SailNet Community banner

1 - 20 of 30 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
5,311 Posts
Discussion Starter #1
I'm out of town on business this week, so can't winterize until late Friday when temperatures are forecast to get into the 20s. I probably won't get everything finished in time, so may resort to placing drop lights in key places for the night. My only problem is that old-fashioned incandescent lights are now impossible to find in the US.

Do any of you have experience with alternatives? IR heat lamp bulbs? (Do they get too hot?) Ceramic heaters with bulb sockets, commonly sold for reptile pets? (Do they radiate the heat to another body effectively?) Others? What is safest and most effective? What fits in a drop light? I'm also willing to buy a different fixture to facilitate use of the bulb.

I've done some searching on Amazon (and need to order today to get it in time) but could use some help in sorting through the options.

FYI, heating pads are probably not an option, because the modern ones seem to all automatically shut off after 20-30 minutes.

I'd love to hear from someone who had dealt with this issue in recent years.
 

·
Senior Member
Joined
·
12,139 Posts
I’m not a fan of leaving a heater or lights on when not present. Especially a bulb designed to heat which means larger resistance.

Looking at the forecast it’s is going to get cold, yes, but only one night below freezing. It shouldn’t mess up your water systems. This is an early than usual cold system. Normal highs are 60.
 

·
Master Mariner
Joined
·
8,369 Posts
A heat lamp of many used to keep a new construction warm overnight for the employees set that mega yacht and 2 others beside it ablaze and smoke damage to a couple others, including mine, set construction back several months. For my 2 cents, if you could find a reliable person to do the winterizing , it might be a better option.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
5,311 Posts
Discussion Starter #4
The boat is at a DIY boat club. There are no reliable contractors in the area. Every time I've inquired about hiring someone, people invariably recommend their "buddy" whom I could tell from the booze on their breath that I wanted nowhere near my boat. There is absolutely nobody in the are that I would trust on my boat while I am out of town.

I'll get everything done that I can Friday night, but a couple drop lights for ~8 hours are a last resort fallback, and commonly used by my two next-door neighbors in past years. Leaving a 60w light turned on in a dry area is a risk that we all take daily in our homes and in every other aspect of our lives. I'll ditch the heat lamp, but I need to find a couple traditional incandescent bulbs.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2 Posts
I'm out of town on business this week, so can't winterize .......My only problem is that old-fashioned incandescent lights are now impossible to find in the US.
Really? Home Depot lists 185 different old fashioned incandescent bulbs. As do Lowes. And Ace Hardware. Maybe they
have one of those stores in Pennsylvania?
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,392 Posts
Why not just pick up a couple of small ceramic space heaters? They are perfectly safe to use and produce far better heat than a light bulb. A 60w or 100w bulb won't do much.


Sent from my SM-G960W using Tapatalk
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,315 Posts
Next 4 nights are forecast below freezing, but it looks like the upper air dip that is bringing the lower temperatures will swing past and be replaced with warmer air in the second half of November.

There may still be some time to winterize before the persistent cold of January-February builds.

For working on the boat when it is cold I use an oil filled radiator. I have not left it on overnight but no part gets hot enough for ignition.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
5,311 Posts
Discussion Starter #9
Really? Home Depot lists 185 different old fashioned incandescent bulbs. As do Lowes. And Ace Hardware. Maybe they
have one of those stores in Pennsylvania?
Have you actually walked into a store and looked? I went to HD and Lowes yesterday. Everything is LED. Posted wattages are “equivalent” values.
 

·
Senior Member
Joined
·
12,139 Posts
Look on the lowest shelf. I was at HD looking for the same thing yesterday. Was amazed how fr the LED has advanced,😃
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,392 Posts
I honestly don't know why people fear leaving heaters on their boats unattended. If your shore power system is done correctly and has appropriate breakers there is very very low risk of fire. Heaters are certified for use in residential dwellings. They have built in thermal safeties and do not get anywhere near hot enough to ignite anything. They are designed for long term use.

