Saturday, August 13, 2011

Living Aboard: Heater

I know many of you will find it odd that I am even mentioning the need for heat but it does get cold in San Diego... just not as cold as where some of you are. It may not be life or death but it is nice to curl up and be cosy on a cold, wet, winter night (it does rain here once or twice a year). On Ellen Louise we use propane for cooking so it is only natural that we would use it for heat also. We have a Force 10 propane heater mounted on the bulkhead. It is plumbed with a permanent propane in line and exhaust out vent. It also has a very convenient spot on the top to warm hot buttered rum drinks with mini sea rails and all. This little heater will heat our entire cabin and completely dry all of the condensation off the insides of the windows. It makes cold nights much more comfortable aboard.

Little rails on the top hold drinks in place.

A word of caution: Propane heaters consume oxygen and the risk of carbon monoxide poisoning is very serious. We always leave the companionway cracked while the heater is on to supply fresh air. Yes, this makes the heater less efficient but it is a serious issue. We never sleep with the heater going and rarely let it run for longer than an hour. Our space is so small it heats up quickly and do not need to run it for long.

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