Extreme Cold weather operation

58Ford

Member

Equipment
BX23s + LP cutter
Jan 1, 2022
90
55
18
SW Washington
ever understood the car 'experts' that say 'don't warmup your car' just start and go after 2 minutes. There's no way an automatic tranny /torque converter is 'happy' about that. I KNOW my forklift loves a good 10-15 minute warmup before being asked to move !
This is purely about emissions. Those experts don’t care about the wear and tear on your vehicle - they have an emissions agenda and the quicker your car gets on the road and out of hi rev/warm up in your driveway where it is pushing out the most pollutants through cold cats - is what they want. I just figure all the Prius/appliance drivers can listen to those experts and I will warm my vehicles up appropriately as needed.
 
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DustyRusty

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Equipment
BX23S
Nov 8, 2015
1,795
996
113
North East
My old BX22 would idle at 600 RPM, and my BX23S idles at 1200 RPM. When I had the BX22, I had a block heater and a blanket covering the hood, and I would start it and start blowing snow at about 1200 RPM, for about 10 minutes until the hydraulic fluid was warmed. Keep in mind that the snowblower is mechanical of the mid-PTO, and the only thing being used is the forward/reverse pedal requiring hydraulic pressure. I have no experience yet moving snow with the BX23S, and I was going to just do what I had always done with the BX22. Start slow and let it warm up naturally. I wish that I could lower the idle on the BX23S, but it has a factory lead seal on the adjustment, so I will not mess with that. My guess is that Kubota increased the RPM for emissions, but am not certain. My old BX had a great heater in the cab and always kept the cab very warm despite having vinyl coverings for the sides and doors. The new cab is all glass, and the heater doesn't seem to have much heat coming from it and is contained inside a heater box, so I can't see how large a core it has. We are supposed to get snow this weekend, and I expect that my questions about the heater will be answered then.
 

D2Cat

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L305DT, B7100HST, TG1860, TG1860D, L4240
Mar 27, 2014
10,437
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40 miles south of Kansas City
If your tractor doesn’t really “warm up” until you begin working it…. and you’re willing to work your own driveway …and that “warms” it…. then,… now that it’s “warmed up”…. why wouldn’t it be good to work your warm-tractor on your neighbors driveway also?

In fact, working it ‘til it’s warm and then shutting it down after only short work is hard on it, because unless it was worked long enough to drive out all the condensation and additional water created by burning fuel…. then shutting it down with that moisture in it is one of the worse things you can do.

I’d do it for money if they insisted……but I’d also do it just for good neighbor relations ….and maybe barter…..

The neighbor…. is she cute? (wink)
Where do you generate this conversation? The original thread has nothing about willing to work or not work on anyone's driveway!
 

tinkerwitheverything

Active member

Equipment
bx2370-1
Jun 3, 2015
267
52
28
Manitoba
Living in cold climate. My machine is kept in heated shop however on occasion it has been stored in a unheated shed. Mine has a block heater so starting it in -20 weather isn't a problem. One thing is let it idle for 5 minutes . after that if hydrostatic with out it being in gear press pedal back a forward a few times to circulate the oil . also lift loader up and down , curl bucket etc ; to circulate oil. You can actually hear the machine change pitch as the oil warms up. Once you've done that a few minutes start using driving the machine being gentle with everything until it starts to free up. Once you've gotten to the place where things are all loosened up your good to go. This is how I treat and warm up any of my machines and never had a problem.
 
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91diesel

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Equipment
BX23S Homemade hyd toplink and pallet forks, Agriease/Nor-Trac snowblower
Dec 31, 2021
28
12
3
Fairbanks, AK
Ok, general consensus seems to be what I already do with the motor and hydraulics (which just seems intuitive to me anyway). So no stories about busted hydraulic hoses (the flexible rubber ones) from working in -5 or -15 temps. That's more what I was worried about, taking my ability to clear out my driveway away because I was working on someone else's stuff in the real cold weather. Thanks again for all the replies!
 

IanB

New member

Equipment
B2650, RC72-30B mower, LA534 FEL, B2781A-63 snowblower
Aug 31, 2021
19
16
3
Manitoba
I grabbed the winter front that @bird dogger makes, and they've really helped with warm up and holding temp on my B2650 in this current cold snap (-28C, feels like -38 this morning!).

Blocking the rad screen would also do the trick, but would still allow the cold air in the side vents, etc so wouldn't allow any heat to build under the hood still, I've also heard of airboxes icing up when snowblowing from airborne snow ingestion, but it sounds like you're using the FEL so shouldn't have that issue.
 

