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View Poll Results: Propane water heater or conventional heater?
Propane 7 38.89%
Conventional 11 61.11%
Voters: 18. You may not vote on this poll

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Old 27-05-2016, 15:25   #46
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Re: Propane Water Heater ?

You know, there is a different way to consider Boatpoker's frightening photos: his observation that there are literally thousands of such gawd awful installations floating around is scary until you realize that those thousands have not exploded. You could say "not yet" and discount this idea, but what I take from it is that a good installation is very unlikely to explode since so many really really bad ones haven't.

Common sense usage will help as well. We all know how uncommon that sense is, but most successful cruisers seem to have at least a smattering of it... that's how they have become successful. As Ann has posted above, we've managed to not blow ourselves up with many years of both cooking and water warming with LPG, and honestly, I don't worry about it beyond taking common sense precautions. Dockhead obviously has a differing evaluation of the risks, and he is entitled to them. I wonder if he will bar LPG fueled boats from the marina which he is trying to establish?

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Old 27-05-2016, 15:28   #47
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Re: Propane Water Heater ?

I don't have details as I didn',t feel comfortable asking, but I met a cruiser who told me of the death of his daughter from an instant propane hw system on his boat. It was apparently a venting issue.

On a cheerier note, there is also on-demand diesel heaters available. See http://itrheat.com/products/oasis-he...-zephyr-hw/://
It is about the size of a typical hw tank and replaces the need for it.
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Old 27-05-2016, 15:29   #48
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Re: Propane Water Heater ?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Jim Cate View Post
. . . Dockhead obviously has a differing evaluation of the risks, and he is entitled to them. I wonder if he will bar LPG fueled boats from the marina which he is trying to establish? . . .

And lose the revenue? Are you crazy? It's hard enough balancing the P and L without turning away business, just because a boater doesn't understand the dangers of LPG. So as long as they pay their berthing fees, I don't care what fuel they use, and as long as they don't get my insurance cancelled, I don't actually even care if they blow themselves up

In other words, Jim -- you're welcome any time
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Old 27-05-2016, 15:30   #49
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Re: Propane Water Heater ?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Sea Dreaming View Post
Ann,
The surveyors concern is that, as others have mentioned, its not ABYC approved.
Ours is mounted an the saloon side of the galley bulkhead. There is an opening hatch nearly over head and is directly inline..though several feet from the companion way. Like everything on the boat it is in good condition but nearly 20 years old. The po really did an excellent job of maintaining the systems but not so good at upgrading.
As for insurance, we are still on the hunt. We are finding most insurance very prohibative so far. Still looking though.
Thanks for the thoughts.
Hi, Sea Dreaming,

The fact that the PO did not upgrade that Paloma could merely speak to its reliability. I know lots of people adhere to the if it ain't broke, don't fix it, way of thinking.

Nonetheless, I did see a German "flash heater" [Dockhead will love that!] installed on a boat in New Zealand, and it was half the size of the Paloma, seemed desirable to me. Apparently they're used a lot in Europe. As well, my daughter in law has them in her house, both stories.

Good luck with it. If you have to have insurance, then they will get a say. Maybe you could get boatpoker to do the installation of something new if you think the Paloma needs upgrading.

Ann
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Old 27-05-2016, 20:53   #50
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Re: Propane Water Heater ?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Paul L View Post
I don't have details as I didn',t feel comfortable asking, but I met a cruiser who told me of the death of his daughter from an instant propane hw system on his boat. It was apparently a venting issue.

On a cheerier note, there is also on-demand diesel heaters available. See http://itrheat.com/products/oasis-he...-zephyr-hw/://
It is about the size of a typical hw tank and replaces the need for it.
It is continuous hot water, not on demand. Conventional type water tank heated by diesel.

The Water Heater by ITR | International Thermal Research
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Old 27-05-2016, 21:14   #51
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Re: Propane Water Heater ?

sailorchic is right. CNG is becoming hard to find in N America. But that's for BOATS. There are a lot of CNG refill stations since a lot of automobiles and city buses use it for fuel. What has happened is that the regs for refilling the older heavy tanks has ramped up, causing the low volume boat providers to start to shy away from doing it. Our local supplier, a chandlery only a half a mile from our berth, had actually considered stopping the service, but chose to raise the prices to cover the cost of the re certification of all the tanks coming through their place. This raised the price from $15 to $30 over the course of only a year or two. For awhile they were out of refilled tanks awaiting certification. Many of my friends with certified tanks build refill adapter, legal ones, and fill them up for less than $3 at the gas stations. I have CNG, with a backup tank on board. Working fine since I bought the boat in 1998, and had been since the single PO bought it in 1986. However, we all recognize that CNG is simply not available outside the US (for us N Americanos) so LPG makes a lot of sense.
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Old 27-05-2016, 21:27   #52
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Re: Propane Water Heater ?

