Thanks for the replies. I think that the heater would eventually drain the battery if it was indeed always on; i.e., powered up even with the ignition off? Mine seems to warm up pretty fast, but I've never felt the spray to check after first starting up.
That heated washer fluid is very welcome for clearing the windshield fast in our current wintry (10 deg F) weather. BTW, Hunter, I was at Lehigh U., class of 1980 and I had a gray 1973 MB 230.6 around 1987-88.
[This message has been edited by Robert W. Roe (edited 01-22-2000).]