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Old 09-09-2014, 12:50 AM   #1
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Aquahot vs electric heat economy

For the first time, I will be spending the winter months in a northernly location and heating costs could be significant. I have tried comparing the cost of heating by aquahot diesel vs aquahot electric vs electric spaceheaters. There are so many variables I have not been able to make any calculation that seems reliable.

For the most part, aquahot electric does not keep up when the weather is colder so my comparison has been between the diesel and electric space heaters.

Anybody with experience with this or thoughts on the issue?
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Old 09-09-2014, 04:52 AM   #2
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A lot most likely depends on the cost per KWH for electric in the area you will be staying. At times last year we used a combination of Hydro Hot boiler and a small space heater. We were not in a northern climate during last winter (thank God with those polar vortexes) I would say from my perspective the Hydro Hot seemed to be most efficient. We just used the space heater for taking the chill out.

Heating will not be your only concern. Make sure your basement compartments are heated. Also how will you be keeping your water hose and water standpipe from freezing? Can you perhaps pile hay bales around the coach to help insulate the floors? Can you add insulation to the windows? The aluminum wrapped bubble wrap seems to work well to assist in keeping the heat out, it should also work to help keep the heat in. If you use your Aqua Hot, how will you be refueling?

Most coaches, and RV's as a whole are not really designed for long term cold weather use. Many special precautions need to be made in those cases.
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Old 09-09-2014, 09:09 AM   #3
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Lat winter I made the stupid mistake of staying on our lot in Arkansas just south of Branson MO. It was there worst winter in 50 years. We used portable electric heaters during the day and the aqua hot at night. I used over 160 gallons of diesel fuel. I also put a cube heater in the basement near my water pump (and it still froze one night). My water filter for the fridge is right behind the access panel, and even though I blocked the panel with cardboard and hung a 40 watt bulb in the area, I still had 2 filters freeze and break. I also learned that if I put my engine pre heat on, the washer lines that run up through the engine compartment wouldn't freeze. The main thing I learned, is to head south after Thanksgiving…….Bruce
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Old 09-09-2014, 07:31 PM   #4
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Thanks for the info. I have resolved the issues that you raised. They are valid ones and I have had to resolve them in the past. My main goal was to identify the most economical means of heating and I was not able to determine how do that.
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Old 09-09-2014, 11:22 PM   #5
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Last winter in FL we averaged 12 gal diesel per month to heat. This may help.
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Old 09-11-2014, 05:07 PM   #6
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I can't give you any numbers, but we supplement the AH with two Lasko tower heaters.
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Old 09-11-2014, 06:11 PM   #7
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A practical approach might be to set the aquahot on a minimum comfortable temperature, say 62 degrees, and then use a portable electric heater if you want the temperature warmer for short periods. Seems when the MH parks meter the electric it's usually at a higher rate than what other permanent residential customers would pay.....

If it is warmer than 40 degrees, the heat pumps are the most efficient....colder than that just shut them off.

Also don't forget to excercise the generator for an hour each month.....can run the electric heaters at this time too.
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Old 09-12-2014, 12:03 AM   #8
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"8wheels".......How are you going to heat water? If you don't use the Aquahot on electric, you won't have hot water. It sounds like your only option is to use the Aquahot on electric and supplement with electric heaters.
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Old 09-12-2014, 12:12 AM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Coma View Post
Last winter in FL we averaged 12 gal diesel per month to heat. This may help.
Might I ask what part of FL and what months?
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Old 09-12-2014, 07:56 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ecarbone51 View Post
Might I ask what part of FL and what months?
Just south of Panama City and Dec through April.
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Old 09-12-2014, 08:11 PM   #11
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Fellow I spoke with said he spent some time in Forest City getting a slide repaired.

Did not say how much fuel he used but did say that it was -44 a couple nights and all that broke was the water filter.
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Old 09-13-2014, 03:01 PM   #12
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Using the Aqua Hot on diesel will do a better job of heating the water than the electric Aqua Hot heater. During the winter in Florida last year, even with temps in the 40s and 50s the electric heater in our Hydro Hot barely gave enough hot water to keep shower temps at comfortable levels. We used the diesel boiler when it got cold, below 40, and the heat pumps for heat when temps were above 40.

Where the OP is talking about it will be cold. I suspect portable heaters might help to supplement his Aqua Hot, but he will find the only way to keep his basement warm is with the diesel burner in the Aqua Hot. These vehicles are not designed to live in during cold winter months in the north, period, so he will most likely have to use all the methods discussed including setting up something to help block the cold from under the coach, like the hay bails discussed.
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Old 09-13-2014, 03:09 PM   #13
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I keep both the Aqua-Hot Diesel Burner switch on plus the 120 VAC Electric Assist Switch on all the time. I let the thermostats decide which one to use depending on incoming fresh water temperature, hot water demands, and baseboard hot water heat demands.

If more space heat is needed than I bring out the two Lasko Electric Ceramic Heaters to supplement until it's comfortable. If it happens to be windy outside then you will need everything that you can find to keep warm.

As the previous poster stated, these RV's are not built for wintertime use therefore if these methods don't work for you then I suggest driving father south until you reach temperatures that do work for you.

Dr4Film ----- Richard
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Old 10-21-2014, 12:18 AM   #14
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Thanks everyone for the suggestions. Basically, I am doing what most of you suggested and running the aqua-hot on both electric and diesel and supplementing with the electric space heaters.

As for the other suggestions, I have addressed most of them and found solutions like heat tape for water lines and window coverings.

Let's hope for a mild winter.
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