got some work gloves, hose pick tool, hose
removal tool to grab the hose and a set of three Long Reach Hose Grip Pliers for $14. If I don't need any of these HF tools, I won't use them
and take them back. I also got a deluxe electronic timer for $11 at HF, when I get the Frostheater installed I can set the timer to start the heater..



see video of tool below (the guys accent made me laugh for reason) http://youtu.be/vjKcGO1YvXE


See this Video for pinch clamps below http://youtu.be/i9Ecvjvutxc

 
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gmcjetpilot

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2010 JSW TDI DSG Matalic Grey
The Petersen UR9020 recommended above is probably a little better with more chin spoiler clearance, but they would be about $93.
The $43 plastic Wal-Mart ramps will work fine and clear the chin spoiler. A little double wood wedge to extend the ramp and reduce the
overall angle would help on even lower cars, but does not look like it needs it. For a Ferrari or Corvette, would not work well I'd imagine.
Neither of these cars are in my foreseeable near future so this ramp will do.




 
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gmcjetpilot

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Finally got it done, 7 hours (plus more to clean up). I would like to say how easy it is... in a way it is, but there were challenges. About an hour to set up and remove the cover, airbox, inner front forward wheel wheel and belly pan. About the same to button up. So that is two hours. The core of the work took 3 hours, but I had some struggles getting the hose onto the oil cooler and locating the heater unit. Then another 2 hours with head scratching and the usual looking for dropped fasteners...
(EDIT looks like I might have a thermostat in the system which some DSG cars have, and I have to disable it. I forgot to set the timer last night. So I plugged it before work, when I got up. I only got an hour of run time of heater on a cold engine. The top hose from the Frostheater was hot. It did seem to warm up faster, but it indicated dead cold when I started. I either have that thermostat or it was not on long enough. We'll see tomorrow. PROBLEM SOLVED, I screwed up the bottom hose; it was kinked. The instructions are clear how to route it. Fixed it last night and this morning... ahhhh full temp and heater at start. NICE. Now all I have to do is figure out how to plug it in at work... the boss might be suspicious if I run a 1000' extension chord out to my car... Ha ha.)

I did not use any of the special tools I bought, except the hose clamps. I followed the instructions except a few deviations mentioned below.

The Skunks Work. I just moved so I did not have all my tools, but made do with what I had.


These are the hose clamp-off tools I bought to reduce fluid loss, but frankly I would just skip them and get a pan to catch the gallon of 50/50 that will drain. If you are careful, use a clean catch pan you can reuse it. You can run it through a coffee filter if you like, but it was not worth it to me. I just brought it to a local repair shop to disgard (DON'T THROW IT DOWN THE DRAIN PLEASE, AND DOGS LOVE THE STUFF. IT WILL KILL THEM DEAD.) Remember DON'T USE 100% glycol, use 50/50 with distilled water. Make sure you buy some distilled water and the proper VW coolant stuff. It tops off very nicely. I drained almost exactly a gallon and was able to put that back in through the reservoir, almost in one shot. The resrvoir is the high point and the fluid was able to fill the system. After I started up, shut down, ran the frost heater for a few minutes. I was able to put the last cup in. After test drive the level is perfect. The special tools I bought above, remote hose clamp tool and special long reach pliers with funny ends were not needed. I did use my longer reach needle nose pliers but not the ones with funny ends. The only thing that came in handy were the ramps and the hose clamps, but again the clamps in the way, I took them off and let it drain.



This is the three new hose clamps for the kit where you spice in the heater in series before the oil cooler. There is a lower hose and upper hose from the heater. I deviated from the instructions. It says DO NOT remove the hoses from the frost heater, they are clocked and so on. They come preinstalled and clamped down That is fine, but it forces you to route hoses from bottom up to attach to oil cooler nipple. The bottom hose has a 180 turn to get the oil cooler. I could not get it on the oil cooler nipple. I removed the bottom hose from heater and attached it to oil cooler from top, then routed the hose from top down. You have to be careful not to twist, kink or pinch it. Then tightening the lower hose clamp on the oil cooler is a pain... Get a 1/4" socket with a 1/4" drive ratchet, universal flex couple and extensions of different lengths. I got my metric stuff out of storage but not my US sockets. The hose clamps can be turned by screw driver but it is a PIA and you can't get them tight. I borrowed a 1/4" socket from a new neighbor and was able to finish the job. (THIS PICTURE BELOW SHOWS A MISTAKE, THE BOTTOM HOSE COMES FORWARD AND AROUND THE WIRE HARNESS, FAIRLY CLOSE TO THE RADIATOR FAN AND THEN DOWN. THE WAY I HAD IT KINKED THE HOSE AND KEPT IT FROM WORKING INITIALLY. FIXED NOW, LOOKS JUST LIKE THE PICTURE IN INSTALLATION MANUAL. WORKS GREAT!)