This brings up another safety comparison: how do you balance the safety of lighter-than-air CNG at 3000 psi with heavier than air LPG at ~100 psi. Having a high pressure tank blow up or off on your boat would not be a hell of a lot better than the typical LPG explosion, and we still hear of the occasional 3000 psi scuba tank going boom.

And has anyone mentioned the much higher energy contained in a standard 9 kg/20 lb LPG tank than the typical CNG tank? Storing as a liquid rather than a compressed gas gives far higher energy density, and for folks who want to be away from sources (even if available) for a while, this matters!

Jim
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Old 27-05-2016, 21:42   #53
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Re: Propane Water Heater ?

I agree, Jim. If I didn't have it, and the relative ease of resupply, I'd be using LPG. I may be moving our boat to the PNW and would then remove the CNG and install LPG or go electric induction for cooking (we have a 1500W inverter - NOTE: much research required on my part). We'll see.
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Old 27-05-2016, 22:51   #54
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Re: Propane Water Heater ?

Quote:
Originally Posted by mitiempo View Post
It is continuous hot water, not on demand. Conventional type water tank heated by diesel.

The Water Heater by ITR | International Thermal Research
There docs are not that clear, but under diesel it is on demand. Meaning there is no storage tank for hot water, the burner turns on and 3 minutes latter you have continuous hw.
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Old 27-05-2016, 23:07   #55
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Re: Propane Water Heater ?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Paul L View Post
There docs are not that clear, but under diesel it is on demand. Meaning there is no storage tank for hot water, the burner turns on and 3 minutes latter you have continuous hw.
Your information is incorrect. It is a 5.3 US gallon water heater with both diesel and electric heat functions. Once it is hot it can keep up with demand for a specific flow - which is not stated.

Not sure where you read 3 minutes.

Expensive as well.


ITR Water Heater - ITR Hydronic Heating Systems - Heating - SO-PAC Marine
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Old 28-05-2016, 00:50   #56
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Re: Propane Water Heater ?

Quote:
Originally Posted by mitiempo View Post
Your information is incorrect. It is a 5.3 US gallon water heater with both diesel and electric heat functions. Once it is hot it can keep up with demand for a specific flow - which is not stated.

Not sure where you read 3 minutes.

Expensive as well.


ITR Water Heater - ITR Hydronic Heating Systems - Heating - SO-PAC Marine
I installed the Zephyr model a couple of months ago and have been using it on diesel and electric since. That's how I know the 3 minutes. It does not rely on a hw tank.
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Old 28-05-2016, 05:09   #57
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Re: Propane Water Heater ?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Jim Cate View Post
You know, there is a different way to consider Boatpoker's frightening photos: his observation that there are literally thousands of such gawd awful installations floating around is scary until you realize that those thousands have not exploded. You could say "not yet" and discount this idea, but what I take from it is that a good installation is very unlikely to explode since so many really really bad ones haven't.
I have even scarier photos of gasoline engine compartment issues and still don't understand why more of them don't blow up.
Electrical issues are even worse. Last year I surveyed a sailboat with a 30amp cord going to 11 outlet multipliers with a total of 60 outlets, all connected with 21 extension cords and no circuit breakers. 6 out of ten boats I look at scare the hell out of me but there are still relatively few disasters occurring.
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Old 28-05-2016, 05:34   #58
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Re: Propane Water Heater ?

Quote:
Originally Posted by boatpoker View Post
I have even scarier photos of gasoline engine compartment issues and still don't understand why more of them don't blow up.
Electrical issues are even worse. Last year I surveyed a sailboat with a 30amp cord going to 11 outlet multipliers with a total of 60 outlets, all connected with 21 extension cords and no circuit breakers. 6 out of ten boats I look at scare the hell out of me but there are still relatively few disasters occurring.
Ergo, there is nothing to worry about. So the logic goes.

I've used 11 outlet multipliers and 21 extension cords and no circuit breakers for several years, and never burned down yet. Twist on wire connectors, no ground. Eh, who needs a ground. So, you know, no problem. All these electrical standards are just scare-mongering -- electricity is perfectly safe.
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Old 28-05-2016, 05:42   #59
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Re: Propane Water Heater ?

I don't understand the US economics that would encourage someone to put a gas water heater on a boat. Surely there is a shed full of second hand ex truck and new water heaters in the US that could be used much more safely? Is the cost of diesel significantly more than gas?

It's a mistery

Here is a reconditioned water heater kit going for £365 (about $500).

Webasto Thermo Top C, auxiliary, night, diesel water heater, 12 month warranty | eBay

Perhaps there is a promising business deal shipping heaters to the US, in a delivery yacht of course
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Old 28-05-2016, 05:48   #60
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VOTE NOW

I have opened up the voting poll for those who wish to add there preferences.

The original poll closed in 2014 with 7 votes cast 3 x Propane and 4 x Conventional, hardly a significant number to judge the preferences of the forum.

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