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I am moving up to Lake Tahoe this winter and taking my 2013 Outback with me. I have a Deltan Battery Tender Plus that I have used on BMW's to keep there battery at max capacity when the car is sitting in the garage. I will be proably diving the outback every other day. Would I be better off buying a battery warmer for the Subaru instead of using the trickle charger in the cold Tahoe winter?
 

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2014 Outback Limited - 2.5 CVT - Graphite ---- 'Rehomed' 2012 Outback Limited - 2.5 CVT - Deep Indigo Pearl - Could be a Black Bumper Masonite car ---- "RIP" 2010 Outback - 2.5 CVT - Silver - So's m
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If you think you got to make a choice..... Why not both?

Are you parking outdoors?

2013? Your battery should be good for the first winter. It's the summer heat that cooks them.
 

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2016 3.6R Limited
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a battery warmer and trickle charger aren't substitutes for one another. they do very different things.

that being said, you shouldn't be using a trickle charger at all. if you're looking to maintain your battery get a float charger. Battery Minder is a good one. The one I linked to has a larger current throughput for car/truck batteries. You would do just fine with the smaller 1.3A variety for motorcycles as well (and $40).
 

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I am moving up to Lake Tahoe this winter and taking my 2013 Outback with me. I have a Deltan Battery Tender Plus that I have used on BMW's to keep there battery at max capacity when the car is sitting in the garage. I will be proably diving the outback every other day. Would I be better off buying a battery warmer for the Subaru instead of using the trickle charger in the cold Tahoe winter?
Tahoe you won't need either one - it gets cold but not that cold. I'm in the Bay Area and do Tahoe stuff all the time. Past 20+yrs even with my old 83 diesel it wasn't an issue though the diesel hated the cold for other reasons but it still started on one or two cylinders and would eventually run on all 4 LOL

My Co-worker in Colorado she is at almost 8000ft her subaru actually needs a warmer and block heater given when the car sits in about 20+ below for more than 4hrs it nearly freezes solid and won't turn over. So she simply plugs in at the light post at the office and the car is more than happy to start at the end of the day.
 

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You don't need anything! We have wintertemperatures all the way down to 40 below around here, and the cars that are in good maintenance conitions take it like it is nothing.

Not even bolck heaters are required, but they are nice to have a warm car really fast.
 

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2012 limited, white, no moonroof or nav
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I live at 7200'. February before last, we saw -25 degrees. Even my parked outside 4runner with the 7 yr old battery started. In fact, the only folks that had any issues with with a vehicle starting had diesels.......Without block heaters.

If you are worried about it, you can heat the entire underhood (Presuming inside parking) with simple heater based on a 200 watt light bulb, old style porcelain base mounted on a piece of wood, on the floor under the engine compartment. If you really want to get fancy, use a piece of stovepipe to make a "Stove" around the light bulb. If you get it the right height, you won't even have to move it to drive off.
 

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For Tahoe I wouldn't bother - just go and have a good time! Only suggestion is making sure your rear tires have the better tread of the 4 on the car this keeps the back end behind the front end especially when your descending down into say Truckee on 80 or dropping down into South Lake on 50. Its the down hill that gets you into trouble.
 

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Discussion Starter #9
If you think you got to make a choice..... Why not both?

Are you parking outdoors?

Yes the car will be outdoors but near to an electrical outlet. From the discussion it looks like the battery tender and battery warmer may not be needed but that an engine block heater might be nice in warming up the car earlier than normal. The Subaru accessory engine block heater looks pretty reasonably priced. Does this work well or are there better alternatives out there.
 

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The factory one is fine. If you want to go full Alaskan, get a Kat's heater pump. Tough install but somebody did already manage to stuff one into a Subaru.


/you never go full Alaskan
 

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2012 OUTBACK 2.5 LIMITED SILVER ICE Metallic, moon and nav free
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If you think you got to make a choice..... Why not both?

Are you parking outdoors?

Yes the car will be outdoors but near to an electrical outlet. From the discussion it looks like the battery tender and battery warmer may not be needed but that an engine block heater might be nice in warming up the car earlier than normal. The Subaru accessory engine block heater looks pretty reasonably priced. Does this work well or are there better alternatives out there.

I assume you are from some constantly warm environment. You won't need anything for Lake Tahoe. Now if you were in N. Dakota or Alaska, then yeah, time to talk.
 

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I assume you are from some constantly warm environment. You won't need anything for Lake Tahoe. Now if you were in N. Dakota or Alaska, then yeah, time to talk.
Not even there! Most people don't know that Minneapolis/St. Paul is most of the times colder in the winter than Anchorage. ND has about the same temps that we have here in de nordland.
 
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