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Old 22-08-2011, 16:39   #1
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Water Hose from Water Heater

I have a one year old Beneteau First 36.7 and have been surprised to find ruptures in the hot water hose coming off the water heater. Happens after every long use of the diseal when motoring for several hours. Taking heat from the engine, the water gets pretty hot and the hose leading from the tank to the sinks gets little ruptures in the first 3 to 5 feet of the tank.

I need to find a good hose that can withstand high temps yet is 'food safe' for potable drinking water. Working with a tight budget right now, so economy is a factor.

Inside diameter 1/2 inch.

Any recommendations as to where I could get such a hose?

Thanks!
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Old 22-08-2011, 17:05   #2
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Re: Water hose from hot water heater

You might consider switching to Pex Tubing and SeaTech Series 35 fittings. They're rated to 100 PSI at 180 deg.
Here is a link: 35 Series - High Performance Thermal Plastic - Quick Connect Fittings - Manifolds - Valves - Sea Tech, Inc.
Trident makes a clear vinyl hose rated to 150 deg. and 250 psi. I think it's their #161.
If you decide to buy the SeaTech system, I'd love the chance to sell it to you: Sea Tech Quick Connect Fittings
How hot do you think it's getting? Is the pressure releif valve working? I wonder if the problem is pressure or heat?
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Old 22-08-2011, 17:13   #3
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Re: Water Hose from Water Heater

First off, What hose are you talking about? The hose from the engine to the water heater and back that delivers the engine hot coolant water to the water heater? Or the hose/pipes that are the inlet or outlet of the water heater that is plumbed to the sinks/showers?
- - They are two totally different things and use different types of hoses/pipes.
- - If the hoses/pipes are, as you mentioned, from the water heater to the sink then take HopCar's advise and replace with higher temperature rated stuff.
- - In any case, a normal diesel engine operates at about 160 to 190 deg F which is a little too hot for continuous circulation of engine coolant to the water heater. I installed two stainless ball valves in the engine coolant hoses from the engine to the water heater so they could be shut off after about an hour of engine running to avoid overheating the water in the water heater. And also to prevent losing the engine should one of the coolant lines to the water heater break/fail.
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Old 22-08-2011, 18:42   #4
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Re: Water Hose from Water Heater

osirissail, I like the valve idea. I wonder if he could adjust the valves to reduce the amount of coolant flowing through the water heater so it wouldn't over heat? Then he wouldn't have to mess with it.
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Old 23-08-2011, 05:16   #5
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Re: Water Hose from Water Heater

I was thinking of putting an thermostatic controlled valve in the line but settled on the simple ball valves in the spirit of KISS. To much fancy and too much of a chance of failures. As it worked out in real life I ended up opening the valves about one hour from the end of the trip so that if I forget to close the valves (happened a lot) - I would be shutting down the engine after anchoring and not overheat the hot water heater.
- - Protecting the engine coolant system was the highest priority. Like the OP's problem with failing hoses in the potable water system, that can also happen in the coolant hoses to/from the engine and then you lose the engine as all the coolant drains out through the failed hose.
- - I also switched from normal hot water hose to the more expensive Thermopol silicon water hoses that are rated for temperatures up to 350 deg F. These hoses will not fail due to any possible water temperatures the diesel can put out. Also used them for the engine coolant connecting hoses between heat exchanger and engine coolant water pump.
- - Being a dealer I get the Thermopol hose from Lewis Marine Group, but a similar Shields Hose product is available from West Marine or other hose supply outfits - try even Truck parts houses.
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Old 10-09-2011, 23:59   #6
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Re: Water Hose from Water Heater

I am just researching putting a hot water system into my boat. Does anyone have any experience or opinions on the comparisons between Quick Connect, Whale and HEP2o quick fit instalation systems?
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Old 11-09-2011, 05:40   #7
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Re: Water Hose from Water Heater

The all appear to do the same thing, although Q-C & Whale use polyethylene piping and HEP2o uses polybutyl piping. I would suspect that your choice is going to be determined by which one is available at your local supplier. They rarely carry more than one version.
- - West Marine and Defender carry the "SeaTech" version of the same stuff.
- - If you were limited by the 3 choices you gave, I would prefer the HEP2o system with the polybutyl pipe as I have worked with that pipe over the years and prefer it.
- - But in any case make sure whichever one you choose, the hose/pipe of opaque, that is, the piping is not translucent or allows light to get to the water in the pipe.
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Old 11-09-2011, 05:51   #8
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Re: Water Hose from Water Heater

Thanks for the insight. None of them appear to be available locally (Langkawi) so whichever way I go, I will have to import it. That at least gives me the freedom to choose.
Do you know whether it is possible to use, for example, polyethylene pipe with the HEP2o system?
When I was asking locally, one dealer whom I trust, said that the HEP system was known but that there was a big question mark hanging over the pipe and no locals would stock it.
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Old 11-09-2011, 06:53   #9
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Re: Water Hose from Water Heater

