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Thread: Cold weather operators, how do you keep the 'puter warm?

  1. #21
    Who am I? HiJackZX1's Avatar
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    I know this may sound stupid, but they make those flat coils that have 2 fans in the middle for cooling hard drives....



    Maybe you can replace the fans with some type of low heat coil system that has an on and off switch up near the driver. Turn it on to heat up the HD, then turn it off when running ok..... Or even better.... put the heating element over the fans, and have them blow down onto the HD.

  2. #22
    FLAC
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    I feel like I post this same post over and over.
    I lived in Calgary where it got below -40 and I had a computer in my car all winter. It was only the hard drive that didn't work at those temperatures, I'd have to wait until the car warmed up, then shut it off and turn it back on again. But I also had a starter to heat up the car to some degree.
    Ampie Case
    2.5" Hard Drive 80GB Samsung 5400RPM
    256 MB DDR2 PC5400
    Xenarc 700TSV - VGA Monitor
    Intel D945GCLF Motherboard
    M2-ATX-HV

    2005 Honda Civic

  3. #23
    FLAC
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    And as a solution to the problem, temporarily, I'll take a trick from my dad. He's got a cabin in Newfoundland where the pipes for the plumbing go from the cabin to the ground and in between the 2 they're exposed and can freeze. So what he did was put 3 regular 60 watt light bulbs on a circuit with a thermostat and it works perfect. It warms up the little area to 8 degrees, shuts off, and turns on again automatically when it senses a drop below 8 degrees.
    Ampie Case
    2.5" Hard Drive 80GB Samsung 5400RPM
    256 MB DDR2 PC5400
    Xenarc 700TSV - VGA Monitor
    Intel D945GCLF Motherboard
    M2-ATX-HV

    2005 Honda Civic

  4. #24
    Admin. Linux loser.
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    Bugbyte's Avatar
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    Try this automotive extreme drive.
    Quote Originally Posted by ghettocruzer View Post
    I was gung ho on building a PC [until] just recently. However, between my new phone having internet and GPS and all...and this kit...Im starting to have trouble justfiying it haha.
    Want to:
    -Find out about the new iBug iPad install?
    -Find out about carPC's in just 5 minutes? View the Car PC 101 video

  5. #25
    FLAC
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    Hey Maheriano, did you have any problems at all with your M10000 in -40C? I have been having cold related motherboard problems (with two separate boards) and decided to buy the M10000 because this post said it work work down to -35C (but there is no reassurance that it will work at -40):

    http://www.mp3car.com/vbulletin/powe...ards-psus.html

    But then I just read another post where one guy said his onboard sound on the M10000 gave distorted sounds until it warmed. Is this true?

  6. #26
    Variable Bitrate quantum's Avatar
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    This is my first winter with a working CarPC, so I was a bit curious to see what would happen in the cold weather.

    The other day, I had my chance. In North Joisey, it was a balmy 11 F when I started my car at 9am. Means it was probably close to 0F or even in the minuses overnight, and the car sat for a good 12 hours out there. Poor baby...

    PC booted right up, no stall or boot errors, no delay, no problems at all!!!!

    So, I did a little test in a controlled environment, or the best I could at least. I have another PC, same exact machine, same exact programs, the only difference is the drive RPM.

    In the carPC I use a 2.5" HD of the 5400RPM variety. In the other one there is a 4200 RPM HD, both 40GB. I put the test machine outside on the deck overnight, so it would be just as cold as the one in the car. The next morning, I hooked it up to a monitor and power supply (outside so it wouldn't get warmed at all).

    It started, but it took 3 tries. I heard the drive spinning, LEDS came on, but it didn't boot. Powered it down, tried again, then again, then it booted, very slowwwwwwwwwwwwly. Took about 1.5 minutes to hit the Windows main screen.

    Then, I went out to the car and fired that one up. 45 seconds later, I'm booted and running no problems.

    So, I froze my *** off and got the sniffles in the name of CarPC science. Hope it helps the cause!

  7. #27
    Newbie maximapwr's Avatar
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    Here's my 2 cents.
    About a month ago, I was at a party and decided to spend the night.(car parked outside).
    I had a 2 month old 5400rpm 2.5 drive, 120gb installed. Was working perfectly.
    Left the party at 8am temp was -8F, it had gotten to -15F overnite.
    Warmed up the car for 10 mins. then left for my 1hour drive.
    PC ran fine for about 35mins. Then Blue Screen.... Reboot and couldn't find boot device.
    HDD was gone.
    I believe going from -15F to a toasty 40-50F in about 30min Was too much for the harddrive. Not sure if it was condensation or what. But now when it gets 10F or less, I justs skip the carputer altogether and use the stock radio.
    Nothing else giving me a problem, replaced hard drive and everything is working as it was.

  8. #28
    Variable Bitrate
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    I've fit my computer behind the lcd in my dash. The heating vent runs right above the compartment the computer is in, which I would guess helps heat it up pretty quickly.

    So far I've had the computer fail to boot once when it was 10*F, but it booted up fine within 5 minutes of starting the car.

  9. #29
    Constant Bitrate
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    Last week i spent a few days in Red River NM, it got down to -33F at night (-36C).
    When i got into my car in the morning when it was still -8, there was FROST on the inside of my car... it was really weird.
    It took my car (a 2006 subaru) about 3 minutes to start of cranking off and on (no engine block heater)... then i let the thing idle for 25 minutes to warm up.

    Anyway, i always let my lilliput heat up before i try to turn on my system, usually takes 5 minutes otherwise the screen wont turn on at all (does anyone else's do this? even just around freezing?)
    After that 5 minutes, nothing turned on at all. I gave it another 25 minutes (while driving), still nothing. So i pulled over and grabbed the pc from under my seat. The WHOLE thing was covered in frost, including inside on the motherboard and heatsinks, etc...... i got my wife to wipe it off as we drove some more, and after about 20 more minutes, pulled over and installed it again, and it worked fine.

    So i guess what im trying to say is if you get that cold, make sure you dont try to start it with frost on it, or you might have some nice water on your mobo etc....

  10. #30
    FLAC greatwhite's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Bugbyte View Post
    Try this automotive extreme drive.
    Thanks, but it's already too small for my current use.
    For once you have tasted flight you will walk the earth with your eyes turned skywards, for there you have been and there you will long to return.
    Leonardo Da Vinci

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