What is hydronic heating?
Hydronic central heating is the use of a heat generator commonly called a boiler (or furnace) to raise the temperature of a heating medium, generally water or water and glycol mixture. The heated fluid is then circulated from the boiler through pipes to heat emitters such as passive radiators, convectors and underfloor heating coils, through the interior of the motorhome, and domestic hot water heat exchanger. The fluid loses its heat through this circulation and the cooler fluid then returns to the boiler for reheating.
What are the advantages of Hydronic heating versus hot air?
Hydronic heating has three advantages over other types of heating systems. These advantages are comfort, efficiency, and versatile installation. Hydronic heating will heat the space more evenly, there is less heat loss as the heat is transferred with a fluid and the heated fluid is easier to move around. You can have different temperatures in different areas of the boat. You can heat domestic water and incorporate engine waste heat and preheat the engine.
What are the advantages of using diesel hydronic heating versus a heat pump?
Similar to hot air systems you cannot heat domestic water and incorporate the engine. A heat pump is 115 VAC system and requires a generator and uses seawater. Also as the temperature outside decreases–output decreases.
How does the Hurricane Hydronic heating system work?
Our Hurricane heater is similar to a home boiler type of heating system. Our diesel burner however uses the on board fuel supply and operates on a 12 Volt-DC battery power supply. The boiler system then pumps the hot fluid throughout the interior of the yacht. The domestic hot water is heated “On-Demand” as it is being used or through a coil heat exchanger in a water heater storage tank. The main heat source is the diesel-burner. However the Hurricane II and Combi is equipped with one 120 or 240 VAC 1500 watt electric heating element that can provide up to an additional 5000 BTU as well as recover waste engine heat to use in the system. These three sources of heat can all be used at the same time as well.
What are the advantages of using a Hurricane diesel boiler versus other brands?
The ITR, Hurricane diesel boiler differs from others by providing heat through a patented low pressure burner that provides high BTU output but without the smell and smoke that is normally associated with diesel burners. Less pressure on the nozzle and a cleaner burner means less maintenance versus high pressure burners. Also Hurricane boilers are the only ones specifically designed for the harsh marine environment and are built with stainless steel burners, water jackets and cases for longevity. They are completely modular and field serviceable with easy diagnostics as well so they are serviceable at sea.
Which Hurricane model is best suited for my use?
In general, the SCH-25 is suitable for powerboats up to 40 feet and should control no more than 4 cabin fans and the H2 and the Combi up to 50 feet and 6 fans. Up to 6 fans can be series plumbed. The H2L which can heat up to a 65 foot boat is best to use a manifold system. With sailboats even larger lengths can be accommodated. Of course cubic feet of space, level of insulation and number of windows are the determining factors.
To get a more accurate picture you can use the following:
L x W x H (approximate for each zone or separate space) x .80 (this is the adjustment for furniture and fixtures) x one of the following factors: 8 (for small spaces like heads or work rooms); 10 (for sleeping spaces); 12 (for all other spaces, generally below 48 North and non-live aboard); and, 15 (for high use spaces, or live-aboards). For example a space 10 feet long, 12 feet wide and 6.5 feet high that is a salon (high use) would require – 10 x 12 x 6.5 x .80 x 12 or 7,488 Btu/H.
Can I purchase direct from ITR?
If there is not an authorized dealer in your area to certify the installation we will sell direct to you. We will need to be more involved with the installation process. However the manuals and the installation check sheets provide all the information required for someone to install a system properly and receive the full warranty.
What is the fuel consumption of the different Hurricane models?
Our SCH25 consumes .22 gal/hr or .84 ltr/hr, the H2 .33 gal/hr or 1.25 ltr/hr, the H2L consumes .46 gal/hr or 1.74 ltr/hr while running and the Combi .40 gal/hr or 1.50 ltr/hr. The heater should however very rarely operate continuously. Typically it operates at a 50% cycle so these numbers should be cut in half. The use of the electric immersion element and use of waste engine heat also affects this fuel consumption.
How do you use the engine waste heat and preheat function in the heating system?
The natural internal pressure of the vehicle’s engine while in use will force its hot coolant through the engine preheat loop in an external heat exchanger. You should have an engine heat aquastat so the Hurricane system’s circulation pump will run or you should leave the diesel-burner switch on while cruising as this will allow the pump(s) in the heating loop(s) to circulate and disperse the heat from the engine. For preheating the engine You can place the heat exchangers under the engines and they will slowly be heated or for quick preheating connect an external pump in the engine loop and a power switch so the coolant in the engine block circulates through the heat exchanger heated by the Hurricane.
Can I install a Hurricane system on my own?
Yes, our Installation Manuals will guide you through the entire heating system installation including mounting location, plumbing, wiring and switching the heater on for the first time. If there is a certified dealer in your area we prefer that you have the certified dealer go over the system with you before installation and then have the dealer fill out the inspection check sheet so the warranty will be effective. It is important to follow proper installation instructions or the warranty will be voided.
How often should I service my heater?
The most important thing you can do to prevent some of the common problems is to run your heater periodically like you would do with an engine or generator. A good practice is to operate the heater every 4 to 6 weeks let it cycle off and then switch it off. You should also perform an annual or 750 hour maintenance. This service would consist of a new nozzle filter and O’ring, igniter, air and fuel filter replacement, as well as a thorough cleaning of the combustion chamber, if necessary. In addition to this annual service, be sure to check the level of water and antifreeze solution every couple of months and top off, if necessary.
Where can I get my heater serviced?
Please contact our Service Department at 1-800-993-4402 in the USA or 1-800-755-1272 in
Canada to find a service location nearest to you, or check the website www.itrheat.com under dealer locations.
What if the heater produces smoke or a smelly exhaust?
Our patented diesel burner should not produce any visible smoke or diesel smell whenever the diesel-burner comes on. If there is smoke present then that is a sign that the heater requires some service or a low DC voltage situation. Please refer to the manual’s troubleshooting section or call our service numbers above.
Do your heaters electric immersion element(s) operate off of the inverter?
No, the load of the 120/240 VAC heating element is too large and will draw your batteries down very fast. Do not wire the electric elements this way but to shore power when available.
How do I winterize my Hurricane system?
The heating system must be completely drained of domestic water whenever the yacht is stored in freezing temperatures and the heating system is not in use. Even if plugged on shore power the BTU output of the element or plug in heaters may not be enough. Be sure to either drain the domestic water lines or fill them with an antifreeze mixture.
If you have any other questions that were not answered please contact us.