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Author Topic: Crazy idea? - Propane water heater for radiant heat?  (Read 4779 times)
belfert
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« on: August 15, 2006, 12:23:03 PM »

I bought a Suburban furnace, but I am finding it difficult to find space for the ductwork.

Radiant heat would be easier to find space for, but I can't really afford a Webasto, Aqua-hot or similiar.  Would an RV propane water heater work to provide hot coolant for a radiant heat system?  I would have have to find a pump and figure out how to control the system so the water heater doesn't have to run 24x7.

Brian Elfert
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TomC
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« Reply #1 on: August 15, 2006, 01:57:34 PM »

While the propane water heater is a fast recovery, I don't believe it to have enough BTU's to provide enough hot water for bus heating. 
I designed my 35,000btu furnace into my design.  Hence, made the kick board under the kitchen counters 6" to facilitate the duct work.  You could also run the ducts under the bus with insulated flex ducts.  Good Luck, TomC
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Tom & Donna Christman. '77 AMGeneral 10240B; 8V-71TATAIC V730.
Dave Harmer
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« Reply #2 on: August 15, 2006, 02:56:43 PM »

Hello, there, Dave Harmer here from Victoria, I had a friend who passed away recently did webasto hot water heating on his 4104 coach with an additinal setup for preheating his 6-71.  Quite nice.  A few of us have been discussing using the palomo or the bosch instant hotwater heaters for the same type of thing.  One thing you would come up against is the pressure switch in the bosch.  this would have to be bypassed.  Other wise this could work.  Also there is no reason to thing that an old small type hotwater heater out of an old trailer or rv would not work.  I personally have installed two bosch instant hotwater heaters for my house hot water and my brother in laws 4106.  Mine is a 4104.
A number of other 4104 owners have gone to the bosch's on the island here also. 
They do tend to be sensitive to cold weather, so mounting or installing them in an inside area would be better in my opinion only then mounting them in one of the bays.  Although I have seen both methods useds.  As for the BTU's, mine is the smaller 35000 to 40000 and seeing as how my coach is done with pex plastic piping.  the water gets pretty hot within a few seconds of turning on.  So I would think depending on the amount of radiators or fins installed on your heating system.  I would think you would see heat in your pipes pretty quickly.  The old time said in his 4104.  It would take less than 15 minutes or less in his coach for plenty of heat.  One of the benefits also is that it does not generally get cold as fast as air heat.  My friends father in law has or had a company named ultra fin, in floor heating.  Some of the piping from this application along with the clip on fins could be used in a coach application also.  You just clip or bolt the fins where you want the heat to come through, IE under bed/ couch, cupboards in a bay or two.

Hope this helps.
Dave 1958 PD4104 out in Victoria, British Columbia.
« Last Edit: August 15, 2006, 03:01:25 PM by Dave Harmer » Logged
belfert
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« Reply #3 on: August 15, 2006, 03:19:33 PM »

It looks like this really won't work with a regular RV water heater.  I forgot to check the BTUs on one.  They are only 12,000 BTU/hr.  A tankless water heater is a bit too large and I couldn't afford the interior space.

I'll have to look for an inexpensive used Webasto or just use the furnace I already bought.

Brian Elfert
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busguy01
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« Reply #4 on: August 15, 2006, 03:41:23 PM »

The tankless propane water heaters are great BUT you must have a positive vent for the fumes!!! They are almost non exeistance on boats now due to the gases killing several people while showering! I had one for years but put it in a vented area and turned on an exhaust fan while using. Scared me!!!
JimH
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Ross
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« Reply #5 on: August 15, 2006, 04:03:26 PM »

The precision temp demand water heater would work.  The company even recommends it in that capacity.  I have one for hot water and it works slick.  Question is...Would it burn more than the Suburban furnace to keep the bus at the same temp?
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n4rsn
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« Reply #6 on: August 15, 2006, 04:25:40 PM »

Brian    check your e-mail
Steve
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buswarrior
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« Reply #7 on: August 15, 2006, 06:59:27 PM »

No one I know who ever owned a Webasto/Proheat/Espar heater ever said a bad thing about it.

Get out to your local transit scrap yard. Many transits have a coolant heater so the engine doesn't run cool, emission control reasons, and customer comfort, since the four strokes don't make the heat that the two strokes used to.

Used take out should be around US$400 or less for a big one. Any more, it better be tested and cleaned!

