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Old 12-11-2019, 21:57   #61
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Re: Tankless water heaters

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Originally Posted by john61ct View Post
The various standards are not compatible.

Do not mix & match unless you're an experienced professional.

Stick to one, do scheduled checklisted inspection / testing, replace proactively especially rubber hoses.

Use detectors, test & replace regularly.

And odds are good you'll be fine, safer than getting cars going highway speeds.
The various standards are not compatible.

What a mealy mouth way of saying that the bureaucrats can't agree on what is safe and what is not. It's more than "not compatible". The various standards from country to country are disagreement about what is safe and what is not safe.

How can we conclude that propane devices are not safe when entire countries can't agree on which conditions in which they are safe and conditions in which they are not safe?

One countries' bureaucrats say it's safe if you use soft hose, others say you must use solid pipe because soft hose is not safe. I am sure that there are other points of disagreement.

So I will make my own decision.

And I'll point out that a wood or diesel burning hot lump of iron is not safe either, my sister was horribly burned when she fell against one. She was close to the iron stove while standing in a tub while hot water was poured over her to bathe. In fact, heating water on any stove for washing seems dangerous due to scalding possibilities.

So I will stick to my propane tankless water heater. It is light weight, light fuel weight, simple, convenient, and safe in my opinion.

And for the fellow who says "if we have sundowners aboard in some anchorage it will be on his boat, not mine, due to the danger of my propane system" (paraphrase) I'll say, perhaps you should not even stay in the same anchorage, you never know what other reckless thing I might be doing.
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Old 13-11-2019, 06:22   #62
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Re: Tankless water heaters

Most owners are much safer following one of the standards rather than none.

My point is simply to choose one rather than trying to combine them.
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Old 13-11-2019, 06:34   #63
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Re: Tankless water heaters

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Originally Posted by wingssail View Post
. . . And for the fellow who says "if we have sundowners aboard in some anchorage it will be on his boat, not mine, due to the danger of my propane system" (paraphrase) I'll say, perhaps you should not even stay in the same anchorage, you never know what other reckless thing I might be doing.

Sorry, that was not at all intended to be an insult, and apologize if it was taken that way I guess the attempt at humor failed.


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I read the Report, I didn't read anything about daily pumping of bilge to exhaust any gas which might have been there.

Page 7, Section 1.6:

"While at sea, standard operational procedure for this class of vessel require that all bilges be pumped every hour. Once all water has been pumped out, procedures require that the bilge pump be given thirty more strokes to remove any gas which might have accumulated.
Similar procedures are required to be followed in port; once first thing in the morning and once more during the day. "


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Originally Posted by wingssail View Post
If there was a leak in the gas line from the locker to the cabin then that is a) a flaw which should have revealed itself by the smell of gas. b) the gas valve would properly have been in the locker. If it was shut off then how did it leak out through the pipe.

If you read the report, which I recommend, you'll see that the leak occurred inside the gas locker on the high pressure side of the regulator, before the solenoid valve. Apparently a loose connection, which can easily happen due to a moment of carelessness when installing a new bottle, or even from motion of the boat in a seaway.



It is a big mistake to think that "this can't happen to me."


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Simply smelling gas in a boat does not mean it's a bomb. In order to ignite, the propane/air mix must contain from 2.2 to 9.6 percent propane vapor. If the mixture contains less than 2.2 percent gas, it is too lean to burn. If it contains more than 9.6 percent, it is too rich to burn. However, the human nose can perceive propane in the air before it is within this range.

There is a dangerously false assumption here -- that leaking gas disperses through the whole air volume so that you can smell it. This is not true, and leaking propane will not disperse through the whole air volume unless it gets mixed up somehow. Propane is more than twice as dense as air and will simply settle in the bilge from a slow leak in the absence of strong air currents, and you will not smell it until there is so much of it that it was risen into the passenger volume.



"Do not rely on sense of smell alone to detect a gas leak" is on the first page of just about every handbook of gas safety ever published. It's kind of Rule #1.


Following from your misplaced confidence in smell as a gas alarm, can we conclude that you don't have an actual gas alarm on board, on top of everything else?


Man, really, stay safe. I say that in all sincerity. If I were you, I would do some more study of gas safety, for sure install a gas alarm with automatic cutoff, and maybe hire a pro to go through your system.
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Old 13-11-2019, 06:42   #64
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Re: Tankless water heaters

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Originally Posted by wingssail View Post
The various standards are not compatible.

What a mealy mouth way of saying that the bureaucrats can't agree on what is safe and what is not. It's more than "not compatible". The various standards from country to country are disagreement about what is safe and what is not safe.