If anything I would be more concerned about running heat lamps on Jerry-rigged light fixtures. On those you have much greater risk of overheating due to poor bulb contacts, or poor wiring connections on the light fixture itself. Even then the risk is low.

Sent from my SM-G960W using Tapatalk
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
5,059 Posts
Unless the temps drop way down for a decent period of time your water systems should be okay. Water is still well above freezing... and the engine has antifreeze. If you seacocks are closed a hose bursting may be a mess but may not even happen

Sitting water can freeze. It takes a while for the boat to entirely drop below freezing.
 

·
Senior Member
Joined
·
12,139 Posts
Unless the temps drop way down for a decent period of time your water systems should be okay. Water is still well above freezing... and the engine has antifreeze. If you seacocks are closed a hose bursting may be a mess but may not even happen

Sitting water can freeze. It takes a while for the boat to entirely drop below freezing.
Rick is hauled out already I think
Either way it will not be a sustained cold
 
  • Like
Reactions: SanderO

·
Registered
Joined
·
5,311 Posts
Discussion Starter #14 (Edited)
Rick is hauled out already I think
Either way it will not be a sustained cold
Yes, my boat is hauled out. If she were in the water I wouldn't be worried.

Remember that things are a little colder up here where I live than down in Maryland. Where the boat is, the current forecast for Tue-Thur next week shows high temps averaging 6°F above freezing, and low temps average 7°F below freezing. That three day stretch is sufficiently prolonged that I need to take it seriously.
I honestly don't know why people fear leaving heaters on their boats unattended. If your shore power system is done correctly and has appropriate breakers there is very very low risk of fire. Heaters are certified for use in residential dwellings. They have built in thermal safeties and do not get anywhere near hot enough to ignite anything. They are designed for long term use.

If anything I would be more concerned about running heat lamps on Jerry-rigged light fixtures. On those you have much greater risk of overheating due to poor bulb contacts, or poor wiring connections on the light fixture itself. Even then the risk is low.
Thinking rationally, I agree with everything you say here. However, there are some other considerations.

The boat club frowns on leaving electric hooked up overnight, but people do it. A couple of boats do it all winter long, though the word around the yard is that they're not leaving heaters on, just 120v bilge pumps and droplights in cold weather. (People generally don't talk about this much, and they clam up if you ask too many questions.) If I'm going to plug in, I want to minimize the wattage for a couple reasons. The electric plugs in the yard appear to be ganged in a way that multiple boats could run off the same circuit breaker. If we all hook up a space heater, someone could blow the circuit breaker for multiple boats. I'm going to be there late Friday doing the winterization, so I'll probably be the last one to leave and can try to be sure I'm by myself on a circuit.

I stopped off at Walmart tonight and found some 72 watt incandescent bulbs (my drop lights are rated for 75 watts), so those are one option at relatively low wattage. I also found a really nice little 250W ceramic heater with overheat protection and a fan that keeps the whole case cool. (Much lower wattage than the 600-900-1500 heater that I already have, and don't want to use.) I'd prefer not to use any space heater, but I may stick the new 250W one in the engine room while I'm working, assess how it's working while I'm on the boat (not too cold, not too hot), and make a decision whether to consider leaving it for Friday night. We'll see, maybe I can get the whole boat, including motor, done in one evening and then I don't have to worry about electric.
These generate a lot of heat, and when the bulb fails, the whole thing is contained. Maybe one or two of these and a small fan to circulate the air.

https://smile.amazon.com/Woods-L33-Contractor-Portable-Halogen/dp/B0038OPP5U/ref=sr_1_1?keywords=woods+l33&qid=1573057736&sr=8-1
I actually have one of those. They're way way too hot, and IMO jury rigging a fan would be much less safe than a purpose-built space heater. But thanks for the suggestion, these things are always good food for thought.
 