Henro

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Equipment
B2910, BX2200, KX41-2V mini Ex.
May 24, 2019
3,401
1,209
113
North of Pittsburgh PA
Running at those cold temps, I think I would verify that the oil in the front axle is SUDT rather than normal gear oil.

Lower viscosity, better lubrication at low temps would be my thinking.

Probably is SUDT as reports here at OTT say that SUDT is what Kubota tractors are shipped with, but something to think about. Not sure if it makes any difference, but it would for me in my mind if nothing else...since SUDT is also acceptable at warm temperatures.

Just an added thought.
 

RalphVa

Active member
Jan 19, 2020
480
187
43
Charlottesville
Kubota manuals contain a chart about getting the tractors ready to use in cold weather. Their concern is with the transmissions and hydraulics not the engine.

View attachment 72771

In your situation I would leave the block heater powered up during the warm up.

Dave
I agree with your startup technique. This is extreme. Engine sitting idling will not warm things up much or at least not very quickly. You'll want to use 0wxx or no heavier than 5wxx engine oil to have the fastest possible cranking speeds and to get the oil pumping to upper ends of the engine quickly. Use a lo vis hydraulic fluid if you have that option.
 

91diesel

New member

Equipment
BX23S Homemade hyd toplink and pallet forks, Agriease/Nor-Trac snowblower
Dec 31, 2021
28
12
3
Fairbanks, AK
I always unplug before starting the engine. I had a toyota diesel truck that I added a coolant heater to (in the lower radiator hose). I would start it before unplugging. I noticed after not much use that the heater wasn't functioning anymore. Read where there's a possibility of very cold water getting circulated by the water pump hitting the hot (and still on) heating element and causing it to fail from the shock. It could've just been and bad heater, but the one I replaced it with lasted the rest of the time I owned the truck.

Now to set up a bit of a blocker for the radiator on the tractor! Compared to my dodge, this is closer to the toyota truck I had as far as coolant heat capacity. The Dodge I can have everything blocked off in this temp and pull a trailer and still not get hot. The tractor, like the toyota, can actually warm up a little at high idle (the temp gauge actually moves off the bottom). I did notice working it, that when I idled it down taking a break, after about 5 min you'd see the temp gauge drop down.
 
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airbiscuit

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Equipment
New Holland T2310, New Holland TC21D, Kubota l3010 GST, Farmall H
Mar 18, 2021
111
67
28
NW WI
One method is to start the tractor then let it sit and warm while you go back in the house for a cup of coffee. That should get the fluids flowing and starting to warm. At your temperatures it won't really get warm until you start working it. You could partially block the airflow through the radiator to help the engine run warmer but that won't do much for the hydraulic fluid. Use will warm the fluid, though. Once it gets warm working it will keep it warm and clearing snow for the neighbors is just like any other work.
I also engage my PTO while it is idling. It helps heat up he transmission/hydraulic oil much faster.

I also think a winter fuel treatment is a good investment.

1641577144528.png
 
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GeoHorn

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M4700DT, LA1002FEL, Ferguson5-8B Compactor-Roller, 10KDumpTrailer, RTV-X900
May 18, 2018
3,399
1,252
113
Texas
Where do you generate this conversation? The original thread has nothing about willing to work or not work on anyone's driveway!
Did you even read the original post? Check out the last few sentences… :rolleyes:

Ok, new here and I did use search with 3 different phrases.
My question is what people think about operation in extremely cold weather? (-5 to -30*f) Just as far as not damaging the tractor goes. It's in the -20's here in Fairbanks AK and although I don't want to go clear mine and other's driveways, a big dump of snow came before the cold weather and I must. My BX23s was bought here and is 'winterized' with a block heater and an oil pan heater (oil pan is shorted I think, so currently not used). I start the tractor, let it run at a little bit of a high idle first. Then I will move the FEL rams in short movements (not the full throw and at a low rpm 1700). Then I'll bring the rpms up to 2200-2500 and drive the tractor in low and work the FEL to more full throws. After this I'll start working the tractor. Like my 12 valve Dodge cummins, the tractor won't really warm up until you start working it some (as far as the temp gauge goes). Any thoughts, opinions, facts, or conjectures are appreciated.
For instance, would you just say clear your own driveway at -10 and below and refuse working on neighbors (for money) or just follow the slow use warm up and use it as a tractor!
 

nbryan

Well-known member

Equipment
B2650 BH77 LA534 54" ssqa Forks B2782B BB1560 Woods M5-4 MaxxHaul 50039
Jan 3, 2019
804
421
63
Hadashville, Manitoba, Canada
I also engage my PTO while it is idling. It helps heat up he transmission/hydraulic oil much faster.