I have a 100 000 BTU Webasto, and wouldn't be without one!

Frozen Canadian that I am....

happy coaching!
buswarrior
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Frozen North, Greater Toronto Area
belfert
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« Reply #8 on: August 15, 2006, 08:03:38 PM »

No one I know who ever owned a Webasto/Proheat/Espar heater ever said a bad thing about it.

Get out to your local transit scrap yard. Many transits have a coolant heater so the engine doesn't run cool, emission control reasons, and customer comfort, since the four strokes don't make the heat that the two strokes used to.

A few people don't like Webasto heaters because of nozzles clogging and such.

My bus is a 4 stroke and originally came with a Webasto heater to preheat the engine and for additional passenger heat.  Somebody along the way removed the Webasto heater.  I couldn't figure out why the Webasto heater control pad was blinking an error code until I figured out the heater is missing!

There is a 80K Webasto on Ebay right now, but it is 12 volt and 80k seems a little much for heating a bus.

Brian Elfert
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Homegrowndiesel
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« Reply #9 on: August 15, 2006, 08:12:11 PM »

Good question Brian. Seems you have come to the conclusion (facts) without having to spend the money.

Hey Buswarior, 100,000 Btu, you must be a frozen canuck (? sp) I think our 40,000 Btu Webasto works great, no excess cycling ( do to the extra capacity of the 6 gallon hot water heater as a buffer) and so far plenty of heat in -10 degree weather. I guess we need to test Canadian winters!

Been there done that, 12,000 Btu made no heat in the bus at 40 degree ot. But the same 24' of hot water baseboard with a couple of air coils and the webasto will roast you if needed.

What temp do you want to operate in and how good is your insulation? Get the big add on filter, $30.00 with shut off valve inline. makes life easy, no clogged filters, or nozzel YET.

Bill
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belfert
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« Reply #10 on: August 15, 2006, 09:00:44 PM »

What temp do you want to operate in and how good is your insulation? Get the big add on filter, $30.00 with shut off valve inline. makes life easy, no clogged filters, or nozzel YET.

I have two inches of spray foam in the walls below the windows and 2" of pink styrofoam where windows are covered up.  Roof is 1.5 inches of spray foam poorly done.  Temps are unlikely to drop below 40 degrees any place I go.

Brian Elfert
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DrivingMissLazy
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« Reply #11 on: August 16, 2006, 05:48:14 AM »

Never had any nozzle clogging in over ten years of use. An inline filter for the fuel is recommended to prevent this problem.
Richard


Quote
A few people don't like Webasto heaters because of nozzles clogging and such.
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Paso One
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« Reply #12 on: August 16, 2006, 07:12:55 AM »

I'm adding a hot water loop to my webasto system. Basically when driving down the road with the valve open (water heater loop ) the engine cooling system heat should bring the water heater water up to a useable tempeture ( actually propably too warm) When parked for a long time the webasto will heat the engine loop , auxially heater loop, or the hot water heater loop.  I'm using a outside wood fired boiler heat exchanger on the side of the water heater..
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belfert
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« Reply #13 on: August 16, 2006, 07:31:17 AM »

Never had any nozzle clogging in over ten years of use. An inline filter for the fuel is recommended to prevent this problem.

Is an inline fuel filter something like the little cylinder style filters that cars use?  The Webasto hookup for the OEM Webasto that was in my bus had a filter housing and regular screw on filter.

Brian Elfert
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DrivingMissLazy
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« Reply #14 on: August 16, 2006, 12:35:25 PM »

That should be it. I changed mine once a year since it was a replaceable unit and never had any fuel problems that I can recall. Did have a control module failure once, but that was because I did not unhook the power while doing some welding on something.
Richard

Never had any nozzle clogging in over ten years of use. An inline filter for the fuel is recommended to prevent this problem.

Is an inline fuel filter something like the little cylinder style filters that cars use?  The Webasto hookup for the OEM Webasto that was in my bus had a filter housing and regular screw on filter.

Brian Elfert
« Last Edit: August 17, 2006, 05:13:18 AM by DrivingMissLazy » Logged

Life should NOT be a journey to the grave with the intention of arriving safely in an attractive and well preserved body. But rather to skid in sideways, chocolate in one hand, a good Reisling in the other, body thoroughly used up, totally worn out and screaming:  WOO HOO, what a ride
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