Alert for 2007 or newer Chevy Malibu.
My daughter recently bought a 07 Malibu. This vehicle had no block heater, and we had to pay $400.00 to have one installed. A block heater usually costs $150.00, but we had to have it installed by the dealer because of the warranty.
Wow, I don't want to get into the Maine vs. Alberta thing, they BOTH have coooolllddd winters ('cept the coast of Maine a little less).
If I were in either I would have some warming method for my car. Block heater a plus since you may find outlets available even if you aren't home. Pre-heating saves wear and tear on both your car AND you!
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I live in Maine and never owned a car with a block heater. One car I owned, a electric heater was installed by a mechanic to keep the engine warm during cold weather. It was installed in the return hose line to the radiator and had to be plugged into an electric source. I never used it. (12/17/2008)
I think you should go to your dealership and have a blockheater installed. Cars in Canada need blockheaters, unless you keep them all the time in a heated garage. Just because the car started once in -35 doesn't mean it will do so always. Most cars with good batteries will start without being plugged in, but it is obviously better to have them plugged in, or all of us wouldn't be doing it.
You can't take advice from some one who lives in Maine on winters in Alberta. I live in Sask. (12/20/2008)
I used to live in MPLS. If you install a block heater, it will save wear and tear on your engine druing startup since the oil is cold. When the oil is cold, its much thicker, it takes more time to lubricate the engine parts, causing engine damage. (12/21/2008)