Besides the lower hose attach to oil cooler, a PIA, the mounting of the heater is unit above inter-cooler hose is PIA. It takes a lot of fiddling to get it to fit. I made an optional trim of off one of the corner mount lugs, on heater housing, to make a little more room. It is not necessary, but what the heck, I have a little dremel cutoff wheel tool. I should have done it on the bench with a hacksaw; it would be easier and could take off more than just the corner.



Another deviation was how I mounted the power chord. This is only temporary but for now the chord is under the hood on the driver side between the air box and battery. The eventual plan is get a nice custom connector to mount somewhere external, grill may be. The connector will not be a standard three prong 120V but a flat MOLEX type that chassis mounts. I will make a short adaptor pig tail to plug into the small Molex type socket and the other end a standard 120V AC extension cord female plug. I will cut the excess wire from the Frost Heater. For now having it under the hood works great, might just leave it. Having a AC cord jammed into the lower grill just looks bad to me, and it is subject to getting dirty and corroded.



 
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MonsterTDI09

TDIClub Enthusiast, Veteran Member
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2010 Jetta DSG/ up keep on 2009 Jetta DSG 2006 Jetta Pag 2 in North SEA Green
Nice Job, Yes it's tight fit.I hope those propane tanks are empty:)
 

gmcjetpilot

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Memphis TN
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2010 JSW TDI DSG Matalic Grey
Again instructions clear, I just screwed up. This is NOT correct. (Air duct removed)



This is after I fixed the route. This is correct. (Air duct installed)

 
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PeterV

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Aug 17, 2000
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So, NH.
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2000 Jetta 5 sp.
I assisted a club member with an install on a 6 speed JSW in late 2010. The unit did not work....

Terry Was really in a quandrt BUT VW has on this car installed "Also since you have a dsg make sure there is no thermostat in the coolant line that runs to the trans cooler. Your new heater will not work if it is left in there."

We removed it ansd all is well.

NOTE look for this thermostat in all cars VW just mar instaLL ONE to mess with us.
 

gmcjetpilot

Veteran Member
Joined
Aug 18, 2008
Location
Memphis TN
TDI
2010 JSW TDI DSG Matalic Grey
I assisted a club member with an install on a 6 speed JSW in late 2010. The unit did not work....

Terry Was really in a quandrt BUT VW has on this car installed "Also since you have a dsg make sure there is no thermostat in the coolant line that runs to the trans cooler. Your new heater will not work if it is left in there."

We removed it ansd all is well.

NOTE look for this thermostat in all cars VW just mar instaLL ONE to mess with us.

Thanks that is not the issue and problem solved (read above post). I had a kink in the lower hose. As soon as I re-routed... which means getting under car, removing belly fairing, taking the air-intake box and plenum off, then the lower hose, draining some coolant...re-routing lower hose, dealing with that dang hose clamp on the engine oil cooler, putting it back together, it worked like a champ. :D

I don't have the thermostat... as I stated above, but thanks for the input. If you want to see if you do or don't have the thermostat in-line with DSG oil cooler, you have to take the air-box off as far as I can see. Anyway this morning 48 degree outside, car at start up? 190F. Priceless. ;)
 

gmcjetpilot

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2010 JSW TDI DSG Matalic Grey
I got tired of popping the hood.... so now I just leave it sticking out like this. Works great.... I can always stow it back under hood. Eventually I am going to mount a special receptical with spring loaded cover in the side lower grill near the fog light.



 
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30Bones

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Cedar Rapids, Ia
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2013 Touareg TDI
Considering buying one even though my car is garaged, bonus is at work I think I can have access to a plug in :D Also how many hours before leaving work would it take to warm it up so I am not wasting electricity leaving it plugged in from 8-5 for no reason.

Now for the ignorant question. I have the DSG and read about removing the tstat and am confused. It is cooled by antifreeze?

Going to do more reading/research tonight and plan to order something in the coming week or so.
 

schultp

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Mar 11, 2008
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Michigan
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2010 Jetta Sportwagen, 6sp manual
Use a heavy duty electric timer to turn on the heater 1-2 hours prior to leaving work. Can use the same concept in your garage each morning.
 

