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Old 10-31-2012, 08:06 AM   #2311
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Lots of stuff to figure out today!

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Old 10-31-2012, 09:12 AM   #2312
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I have been lurking this thread for a while now and finally have a reason to chime in. On my popup i have installed one of the wave 8 propane heaters from Amazon. The thing really cooks the popup (which has lots of natural ventillation ). I imagine the 6000 btu/h model would heat the sprinter no problem.



http://www.amazon.com/s/?ie=UTF8&key...l_8hlc6xr1ff_e
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Old 10-31-2012, 09:15 AM   #2313
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Espar Airtronic D2 Heater Installation.



I'm going to be spending several hours today installing the diesel heater in the van.
After freezing our butts off a couple of nights in the desert last week.. the priority of this has become higher
I'm going to try and document this extensively in the hopes that it will help someone down the line doing a similar install because it is a fairly complicated system and it'll save you several hundred bucks if you do it yourself (not to mention the piece of mind of really knowing your setup incase you have troubles down the line)

Disclaimer: don't do it yourself if you might screw it up
I take no responsability for when you burn your vehicle to the ground (I hope I didn't just jinx myself)



What is the Airtronic D2?

Essentially it is a diesel "bunk heater". It is used in 18 wheelers to keep the drivers warm when they are sleeping in their bunks without the need for the engine to be running. It is also often used in boats. It runs off of your existing diesel fuel supply (obviously not something you'd want if your vehicle is gasoline).


Why I chose the D2:

-We need heat.
-It runs off of our existing diesel fuel tank (yay!) so we don't have to carry any extra fuel source (and since I'm trying to build the entire van to run off electric (no propane) when boondocking - this is a big plus).
-In Colorado we have a "puffer law" meaning you are not allowed to let your vehicle idle to warm up. This will also give me a way to warm up the van without risking a puffer ticket as my van is a daily driver

The D2 is VERY efficient:
on low it burns 0.1 litres per hour using 8 watts for the glow plug
on medium it burns 0.15 liters per hour using 12 watts
on high it burns 0.23 litres per hour using 22 watts

Converting that to American ... running on low (which is likely most of the time in a small van) it will burn 0.025 gallons per hour on low - times 24 hours = 0.6 gallons. So if you ran it non-stop for 24 hours it would burn just over 1/2 gallon of diesel and chances are unless it is subfreezing outside you'd never run it 24 hours.

The glow plug is 8 watts / 12 volts =0.667 = 16 amps per day running non-stop. Even a small solar panel would easily offset this.

On high the math turns out to be: 1.38 gallons for 24 hours non/stop and 44 amps (I've been told there is no way you'd be able to stay in a sprinter long with it on high as it'll be way too hot inside).


Sprinter Tip:

If you are ordering a Sprinter - make sure you get option KL1 on your order sheet... here is how it is listed on mine:


...and here is what it actually is:


A built in Diesel fuel tap!
Without the KL1 option you would have to drop your fuel tank, drill a hole in it and install your own fuel tap.

If you are looking at a used Sprinter and want to see if it has this option
Lay on the ground right beside the fuel door (which is at the back edge of the driver's door)


and then looking underneath you will see the fuel tank and the filler hose going up to the nosel above...
Right in front of that fuel filler hose is the KL1 tap.


If the Sprinter you are looking at doesn't have this tap.. keep in mind you'll have extra work to do if you pursue any diesel powered devices (installing your own tank tap).


This should make today's installation MUCH easier
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Old 10-31-2012, 09:17 AM   #2314
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bobfab View Post
I have been lurking this thread for a while now and finally have a reason to chime in. On my popup i have installed one of the wave 8 propane heaters from Amazon. The thing really cooks the popup (which has lots of natural ventillation ). I imagine the 6000 btu/h model would heat the sprinter no problem.



http://www.amazon.com/s/?ie=UTF8&key...l_8hlc6xr1ff_e
I appreciate your input Bob

We used a propane catalyst heater this past week in Moab and unfortunately it didn't work well for us.

