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Old 22-10-2014, 03:11   #1
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Calorifier Sizing Advice and Experience Sought

Dear All,

I'm in the process of trying to decide what size of calorifier I should be looking to install into my new-to-me yacht (which is currently without). My partner and I consider hot water showers to be an important part of comfortable living aboard, so I am looking for some real-world experiences to help me.

Basically I want to know how big is your calorifier, how long does it allow you to continuously "hot water" shower for. Bonus points for how long does it take to heat up from running the engine.

e.g. I have a 15 gallon/60 liter calorifier, and I get 20 minutes of continuous shower-hot water out of it. It takes 60 minutes of engine run time to get it up to temperature.

Other thoughts and experiences that are relevant are also welcome.

I did a search, but couldn't find any good detailed cruisers experience of this question in the archives.

About My Yacht: is a 45 foot/13.5m sailing yacht powered by a 50hp volvo diesel. It will be home to a couple in colder waters, with additional berths for up to another 4 people on the odd occasion. There will be no generator, however an hour or two a day of engine time is expected to charge batteries and run the watermaker (and heat the water). There will be a reflex diesel stove installed, which has the internal heating coils also run to the 2nd calorifier circuit.

Thanks,

J
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Old 22-10-2014, 04:57   #2
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Re: Calorifier sizing advice and experience sought

60 liters is huge. My boat, a 54-footer with 7 berths, was built with a 50 liter one, which was replaced with a 32 liter one.

The 50 liter one was more than adequate, especially since it was extremely well insulated and would keep a tank of hot water hot for days.

The 32 liter one is not as good, but still more or less ok. It reaches full temp (80 degrees C) in about 30 minutes from either main engine or central heating and about an hour with a 1500 watt immersion heater. That's in cold weather; less in summer.

You can get two very generous, almost land-like showers out of it; and more than two if the showers are really nautical. .

The 50 liter tank was essentially endless if central heat was running. A whole boat full of people could shower without running out.
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Old 22-10-2014, 05:35   #3
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Re: Calorifier sizing advice and experience sought

Hi

6 gallon, would heat in 30 mins to about 45c, enough for 3 souls to have a constant run for about 5 mins each with a transom shower head.
Try and get a rating l/min on the faucet other wise it's how long is a 'piece of string'
Also mine was in a 2.4 l Volvo which was a hot running engine, so engine cooling/ heat up is a factor to the answer You are looking for!



Sent from my iPad.......i apologise for the auto corrects !!!
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Old 22-10-2014, 06:10   #4
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Re: Calorifier sizing advice and experience sought

We had a 15l last boat, enough for 2 long showers, heats from engine in 40m low revs, much faster if the engine is warm. This boat is a 25l, takes an hr maybe. Personally I'd rather smaller since you use a few litres it's replaced in the tank with cold water..no more hot water...
We use a watermaker so water isn't two precious. Heating using the 1200W element takes about 40 mins. I'm going to replace the element with a 500W so it draws half the amps and I can run it from solar. I run it occasionally from solar now but I prefer not draw 100Ah to do it.
15l with 500w element would be ideal for us. Enough for a couple of showers and dishes each day.
So it depend if you are planning to be plugged into the dock, or want to be as economical as possible with available power. You can also supplement engine heating by heating with the generator and it should take 30 mins from a cold engine to heat 25l.
Once heated the water stays hot for 36hrs or so, so long as none is used and replaced with cold water in the tank. Our unit is a quick B3 boiler.
You might prefer heat a smaller tank twice per day, run the genny for one hour in the morning and 1 hr at night and have more available hot water, instead of running for 2 hrs in the morning and having cool water later after a couple of showers.
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Old 22-10-2014, 11:48   #5
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Re: Calorifier Sizing Advice and Experience Sought

why not just put in a hot water shower head 110v . heats the water as it comes out of the shower head . ebay $ 34.00 ? I'm pretty sure there are better brands , just saying .
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Old 22-10-2014, 18:15   #6
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Re: Calorifier Sizing Advice and Experience Sought

Quote:
Originally Posted by sailersteve View Post
why not just put in a hot water shower head 110v . heats the water as it comes out of the shower head . ebay $ 34.00 ? I'm pretty sure there are better brands , just saying .
Does not really look practical. You need at least 30 amps of 110AC to run one of those. That is a lot of juice!
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