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Old 11-06-2018, 02:24 AM   #1
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Neat Heating Idea

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Old 11-06-2018, 06:34 AM   #2
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I had to look it up. One tealight candle puts out about 100btu. That thing has 8 candles, so 800btu.

For reference, most basic, portable space heaters put out somewhere between 4000-6000btus.
120 volts * 15 amps = 1800 watts (max for most American household circuits)
1 watt hour = 3.41 btus
1800 * 3.41 = 6138 btus

That's a pretty display, but it's hardly a heat source. It could keep a closet toasty warm, though
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Old 11-06-2018, 07:12 AM   #3
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I had to look it up. One tealight candle puts out about 100btu. That thing has 8 candles, so 800btu.

For reference, most basic, portable space heaters put out somewhere between 4000-6000btus.
120 volts * 15 amps = 1800 watts (max for most American household circuits)
1 watt hour = 3.41 btus
1800 * 3.41 = 6138 btus
Quite true. However, I think the idea is to help reduce the load on a primary system to save energy. Also, several of these could effectively all but eliminate the need to run a primary system. And I'm willing to bet with the cost of generator fuel and the relative inefficiency of solar (not that it doesn't work, but it does have its drawbacks and shortcomings) that seven or eight of these placed strategically could possibly minimize the need to run a primary.
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Old 11-06-2018, 07:42 AM   #4
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I could see it being viable if you make your own candles.. and remember wax-burners are quite dirty.. being in the HVAC industry, when i went to service A/C units i could easily tell homes that had smokers and homes that burned lots of candles.. by the amount of sticky residue on A-coil and inside return ductwork.



some of that residue would likely end up on the pots in this case which would make it easier for keeping things clean..



-Christopher
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Old 11-06-2018, 07:44 AM   #5
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In a very small space

that is very well insulated and tightly sealed

will make a barely detectable difference.

Not as much as a large dog sharing that space.

Not as much as putting on some warmer clothes.

But nice psychologically, placebo can be very powerful.
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Old 11-06-2018, 10:21 PM   #6
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Tealights are pretty much liquefied after a while. Get in a small accident or just bump one of those hanging things hard and you've got really hot oil splashing around. No, thanks.
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Old 11-07-2018, 06:29 AM   #7
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Numbers are fun
Amazon sells a pack of 120 tealights for $11.99 (let's say $12).
They are said to have a 4-4.5 hour burn time. I'll go on the high end, so say 4.5 hours.

So for $12 one can expect the box of tealights to produce 120 * 100 btus/hour = 12000 BTUs/hour. With a total burn time of 4.5 hours there is a total of 54000 btus available in that box. If you were to burn the entire box worth of candles at the same time for 4.5 hours that is a reasonable amount of heat! Don't knock over any furniture

Total cost for tealights: $12 for 54000 btus.

I looked up the average price per kilowatt/hour of electricity in the USA and Google gave me $0.12. 12 cents per kilowatt hour. If we're talking about a dumb resistive heater, say a baseboard, then converting electricity to BTUs is real easy.
1 watt/hour = 3.41 BTUs.

To output 54000 BTUs with a resistive heater will require 54000 / 3.41 = ~15836 watt/hours, or 15.836 kilowatt/hours.

15.836 kilowatt/hours * $0.12 = $1.90.
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Old 11-07-2018, 06:38 AM   #8
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Since this is skoolie.net many of us are using propane. I'll look at that quickly.

Converting the final output of BTUs per pound of propane is easy enough, but most propane furnaces in campers utilize convection and aren't terribly efficient. Non-venting ones such as the Little Buddy put all the available heat into the room at the cost of also devouring your oxygen and pumping out some unwanted exhaust. But candles do the same thing, so I'll compare a non-venting burner with candles.

1lb of propane = 21,600 BTUs.

I pay $16 USD to fill my 20lber when I conveniently use the nearest gas station. They will fill the tank to the 80% mark, so 16lbs of propane. That's an easy one. $1 per pound of propane.

So to product 54000 BTUs with the propane requires me to burn 54000 / 21600 = 2.5 lbs of propane.

2.5 lbs * $1 = $2.5
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Old 11-08-2018, 04:10 AM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jazty View Post
Since this is skoolie.net many of us are using propane. I'll look at that quickly.

1lb of propane = 21,600 BTUs.

