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Old 01-10-2007
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1970 Columbia,

The heat function is really nothing more than the same concept as a heat pump on your house. It really works well, but is not quite as efficent as the Air Conditioning. Water temperature will play a factor, but I cannot comment what will happen when it gets really cold because the coldest I have used it is probably in the upper 40s (water temperature, not outside temp. Have used in the 20s outside).

You will like it. I have heard conflicting comments on the Mermaid, but most of the negatives were on their small models they sold several years ago. I have no info for you on a 16k so would take the comments posted above as true.

Another suggestion for you: Put a collection pan for condensation to pump overboard versus dumping it in your bilge (like most people do). This keeps the bilge dry (in theory, I guess). You also get a lot of algae buildup otherwise. Don't forget to really oversize the strainer and make it very accesible.

Take care. Hope it works out.

- CD
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Old 01-10-2007
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1970 Columbia,

As you are sailing in Lake Huron you will might want the heat more than the air. Season is relative to the sailor. Water temps will be low to mid 40's in April (really want that heater at night), warming to mid to high 60's in July, staying in the 60's most of the way through September, and then back to the high 40's by the end of October or early November. Good Luck.
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Old 01-11-2007
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Originally Posted by CaptDaveB
Mermaid Marine air is the only manufacturer to offer a 5 year warranty and prettty decent prices. The pumps they offer are pretty slack, but otherwise they have good units. Their 16.500 with a proper installation would be more than enough for you 34.
We have a Mermaid Marine Air heat pump-style AC/forced air unit in our steel 41 footer. It came with the boat. I suspect it is the 16.5 model, but the instruction manual is aboard the hauled boat some miles from here.

What can I tell you? First off, if it hadn't come with the boat, I wouldn't have bought one...but that's just me. It seems strictly for dockside use, although I just acquired a Xantrex RS 2000 inverter that could probably handle it offshore at the cost of beating up even an expanded battery bank. It eats up a good portion of the starboard pilothouse locker, and while I would have preferred the stowage, I suspect I will just leave it in there for the odd tropical dock we choose to pay for. I don't have A/C at home (very old hot-water heated rad system) and I don't work in an office, so heat doesn't bother me as much as some.

Our layout is as follows: we have an aft cabin, a forward saloon and a pilothouse. There are proper vents and returns in all three. With the boat's stern facing south in a Toronto summer (32 C or 90 F) and with all hatches closed, I got the saloon and the aft cabin to about 23 C/76 F in about an hour. The pilothouse (aka "the greenhouse") was a broiling 37 C/99 F. No dice there. I ended up cracking the pilothouse hatches just to let the hot air rise.

The water filter/strainer is accessible and I can winterize from a central standpipe. I only used the heat option once because the boat is usually warm enough due to insulation to the water line and candles/lamps/body heat. I have also heard of the 40 F water limitation, along the previous owner (who lived aboard in a Toronto winter...a real one, not this tropical '06-'07..with bubblers) made provision for a second 30 amp shore power line (total: 60 amps). While I got the impression that he needed this extra to run the Marine Air unit in times of cold, maybe he just needed to run three ceramic heater cubes or a heat fan...I'll have to check.

A friend put a small Mermaid A/C in the wet locker of a Viking 33, which is a smaller boat than yours, I believe, and he loves it.

Or rather, he could care less, but his wife and daughters demanded it.
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Old 08-25-2010
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Cover for a Carry-On air conditioner

Hi, I bought a second hand carry-on Air Conditioner for my sailboat. Unfortunately it did not come with the cover that goes over it when it
is placed in the hatch. Does anyone know if there are companies making
these covers or where one can buy the pattern. They can be bought at
West Marine but the cost is around $250 which seems way out of line for
a canvas cover. Thanks
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