When you plug in the heating element, it warms the coolant to help provide easier starts and faster engine heat. The engine coolant heater element needs to be plugged in for several hours to be useful. The heater element will not provide instant heat, but it will provide less restrictive cold starts and shorten the time required for sufficient heat. Your Engine block heater element is not a heater. The engine coolant heater is a dead short which provides to the engine's coolant through the port where it's located. The heater element is not big enough or hot enough to provide instant heat up the engine. The coolant heater element is made to keep the engine fluids from freezing in super cold weather not you from freezing. Diesel engines need the engine block heaters in the winter months as diesel fuel will quickly turn to gel when it gets near freezing or below. The application of a winter diesel fuel additive will prevent and cold weather fuel problems from occurring. This why you often see semi trucks with their engines running all night. Big rigs keep their engines operating to maintain the motor temperature, keeping everything including fuel and radiator coolant warm.
II you live in a climate where below zero temps are typical during the winter months then we suggest an engine block heater if available. The Cummins factory heater is installed into the engine block. Having the heater mounted on your turbo diesel engine is a big plus for cold weather operation. For the operation of your engines, heater element you just need to plug it into a standard 110 Volt outlet using a Heavy Duty extension cord. The engines heating element has a rod installed into the engine block. The heating element contacts the anti-freeze inside the block. This coolant heating elements rod gets red hot when you plug it in and keeping the anti-freeze coolant warm. By keeping the engine block warm, you will obtain faster warmups when it's super cold outside.