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Old    Austin Top (boardridesurf)      Join Date: Aug 2006       05-04-2009, 9:08 PM Reply   
I have plans to install a heatercraft heater in my boat tomorrow to keep everyone happy and warm in the early spring, late fall and for late evening summer sessions here in Colorado. I have used the search function and just about everyone who has responded about these heaters give them lots of praise. But I just can't see how these provide enough heat in the cockpit when motoring, and I understand the engine has to be on for them to work. Even with having a pull out tube, it seems like the tube would only heat one person at a time-and then only when the engine is on.
Therefore I did a search to see if there were 12v plug-in options. Has anyone tried using a 12v plug-in blanket or small plug-in heater. It seems like these don't draw very many amps (around 6), and therefore I figure I could have two of these blankets plugged in even when the engine was off and not have any problems. Thinking back over last season, the most complaints about the cold come from the women on the boat and its usually when we are hanging out late into the evening after the sun is down and we are listening to music with the engine off. Doesn't sound like a heatercraft heater will help much with this scenario. I was convinced that the heatercraft was the way to go, but now I am second guessing this. The heatercraft will cost me around $775 installed and two 12v plug-in blankets would only cost a total of around $100 for two good ones. I am sure I will get the response to get the heatercraft for when the engine is on and to also purchase the 12v blankets. However, I am really wondering if the heatercraft is worth the $775 or if I should just make due with 12v blankets. Advice?
Old    tj (tj_in_kc)      Join Date: Jan 2008       05-04-2009, 9:14 PM Reply   
becareful with plugged in things around the water, you may remember that's how spud's mckenzie died. had headphones on and jumped into the water...tragic.
Old    Art (rallyart)      Join Date: Nov 2006       05-04-2009, 11:35 PM Reply   
There is no 12v heater that will provide you with any heat. They might keep part of a windscreen defogged.
A blanket might work some, but if it draws 6 amps at 13 volts that's only 80 watts. A week 110v heater is ten times that. A normal sleeping bag will cost less and keep you warmer, I think.
80 watts is about 270 BTU. Heatercraft 3 outlet is 40,000 BTU

(Message edited by rallyart on May 04, 2009)
Old    Bill K (bill_airjunky)      Join Date: Apr 2002       05-04-2009, 11:59 PM Reply   
Hehe, good luck on the 12v blankets. Send video please.
Old    George Aslinger (mobv)      Join Date: Jun 2002       05-05-2009, 4:36 AM Reply   
The heatcraft heater has the same surface area as a car heater and puts out slightly less heat because a boat runs at lower temperatures.

The boat is open air so the heat goes away quickly. The driver benefits greatly with warm feet and air. The pull out tube is great for warming a rider after they get out of the water. Works best with a blanket or dry towel to keep the heat in.

If you ride in cold weather a heater is the way to go.
Old    Adam Curtis (acurtis_ttu)      Join Date: May 2004       05-05-2009, 6:52 AM Reply   
I've used these for two seasons, sit on them wet too. they work pretty good. My wife really likes them. At times they get almost uncomfortable hot.

I get alot of laughs untill people end up siting on them the entire day, lol.
Old    Brit Rider (brit_rider)      Join Date: May 2004       05-05-2009, 7:30 AM Reply   
I had my heater on over the weekend in the boat (3-outlet Heatercraft) and it was a life saver!

When coming in off the water I just stuck a hot-tube up my jumper sleeve and was warm within a minute or so. Did the same a few weeks ago when I had my dry suit on also...

Since having one I'd never go back to not having one, but equally... not sure if its worth the amount of money you've been quoted... I think you maybe need to look for a better price or install the unit yourself; Mine cost me half what you paid (relatively speaking - I'm in the UK).

