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Old 19-07-2012, 07:44   #1
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Tankless Propane Water Heater ?

We are looking for information on using a tankless propane water heater on board. Does anyone have experience with installing or using one? There are indoor and outdoor units available. All of the indoor units seem to require 110 volts. We would like to mount it indoors in a very well-ventilated space. Most are not recommended for use on boats. Any info would be greatly appreciated. Cheers.
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Old 19-07-2012, 07:49   #2
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Re: Tankless Propane Water Heater?

i have a propane powered VENTLESS heater... made by EXCEL

it is awesome... it gets the water too hot, I need to lower the control down a bit.. it is scorching...

it will keep the water hot forever at the right flow rate, again using the control valve...

it is placed in the cockpit lazzerette, and has some reflective/heat shield type of material behind it attached to the bulkhead on the back side of the galley...

the top of the heater is about 10 inches below the top of the lazerette seat... and no heat reaches that far up... it is 'warm' about 3-5 inches above the unit... and thats it...

i strongly urge and will install another unit like it on any future boat
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Old 19-07-2012, 08:07   #3
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Re: Tankless Propane Water Heater?

I have the excel too. I have it at my house waiting to be installed. Working on replumbing this weekend. I have tested it and it is awesome! Can't wait to get it on the boat.
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Old 19-07-2012, 08:28   #4
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Re: Tankless Propane Water Heater?

If it is not properly vented, a tankless heater can kill you. Odds are the marine units have different venting, may have some extra safeties, may have some different metals so they won't corrode as quickly in the marine environment. But as long as you are ware of the venting and safety issues, and the unit does what you want it to, vote with your wallet.
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Old 19-07-2012, 08:59   #5
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Re: Tankless Propane Water Heater?

It only cost 200 dollars.

Think of it this way. You burn a propane stove for longer than you would shower. We don't hear nearly as much in regards to safety using a propane stove as we hear about a water heater and the water heater would have a much much shorter burn time for a shower than for cooking a meal (unless you take really long showers:-)

Just like any fuel burned. Venting is needed, but the safety features that are included with the unit seemed more than adequate.
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Old 19-07-2012, 09:34   #6
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Re: Tankless Propane Water Heater?

I have an older Wolter unit which isn't being manufactured anymore and I cannot find parts. I am interested in repacing it with the Excel but I have a couple of questions. I went to Excel's website but couldn't find the answers.
Does it have a continuous pilot light or an igniter?
If an igniter, is it 12 volt or 110 volt?
If it has a pilot, how difficult is it to light it each time you wish to use it?

Thanks,
Tommy
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Old 19-07-2012, 09:35   #7
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Re: Tankless Propane Water Heater?

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Originally Posted by hellosailor View Post
If it is not properly vented, a tankless heater can kill you. Odds are the marine units have different venting, may have some extra safeties, may have some different metals so they won't corrode as quickly in the marine environment. But as long as you are ware of the venting and safety issues, and the unit does what you want it to, vote with your wallet.
On the Excel site, it says that the unit is fit for boats.
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Old 19-07-2012, 09:36   #8
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Re: Tankless Propane Water Heater?

"You burn a propane stove for longer than you would shower."
Except, a shower usually takes place in a closed space, compared to an open galley. I happen to know someone who collapsed from CO poisoning years ago when these heaters were first being used on boats. Fortunately someone went below to find out why he'd been in the shower for so long, and they brought him on deck and shut the heater when they found him.
Galley vs. shower makes a big difference.
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Old 19-07-2012, 09:39   #9
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Re: Tankless Propane Water Heater?

Quote:
Originally Posted by hellosailor View Post
"You burn a propane stove for longer than you would shower."
Except, a shower usually takes place in a closed space, compared to an open galley. I happen to know someone who collapsed from CO poisoning years ago when these heaters were first being used on boats. Fortunately someone went below to find out why he'd been in the shower for so long, and they brought him on deck and shut the heater when they found him.
Galley vs. shower makes a big difference.
Mine will be in the galley so that I can close up the head if it's cold out and vent through other means. Who wants to be in a cold shower:-) Or one that will kill you!
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Old 19-07-2012, 09:41   #10
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Re: Tankless Propane Water Heater?

I have used them on two boats. I like them if yu have a good place to mount one. The last unit I got was a great unit and only cost $105. (Eccotemp L5) It was mounted next to the stove, self venting thru the companionway hatch. Really no different than using the cook stove safety wise..... well .... actually it had more safety features than the cook stove.
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Old 19-07-2012, 09:56   #11
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Re: Tankless Propane Water Heater?

Quote:
Originally Posted by hellosailor View Post
"You burn a propane stove for longer than you would shower."
Except, a shower usually takes place in a closed space, compared to an open galley. I happen to know someone who collapsed from CO poisoning years ago when these heaters were first being used on boats. Fortunately someone went below to find out why he'd been in the shower for so long, and they brought him on deck and shut the heater when they found him.
Galley vs. shower makes a big difference.
You are kidding right????

Let's see....open propane burner in the galley where you are standing and cooking.

Propane water heater probably a good distance from you shower unless you are CRAZY enough to mount a propane water heater in your shower with you...AND EXHAUST it there...

please tell me some bad kid made that post and not you...
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Old 19-07-2012, 10:21   #12
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Guys technology has come a long way. Many Geminis over the years had this type of water heater ventless and tankless installed in the head in the open. They are very safe and work great. Saying a propane water heater will kill you is like saying using a propane stove will kill you.
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Old 19-07-2012, 10:35   #13
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Re: Tankless Propane Water Heater?

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Originally Posted by Dulcesuenos View Post
Guys technology has come a long way. Many Geminis over the years had this type of water heater ventless and tankless installed in the head in the open. They are very safe and work great. Saying a propane water heater will kill you is like saying using a propane stove will kill you.
Exagggly....
Ya gotta be smarter than the equipment you install...
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Old 19-07-2012, 11:02   #14
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Re: Tankless Propane Water Heater?

Quote:
Originally Posted by psneeld View Post
Exagggly....
Ya gotta be smarter than the equipment you install...
That's a great quote... I need to borrow that one! Should be used a lot on this forum!
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Old 19-07-2012, 11:18   #15
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Re: Tankless Propane Water Heater?

We have been using an Excel ventless propane heater on board for 2 & 1/2 years without any problems.

I installed ours in the anchor locker which is behind the toilet in our head. I installed a few layers of aluminum sheeting behind and above it as a heat shield. I also installed a separate propane system for it along with a water solenoid that opens when the propane solenoid opens. The system will not turn on if there is no water flowing through it.

The Excel uses two D cell batteries for the ignitor.
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