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Old 11-17-2018, 10:58 PM   #1
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I think I may be confused about heat

We have the aqua hot in our bus which has the electric switch as well as the diesel switch. We are newbies and we leave the diesel on constantly but starting to wonder if this is the right thing to do.

Will the aqua hot heat the coach as efficiently with just the electric switch on when hooked to 50 amp vs the diesel switch turned on? I think I now recall videos on using just the electric switch for heat and when hot water is needed for long shower or dish washing, then, turn on the diesel switch.

Anyone willing to clear this up for me? I appreciate the education.
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Old 11-17-2018, 11:03 PM   #2
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Diesel will provide much more heat than electric

When pluged in to power i leave electric on but you only get about1400 watts
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Old 11-17-2018, 11:13 PM   #3
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We try and stay in fairly mild climates and don't use the diesel side too much. Heat pumps are good above 45 degrees or so combined with heated floors we don't run the furnace much. We do turn on the diesel for hot water when it gets cold, the electric only water heater can't keep up.
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Old 11-17-2018, 11:25 PM   #4
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Thank you for the replies. I don't think I provided enough information in my original post. We are staying in a campground for the next few months with temps that will be 20 - 30 degrees. We have 3 roof top heat pumps (I think, we have 3 ac's so I think all three have heat pumps) but we choose to use the aqua hot for our heating. We also have the heated tile floors as well as a fireplace.

Specific to the aqua hot and heating the coach only. Does it heat the coach as efficiently on the electric only vs diesel? I know if we want a long time shower with hot water we need to turn it to diesel but, i am only asking about heat.
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Old 11-17-2018, 11:37 PM   #5
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Thank you for the replies. I don't think I provided enough information in my original post. We are staying in a campground for the next few months with temps that will be 20 - 30 degrees. We have 3 roof top heat pumps (I think, we have 3 ac's so I think all three have heat pumps) but we choose to use the aqua hot for our heating. We also have the heated tile floors as well as a fireplace.

Specific to the aqua hot and heating the coach only. Does it heat the coach as efficiently on the electric only vs diesel? I know if we want a long time shower with hot water we need to turn it to diesel but, i am only asking about heat.
think you will be best running your aqua hot on diesel at 20 to 30 temps. Floors and fireplace will help. Not sure heat pumps wil help at that temps don't think the electric only will handle those temps .,
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Old 11-18-2018, 12:41 AM   #6
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Originally Posted by brandss View Post
Thank you for the replies. I don't think I provided enough information in my original post. We are staying in a campground for the next few months with temps that will be 20 - 30 degrees. We have 3 roof top heat pumps (I think, we have 3 ac's so I think all three have heat pumps) but we choose to use the aqua hot for our heating. We also have the heated tile floors as well as a fireplace.

Specific to the aqua hot and heating the coach only. Does it heat the coach as efficiently on the electric only vs diesel? I know if we want a long time shower with hot water we need to turn it to diesel but, i am only asking about heat.
Set the floor to 95-98, leave the Electric on for the hydronic heating, and the probably single element, should provide enough heat, combined with the floor's heatsink mass of tile - to keep you reasonably warm. You could also augment with the fieeplace if more heat is needed. Finally, a portable 1500 heater should also seal the deal on warmth!

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Old 11-18-2018, 01:57 PM   #7
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...Specific to the aqua hot and heating the coach only. Does it heat the coach as efficiently on the electric only vs diesel? I know if we want a long time shower with hot water we need to turn it to diesel but, i am only asking about heat...
To be specific, when really cold outside the electric alone is not enough to heat the coach, you must turn on the diesel burner. We minimize using the burner by turning on the floor heat and using two Lasko towers. Heat pumps will not work under around 40 degrees.

I assume you know that when going down the road, your diesel engine will provide hot water and heat. Turn the thermostat on heat, set the temperature....leave the burner and electric off....and you'll have coach heat. You don't have to do anything for hot water....just drive.
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Old 11-18-2018, 02:57 PM   #8
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A single electric element is about 5,000 BTU.
The diesel burner is around 50,000 BTU.

Electric only is for like hot water in summertime. 5,000 BTU will never keep up heating a coach in 20 degree weather.

Think of the electric element as a single ceramic space heater... when I had issues with diesel a year or so back, TWO 5,000 BTU ceramic heaters (Lasko Towers on each end of coach) plus the electric element on the aquahot (15,000 BTU total roughly), could not get the inside above 40 degrees on a 15-20 degree day. The diesel keeps it nice and toasty.
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Old 11-18-2018, 03:13 PM   #9
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I have two electric elements in my aquahot[10000 btus] and at 30f outside they will not keep the coach over 60f. Of course the water temp coming in from the outside connection or from your tank to the aqua-hot is a lot cooler, so not much chance of a hot shower either. Have found that without heated floors or cube heaters, diesel is necessary at about 55f. to keep coach at 74f and have hot showers.
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Old 11-18-2018, 05:33 PM   #10
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Thanks everyone. Its tough learning all the ins and outs of owning a coach. You have helped me to understand the heating and how it works. Really appreciate the responses and all of the good information.
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Old 11-18-2018, 08:28 PM   #11
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I appreciate all the help too. Not sure what system we will have but reading these type threads are helping me with expectations..
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Old 11-19-2018, 01:10 AM   #12
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I have two electric elements in my aquahot[10000 btus] and at 30f outside they will not keep the coach over 60f. Of course the water temp coming in from the outside connection or from your tank to the aqua-hot is a lot cooler, so not much chance of a hot shower either. Have found that without heated floors or cube heaters, diesel is necessary at about 55f. to keep coach at 74f and have hot showers.
That's been pretty much exactly my experience too and only with one electric element

I usually just leave both electric and diesel switches on year round. May be overkill for summertime but it does give the burner some exercise. About the only time I turn the diesel off (in the summer) is if I'm in close quarters and too lazy to put the gen-turi chimney up not wanting to flood the neighbors patio with exhaust at random intervals.
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Old 11-19-2018, 04:42 PM   #13
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If you are on metered electricity you will want to use diesel for heat after the heat pumps reach the minimum outside temperature

Easy to check by monitoring the discharge temperature as the outside temp drops

You may hear the compressor kick off with the fan still running, all models are somewhat different

Re run the heat pumps down to 28-30 and switch over to gas/diesel

Our thermostat says gas instead of diesel

If unmetered electric then space heaters, electric Aquahot, and fireplace

When it drops down to zero it takes the diesel burner as well
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