Are you buying direct from Heatercraft? Whats the installation cost coming in at etc?
Old    WAlove (masonwakerider)      Join Date: May 2003       05-05-2009, 8:41 AM Reply   
we used to sell a heater blanket that was some sort of plastic on top and fleece on the bottom. It had an outlet for the pull out heater vent to go into. It kept the blanket full of hot air and kept every one warm that fit under the blanket. It worked very well. I have no idea who made them though
Old    ttduncan (ttduncan)      Join Date: Jan 2008       05-05-2009, 9:13 AM Reply   
we have a heater and use it all the time. would not go with out one now. we usually keep the bow cover on to block the wind. the cockpit is warmer. the driver feet are very warm. we have never used extra blankets, just towels with the heater tube blowing in.

the $$ you are quoted seems high, but i had mine installed factory new.
Old    Chasin7 T (chaser)      Join Date: Sep 2006       05-05-2009, 9:14 AM Reply   
Maybe try a couple of these....|sm|go|tm

Old    Art (rallyart)      Join Date: Nov 2006       05-05-2009, 9:23 AM Reply   
You can also install seat heaters from the aftermarket without out too much effort. Some upholstery shops will have a selection.
Check that they are suitable for a wet environment.
Old    Greg Taylor (gregtay)      Join Date: Aug 2008       05-05-2009, 10:13 AM Reply   
We run a three port up front and a two port Heatercraft in back.. plus one of those heater blankets you plug the heater hoses into. There is not way my wife would go out without all the heat. The install is easy.. i've done three over the last 2 years and all 3 were no problem.
Old    Austin Top (boardridesurf)      Join Date: Aug 2006       05-05-2009, 10:53 AM Reply   
WAlove and Greg,
The blanket that you can plug the heater hose into sounds perfect. Does anyone know what they are called or where I can purchase them?
The heatercraft is being installed at a dealer right now, and to answer the questions about cost, I was quoted $450 for the unit, $20 for additional parts, 2-2.5 hours of labor, and tax, equaling $750. West Marine sells this same unit for $405, so I will be checking to see if I can get a price match. I know that I maybe could have done the install myself, but the dealer does excellent work and it would most likely take me a full day to do it myself. So the $250+ for installation seems worth it.
Old    Edgar Ramon (jame04)      Join Date: Nov 2007       05-05-2009, 11:39 AM Reply   
I just brought the 3H series with 3 hot tubes, complete for $396
Old    Bill K (bill_airjunky)      Join Date: Apr 2002       05-05-2009, 11:47 AM Reply   
Heres a link for the Hot Wrap blankets. I have had two of them on the boat for like 10 years. They rock.

Funny, I ran across a picnic blanket at Kohl's one day that was similar.... but it was $13. Just didn't have the hole for the heater or all the insulation between the nylon & the polar fleece.
Old    Adam Curtis (acurtis_ttu)      Join Date: May 2004       05-05-2009, 11:54 AM Reply   
Austin, make sure your dealer installs the fitting ( ?) that allows the heater to put out heat at idle.
Old    Bill K (bill_airjunky)      Join Date: Apr 2002       05-05-2009, 12:07 PM Reply   
That would be the Y adapter so that water is pushed using the raw water pump instead of the engine's water pump (more volume).

Old    Austin Top (boardridesurf)      Join Date: Aug 2006       05-05-2009, 12:10 PM Reply   
Bill-thanks for the link.

Adam-why wouldn't the heater automatically put out heat at idle as long as the engine is warm? Do you know what this fitting does specifically to allow heat at idle (does it raise the engine's rpm at idle or what?)? Do you know if this fitting comes in the heatercraft "complete" package?

Thanks for all of the help and advice.
Old    Bill K (bill_airjunky)      Join Date: Apr 2002       05-05-2009, 12:18 PM Reply   
More blankets for a bit less money. I talked to Jake at SkySki & they don't plan to make any more at this point. So once these 4 are gone, their gone.

The Y adapter moves the water return from the engine manifold to the raw water pump where water is brought into the boat. This pump pumps way more volume at idle. This was a move that Heatercraft R&D made a few years ago but has taken some time for all the boat manufacturers to grasp. I had one on my MC 205 for years & never had any issues. If you buy from a knowledgeable dealer, like, they will probably advise you about it.

(Message edited by bill_airjunky on May 05, 2009)
Old     (polkaking27)      Join Date: Feb 2005       05-05-2009, 12:19 PM Reply   

The fitting is crucial for hot air at idle. At idle the engine isn't producing enough pressure to pump a lot of hot water through the heat exchanger. When you install that fitting it creates a low pressure on that side of the line which then "sucks" the hot water through the heat exchanger.