I have a very sensitive nose (probably the only of my 5 senses that still works well ) and the entire time it is on I can smell/taste its exhaust. Even with our ceiling fan on non-stop circulating fresh air the exhaust of the propane makes me sick to my stomach. We ended up deciding it was better to be cold than run the catalyst.

Hence another reason I spent so much on this D2... its combustion air (intake and exhaust) are external on the vehicle.

I wish I were not so sensitive to the fumes as it would have saved me $1000

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Old 10-31-2012, 09:24 AM   #2315
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Can't wait!

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Old 10-31-2012, 10:22 AM   #2316
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Sutherngintelmen View Post
Advan canoe / kayak load assist:



Dismount:



no doubt
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Old 10-31-2012, 11:06 AM   #2317
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I think you'll be happy with the D2. I have some friends that recently installed this on a 37' sailboat. Prior to that, they had a different (and I think less efficient) heater. They're very happy with the result plus it's lower fuel consumption and better heating.

How will you mitigate the possibility of plugging or flooding the intake/exhaust for it (I'm guessing off-roading in wet or muddy conditions or ice buildup would the most likely to cause this)?
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Old 10-31-2012, 11:25 AM   #2318
tommu56
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did you conciser the Hydronic heaters that would heat the engine and provide heat with a heat exchanger hot air?

The Hydronic 5 from Espar

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Old 10-31-2012, 11:38 AM   #2319
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Ian: tbd - but I have some ideas.

At the moment I'm trying to figure out how to translate this:



to this:




...and then cut a 4.5" hole in the right place

This is almost as stressful as the roof vent installation


Then I have to cut a hole in the *interior* floor for this:



which is going to be a PITA. If I wasn't building things arse-backwards, I would have cut this hole out MONTHS ago because I need the plate to go down on the metal floor. Removing the floor at this point is NOT an option so instead I'll try and cut through the wood/fiberwood/massloaded vinyl/ccf foam/butyl rubber ( ) layers with a dremel so that I have a full plate mounting area then on the metal.

...but of course the metal is corrugated so I have to come up with some sort of a filler to make the surface flat for the mounting gasket.

I did get ONE thing done today. I installed this sticker.
I think I'll run a highlighter over the english text to draw attention to it




Off to Home Depot.. turns out with all of my hole saws that none of them are 4.5".
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Old 10-31-2012, 11:43 AM   #2320
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Quote:
Originally Posted by tommu56 View Post
did you conciser the Hydronic heaters that would heat the engine and provide heat with a heat exchanger hot air?

The Hydronic 5 from Espar

I did.. and I've read lots of good things about them!

Personally.. I'm trying to keep the "mercedes parts" and the "geek parts" completely independent of each other. It wasn't worth the extra expense/complexity/warranty impact/etc to me when the D2 will meet all of our goals.

If I still lived in Northern Ontario where -40 happens... I would have given it much more consideration.

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Old 10-31-2012, 02:14 PM   #2321
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Newly Subscribed!

Hey Geek!

After stumbling upon this thread a couple days ago, I just finished skimming/reading through to catch up to where you are at now. Wow! You do awesome work! I have one question though. It looks like in this picture that the driver seat is just to the right of the fridge cabinet? If so, does your swivel chair still work or would your feet be jammed into the fridge cabinet because of where you located it?

Keep pluggin' away man it looks great!

Quote:
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what's that in the back? a wall?

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Old 10-31-2012, 02:39 PM   #2322
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I believe that you can also pick up these heaters to run regular gas fuel.

I had mine installed so as not to void the warrant of the heater in case it went wrong and it saved me a bit of time. I was also able to get a discount on the D2 Airtronics since the dealer was running a special since he had so many on the shelf. I also need to pic up addition part that allow the heater to run at higher altitude.

This item is amongst the first things I had installed when I started to outfit my Sprinter and the most important thing as far as I was concerned. I have not spent a cold night in the van, the first couple of nights I slept with it on I ran the heat to high and had to get down to my underwear.