How can we conclude that propane devices are not safe when entire countries can't agree on which conditions in which they are safe and conditions in which they are not safe?

One countries' bureaucrats say it's safe if you use soft hose, others say you must use solid pipe because soft hose is not safe. I am sure that there are other points of disagreement.

So I will make my own decision. . . .

Flawed logic here --


It's kind of like, the Russians use liquid fuel boosters, and the Americans used solid fuel boosters, therefore the so-called experts don't understand anything about rockets, and I'll just design my own rocket in my garage.


Just because experts may disagree on some things, does not mean they know less than you do.


And furthermore, as John said, safety standards are a SYSTEM, and an amateur will not necessarily appreciate how they interact with one another, so it is far better to choose ONE of these systems and follow it conscientiously.



Liability and insurance issues are another dimension to this we haven't even touched on.
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Old 13-11-2019, 09:11   #65
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Re: Tankless water heaters

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Originally Posted by Dockhead View Post
It's kind of like, the Russians use liquid fuel boosters, and the Americans used solid fuel boosters, therefore the so-called experts don't understand anything about rockets, and I'll just design my own rocket in my garage.
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Old 13-11-2019, 09:38   #66
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Re: Tankless water heaters

I don't know which one is best but I have had an Eemax for 5 years and it works great.
Input: 110 vac, cold water
Output: hot water 40 degree increase above ambient.
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Old 13-11-2019, 10:59   #67
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Re: Tankless water heaters

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I don't know which one is best but I have had an Eemax for 5 years and it works great.
Input: 110 vac, cold water
Output: hot water 40 degree increase above ambient.
Curious, several posts have mentioned the 40° above ambient. Did your unit not have temp adjustment? Ours had adjustable temp setting and after 5-10 seconds it would scald you with incoming water temps near freezing (if you didn't drip, it would freeze the lines)
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Old 18-11-2019, 17:04   #68
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Re: Tankless water heaters

Oh my god Where's the rationality?

Stoves onboard a boat were more than likely grandfathered in well before water heaters were.

Gentlemen lets contain ourselves here for just a moment. There may very well be personal affections for each fuel type out there. Not to mention cultural exposure & experience at play. One must admit that there are safety guidelines to using each. Attempting to "blame the fuel" for being safe or not is a completely irrational argument.

Ultimately it's up to us to use safety guidelines to NOT blow ourselves up in the process. I can put a loaded .38 handgun on the table in front of you. Odds are you will not get shot. Is it possible that you MAY shoot yourself in the head? Yes it is. Has it happened before with other people? Yes, it has. The main rule of gun ownership is not to aim a gun at someone / something you don't intend to shoot. Breaking that rule can cause damage to a person.

The real discussion should be are safety measures being followed? Do you understand your fuel of choice and are you using it wisely & safely? Are you willing to take responsibility for your actions if something happens while using it?

As an example? Does helium usually go into beer? Not usually. There's nothing saying you can't put it in there though. What would happen if you were to commercially manufacture such a beer?

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Old 18-11-2019, 18:01   #69
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Re: Tankless water heaters

Well, as long as it is not a propane beer. Helium can't blow up the boat.
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Old 19-11-2019, 20:06   #70
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Re: Tankless water heaters

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Well, as long as it is not a propane beer. Helium can't blow up the boat.
Neither can propane... Ultimately it needs help to blow up the boat. No gas randomly combusts on its own. It needs a spark or another flame of some kind.
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Old 19-11-2019, 21:09   #71
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Re: Tankless water heaters

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Originally Posted by Dockhead View Post
Flawed logic here --

It's kind of like, the Russians use liquid fuel boosters, and the Americans used solid fuel boosters, therefore the so-called experts don't understand anything about rockets, and I'll just design my own rocket in my garage
Just because experts may disagree on some things, does not mean they know less than you do.

And furthermore, as John said, safety standards are a SYSTEM, and an amateur will not necessarily appreciate how they interact with one another, so it is far better to choose ONE of these systems and follow it conscientiously

Liability and insurance issues are another dimension to this we haven't even touched on.
No, it's like the Russians say only liquid fuel boosters are safe, and the Americans say only solid fuel boosters are safe.

The rocket scientists can't make up their minds, so I get to choose.

And the Russians also say you must use nylon for parachutes, and the Americans say Dacron is only cloth permittable.

Then you, mr dockhead, conclude that I must take either one set of rules or the other, I cannot mix and match. Like if I choose the Russians for booster fuel choice I must also chose the Russians for parachute cloth.