30Bones

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Cedar Rapids, Ia
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2013 Touareg TDI
The work outlet is outside so I will just go out and plug it in around 3. I have a timer from some outdoor landscape lighting I will use in the garage.
 

30Bones

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Cedar Rapids, Ia
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2013 Touareg TDI
Make sure you buy some distilled water and the proper VW coolant stuff. It tops off very nicely. I drained almost exactly a gallon and was able to put that back in through the reservoir, almost in one shot.
Can this proper VW coolant be bought at a parts store?
 

gmcjetpilot

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Joined
Aug 18, 2008
Location
Memphis TN
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2010 JSW TDI DSG Matalic Grey
Considering buying one even though my car is garaged, bonus is at work I think I can have access to a plug in :D Also how many hours before leaving work would it take to warm it up so I am not wasting electricity leaving it plugged in from 8-5 for no reason.

Now for the ignorant question. I have the DSG and read about removing the tstat and am confused. It is cooled by antifreeze?

Going to do more reading/research tonight and plan to order something in the coming week or so.
Harbor Freight has simple mechanical timers and electronic timers for less than $9-$12. The time depends on temperature. The manuals says 2-3 hours. I run mine 2 hours, but have gone to 2.5 hours as temps got lower.... If it is down in the freezing 32F or less, the manual also says leave it run continuously. The Frostheater has a thermostat and will not overheat the coolant. When I start my car it is right at 190F (straight up normal full warm temp) and then drops down to below 160F. In two minutes it back up to about 180F. Of course we are only getting into the low 40's high 30's, then it warms up to the 50's.... typical wacky temp swings this time of year.

Yes the TDI has two oil coolers that are cooled with radiator coolant, one for the engine and one for the DSG transmission.... they are liquid to liquid heat exchangers. The oil coolers have coolant lines running to them, as well as fins, to cool by air as well. In the case of late model DSG TDI's (maybe only JSW's 2011 or 2012 and later?) VW put an in-line thermostat on the coolant line to the DSG oil cooler, to allow the temp of DSG transmission to warm up faster or stay warm in cold temps I assume. Clearly it was an afterthought, and my 2010 TDI JSW does not have the thermostat. Regardless, the Frostheater goes in series with the DSG oil cooler coolant line. If there is a thermostat, the Frostheater can't warm the whole system. Manual transmissions don't have this of course.

The Frostheater does not use a pump, it just heats the coolant, and by virtue of where the Frostheater is located, hot coolent comes out the top of the heater and into the top of the engine. The cold water sinks in the engine and into the bottom of the Frostheater. As hot coolant cools, it sinks in the engine and draws the new hot coolant (from the Frostheater) into the top of the engine. It circulates naturally, hot water rises, cold water sinks. The manual calls this "thermal-syphoning". Anyway it is a weak force and can't tolerate any blockage, be it a thermostat or kink in a hose (what I did). This Saturday I did not plug it in, and had to go on a small errand, and with the out radio on I forgot how much louder the car when cold. Fortunately it was fairly warm today...high 50's. Regardless there is no debate that pre-heating the engine is a good thing....
 
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30Bones

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Thanks a bunch. Heater arrived today, best packing job I've ever seen. Install next weekend I'm thinking.


Ermahgerd! Sent from my Galaxy3 using Tapatalk 2
 

Elladara

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Sep 21, 2011
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Cincinnati
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2012 JSW
I got tired of popping the hood.... so now I just leave it sticking out like this. Works great.... I can always stow it back under hood. Eventually I am going to mount a special receptical with spring loaded cover in the side lower grill near the fog light.
Does anyone have any pics or ideas about mounting a receptacle? I got my frost heater in the mail today and I don't like the idea of having the power cord just sitting in the grill.
I was thinking about something like this to the front grill: http://www.ebay.com/itm/Marinco-150...257?pt=LH_DefaultDomain_0&hash=item3f1f625b59
 

schultp

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Mar 11, 2008
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Michigan
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2010 Jetta Sportwagen, 6sp manual
I installed one of these receptacles on my 98 MK3 Jetta. Works great, very tidy. I placed it in a small flat section of a lower grill cover. The cover is black and the receptacle is barely noticeable.
 

MonsterTDI09

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BoiseTDI

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That looks very clean, me likes! =) I'm getting ready to install my frostheater in my 02 Jetta this Saturday, getting everything together now. May as well change the oil while I'm at it.




Use hole saw in a drill press.Just make you use piece of wood between the fins.
 
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