I pay $16 USD to fill my 20lber when I conveniently use the nearest gas station. They will fill the tank to the 80% mark, so 16lbs of propane. That's an easy one. $1 per pound of propane.

So to product 54000 BTUs with the propane requires me to burn 54000 / 21600 = 2.5 lbs of propane.

2.5 lbs * $1 = $2.5
Good point. However, I wonder about using propane with this idea somehow, perhaps it might reduce propane consumption by increasing efficiency through the ceramic? Just a thought...
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Old 11-08-2018, 04:25 AM   #10
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The pots just create radiant heat. Your propane heaters use the metal plates to create radiant heat, you don’t need the pots.

Open flame propane indoors in cold weather is a moisture-fest.. I myself like heat exchangers
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Old 11-08-2018, 06:08 AM   #11
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One more post to 10,000 Cadillackid! Let's see it!

Thanks for your contributions to the forum!
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Old 12-09-2018, 05:47 AM   #12
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From a listing of a Chinese diesel air heater on eBay for $175.00:

"Name: 8KW 12V Diesel Air Heater Kit
Model: A80946
Specifications
Material: carbon fiber
Color: Black
Size: 390150140mm (1565.5")
Voltage: 12V
Power: 8000W
Fuel: Diesel
Complete combustion rate: 100%
Fuel consumption: 0.1~0.24L
Working temperature: -40C~80C"

Since most out buses are diesel in the first place. It seems like a reasonable choice for heat.
I'll most likely use an 8Kw in the main cabin and a 2Kw or 5Kw in the bedroom.
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Old 12-09-2018, 08:07 AM   #13
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I just picked up a cheap chinese diesel heater and will be installing it at some point this month. I'll let everyone know how that goes but so far it seems like a winner.

After a lot of research I've determined the chinese ones are basically all the same core unit, and mostly vary based on the included accessories. Different control modules, different vents.. Some kits have a muffler, some have a fuel tank, some have a super basic remote control.

I picked mine up at Amazon and read a lot of reviews of poorly packed units that were shipped from China. I spent a few extra dollars and got one shipped from the US, and it arrived very well packed.

This is the one I bought: https://amzn.to/2Px9u3K

I'll do a full review when it's installed.
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Old 12-09-2018, 10:40 AM   #14
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Thanks Brokedown...looking forward to hearing your report!
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Old 12-09-2018, 11:12 AM   #15
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Is it a 5 kW or 2 KW. The diesel consumption specification is not clear.
0.1 -0.24 liter / hour? A liter of diesel fuel has an energy content of 10 KWh.
so at full 0.24 liter / hour setting it would be 2.4 KWh input. 60 to 70% efficiency is 1.68 KWh interior heat. rest lost through exhaust.


Curious, later Johan
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Old 12-09-2018, 11:46 AM   #16
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Thanks Brokedown...looking forward to hearing your report!
As am I. These units look to be a good value.
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Old 12-09-2018, 11:57 AM   #17
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I got the 5KW unit. I've read (but haven't validated) that the 2kw and 5kw units are the same part but differ in programming. Again, this is a rumor I heard and is very likely not true.
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Old 12-09-2018, 12:23 PM   #18
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The Facebook group on these gives great support.

Make sure to run them near full output very regularly, and occasionally on kero.

Be ready to replace the substandard parts with better quality ones, much more quickly than you would need to with the big 3 makers.

Many are interchangeable.

And **none** of these style units are designed to be used all day every day for long, I think the (better) ones that publish estimated duty cycle rate them at 10,000 hours.

For full-timing in cold conditions a bigger investment up front will pay off long term, examples like Kabola for hydronics, Dickenson Arctic, ITR's Hurricane model. . .
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Old 12-09-2018, 01:01 PM   #19
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just say'n

I'm looking forward to real user reports. I'm just guessing but if it anything like their hydraulic jacks, where they don't seem to have as many pounds in their tons as we do, I expect that they don't have as many joules in their watts as we do
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Old 12-09-2018, 05:17 PM   #20
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No, straight knockoffs of the Planar, which knocked off Espar, very similar in effectiveness and fuel consumption as Webasto.

In other words proven in millions of vehicles in cold climates around the world, of that there is no doubt, plenty of evidence over decades.

But these super cheap Chinese ones are **very** likely to break down sooner, there aren't certified dealers to go for for parts or support, you're on your own with design installation and repairs.

And my point about **designed** longevity stands for even the best quality versions.
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