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bell ringer
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5,083 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Looking at the 3 forced air diesel heaters the Espar pricing seems to be a lot lower. maybe because there appears to be more places to buy them so it drives the price down.

But anyone else have any input on why the pricing on the Espar is lower than the Webasto and Wallas units (doesn't appear to be reliability)?
 

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Bristol 45.5 - AiniA
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4,526 Posts
We bought an Espar several years ago and it was pretty much the same price then as the others. It would be interesting to know why it is now much cheaper. Has manufacturing been out-sourced? We are very pleased with the Espar.
 

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Glad I found Sailnet
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3,842 Posts
Does it have the double-walled chimney, so combustion air does not come from within but from without?

Regards,
Brad
 

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Bristol 45.5 - AiniA
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Yes, we do have the double chimney. Damn thing was not cheap but we spend two winters living aboard in NYC and it was toasty and lovely. We seemed much happier than those using electric heaters and I think our fuel costs might have been lower.
 

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bell ringer
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5,083 Posts
Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Doesn't really seem that there are a lot of extra parts in the marine kit and they could just be gotten separate (around $100).

But now I'm considering the hydronic system as might as well the hot water feature and it looks about the same price once a heat exchanger is added in.
 

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Old enough to know better
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4,346 Posts
Doesn't really seem that there are a lot of extra parts in the marine kit and they could just be gotten separate (around $100).

But now I'm considering the hydronic system as might as well the hot water feature and it looks about the same price once a heat exchanger is added in.
I think if you are going to use it out cruising, where you will not have shore power I think Hydronic sounds smart but remember if you are at all cost conscience they will be much more money. You have to buy a radiator/fan unit for each area to be heated, but I have always thought it would be cool to do a radiant heated sole set up with one. I have not heard of anyone doing it that way. And imagine a radiant heated mattress, sounds pretty luxurious! Being able to get hot water when out on the hook without running your engine does sound nice. As far as the double walled exhaust, seems to me that boats are not that tight that it would make all that much difference in actual practice. They seem pretty drafty and engine compartments, and cockpit lockers (were the units are often mounted) normally have enough ventilation that I doubt it would really help.
 

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bell ringer
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5,083 Posts
Discussion Starter · #8 ·
I think if you are going to use it out cruising, where you will not have shore power I think Hydronic sounds smart but remember if you are at all cost conscience they will be much more money.
It looks that the cost of a M10 hydronic + radiator is about the same as a D4 air unit, and even if it is a few $100 it seems worth it in the big picture. I only think I would put the heat into the main salon and figure that enough heat would make it to the aft cabin to make sleeping just kind (theres always just a cabin fan otherwise).

I'm not too concerned about the battery power needed as already have solar able to take care of that.

I've got till next Spring so have time to collect stories.
 

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Super Moderator
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Doesn't really seem that there are a lot of extra parts in the marine kit and they could just be gotten separate (around $100).

But now I'm considering the hydronic system as might as well the hot water feature and it looks about the same price once a heat exchanger is added in.
To the untrained eye yes that is what you will assume.... :eek:

And this is why Espar prefers Espar trained technicians to install the units. There are lots of differences and a bunch of extra's you will need if you cheap out and go with a truck kit..

The truck kits are quite different from the marine kits. Here's just a few of of differences..


*Marine unit has different fuel line, not plastic. The plastic fuel lines in the truck kit do not meet ABYC, USCG or minimum standards your insurance company will want to see.

*Marine kit has marine specific software to minimize lock outs. On trucks they know where the fuel tanks are in comparison to the fuel metering pump. Not so on boats so the software is different.

*The truck kit comes with very little duct hose & supply/return outlets/inlets. You will need more.

*The truck kit does not come with exhaust lagging insulation

*The truck kit does not come with a muffler

*The truck kit does not come with double walled marine SS exhaust hose it is single wall and NOT SAFE for marine use.

*The truck kit does not come with the exhaust fitting for the transom

*The truck kit does not come with a marine mounting bracket, they mount them on a floor.

*On some models the marine kits use a larger duct hose diameters and heater outlets to make up for the longer runs in boats. This means a new case / plenum outlet for the Espar

*Truck kits don't come with exhaust condensate drains (some marine kits don't either)

*Due to the lockout issues on boats, because of the length between tank and metering pump, you will need a the digital t-stat which allows reading and clearing codes. If you don't opt for this it means a technician with a $1000.00 tool to come reset the unit and clear the codes.

*Wiring harnesses are longer on boat kits to accommodate thermostat placement in relation to heater.


In short I have installed a number of Espar's for folks trying to save a buck. It ALWAYS COST MORE, in the long run, when you buy a truck kit off eBay or the net compared to a marine kit.

I would strongly urge you to buy the unit from whomever will stand behind it and service it locally. I would also not install an Espar without the digital thermostat. These stats allow you to re-set codes and trouble shoot the codes. The service tool for this cost over $1000.00 and the Digi-Max D-1000 stat costs under $100.00

I do not advise teeing into an existing fuel line. The fuel "metering" pumps need the small diameter pick up the Espar ships with or they can lock out and cause problems..
 

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Bristol 45.5 - AiniA
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4,526 Posts
Listen to the man, he doth speak the truth. I watched our Espar being installed. It was not a casual undertaking. We have five outlets (main cabin, two other cabins, two heads). In retrospect it might have be better to have had three (left out the heads) and saved the extra expense and the space lost to ducting. I can see the advantages of hydronic systems but you get more complexity and cost, but save space.
 

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Mermaid Hunter
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5,689 Posts
In retrospect it might have be better to have had three (left out the heads) and saved the extra expense and the space lost to ducting.
NOOOooo! There is nothing so nice as a warm toilet seat in the winter.
 

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Bristol 45.5 - AiniA
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4,526 Posts
Then get one of those fur-lined seats - they are pretty cheap.
 

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Registered
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had a espar on a PSC. now have a hydronic wabasco on the outbound. Multiple advantages to the webasco.
easy to get individual satellite units into each area with individual thermostats. have one in each head so have that warm seat.
units are very small and tubing runs easy to snake throughout boat so virtually no storage space is lost.
has summer and winter settings so can get domestic hot water without heating boat.
has heat exchanger with engine so can heat boat off a hot engine block without running furnace.
fans are quieter so easier to sleep with unit on.
downsides are same as forced hot water c/w forced hot air. takes 15-20m for furnace to get hot enough to open the thermostats that allow circulation of heated water. can't turn it on for a few minutes to just get the chill off the boat like we could with the espar forced hot air. it heats the air that's already in the boat so the air is neither drier nor more humid so need to wipe portlights on occasion.
Its more expensive to buy and uses both electricity and diesel. Seems more efficient than the espar so over time may pay for itself. Unlike drip diesel or solid fuel stoves does make a constant background noise from fans ( furnace is hidden aft and very quiet). Does require winterizing if boat goes on the hard.
 
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