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Old 11-10-2017, 03:46 PM   #1
Mini-Skoolie
 
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Building around Heaters and Hoses (Pros & Cons)

Something we’ve tossed around for a while whether or not to just get rid of the heaters like a lot of people do even though it looks like quite a process but I think we’ve come to the conclusion that living in the PNW means we’ll need those heaters if we want to drive in the winter.

Has anyone just lifted them and built around them? They could come in handy on the road and this way we wouldn’t have to flush coolant and recirculate everything.

Any thoughts or opinions from the experts would be greatly appreciated.

Stay warm out there.




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Old 11-10-2017, 06:14 PM   #2
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I'm no expert, my opinion holds value only to me...But I'm leaving mine. They help it warm up inside great. I get all four seasons and will want weekending abilities for all seasons. Rerouting doesn't sound like much more work but it is more than its worth to me to delete a heat source. I have a propane heater on the way.
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Old 11-10-2017, 06:46 PM   #3
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Anything is possible.
If you can or want to give up the extra wall thickness then go for it.
Some concerns that I would have?
Burying heater hoses in an inaccessible space. Why? Because eventually those hose are going to wear out. Whether rub in specific areas or just wear and tear because every time the coolant heats up they expand and actually stretch out some and as they cool off they contract and draw back? Options to help are while they are exposed you can re-route the hoses under the bus, change everything to hard pipe in the wall with tubing at the ends with access or new rubber tubing at a minimum so then as you take the old stuff out you can look at its condition and guess at how long the new stuff is going to last?
NOT TRYING TO SCARE YOU but I myself would not want it buried in my finished walls and not know I have a leak until my finished floor is showing signs of something leaking and my bus engine needs a gallon of fluid every couple of months?
The only other thing is to be careful of how high you raise the heater coil in concerns with the top of the radiator of your engine? Why? Because towards the top of your radiator there is/should be an overflow jug/tank that handles all the air and fluid during the expansion and contraction of the fluid in the coolant system so in my mind if you get the heaters elevated above then you will have a problem with that fluid wanting to drain back out of the coil to the radiator which will send it to the overflow tank. Which will leave air in the heater coil which won't show up at first but it will show up as the coil not working. The cause will be that it is air locked and can't move the coolant. Even with a secondary pump if the air has gotten back/into the pump.
There are several options to expand your idea if you will give us more info.
I don't have coolant heaters in my bus?
I have been doing commercial steam,gas,and hot water piping since 95 so the ones that do have coolant heaters in there build should chime in in a little.
My thoughts and opinions are from my work except burying rubber radiator hose in a wall with no access in a finished SKOOLIE. I would never be able to sleep? I would be like a dog constantly looking for a problem to protect what I had?
Don't know if the dog thing was a good analogy but mine will let me know when a piece of trash is blowing buy?
Good luck
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Old 11-10-2017, 06:54 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jolly Roger bus 223 View Post
Anything is possible.

If you can or want to give up the extra wall thickness then go for it.

Some concerns that I would have?

Burying heater hoses in an inaccessible space. Why? Because eventually those hose are going to wear out. Whether rub in specific areas or just wear and tear because every time the coolant heats up they expand and actually stretch out some and as they cool off they contract and draw back? Options to help are while they are exposed you can re-route the hoses under the bus, change everything to hard pipe in the wall with tubing at the ends with access or new rubber tubing at a minimum so then as you take the old stuff out you can look at its condition and guess at how long the new stuff is going to last?

NOT TRYING TO SCARE YOU but I myself would not want it buried in my finished walls and not know I have a leak until my finished floor is showing signs of something leaking and my bus engine needs a gallon of fluid every couple of months?

The only other thing is to be careful of how high you raise the heater coil in concerns with the top of the radiator of your engine? Why? Because towards the top of your radiator there is/should be an overflow jug/tank that handles all the air and fluid during the expansion and contraction of the fluid in the coolant system so in my mind if you get the heaters elevated above then you will have a problem with that fluid wanting to drain back out of the coil to the radiator which will send it to the overflow tank. Which will leave air in the heater coil which won't show up at first but it will show up as the coil not working. The cause will be that it is air locked and can't move the coolant. Even with a secondary pump if the air has gotten back/into the pump.

There are several options to expand your idea if you will give us more info.

I don't have coolant heaters in my bus?

I have been doing commercial steam,gas,and hot water piping since 95 so the ones that do have coolant heaters in there build should chime in in a little.

My thoughts and opinions are from my work except burying rubber radiator hose in a wall with no access in a finished SKOOLIE. I would never be able to sleep? I would be like a dog constantly looking for a problem to protect what I had?

Don't know if the dog thing was a good analogy but mine will let me know when a piece of trash is blowing buy?

Good luck


Totally great point about them being accessible, maybe we’ll build a runner box for them that’s accessible. We plan to have that wall have our desks on it anyway leaving foot room for a small box on the wall.

Thank you so much!


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Old 11-10-2017, 06:59 PM   #5
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I'm leaving that wall mostly open, my conversion had a minimalist approach. The hoses will still be accessible and able to be routed on the other side of the motorcycle, bed, fridge, dinette...plan is to protect them with storm drain hose or something similar.

Yeah definitely don't make them inaccessible.
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Old 11-10-2017, 07:13 PM   #6
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My biggest point in my head should have been with a raised/finished floor even an1/8-1/4 you won't know you have a leak until it starts showing signs in the flooring or walls? What might be an option is I actually used solid rubber flooring in all of my plumbing areas with drain holes to the underside so I could visually see a leak in that specific area.
Maybe you can cover the floor and both the skin and back of the studs around the coolant lines and some drain holes even if it is into a proposed storage bin or LP tank bin just not an electrical bin.
Where are you at? I am in NC
There are others here that have relocated and or moved there heaters and they should chime in soon.
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Old 11-10-2017, 07:19 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Stuntmanmitch View Post
I'm leaving that wall mostly open, my conversion had a minimalist approach. The hoses will still be accessible and able to be routed on the other side of the motorcycle, bed, fridge, dinette...plan is to protect them with storm drain hose or something similar.

Yeah definitely don't make them inaccessible.
Hard pipe it and forget it? Sch 80 with a piece of rubber underneath bolted solid in your bike area and never worry about it again.
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Old 11-11-2017, 01:00 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jolly Roger bus 223 View Post
Hard pipe it and forget it? Sch 80 with a piece of rubber underneath bolted solid in your bike area and never worry about it again.
That sounds like a better idea. Thanks.
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Old 11-11-2017, 03:29 PM   #9
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be careful about schedule 80 or even CPVC.. max temp i thought on most schedule 80 is 140-160f and CPVC is 200, high temp PEX is 200.. your coolant temps may very well reach or exceed those numbers at times.. and while your heater valves are likely closed in summer.. it would suck to forget, run the bus up a hill get to 210 and fail a pipe because of an over-site.. id either run 3/4" copper hardlines or keep the hoses in such a way you can repair / replace if needbe/..
-Christopher
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Old 11-11-2017, 05:22 PM   #10
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Originally Posted by cadillackid View Post
be careful about schedule 80 or even CPVC.. max temp i thought on most schedule 80 is 140-160f and CPVC is 200, high temp PEX is 200.. your coolant temps may very well reach or exceed those numbers at times.. and while your heater valves are likely closed in summer.. it would suck to forget, run the bus up a hill get to 210 and fail a pipe because of an over-site.. id either run 3/4" copper hardlines or keep the hoses in such a way you can repair / replace if needbe/..
-Christopher
He might just mean black steel pipe. Overkill and done.

1" 10890 burst psi 1360 working psi
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