Join Date: Oct 2006
Location: on the boat - Chesapeake
Thanked 158 Times in 141 Posts
Rep Power: 9
My experience with forced-air diesel heat is that it is wonderful. There are some teething problems, and my personal experience with Espar (2 years) and Webasto (4 years) is that Espar is more robust.
The hydronic systems draw more power and present some mechanical maintenance issues (the hose clamps back off from thermal cycling and leak) but have the advantage of making hot water.
Propane heaters burn through propane at a startling rate.
The noise from the blower on a forced-air diesel heater (at least Webasto and Espar) is pretty much what I was used to from forced-air natural gas or heat pump in houses. I can easily hear the reassuring click of the heater fuel pump buried in an insulated engine room over the air flow. The fuel pump noise is way quieter than my grandmother's ticking cuckoo clock. It is just another boat noise.
sail fast and eat well, dave
beware "cut and paste" sailors.
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