·
Master Mariner
Joined
·
8,369 Posts
I honestly don't know why people fear leaving heaters on their boats unattended
It's never about the expected.
I don't know the weather in the area we are discussing, but is it fair to assume that with temperatures reaching those lows a significant gust could be possible during the system that caused them? If so, could a boat on the hard not move enough to knock a heater over where it just might cause a fire?
I know, but as they say, sh*t happens......
 
  • Like
Reactions: SanderO

·
Senior Member
Joined
·
12,139 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
5,311 Posts
Discussion Starter #17 (Edited)
It's never about the expected.
I don't know the weather in the area we are discussing, but is it fair to assume that with temperatures reaching those lows a significant gust could be possible during the system that caused them? If so, could a boat on the hard not move enough to knock a heater over where it just might cause a fire?
I know, but as they say, sh*t happens......
All space heaters sold over the last ~10 years have tipover switches. In my experience they are very sensitive, and will usually even shut off the heater if you set it on carpet.

But if any boat on the hard moves enough to knock a heater over, you've got really big problems with how the boat is blocked. A boat that's blocked properly has NO movement of the hull at all. Maybe a little vibration of the rigging in a big gust, but no motion of the hull. Period.

If your boat is on gravel or dirt it better have plywood under the stands or the stands will work loose over time. There's a guy on YouTube who posted about some movement of his boat on the hard last winter, and it was clear from his video that his stands were on gravel with no plywood under the legs.
I have a couple very similar ones from the same manufacturer at home and in my office. They are very nice, and I have used one on the boat when working in the winter. But with 600-900-1500 watts it's more heat and electrical draw than I would want if I were to leave it on overnight. That's why I bought the little 250W one this evening. Should be plenty for a confined space like around my motor.
 

·
Master Mariner
Joined
·
8,369 Posts
But if any boat on the hard moves enough to knock a heater over, you've got really big problems with how the boat is blocked. A boat that's blocked properly has NO movement of the hull at all. Maybe a little vibration of the rigging in a big gust, but no motion of the hull. Period..
Last year in Trinidad we had an earthquake that lasted over 5 minutes. I stood in the companionway (stupidly I was too mesmerized to get a camera) in the slip and watched boats as big as 53 feet hop up in the air about 5"! The steel pilings were whipping fore and aft about five' and had they been going toward the boat instead of fore and aft, they would have gone right through the topsides, rub rails and all. Oddly, not a single boat came off it's stands, just hopped straight up and down in place and none sustained any damage, but I saw all this first hand and expected many boats to go over.
There was about a 7" crack through the marina restaurant from roof through the stone floor and it had to be levelled,
As I said, it's not about the expected. They never figured out why the heater on the mega-yacht caused the fire either, but it totally destroyed 2 boats and severely damaged many more, to the tune of many millions of dollars.
 

·
Senior Member
Joined
·
12,139 Posts
Well I guess we have to plan like we could have an earthquake any time now. .....not
🤭🤭🤭🤭🤭🙀🙀🙀🙀🙀🙀😃😃😃😃😃😃😃
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
21,764 Posts
While I don’t think an incandescent bulb is much of a risk, the risk is in the wiring or extension cord, not the device. I personally know two boats that suffered.

Our marina bans anything left plugged in on the hard and all space heaters. The latter are commonly used aboard in shoulder seasons, as our respective heat pumps just won’t get the job done, while living aboard.

Not sure how an insurance policy would respond, not only for ones own hull damage, but liability to others. It would seem to be a “consequential damage”, which is almost never covered.

Again, I wouldn’t be too concerned about it, but the risk of freeze damage for a few hours is pretty low too. I hope. I was pulled this week, but haven’t gotten out to open thruhulls and let the seawater drain. That’s has to get to 28F. Fingers crossed, but have you ever tried to make ice cubes at exactly freezing temp. Takes forever.
 
1 - 20 of 30 Posts
Top