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What is the preferred heat source?-gctid781343

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    What is the preferred heat source?-gctid781343

    Good day all,

    Well, our first winter on our 1982 40ft Bodega, and we are trying to establish the best way to heat the cabin. We live on the Columbia river in Oregon, and temps at the coldest are around the mid-20's. Currently are using 3 warm oil heaters, my guess is our power bill for our first month on is gonna be ugly....

    Looking at using a Buddy Propane heater while we are there, and awake... too paranoid to leave something like that on while we sleep.

    I'd welcome any ideas without busting the budget.

    Todd

    #2
    The Buddy propane heater doesn't seem too economical, from the manufacturer,

    "Provides 3 to 6 hours of heat with 1-lb. propane cylinder and 48 to 110 hours with a 20-lb. tank "

    A 15lb Blue Rhino tank costs about $20, that would be about $10 a day or $300 per month plus the hassle of tank changes. There must be a better choice.

    I think I'd look for a small fan powered electric space heater.

    Mike
    2004 Bayliner 285 350 MPI Bravo III
    2007 Bayliner 192 Discovery 3.0 135HP (sold)
    2000 Ciera 2455 sold
    Redmond, Washington
    The one on the Left (Wet) Coast

    Comment


      #3
      Check Webasto. they make heaters. Most of us around here, use central air with reverse cycles for heat. That way we are on generator or shore power. The stand alone heaters have to be installed to eliminate moisture or you have a mold maker in addition to a heater. some of the diesel heaters use about .24 ltrs an hour. Pretty good for a 40 foot system.
      David
      http://www.cambridgeadvertising.org
      http://www.davidladewig.com

      Comment


        #4
        When you are on shore power, you probably already own the safest and most efficient electric heaters. No electric heater is really "efficient" actually. I have the big buddy heater and it is quite safe with low O2 sensor and tip over protection. That's the cheapest option I've come across when hooked to a big tank of propane, and the little electric fan adapter can be found on ebay for cheap. You just have to decide if you want these work around solutions or invest big bucks in a more permanent and robust solution. I had a houseboat buddy that used a couple of wall mounted propane heaters that were 30k BTU each. He said it was a fraction of a diesel heat system to set up. They looked something like this, not sure if that's the exact model. His had blowers and would drive you out of the boat.

        http://www.homedepot.com/p/Dyna-Glo-...FUlNfgodfnwHMA

        Comment


          #5
          Diesel is generally the preferred heat source, due to its reliability and its low cost per BTU of heat output due to its low cost per BTU output.

          A gallon of #2 diesel has about 138,000 BTU's of stored energy.

          At 80% efficiency you'll get about 110,400 BUT's of heat out of a gallon.

          1 Kilowatt of electricity has 3412 BTU of energy

          Electric heat is 100% efficient

          110,400/3412 = 32.35 KW of energy in a gallon of diesel "heat"

          If diesel costs $2.50 a gallon then the equilivent cost per KW is $.077

          If you are paying $2.50 a gallon for diesel, and 7.7C per KWH the two heat sources are pretty much awash cost wise.

          I do not knw how much you pay for electricity in Portland, buy if my memory serves correctly you are paying among the lowest costs per KWH in the country, so it might be a good idea to realistically compare.

          KEVIN SANDERS
          4788 LISAS WAY - SEWARD ALASKA

          Comment


            #6
            Our boat is a much smaller 3270 and except for the few really cold spells two electric space heaters work fine. When it gets really cold I would like to just plug in another electric space heater but the electric service to the boat won't allow for that. So I am in the midst of installing a free standing diesel heater for the extreme situations. Otherwise the electric space heater are doing a great job. I should add that the need for the extra heat is to please the Admiral.

            Greg
            Newport, Oregon
            South Beach Marina
            1986 3270 with twin 110 HP Hino diesels. Name of boat "Mr. Darcy"
            Past work history: Prototyping, tooling, and repair for Reinell,. General fiberglass boat repair starting in 1976.
            Also worked as heavy equipment mechanic, and machinery mechanic for over 30 years.

            Comment


              #7
              "Mr. Darcy" post=781366 wrote:
              Our boat is a much smaller 3270 and except for the few really cold spells two electric space heaters work fine. When it gets really cold I would like to just plug in another electric space heater but the electric service to the boat won't allow for that. So I am in the midst of installing a free standing diesel heater for the extreme situations. Otherwise the electric space heater are doing a great job. I should add that the need for the extra heat is to please the Admiral.

