Diesel heater fitting

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AGPlant

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I am looking into fitting a diesel heater. We have a Devon moonraker so could fit in either a side cupboard or under the rear seat.
Is there any way I could duct the heat into the big tube at the back of the bus? What would we do with where the heat exchanger connects or would we have to cut into it further forward? Don really want to it holes in the original Devon units. Ideas needed!!
 
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Somebody once told me that the diameter of the central heat tube under the bus matched that of some standard pipe (either drainpipe or waste pipe).

If true, you can use a large number of standard fittings to make that work, e.g.
Afvoer%20T-stuk%2090%C2%B0%20%C3%98110.jpg
 

Coda

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Diesel and not petrol? AFAIK the main advantage is that you have the option of a cheap chinese heater (which also AFAIK, do not come in petrol versions). Big downside IMO - fitting another tank somewhere and somehow filling it up.

I plan to fit a heater too, but decided on petrol (I think there's only one company making petrol versions?). My current feeling is to fit it underneath somewhere near the gearbox, and tap into the existing pipes after one of the heat exchangers (where they connect to one of the bellows) or maybe modify one of the bellows itself. Modifying bellows rather than the metal pipes (Y-pipe or long transfer pipe) mean you are modifying a part which is easily sourced/replaced, and not something which is possibly an original part of the bus.
 

matty74

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Wouldn’t be without ours as we have no heat exchangers or mid section centre pipe.

Mine is plumbed into the front pipe so we are able to use the totem pole flap for up and down heat, can also introduce some cooler air via the front vent.

It’s fitted under the bus with protective guard and the slim diesel tank is fitted behind the portaloo (in the buddy seat location).

Originally I had it drawing in cold air from outside but then rerouted it to draw air from inside the van (under rock n roll bed) which works a treat.

It makes the cab toastie when we’re on the move and keeps the screen clear too.

There’s some pics on my Winnie thread in the Gallery section, post #103


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Clem

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I've seen some very neat installations under the front seat. It requires some minor body modification and the use of a small fuel tank but looks good.
 

montypsx

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Hi all I wouldn’t tap into the center pipe unless it’s very well insulated because you’ll lose a lot of heat and your heater will run flat out and flatten your battery really quickly and use a lot of fuel, I have a dorma with a diesel aberspacher and mine is in the cupboard infront of the rear wheel arch. I can run 4-5 days on 5ltrs and without recharging the battery hope this helps
 

madjack

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Running one of the cheap Chinese ones in my T4 and works a treat ,had a petrol one in the t2 and found the pump would fail if not used regularly so ended up going but to propex in the t2 one under the rock and roll and one up the front under the seat and rely on a heated screen to keep that clear
 

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Coda said:
Diesel and not petrol? AFAIK the main advantage is that you have the option of a cheap chinese heater (which also AFAIK, do not come in petrol versions). Big downside IMO - fitting another tank somewhere and somehow filling it up.

Yeah massive downside lol

 

Coda

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Coda said:
Diesel and not petrol? AFAIK the main advantage is that you have the option of a cheap chinese heater (which also AFAIK, do not come in petrol versions). Big downside IMO - fitting another tank somewhere and somehow filling it up.

Yeah massive downside lol

Sarcastic much? Each to their own.
 

mike202

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The cheap diesel heaters weren’t available when I had my Webasto petrol heater fitted. At a fraction of the price I’m not surprised they are popular and I haven’t read anything bad about them.
I do love my heater and use it a lot when camping on colder evenings and also driving in cold weather. I warm the van up for ten minutes before leaving and then turn it down otherwise it’s too warm.
I was advised by the installer to have it under the bench seat and have a central vent to blast the warm air up between the front seats. As people have said above it’s best to recycle the air from where it’s heating otherwise the heater thinks that it needs to be on all the time, as it’s drawing in cold outside air.
Installing it under the R&R bed/ bench means that there are just two small holes needed for the heater burner intake and exhaust. If it’s mounted underneath you need two larger holes instead for the cab air inlet and outlet.
I still have the stock heating system of course, which is perfectly adequate for most of the year when driving for keeping us warm without the need to fire up the petrol heater.
I wanted a minimum fuss install, and to keep everything else stock. To get around the issue of cutting into my original Westfalia panels I had a piece of laminate made to fit behind the locker door opening and leave the door off most of the time. So it’s all easily reversible. This may not be an issue for some people, depending on preference and whether you want to preserve panels.
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Low n slow