"Safety standards are a SYSTEM" Yeah, right.

BS.

The pieces of the standards are not necessarily all dependent on each other.

And we have brains so don't have to just accept what the bureaucrats say.

Criminy do the sailors in the UK no independent thought any more?

How did you ever control half the world?

My insurance company could care less.

1984
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Old 19-11-2019, 21:48   #72
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Re: Tankless water heaters

What a crock.

We are talking **propane** safety standards in a marine context.

Yes they are an integrated system, and non-experts should choose one and follow it, not mix and match.

Experts of course can devise their own systems and perhaps be "even safer", **if** they truly are experts.

If your insurance doesn't require adherence to a standard, and you're confident, of course up to you, do what you like.
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Old 20-11-2019, 09:36   #73
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Re: Tankless water heaters

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Originally Posted by wingssail View Post
No, it's like the Russians say only liquid fuel boosters are safe, and the Americans say only solid fuel boosters are safe.

The rocket scientists can't make up their minds, so I get to choose.

And the Russians also say you must use nylon for parachutes, and the Americans say Dacron is only cloth permittable.

Then you, mr dockhead, conclude that I must take either one set of rules or the other, I cannot mix and match. Like if I choose the Russians for booster fuel choice I must also chose the Russians for parachute cloth.

"Safety standards are a SYSTEM" Yeah, right.

BS.

The pieces of the standards are not necessarily all dependent on each other.

And we have brains so don't have to just accept what the bureaucrats say.

Criminy do the sailors in the UK no independent thought any more?

How did you ever control half the world?

My insurance company could care less.

1984



I think all the standards agree that tankless propane water heaters must not be used on boats.


Hell, even the MANUFACTURER agrees that your tankless propane water heaters must not be used on boats.


But as others have said -- if you're sure you're smarter than all the engineers on both sides of the Atlantic who promulgated all those standards, as well as the engineers who made your heater -- go for it. Your boat, your life, your family -- your rules. You are a smart guy and great sailor, and I have great respect for you, and I've learned a lot from you on other topics, but your comments about detecting gas leaks by smell make me think that you don't understand even basic things about gas safety, much less enough to establish your whole own gas safety system from scratch in disdain of the published standards.



There's no shame in that -- it is impossible for one person no matter how brilliant to understand in depth all the different specialized fields involved in cruising. It's important, however, to know what you don't know (Aristotle said that this is actually the essence of wisdom), and seek out a way other than just making it up yourself, to solve the problem, whether it's finding a real expert, or following a published standard.



As to your insurance company -- I've never seen a policy -- and I've seen a lot of them -- which didn't one way or another give the insurer the right to deny claims which arise as a consequence of intentional violations of safety standards, whether the standards are legal requirements or not. You might want to read your policy and think about this. Of course your insurer doesn't care -- why would they? They simply don't pay and that's it.



And as a lawyer, I can tell you that the liability issues could bankrupt you in case of an accident; actually PROBABLY would. That just by itself is an entirely sufficient reason to follow ABYC scrupulously, log your maintenance, get regular professional inspections. Propane has twice the explosive power by weight than TNT; it demands respect and care, including respect for the work of the real professionals who formulated the standards.
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Old 23-11-2019, 13:34   #74
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Re: Tankless water heaters

Wow! What a discussion! I'll put my 2 cents in by saying we had a PrecisionTemp ShowerMate M-550 EC (marine grade) installed in our 5th wheel trailer 2 years ago and its the best thing we could have done. My wife is a licensed electrician and followed all codes for the install and we had it inspected/tested by someone from the gas company. We told our insurance rep all about it and that was that. We inspect it regularly and so far, zip problems.



I know its not a boat, but we are seriously thinking of having one installed in our new boat when we get it. It has no pilot light and a 20# tank of LP lasts for several months easily. Expensive? Oh yes. Worth it? To us, yes, as we travel a lot. Its the only LP gas appliance aside from the outside grill. We chucked the gas stove and we use induction and a microwave/convection oven for cooking now.



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Old 23-11-2019, 13:59   #75
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Re: Tankless water heaters

We just bought a boat with a Paloma on demand propane water heater, and the only way I could get it insured was to remove the water heater before we left the dock. It was stipulated in several quotes, including the one we went with. I am not sure if the same applies for electronic ignition propane heaters that don't require a pilot light.
The previous owner had the heater grandfathered in with the stipulation that the gas was turned off before being underway, but I could not find an insurer that would touch the boat with that Paloma on it.
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