              Greg
              The real cost/benefit lol.

              Technically electricity is a secondary heat source and the least efficient energy source but anyway. I looked at exactly that setup (free standing diesel) for my 32 and stuck with the big buddy heater. If it's that cold the Admiral exercises rank and no boat.

              Comment


                #8
                I will pay about $2100 for 5 months of winter electric as we have the highest electric rates in North America plus shrinkwrapping, dock rent and engine winterizing.

                It adds up to the point that I will be devoting those bucks, plus quite a bit more, to heading south next winter.
                "Adios Dinero"
                1997 3988 with new 330 Cummins
                Photo Credit: Whiskywizard

                Comment


                  #9
                  "The Other Gary" post=781372 wrote:
                  I will pay about $2100 for 5 months of winter electric as we have the highest electric rates in North America plus shrinkwrapping, dock rent and engine winterizing.

                  It adds up to the point that I will be devoting those bucks, plus quite a bit more, to heading south next winter.
                  Now you are talking sense. Where you thinking.

                  Comment


                    #10
                    We heat with two space heaters I picked up from west marine. They are set to use 900 watts each, but can go up to 1500 watts. They keep the boat in the mid 60's with no problems. Even into the mid 20's these work fine. But, with only 30 amp service on our 41 ft boat, we shut one off to run the microwave, stove top or a hair dryer. (Our next boat will have more power service)

                    We also have a diesel hydronic heater on board. We do use it for a quick warm up if we are away for a day or more with the electric heaters off. But, day to day, find it noisy (even tho it is not very noisy)

                    I would think this week will tell you what works. I think we will be in the upper teens by Saturday morning.
                    1992 3288, twin Hino 150's sold
                    S. Puget Sound

                    Comment


                      #11
                      "iceclimber" post=781370 wrote:
                      "Mr. Darcy" post=781366 wrote:
                      Our boat is a much smaller 3270 and except for the few really cold spells two electric space heaters work fine. When it gets really cold I would like to just plug in another electric space heater but the electric service to the boat won't allow for that. So I am in the midst of installing a free standing diesel heater for the extreme situations. Otherwise the electric space heater are doing a great job. I should add that the need for the extra heat is to please the Admiral.

                      Greg
                      The real cost/benefit lol.

                      Technically electricity is a secondary heat source and the least efficient energy source but anyway. I looked at exactly that setup (free standing diesel) for my 32 and stuck with the big buddy heater. If it's that cold the Admiral exercises rank and no boat.
                      According to what I studied in second year physics, electric heat is as close to one hundred percent efficient as can be. In some locations it is very expensive but that is not the case for Mr. Darcy. An all you can use 30 amp service is included in the under $200 a month slip rent, which also includes water and holding tank pump out. So how do your physics come up with electric heat as being Inefficient? I would really appreciate seeing you calculations on that to see if my text book and the instructor were actually wrong or not. I have to pay beyond the slip fee for all the diesel to fire the freestanding heater making it my "secondary" heat source. Also physically the least energy efficient.

                      Greg
                      Newport, Oregon
                      South Beach Marina
                      1986 3270 with twin 110 HP Hino diesels. Name of boat "Mr. Darcy"
                      Past work history: Prototyping, tooling, and repair for Reinell,. General fiberglass boat repair starting in 1976.
                      Also worked as heavy equipment mechanic, and machinery mechanic for over 30 years.

                      Comment


                        #12
                        "Mr. Darcy" post=781528 wrote:
                        "iceclimber" post=781370 wrote:
                        "Mr. Darcy" post=781366 wrote:
                        Our boat is a much smaller 3270 and except for the few really cold spells two electric space heaters work fine. When it gets really cold I would like to just plug in another electric space heater but the electric service to the boat won't allow for that. So I am in the midst of installing a free standing diesel heater for the extreme situations. Otherwise the electric space heater are doing a great job. I should add that the need for the extra heat is to please the Admiral.

                        Greg
                        The real cost/benefit lol.

