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Old 05-24-2006
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Tankless propane hot water

We are considering installing a Showermate (tm) tankless propane hot water heater made by Precisiontemp Co. in our 35' sloop. Does anyone have any feedback on these things? Performance? Ease of installation? Drawbacks? Any insight appreciated.
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Old 05-24-2006
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tankless

these tankless heaters have been discussed in the past if you do a search and/or google it. Other than the expense, it sounds like a great idea. Who wants to run their engine in the middle of summer to heat water?
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Old 05-24-2006
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Check insurer

These types of heaters do make basic sense, and there are a variety of makes available. One point, we looked at a boat once where such a heater had been removed - not because it didn't work, but because that particular owner's insurers wouldn't cover the boat with that (propane fired) heater - so do some checking about that before you buy.
They often take up room in the head area, usually cramped to start with, but depending on the boat you may find a good fit for one.
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Old 05-24-2006
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One problem with the tankless water heaters. They're not very effective if the ambient temperature of the water is relatively high. The heat transfer is far less effective if the water is relatively warm to begin with, so it may not work as well as you'd like in the summer.

This is especially true if you live in a warmer climate... if you sail in New England, or the Great Lakes it might work acceptably...
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Here in the States the issue is insurance and finance companies will not approve instant heaters unless you can vent them directly out of the boat. We had an old Paloma and looked at keeping or upgrading. I could not find a unit that was small enough to fit in the head and I could not find a reasonable way to vent out. Smaller units are not made to vent out. Units made to vent out were huge. All manufacturers I found specifically stated the unit was not to be used in any confined space including boats and campers. Seems like too many "no" answers, so we put in a new isotemp. We have to run the engine to get in and out of the marina and we carry a couple of sunshowers so one way or the other we will have hot (enough) water.

Larry
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Old 05-24-2006
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I had a small Junkers quick-heater in my boat that could only be used with the forehatch open to vent the heat from the burners. Couldn't be used in anything but tranquil conditions and used mountains of gas. And nobody could step over the hatch while this thing was running!!
Now I run a small 35 litre hot water cylinder off the engine. Diesel is in any case a lot more readily available than gas and is also less expensive. The right heaters get hot really quickly and stay warm for several hours.
I would never have another gas quick-heater.
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