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Ray

Why Is It?

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This may be a silly question but why is it that boats don't have heaters for use under way in the same way that cars and vans do?

Just back from a chilly but lovely couple of days cruising where this thought occurred to me. We can and did use the Webasto of course but it made me wonder... as you do!

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Lightning answer, many thanks... why didn't I think of that!

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24 minutes ago, Ray said:

This may be a silly question but why is it that boats don't have heaters for use under way in the same way that cars and vans do?

Just back from a chilly but lovely couple of days cruising where this thought occurred to me. We can and did use the Webasto of course but it made me wonder... as you do!

Hello Ray, 

On Narrow Boats if they use a diesel heater such as a Webasto, it is a wet system using radiators, some of course use gas boilers to heat the radiators.

Regards

Alan   

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unless its Broads Suncharm that has radiators but they are useless  tiny double radiator to heat the galley and saloon had a cold 2 weeks aboard one April never again

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Thanks Alan, nice to know it can be done! I think I'll stick with what I have, Narrow Boats have a certain appeal but for me it's a case of they look nice but I wouldn't really want one.

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Course it can be done - I have. Used a Volvo heater matrix and blower (any other will do) plumbed into the calorifier feed and return. Electric via 3-position switch. Ducting out as required. Result - hot air as soon as the engine has warmed up, same as your car. Many other owners have done the same.

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That's the sort of thing I was thinking of! 

 

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Ray, have a look on you tube "the tiller people" he has a radiator system connected to the engine via a  alde heat exchanger. Its in a playlist" design series" I think its near the end of vlog number 6.its simple and its free engine heat.can be used in a broads type boat. sorry dont know how to link yet.

Paul.

Edited by scaniaman
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You can go DIY and make something up yourself(my Dad had an old Fiesta heater matrix and blower fitted on one of their boats) or you can also get ready made aftermarket jobs from people who supply kit car/rally car type stuff too.

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I will look it up thank you.. I'm not sure I'd actually fit one but it has got me thinking! Which usually turns up to be dangerous and/or expensive :12_slight_smile:

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Should probably say that you can't do it on engines that are raw cooled, that is ones that suck water from the river, pump it around the engine block and then straight back out the exhaust. 

You need the sealed type system where the river water is used to cool the engines own coolant via a heat exchanger(this takes the place of a radiator such as used in a car).

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I have one of those suck and pump types... probably for the best!

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Our boat Alfa 29 built 1991 uses a heating system that's runs off the engine .It is far from the best and is hard to keep the boat warm.My problem being , spending a life time in kitchen I suffer from the cold We  love our boat but she can be cold.Think if she was warmer may well spend more time on her.

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Ray I reckon you will have the sealed type system on your boat(just seen her in another thread), both system types pump water from the river and out of the exhaust it's just what happens at the engine that's different. If you have domestic hot water heated by the engine then you have the sealed type and the potential for a heater too.

 

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That sounds right, we do have domestic hot water heated by the engine! I have to say I have learnt so much from being a member here!

Ian, one of the greatest aspects of cruising for us and I would guess most is the relaxation of being on the water and you can't relax properly if you're cold! I also can't stand being too hot so total respect for your years in a kitchen!

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I think there was a previous thread about this a couple of years or so back. Someone posted a link to exactly that sort of thing, and i have to admit, i forgot all about it. However, if there still is a warm air blower from the engines sealed water cooling system, i may suggest we look into this on Lightning.

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Worked perfectly, very interesting too!

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If you do add a heat exchanger, be it car based or purpose built, and find the engines sealed system water pump is struggling to push water the extra distance, you can buy little in-line 12v pumps that will boost the circulation tremendously for very little cash.

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Simples , no radiator

Actually there is, the boats 'Radiator' is the river! (Via heat exchanger etc)

We have looked at and discussed a few times now of doing this onboard 'B.A'   Initially I was thinking of going down the scrapyard route, cobbling together a matrix / fan etc but nowadays there are some decent sized ready made kits out there, matrix inlet / outlet with 12v fan, some of them multi speed, plus the hot air ducting pipes.  It is something we will do one of these days maybe even during our forthcoming AMP next April.  If so We will of course report with photo's of the diy fitting

Griff

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I've done it on my present and last boat, escort matrix and inline bilge blower plumbed into calorifier take offs, works well and cheap.

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9 hours ago, SPEEDTRIPLE said:

I think there was a previous thread about this a couple of years or so back. Someone posted a link to exactly that sort of thing, and i have to admit, i forgot all about it. However, if there still is a warm air blower from the engines sealed water cooling system, i may suggest we look into this on Lightning.

That may have been me - https://www.volvopentashop.com/epc/en-US/Details/AccessoriesCatalog/5438?path=1532%2F4225%2F5437%2F5438  or page 86 here - https://www.volvopenta.com/content/dam/volvo/volvo-penta/master/marine-leisure-engines/for-owners/parts/Accessories/Accessories Catalog.pdf

You can sign up to get prices or speak to French Marine in Brundall.

I have seen similar systems running radiators before, good way to get heat when cruising. 

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11 hours ago, Chelsea14Ian said:

Our boat Alfa 29 built 1991 uses a heating system that's runs off the engine .It is far from the best and is hard to keep the boat warm.My problem being , spending a life time in kitchen I suffer from the cold We  love our boat but she can be cold.Think if she was warmer may well spend more time on her.

Can you not fit a diesel heater as well?

We know of several people now that have fitted the cheap chinese heaters off Ebay, They come in at under £200 for the full kit and they seem to kick out a lot of heat.

Too early to say how reliable they will be long term but for what they cost you can carry a spare and swap it if it breaks.

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