                        Technically electricity is a secondary heat source and the least efficient energy source but anyway. I looked at exactly that setup (free standing diesel) for my 32 and stuck with the big buddy heater. If it's that cold the Admiral exercises rank and no boat.
                        According to what I studied in second year physics, electric heat is as close to one hundred percent efficient as can be. In some locations it is very expensive but that is not the case for Mr. Darcy. An all you can use 30 amp service is included in the under $200 a month slip rent, which also includes water and holding tank pump out. So how do your physics come up with electric heat as being Inefficient? I would really appreciate seeing you calculations on that to see if my text book and the instructor were actually wrong or not. I have to pay beyond the slip fee for all the diesel to fire the freestanding heater making it my "secondary" heat source. Also physically the least energy efficient.

                        Greg
                        Correct!!!

                        Electric heat is 100% efficient. Zero percent of the heat value in a Kilowatt hour escapes the area being heated.

                        As indicated in my post above the break even point at $2.50 per gallon of diesel is about 7 cents per kilowatt hour.

                        At my marina I pay $.26 per kilowatt hour, but Portland where the OP is, has some of the lowest electric costs in the nation due to the low cost of locally generated hydroelectric electricity, so he really needs to analyze his actual energy costs to determine the cheapest way to heat his liveaboard boat.

                        KEVIN SANDERS
                        4788 LISAS WAY - SEWARD ALASKA

                        Comment


                          #13
                          "iceclimber" post=781505 wrote:
                          "The Other Gary" post=781372 wrote:
                          I will pay about $2100 for 5 months of winter electric as we have the highest electric rates in North America plus shrinkwrapping, dock rent and engine winterizing.

                          It adds up to the point that I will be devoting those bucks, plus quite a bit more, to heading south next winter.
                          Now you are talking sense. Where you thinking.
                          Green turtle Cay and Marsh harbour will do me just fine. Don't like Nassau or Freeport
                          "Adios Dinero"
                          1997 3988 with new 330 Cummins
                          Photo Credit: Whiskywizard

                          Comment


                            #14
                            Thank you everyone for the good conversation, doing a little research on the defender diesel fireplace / furnace. With gasoline engines that would mean putting in a secondary fuel tank and really perplexed as to how to run the exhaust flue given the design of the boat.

                            Does anybody have any experience with these units? Or is there another brand I should be looking at, they are not inexpensive however they seem to be very highly rated...

                            Comment


                              #15
                              "Mr. Darcy" post=781528 wrote:
                              "iceclimber" post=781370 wrote:
                              "Mr. Darcy" post=781366 wrote:
                              Our boat is a much smaller 3270 and except for the few really cold spells two electric space heaters work fine. When it gets really cold I would like to just plug in another electric space heater but the electric service to the boat won't allow for that. So I am in the midst of installing a free standing diesel heater for the extreme situations. Otherwise the electric space heater are doing a great job. I should add that the need for the extra heat is to please the Admiral.

                              Greg
                              The real cost/benefit lol.

                              Technically electricity is a secondary heat source and the least efficient energy source but anyway. I looked at exactly that setup (free standing diesel) for my 32 and stuck with the big buddy heater. If it's that cold the Admiral exercises rank and no boat.
                              According to what I studied in second year physics, electric heat is as close to one hundred percent efficient as can be. In some locations it is very expensive but that is not the case for Mr. Darcy. An all you can use 30 amp service is included in the under $200 a month slip rent, which also includes water and holding tank pump out. So how do your physics come up with electric heat as being Inefficient? I would really appreciate seeing you calculations on that to see if my text book and the instructor were actually wrong or not. I have to pay beyond the slip fee for all the diesel to fire the freestanding heater making it my "secondary" heat source. Also physically the least energy efficient.

                              Greg
                              Sigh. As I was typing that, I thought "oh I'll just start some pointless argument". If you took physics you would know what I was referring too. Electricity is a secondary energy source. It has to be created, it's very expensive and inefficient to create, even solar has significant overhead to arrive at the finished product, although as an investment it starts to pan out. I was not referring to each and every person's individual situation, as the OP mentioned he pays for electricity. You don't. I get that. If you read my response you will see that I referred to what we call a "cost/benefit" which means how much do I have to invest, what kind of BTU's do I get out, and how much is the fuel source going to cost.

                              Go ask your instructor what the most efficient source of heat is, and he will tell you what I did.

                              If I had the OP's issue with gas engines, I'd look at propane. OP, don't forget the sniffers

                              Comment

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