I also think a winter fuel treatment is a good investment.

View attachment 72980
I like the unloaded PTO warmup idea. I'll try it in about an hour. Just plugged in the tractor, it's -22C out there now, our max temp for the day. There's a snow dump 3-6" tonight so have some prep to do, including some pallet forks work, before dropping the loader and mounting the B2782B back on the front.
If the PTO front/back/both selector will move in this cold, I'll put it in both position to warm things up.
As for treatment, I just always put a maintenance dose of Sea Foam in each fuel can at fill-up. Never had a fuel issue, -35C to +35C.
 

91diesel

New member

Equipment
BX23S Homemade hyd toplink and pallet forks, Agriease/Nor-Trac snowblower
Dec 31, 2021
28
12
3
Fairbanks, AK
I'd have to trick the seat switch to run the PTO, otherwise the tractor shuts off if I'm not sitting on it.
 

DustyRusty

Well-known member

Equipment
BX23S
Nov 8, 2015
1,795
996
113
North East
I had the same problem with the seat switch. I used a jug of Kubota UDT2 on the seat to keep it running when I wasn't in it.
 

airbiscuit

Active member

Equipment
New Holland T2310, New Holland TC21D, Kubota l3010 GST, Farmall H
Mar 18, 2021
111
67
28
NW WI
My PTO runs if the range selector is in neutral. A weight on the seat works too.
 

fried1765

Well-known member

Equipment
Kubota L48 TLB, Ford 1920 FEL, Ford 8N, SCAG Liberty Z, Gravely Pro.
Nov 14, 2019
1,149
808
113
Eastham, Ma
Ok, new here and I did use search with 3 different phrases.
My question is what people think about operation in extremely cold weather? (-5 to -30*f) Just as far as not damaging the tractor goes. It's in the -20's here in Fairbanks AK and although I don't want to go clear mine and other's driveways, a big dump of snow came before the cold weather and I must. My BX23s was bought here and is 'winterized' with a block heater and an oil pan heater (oil pan is shorted I think, so currently not used). I start the tractor, let it run at a little bit of a high idle first. Then I will move the FEL rams in short movements (not the full throw and at a low rpm 1700). Then I'll bring the rpms up to 2200-2500 and drive the tractor in low and work the FEL to more full throws. After this I'll start working the tractor. Like my 12 valve Dodge cummins, the tractor won't really warm up until you start working it some (as far as the temp gauge goes). Any thoughts, opinions, facts, or conjectures are appreciated.
For instance, would you just say clear your own driveway at -10 and below and refuse working on neighbors (for money) or just follow the slow use warm up and use it as a tractor!
There are TWO good choices!

#1......Move to Florida!;)

#2......Create a minimally heated structure for tractor storage.

I lived in Minnesota for many years, so I DO understand your dilemma!
I moved to Florida!(y)
 
Last edited:

GreensvilleJay

Well-known member

Equipment
BX23-S
Apr 2, 2019
4,352
1,295
113
Greensville,Ontario,Canada
re: I'd have to trick the seat switch to run the PTO, otherwise the tractor shuts off if I'm not sitting on it.

That is redickulous !!! I'll have to check it out, when it warms up.
It means you can't run a PTO power buzzsaw off my BX23S , or any other device or tool ??
Say a chipper/shredder, fruit tree sprayer, ????
 

91diesel

New member

Equipment
BX23S Homemade hyd toplink and pallet forks, Agriease/Nor-Trac snowblower
Dec 31, 2021
28
12
3
Fairbanks, AK
I tried the parking brake (no joy), I'll go try the N selection this morning (I never use that due to the HST), but I suppose that's a no brainer!
 

91diesel

New member

Equipment
BX23S Homemade hyd toplink and pallet forks, Agriease/Nor-Trac snowblower
Dec 31, 2021
28
12
3
Fairbanks, AK
Nope! the nanny staters win again! in N, parking brake set, tractor will shut off with pto engaged if you're not in the seat. I just picked up a 50" pto snowblower, so it'd be nice to have it warming up a bit as well. Guess I'll go to the fake weight trick.