Campervan Heating and Hot Water
If you like to holiday all year round then some sort of vehicle heating will be required. If you plan to have a shower in your camper and hot water supplied to your sink and basin, a reliable means of water heating is essential.
There are a large variety of products that you can choose to provide space heating and hot water, and combined appliances providing both. Diesel heaters are popular in larger motorhomes and there are also diesel powered combined systems providing heat and plentiful amounts of hot water.
Most space heaters are controlled thermostatically with a temperature selector so you can set the desired heat. When the room temperature drops below the selected level the heater will automatically ignite and run until the campervan reaches the selected temperature.
Campervan Space Heating
The older style of gas powered heaters are no longer used in campervans and motorhomes for safety reasons. The combustion from these appliances was discharged into a living space and the combustion process also removed oxygen from the living space. There was also a risk of fire from an exposed flame.
In modern appliances the combustion process is contained within a sealed compartment. The hot air from the combustion process is not directed into a living area for heat, but instead passed through a heat exchanger. It is the heat exchanger that provides the heat which is a lot cleaner and safer than the older heaters. In some systems a fan is used to distribute the heat around the motorhome and in larger vehicles the fan distributes the heat using a network of ducts.
Gas and Electric Power
Some products can operate on gas and also include an integral electric element so that you can use a mains hook-up to provide your heat. On some models you can use both sources for rapid heating. Make sure you read the instruction manual for safe and efficient use of a product.
Different power settings allow you to get the best use of the heater when using electric from hooks-ups with differing power supplies
If space is a problem you may want to opt for an externally located space heater. The Propex HS2212 is a gas or mains operated external heater designed for mounting underneath a vehicle and ducting directly through the floor into a motorhomes interior:
Campervan Water Heating
Like the space heaters you can get gas or electric water heaters and combined power systems. All have different water heating times, capacity, power usage and fitting criteria so be sure to do your research depending on your hot water requirements and your campervan layout.
There are portable units providing hot water for cleaning and showering as highlighted in our blog:
Below are some of the units available, but there are many more on offer all with different prices and attributes:
Campervan Heating and Hot Water Combination Systems
The Truma Combi 4 is a space heater with an integrated hot water boiler. Using the control panel you can select heating only, hot water only or both at the same time. This combi has four outlets for good distribution of warm air and can heat water in around 20 minutes
For a number of years the Alde system has been fitted into a lot of motorhomes. This system is similar in function to a domestic heating/hot water boiler. A mixture of water and glycol are heated by the boiler and pumped through a system of pipes to convectors placed at low level. The convectors produced hot air that rises and provide a barrier in front of windows to keep the chill off.
You can also install underfloor heating with this system and have a heated towel rail which is usually something we miss when camping.
Campervan Heating and Hot Water Diesel Systems
Eberspacher provide heating and hot water systems for a range of different applications. Their Combitronic air and water heater is a dual fuel system that can operate on diesel or 230V hook-up or a combination of both. They also have a Hydronic system which is integrated into the cooling system of a vehicle and utilizes the heat from the vehicle. These systems use diesel direct from a vehicles tank which reduces the size of gas cylinder required for cooking and other uses.
Eberspacher products can only be installed by trained and approved technicians.