Some tips of installing a block heater on an engine include draining the radiator and performing the procedure inside or when it's warm. Also be sure to wear gloves while draining the coolant to avoid any accidental spills or skin contact. Other tips include reading the instruction manual and becoming familiar with the layout of the engine.
A block heater's purpose is to keep the engine coolant warm while the vehicle is not in use. This is required in places where the weather drops to freezing temperatures. It helps prevent the coolant from expanding as it normally would when the weather is cold. This is especially useful, because the coolant expands in viscosity and can cause some of the hoses to become clogged, resulting in eventual engine failure.
One of the more basic tips is to wait for warmer weather, or complete the job inside of a garage. The warmer the weather, the thinner the coolant is and easier it is to drain it from the radiator.
Be sure to use gloves when handling coolant. If the coolant happens to be too hot, it can cause chemical burns, according to the US Department of Health.
Also, become familiar with the layout of the engine. A block heater is installed into one of the freeze plugs ports on the bottom-end. This location changes, depending on the type of engine. It also helps in knowing how to run the power cables for the heater block.