This the best thing that I have purchased so far.



Quote:
Originally Posted by Geek View Post
Espar Airtronic D2 Heater Installation.



I'm going to be spending several hours today installing the diesel heater in the van.
After freezing our butts off a couple of nights in the desert last week.. the priority of this has become higher
I'm going to try and document this extensively in the hopes that it will help someone down the line doing a similar install because it is a fairly complicated system and it'll save you several hundred bucks if you do it yourself (not to mention the piece of mind of really knowing your setup incase you have troubles down the line)

Disclaimer: don't do it yourself if you might screw it up
I take no responsability for when you burn your vehicle to the ground (I hope I didn't just jinx myself)



What is the Airtronic D2?

Essentially it is a diesel "bunk heater". It is used in 18 wheelers to keep the drivers warm when they are sleeping in their bunks without the need for the engine to be running. It is also often used in boats. It runs off of your existing diesel fuel supply (obviously not something you'd want if your vehicle is gasoline).


Why I chose the D2:

-We need heat.
-It runs off of our existing diesel fuel tank (yay!) so we don't have to carry any extra fuel source (and since I'm trying to build the entire van to run off electric (no propane) when boondocking - this is a big plus).
-In Colorado we have a "puffer law" meaning you are not allowed to let your vehicle idle to warm up. This will also give me a way to warm up the van without risking a puffer ticket as my van is a daily driver

The D2 is VERY efficient:
on low it burns 0.1 litres per hour using 8 watts for the glow plug
on medium it burns 0.15 liters per hour using 12 watts
on high it burns 0.23 litres per hour using 22 watts

Converting that to American ... running on low (which is likely most of the time in a small van) it will burn 0.025 gallons per hour on low - times 24 hours = 0.6 gallons. So if you ran it non-stop for 24 hours it would burn just over 1/2 gallon of diesel and chances are unless it is subfreezing outside you'd never run it 24 hours.

The glow plug is 8 watts / 12 volts =0.667 = 16 amps per day running non-stop. Even a small solar panel would easily offset this.

On high the math turns out to be: 1.38 gallons for 24 hours non/stop and 44 amps (I've been told there is no way you'd be able to stay in a sprinter long with it on high as it'll be way too hot inside).


Sprinter Tip:

If you are ordering a Sprinter - make sure you get option KL1 on your order sheet... here is how it is listed on mine:


...and here is what it actually is:


A built in Diesel fuel tap!
Without the KL1 option you would have to drop your fuel tank, drill a hole in it and install your own fuel tap.

If you are looking at a used Sprinter and want to see if it has this option
Lay on the ground right beside the fuel door (which is at the back edge of the driver's door)


and then looking underneath you will see the fuel tank and the filler hose going up to the nosel above...
Right in front of that fuel filler hose is the KL1 tap.


If the Sprinter you are looking at doesn't have this tap.. keep in mind you'll have extra work to do if you pursue any diesel powered devices (installing your own tank tap).


This should make today's installation MUCH easier
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Old 10-31-2012, 03:08 PM   #2323
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Miguel: do you have the contact info of the folks who did your install?

I need to go see them when I'm done so I can get them to flush my error codes.

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Old 10-31-2012, 04:07 PM   #2324
a1fa
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I love my gasoline heater in the vanagon. This is what i have:



Eberspacher BA6.

It heats up in seconds. I have hot air almost instantly.
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Old 10-31-2012, 06:21 PM   #2325
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Solar 101 questions:

Question 1:

Are all solar panels created equal as far as electricity production?

For example Panel A and Panel B are both 200 watts.

In the same sun side by side would they both produce the same amount of amps or is there other things to consider than their "rating"?

Question 2:

I've seen a panel that some folks on here listed (135 watt) listed for $310.

I've seen another panel that would fit on my roof that's 315 watts (more than double the power) for $378.

Is there any reason I should NOT spend the extra 68 bucks and get the extra power?

Sorry for the n00b question - I appreciate input from those that have already figured this out.
:cheers:
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