I don't believe that it comes with the "complete package" but you can buy them for about $25-30 bucks. It may? be the extra parts that your dealer quoted you for.
Old    Edgar Ramon (jame04)      Join Date: Nov 2007       05-05-2009, 12:48 PM Reply   
Only 3 of those blankets left
Old    Austin Top (boardridesurf)      Join Date: Aug 2006       05-05-2009, 1:21 PM Reply   
Bill-Thanks for the link. I just purchased the last two blankets. Maybe Jake at SkySki needs to hook you up for selling his last four blankets in less than an hour.

Also more questions about the "Y" adapter. I just called the dealer and talked to the tech. He said that he installs the heater after the waterpump and that this fixes the issue with less heat at idle. He said that this is the best way to do the install and he doesn't recommend doing it any other way. He said if it doesn't work well for my needs then he will be happy to install the "y" at anther time.

Old    dave Noti_dad (noti_dad)      Join Date: Jul 2003       05-05-2009, 1:33 PM Reply   
How about one of these? id=3
Old    Bill K (bill_airjunky)      Join Date: Apr 2002       05-05-2009, 2:56 PM Reply   
Hehe, good job guys. You will love the blankets. Actually, your wives/girlfriends will love it.

The Hot Wraps I posted above are the originals. The owner of the company lives in the Seattle area & will custom silkscreen them for your company (like SkySki). I don't know why every boat manufacturer under the sun doesn't have these babies custom silkscreened with their logo on them & give them away to their favorite customers.

So, after the waterpump..... is this the spot in the intake manifold? If so, it seems like this was the spot I eliminated on my MC when I did the Y install. It's worth a try. If it works, great. If not, keep the plug & move the hose down to the Y. Or maybe a call to HeaterCraftwould be in order.
Old    Greg Taylor (gregtay)      Join Date: Aug 2008       05-05-2009, 5:13 PM Reply   
We actually went with this blanket: same idea, but it's a bit larger (and more expensive.) A friend of mine was able to make his own blanket last week... he used the Moomba logo from his old cover.. just cut up the cover and used that for the wind resistant side..then added fleece on the inside and left a place to attach the hoses... looks like if was made in a factory:-).

Anyway.. get a blanket.. best $100 you will ever spend.
Old    dave Noti_dad (noti_dad)      Join Date: Jul 2003       05-06-2009, 10:43 AM Reply   
Same blanket. I rep those through Mambe Blankets to Bakes. Some of the opther local shops will also have them soon. They just have an updated pic. Awesome Blanket. You'll love it.noti_dad
Old    Wakedoc (wakedoc)      Join Date: Jan 2003       05-06-2009, 8:09 PM Reply   
Anyone have any comments regarding the difference between the 2 and 3 outlet systems? The 3 outlet has a higher BTU output, so should be fine, but I have heard a few comments that it puts out less heat per outlet than the 2 system, and that some people find that they are better off with the 2. I would like to install the 3 outlet (another hot tube would be nice!), but not if it appears that you don't get the heat output per outlet. Any thoughts??
Old    Bill K (bill_airjunky)      Join Date: Apr 2002       05-06-2009, 9:39 PM Reply   
Heatercraft also sells a Y for the air ducts. So I imagine what many people are seeing are 2 duct cores setup with a Y & then 3 vents.

In my MC I had a 3 duct unit (the core is twice as long as a 2 duct unit & has 2 fans) with 2 Ys, 3 cents & 2 hot tubes. There was never any shortage of heat in that boat.

I'm considering removing the vent in my Vride & replacing it with a second hot tube. If you have the room for them, just go with all hot tubes.
Old    dave Noti_dad (noti_dad)      Join Date: Jul 2003       05-06-2009, 10:55 PM Reply   
I have a y vent making 3 instead of 2 and found that heat went down unless I block one of the y vents.
Old    Greg Taylor (gregtay)      Join Date: Aug 2008       05-07-2009, 8:56 AM Reply   
Heatercraft also has a new 4 port heater:-)... it is teh same core and blower as the 3 port.. and it is the exact same size as the 3 port (just jsut managed to fit 4 holes in the shell)... go for 4:-). If you already have a 3 you can easily convert it to a 4 port for about $75.
Old    Edgar Ramon (jame04)      Join Date: Nov 2007       05-11-2009, 9:16 AM Reply   
I ordered the 3 with 3 hot tubes and plan on installing that in my 08 X15. Wondering what system came from the factory on this boat??


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