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 > Recycling engine heat for hot water tank

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Gjac

Milford, CT

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Posted: 06/01/21 09:01am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

If it is just for hot water to me it is not worth it. If the bus has a 460 engine they tend to run hot and crack exhaust manifold's, adding a run of high temp hoses to the WH would reduce the engine temps. Have you driven the bus up a hill on a hot day yet? Does it have the 460 engine?

Grit dog

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Posted: 06/01/21 11:34am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

wildwind.creations wrote:

ALL FANTASTIC INFO HERE THANKS TO EVERYONE!

A 2008 short school bus is $8000 and seems built for long life. It seems an economical option? Perhaps used tires or parts could be found cheap? I had not considered costs of repairs.



Most of what mrandy wrote is correct. Although there are school bus conversions out there that range from basically a homeless shelter on wheels to nice full blown RV conversions.

Based on your post above, it doesn't appear that you are that "into" vehicles or handyman stuff to accomplish the latter with much efficiency or economic feasibility.

Cost of mechanical parts? Meh, same as any class 3-4 gas despite what mrandy cautioned. You need something relatively heavy duty to haul around a small mobile home.

Regarding the water heater specifically, the time and effort to install a heat exchanger seems like a waste of both. New 6 gal LP water heater is about $400 + hardware. The heat exchanger will only be useful for, what half a day after driving the vehicle I suppose if your driving every day, that is fine, or only showering and doing dishes on driving days. Otherwise, you're doing double the work and expense to have 2 separate water heaters, one of which is useless when parked.


2016 Ram 2500, MotorOps.ca EFIlive tuned, 5” turbo back, 6" lift on 37s
2017 Heartland Torque T29

wildwind.creations

fla

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Posted: 06/01/21 12:02pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Please clarify, is there an added benefit to reduce eng temp and less cracked manifolds if I run a "temp" hose to the water heater? I can see how not worth costs just for hot water.

JaxDad

Greater Toronto Area

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Posted: 06/01/21 12:08pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

wildwind.creations wrote:

ALL FANTASTIC INFO HERE THANKS TO EVERYONE!

A 2008 short school bus is $8000 and seems built for long life. It seems an economical option? Perhaps used tires or parts could be found cheap? I had not considered costs of repairs.


One thing to consider if you haven't already pulled the trigger, most school buses (especially shorties) are designed for stop & go city driving, they aren't usually geared for highway driving.

Gjac

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Posted: 06/02/21 05:52pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

wildwind.creations wrote:

Please clarify, is there an added benefit to reduce eng temp and less cracked manifolds if I run a "temp" hose to the water heater? I can see how not worth costs just for hot water.
Big Block engines both Ford and Chevy generate a lot of heat especially in heavy MH's they are known to crack the cast metal exhaust manifolds. Headers, larger cooling capacity, air dams to force air through the radiator, all help to reduce the heat. I guessing a school bus conversion when complete will weight 15-18k lbs, that is a lot of weight to pull up a hill on a hot day. If your Eng is a mid 90's or older and a 460 or 454 block you will add about 80 more HP and equivalent torque by adding headers and a FF muffler. What engine do you have in the bus? What year is the chassis?

Grit dog

Black Diamond, WA

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Posted: 06/02/21 06:28pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

The OP doesn’t own a bus. They are considering it.

wildwind.creations

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Posted: 06/02/21 08:33pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

I am still shopping for the bus .... Mine will be stripped without much installed. It likely will be 2008 +/_ a few years. It seems you get the most for your money around that year. It should be lighter than original. What is "FF" muffler?

Gjac

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Posted: 06/03/21 05:52am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Free flow low back pressure muffler. I don't know what a newer bus would have in it for an engine so I would not worry about it until you know what it is, its weight and what kind of cooling system it has.

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