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There's some good youtube video's on how these are set up. I think you just have to use your imagination on where to put it. The diesel tanks are quite small so somewhere easy to fill is a good idea. Just search there's a few on there.
 

roobug67

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I've mounted mine under the Bed in my Westie and the fuel tank is in the engine bay. And no I'm not getting into the merits of the fuel tank there. Its safer than having a tank of Diesel in the passenger cabin area.



 

Coda

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roobug67 said:
I've mounted mine under the Bed in my Westie and the fuel tank is in the engine bay. And no I'm not getting into the merits of the fuel tank there. Its safer than having a tank of Diesel in the passenger cabin area.
After saying I was leaning towards a petrol version I decided I couldn't justify the 6-7x price so I bought a cheap diesel heater (genuine 2kw not the rebadged larger 5kw one).

Now I'm trying to figure out where to put it. I think I might do a fuel tank in the engine bay like you (BTW - you do realise your firewall between your engine and petrol tank is missing? :mrgreen: )

I still may put the heater underneath next to the gearbox if there's room. The center section of the bus has a belly pan so all that free space is unavailable at the moment (until I can the bus on the lift to remove the pan). So with a diesel tank in the engine bay, the heater underneath plumbed into the central heater Y pipe, and the control panel under the rear bench, it might just be the solution for me (my ultimate aim is to have good heat preferably coming through the original vents, with as little modification to the bus as possible).

One other thing - I know many people have advocated having the heater recirculate warm air (it's obviously more efficient) but I've also heard tales of condensation issues in some cases with not drawing fresh air from outside. What's the findings of folks here that recirculate?
 

ozziedog

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If we’re using logic here, and that’s what I’m gonna try :shock: I would think that recirculating the air as much as possible will reduce the amount of water being brought into the van as opposed to lots of new moisture laden air being the opposite effect and there is probably some other issue causing condensation or it would have happened anyway. That’s my take on it :mrgreen: .

Ozziedog,,,,,,,,,,firewalls didn’t come out until a bit later( circa1970 ) :mrgreen:
 

Coda

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ozziedog said:
If we’re using logic here, and that’s what I’m gonna try :shock: I would think that recirculating the air as much as possible will reduce the amount of water being brought into the van as opposed to lots of new moisture laden air being the opposite effect and there is probably some other issue causing condensation or it would have happened anyway. That’s my take on it :mrgreen:
That logic holds if the outside air has a high relative humidity and the people in the bus are breathing out air without moisture. But the opposite is often true (unless you’re in Wales :)) and activities like cooking also contribute more moisture.

Just the fact that heating the air means it can contain more moisture and therefore feels drier so a diesel heated bus is a win anyway for relative humidity.

So logic aside, I’m wondering what really happens in practice :mrgreen:
 

roobug67

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Coda said:
roobug67 said:
I've mounted mine under the Bed in my Westie and the fuel tank is in the engine bay. And no I'm not getting into the merits of the fuel tank there. Its safer than having a tank of Diesel in the passenger cabin area.
After saying I was leaning towards a petrol version I decided I couldn't justify the 6-7x price so I bought a cheap diesel heater (genuine 2kw not the rebadged larger 5kw one).

Now I'm trying to figure out where to put it. I think I might do a fuel tank in the engine bay like you (BTW - you do realise your firewall between your engine and petrol tank is missing? :mrgreen: )

I still may put the heater underneath next to the gearbox if there's room. The center section of the bus has a belly pan so all that free space is unavailable at the moment (until I can the bus on the lift to remove the pan). So with a diesel tank in the engine bay, the heater underneath plumbed into the central heater Y pipe, and the control panel under the rear bench, it might just be the solution for me (my ultimate aim is to have good heat preferably coming through the original vents, with as little modification to the bus as possible).

