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Old 05-02-2016, 01:12 AM   #21
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I think it would if you turned the heater fans on. The only time I tried to use it, it ran my batteries down. It has a timer on it and the mechanic told me they would set it to come on a while before they started their morning route. A bus driver said they also used them when driving around if the engine wasn't producing enough heat to heat up the bus.
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Old 05-02-2016, 07:16 AM   #22
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A bit pricier than I can consider (I hope to find a full bus for not much more than they want for this): Proheat ? X45 School Bus
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Old 05-02-2016, 07:29 AM   #23
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Dapplecreek View Post
A bit pricier than I can consider (I hope to find a full bus for not much more than they want for this): Proheat ? X45 School Bus

yeah they are pricey.. I looked at them a bit myself.. you might be able to find a used trucker APU which does similar as well...

I do know for a fact in REALLY cold weather a diesel bus running slow will not stay warm inside so they used these.. a few years back I was helping with an event in minneapolis in january.. the actual (non-wind) temperature was negative 27.. i was driving one of the busses.. I think it was a mid 90s bluebird.. not sure of the engine.. it was diesel.. I had every heater in that bus turned on high and the only time I ever got warm inside was on the highway.. the temp gauge would run up to close to 1/2 then.. but back on the surface streets it would go below 1/4..

the other bus being run had an Aux heater and was roasty toasty inside and its engine reached normal temp all the time

I think though if you are building an RV, like mentioned putting PEX in your floor is the way to go and will keep you quite warm...

you WILL need to build a temperature regulation system as you almost NEVER want your floor-heat Loop temperatures over 100 degrees.. in fact when i built them into Houses i ran loop temperatures typically 90 or below but would do a run up to 100 if a customer really wanted hot feet...

your bus coolant temperature when driving is going to be 180 or above..



-Christopher
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Old 05-02-2016, 10:10 AM   #24
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Very common on Cummins and many others. It is simply a 110v heating element that protrudes into the water jacket. You plug it in to an external source and it raises the temperature of the water/coolant mix in the block. Have one on my 4BT but doubt I'll hook it up as it is jammed up against the turbo and would likely melt the cord unless removed from the engine.
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Old 05-02-2016, 10:18 AM   #25
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That's interesting. I hadn't seen or heard of those in the past.

In the military we had auxiliary diesel heaters for vehicles, but never a coolant heater that I ever saw.

Wouldn't that do basically the same thing as a tankless water heater dedicated to the bus coolant system? Of course you'd have to use a pump also.
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Old 05-02-2016, 10:33 AM   #26
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It is so funny this thread popped up today, and my start-battery died last night lol.
I checked them, and they were "puffy"...time for new ones! ...And time for my butt-head to remember and unplug them -_-
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Old 05-02-2016, 11:20 AM   #27
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I recommend you ingest several six packs to help swallow that bitter pill.
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Old 05-02-2016, 11:39 AM   #28
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Yes the Webasto and Espar could be thought of similarly to a tankless domestic water heater. They don't give the same once-through temperature rise a tankless heater would, so they won't take in 50 degree water and put out 120. But over time, recirculating the coolant over and over, they'll pre-heat the coolant, engine, cabin heaters and whatever else shares the loop to 180+ degrees.

In Europe these heaters are (apparently) very common even in regular passenger cars and are called "parking heaters."

As in cadillackid's experience, the Webasto/Espar also are used in environments where the bus engine won't produce enough "waste" heat for all the auxiliary demands, so the coolant heater is run too for passenger comfort and to keep the engine at temperature to avoid the carbon deposits that can accumulate when a diesel engine runs cold.

Several of us here have or plan to use one of these heaters for space and domestic water heating.
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Old 05-02-2016, 11:44 AM   #29
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The externally plugged in coolant/block heaters don't raise the temp all that much. They are really only intended to prevent the block from freezing in severe cold. They also help a bit with starting in those conditions.
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Old 05-02-2016, 12:45 PM   #30
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That sounds like a pretty worthwhile investment. I don't know how efficient they are but it sounds good. I like the idea of something that will heat the bus, but it sounds like you need fans. Hence the house battery system I guess.

I'll admit, a dedicated tankless water heater connected to the coolant system actually sounds a lot simpler, but again changes your fuel/power source.
I've also read a thread where they created a closed loop of coolant for heating the bus not connected to the engine, utilizing a tankless water heater. I'm leaning that direction because the bus operating temp rarely rises enough to put out heat through the heaters. Yes it gets warm even in the back, but not enough to affect the person in that seat.

I don't really like dealing with a wood stove in a bus. It feels good, but wood and ash are dirty. Besides, I've been feeding wood stoves for to much of my life already. Most of the time this stove gets used as a table, and to be able to put things inside it.

I have several of those old submersible military water heaters that you put into a garbage can full of water to boil it in about 7 minutes. They melt themselves if not fully submerged when fired. Simplicity and efficiency, but not quite appropriate for heating a bus. I can see copying the design to be used more effectively in buses.
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