Polybutyl pipe is the stuff "Qest" system pipes were made of. What was not known at the time was that it is biodegradable when buried in earth. Got real embarrassing for the company when the pipe degraded. Also they were using a "metal band crimp" system to speed up installations. That didn't work either what with less than expert installers. So the company took the product off the market. And the legacy of their failures haunt the polybutyl products. However, I have used the stuff for over 25 years with no failures.
- - Polyethylene is more resistant but also more translucent which causes problem with algae growth inside the pipes when sunlight penetrates. The systems being sold now have only been on the market for a few years and do have a long enough history for potential problems to surface.
- - But the mainline boat manufacturers are using the polyethylene systems and quick-connect fittings as the installation is very easy and quick - Just push the pipe into the fitting and you are done. However, I would caution that you should support the pipes and fitting with pipe clamps so that flexing cannot work the pipe/fitting joint apart. When the mainline boat manufacturers adopt a system it generally means they really trust it as their warranty exposure is extensive if the system fails or has problems.
- - Another consideration, as with brands of diesel engines, is getting replacement parts worldwide. Whale and SeaFit stuff is pretty much available anywhere. The others might be a problem trying to get parts "locally."
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Old 11-09-2011, 07:07   #10
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Re: Water Hose from Water Heater

I installed a hot water tank a couple of years ago and used plain old automotive heater hose coming from the engine and clear braided water hose for the rest of the plumbing and havent had any problems yet ( you notice I used the word - yet)
The only problem I had was with the fittings on the tank. The tank being aluminum, I thought best to use the nylon fittings recomended by West Marine (my 1st mistake)
To make a long story short, I decided to bite the bullet and buy STAINLESS fittings, hard to find, expensive but they dont leak!
I dont give a damn what you do - when the water gets hot - the tank fitting is going to leak - it doesnt matter how much pipe tape, pipe dope, goop or glue you put on - it's gonna leak!
Moral of the story- don't believe everything they tell you at West Marine and dont be a "cheap charlie" and buy nylon or plastic fittings for hot water because you think bronze or stainless is too much $$$ (which it is) You get what you pay for - sometimes.......
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Old 11-09-2011, 07:54   #11
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Re: Water Hose from Water Heater

I have a Force 10 (now Kuuma I believe) which has a temperature contol valve on the heat exchanger which cuts off the engine coolant flow when the hot water heater reaches 140F. I don't know where one can buy such a valve without the water heater but it might be possible. The other alternative is to put temperature controlled mixing valve as close as possible to the water tank with some high temperature hose and limit you water temps in the distribution system to something like 125F. That will certainly let you stretch your hot water supply. Mixing valves are pretty inexpensive.
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Old 11-09-2011, 08:29   #12
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Re: Water Hose from Water Heater

Galleyslave, I've used both Whale and Sea Tech. Both are very easy and quick to install. I sell Sea Tech and if you email me a list of what you need and where you need it shipped I would love to quote you. Here is a link to our web page showing what we stock in Sea Tech products :
Sea Tech Quick Connect Fittings
If we don't stock everything you need we would be glad to get it for you.
If you prefer to use Whale fittings, I can order those for you.
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Old 11-09-2011, 08:52   #13
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Re: Water Hose from Water Heater

Quote:
Originally Posted by Geoduck View Post
. . . I dont give a damn what you do - when the water gets hot - the tank fitting is going to leak - it doesnt matter how much pipe tape, pipe dope, goop or glue you put on - it's gonna leak!. . .
Actually that is one of the downsides of the plastic pipe systems. To make them flexible they contain oils, etc. and overly hot water like from an engine heater hot water heater can "cook" the oils out of the pipe and fittings near to the hot water heater resulting in fitting or pipe failures.
- - To prevent this, I simply plumbed bronze or brass fittings/pipe nipples for about 12 inches from the hot water outlet of the water heater before connecting to the poly pipe. Also I regulate manually the engine supply of hot engine coolant to the water heater to keep the water heater temperature below 120 deg F. Don't forget that your diesel engine coolant reaches 180 deg F under normal operation and if you let it circulate through the water heater, the water in the water heater will rise to that same temperature. Then you have all sorts of potential problems.
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Old 11-09-2011, 16:33   #14
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Re: Water Hose from Water Heater

I am using a Hotpot calorifier from a British supplier which has a thermostatically controlled mixer between the tank and the hot water take off so 80 deg C hot water in the poly pipe is one problem I wont have to worry about.
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Old 11-09-2011, 16:59   #15
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Re: Water Hose from Water Heater

I have no experience with marine systems (I only own a daysailer), but I am a master plumber. I can't understand why anyone would consider anything other than PEX tubing for a boat these days?!? It's almost completely taken the place of rigid copper tubing in residential plumbing, it's virtually fool-proof as far as leaks are concerned, algae doesn't grow in it, everything's readily available at any big box store (Home Depot, Lowes, Menards etc), and it's relatively inexpensive considering the few fittings needed to complete a typical distribution system on a boat.

The Uponor Wirsbo PEX tubing is rated to withstand 100psi @ 180*F, and 80psi @ 200*F

The lines that go from the engine coolant to the heat exchanger/coil in the water heater should be hePEX (heat PEX) tubing, and not the aquaPEX (domestic water). The hePEX has an oxygen barrier that the aquaPEX does not to inhibit internal corrosion in that part of the system.
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