One other thing - I know many people have advocated having the heater recirculate warm air (it's obviously more efficient) but I've also heard tales of condensation issues in some cases with not drawing fresh air from outside. What's the findings of folks here that recirculate?

Mines a very early 68, the fuel tank Firewall wasn't installed until July 68 onwards. If you look a lot of the engine bay around the Fuel Tank is different on an early 68, in fact structurally elsewhere an early 68 is different to 69 MY buses.

And no issues with condensation recirculating the air inside the bus.
 

matty74

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I’ve had one fitted since mid 2019 ... it’s purely for cab heat when we’re on the go.
It now means (lockdown permitting) that we can use the van earlier and later in the year without worrying about freezing our asses off on the journey.

I originally had the air being drawn in from outside (pic 4) with a cone filter over the inlet (I have since mounted a splash guard under the heater, will add pic next time I’m at garage), but wasn’t getting as much heat through on colder wet days so decided to pipe inlet to under rear seat (pic 5) looking from above which has improved things significantly.

I chopped into the front pipe under the cab as I have no heat exchangers or centre pipe to worry about, all of this is now insulated back to the heater, as is the air inlet that runs through the hole left by the centre pipe at the rear then T’s to under the bench.

2 things to consider when mounting the heater further back and planning to use the totem pole.

1. The position of the controller, unless you extended the wires ... yes the heaters are thermostatically controlled but will run flat out to achieve set point, so having some control to hand is nice to have (in case it can’t achieved the desired set point) ... of course you could also use the remote that some of them come with.

2. The distance the heat has to travel. Mines more or less under the buddy seat / porta-loo so the heating distance is about 1.2m ... this works fine.

The great thing about utilising the totem pole is you can also introduce cooler air from the front vent flap.

We have no issues recirculating the air in terms of condensation.

Some pics

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Coda

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matty74 said:
I’ve had one fitted since mid 2019 ... it’s purely for cab heat when we’re on the go.
It now means (lockdown permitting) that we can use the van earlier and later in the year without worrying about freezing our asses off on the journey.

I originally had the air being drawn in from outside (pic 4) with a cone filter over the inlet (I have since mounted a splash guard under the heater, will add pic next time I’m at garage), but wasn’t getting as much heat through on colder wet days so decided to pipe inlet to under rear seat (pic 5) looking from above which has improved things significantly.

I chopped into the front pipe under the cab as I have no heat exchangers or centre pipe to worry about, all of this is insulated back to the heater, as is the air inlet that runs through the hole left by the centre pipe at the rear then T’s to under the bench.

2 things to consider when mounting the heater further back and planning to use the totem pole.

1. The position of the controller, unless you extended the wires ... yes the heaters are thermostatically controlled but will run flat out to achieve set point, so having some control to hand is nice to have (in case it can’t achieved the desired set point) ... of course you could also use the remote that some of them come with.

2. The distance the heat has to travel. Mines more or less under the buddy seat / porta-loo so the heating distance is about 1.2m ... this works fine.

The great thing about utilising the totem pole is you can also introduce cooler air from the front vent flap.

We have no issues recirculating the air in terms of condensation.
Thanks Mat, great installation. Mines a Dormy, and there's what they call a 'wardrobe' in the space where you have a buddy seat, which if you haven't seen one, is a tall and thin (about 19cm deep inside) cabinet designed for hanging up clothes :mrgreen:
I guess I could install a heater and a small fuel tank in there, first I'd have to remove the belly pan in order to get the air intake and exhaust through the floor.
 

matty74

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Yes I know the type of cupboard you mean,
100250391d664b97b7a783a445068681.jpg


Would this type (this is in my garage) fit in your cupboard?

Granted you’d have to elbow down through the floor to tie into your front pipe, unless you were happy just to blow warm air through a vent on the far side of the cupboard. Then it’d just be an exhaust and cold intake down through the floor.

The controller unplugs so you can mount it elsewhere ... I guess your cupboard becomes useless in terms of storage though ... just a thought.


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