I have read all the threads on this subject and I'm still making up my mind.
I have bought a LPG forced air unit like the diesel ones. I got a good deal on it and thought it would be a nice addition to a bulkhead heater.
I was dead set on a Newport
P9000 propane unit. Due to compactness and the chimney is much smaller. No soot either. But I've heard different comments some say they use little others say they are fuel
hogs and the rating by factory is not the best. We will be full time liveaboards so YMMV
and of course we are in Oz now but plan to cruise
some cooler areas.
Using diesel is good keeping less fuel
sources but we cook with propane already. (BTW some are very Leary of propane on board. It should be used with caution). Carrying extra propane tanks
on long cruises can put weight where you don't want it. Of corse you can use composite tanks
which will help. Then there's the hauling of tanks for refueling vs just putting diesel in the tank. Oh but then there's soot from diesel and larger exhaust
. But wait some say no soot if its working proper. But there is some maintenance
Then there's wood, coal or pellet. More messy and wood can be bulky to carry while on passage
. Do you want to use your heater whilst underway? I'm not even sure about diesel drip while healing but I think they are built to use underway? Wood can be too but the safest is likely the Propane. Feeding a wood stove if it s bit rough could get exciting. Propane can burn at a multitude of angles.
The Propane unit is not incredibly warm and many like it more for ambiance. The Newport
is a closed circuit so condensation
is not a factor. But someone was telling me the other day that Dickenson diesel heaters are not a closed circuit? The diesel is rated with more BTU.
Today I was designing a more efficient stainless wood burner. But I don't know if I would build one or just get something else like the P9000
Our criteria are warmth for down to about 0c 33 center cockpit
. Insulated deck and wood lined. Most times we will want it, it will be around 10c minimum and rainy. Liveaboard
of 4. We need a certain amount of cost efficiency in usesage. We want it to work while on passage
. Have a nice ambiance not take up too much space. We also have the forced air unit to get the boat warm quicker. Maybe we just need 2 bulkhead heaters.
Sorry what was my point oh yeah. The only right answer is the one you come up with. What's best for one is not best for all. Think about what you really require what you can and can't live with and then see if anything fits the requirement. Some people just use their stove or a Petro max and some ventilation.
I hope that helps somehow.