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Home Skillet

Pearland Texas

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Joined: 10/21/2004

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Posted: 05/22/21 08:38pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

One of these may make more sense.


2005 Gulf Stream Conquest 31ft
BigFoot Levelers,TST in tire TPMS,Bilstein Shocks,Trans temp guage,Lowrace iWAY


Verde Valley

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Posted: 05/22/21 08:48pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Atwood GCH10A-4E
Gas Combo (electric) Heat exchanger 10Gal 4th version Electronic Ignition

Atwood GEH16-EXT
Gas Electric Heat Exchanger 10gal tank but 16gal equivalent (due to high temp and mixing valve)

Suburban SW10DEM, SW12DEM, SW16DEM
Gas/Electric in 10,12 or 16 gal tanks with Motor-Aid and electronic ignition

Heat Exchanger/Motor-Aid
1/2" tube attached to tanks that Hot Engine Coolant flows thru heating the water as you drive
2 hrs drive time will yield roughly 130*F water temps
*longer drive times doesn't cause HIGH water temps....1/2" tube/coolant flow can only transfer just so much heat)

Is it time for your medication or mine?

2007 DODGE 3500 QC SRW 5.9L CTD In-Bed 'quiet gen'
2007 HitchHiker II 32.5 UKTG 2000W Xantex Inverter
US NAVY------USS Decatur DDG31


Blythewood, SC

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Posted: 05/23/21 04:59am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

I’ve had several water heaters that used the radiator to heat the water while driving. They a great job for having hot water upon arrival. Then the normal heating process is used to heat the water. Two “Buts”:

I had one in a 2000 Winnebago/VW and after a long day of driving smelt some burning rubber coming from the area contains the WH. Apparently there were some wires routed too close to the coolant hose and started to melt. So watch for for that.

Second I bought a very abused Winnebago which had a space heater at the back of the unit heated by the radiator coolant. They very day I bought the thing and driving it home the engine overheated. Upon looking, the heater hose at the back of the mh had burst and coolant drained out. So inspect hoses often.

Tom Wilds
Blythewood, SC
2016 Newmar Baystar Sport 3004
2015 Jeep Wrangler 2dr HT


Dixie --- N. Georgia

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Posted: 05/23/21 06:58am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

We had this feature on a 2000 Itasca Horizon DP. Loved to be able to pull in and shower to relax after a day of driving. Suggest if you do this you be able to isolate the water heater from the engine in the event of a leak developing in the long piping run to and from the WH.


Davison Michigan (East of Flint)

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Posted: 05/23/21 07:47am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

There are a few heat exchange systems
Motor aid
Aqua Hot
And I think one with Hydro in it's name

All work much the same. Engine heat heats the water heater water when engine running.. Shut down and the coolant lines do not flow (well very low if any flow) Get ready to leave you can turn on an aux pump and now hot water pre-heats the engine (Also very useful) safely giving you a warm. or warmer (120 give or take a bit) engine to start and shorter warm up time.

But now you have names to google (Try Hydro Heat for the hydro version though I suspect aqua-hot will hit 'em all)

Home was where I park it. but alas the.
2005 Damon Intruder 377 Alas declared a total loss
after a semi "nicked" it. Still have the radios
Kenwood TS-2000, ICOM ID-5100, ID-51A+2, ID-880 REF030C most times


monticeeo, fla

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Posted: 05/25/21 07:06am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

I had them on two boats . Really not worth the expense , lot cheaper to heat the water when ya need it . Huge potential for leaks , both into and out of fresh water and engine coolant . But that said , many marine engines do something similar for engine cooling , run sea water thru a heat exchanger to cool engine fresh water !



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Posted: 05/25/21 08:30am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator


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.

mr_andyj wrote:

All you need is the water heater with the plumbing for the engine coolant and some heater hoses to run the coolant back to the heater. Heater hose is not going to be a cost consideration on this project. The risk is that your engine now has more places to leak coolant.
Yes, it is nice to have hot water after driving.
Sure, it will get cold eventually, or will run out after use.

I had a class c and the fresh water tank was under the floor and next to the exhaust pipe; 35 gallons. After a long drive the water would be warm enough for a shower, all 35 gallons.
Yes nice.

To save water a cold shower does the trick.
To use a lot of water then a warm shower does the trick.

Can I talk you out of a school bus?

Have you checked the price of just one tire?

I owned a 3/4 ton truck. Everything is more expensive to replace and work on. I can't imagine something bigger being cheap to own.

Consider something more reasonable. A truck and pull a trailer, or buy a box van and convert that, it at least has normal automotive parts and tires.



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Posted: 05/25/21 08:41am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

If the bus is built on an E-450 chassis, repair parts will be the same as for most class C motorhomes (as it's the same chassis). I assume that's what you mean by "Ford 450 gas" in a 2008 model year.

At least around here, usually when schools are selling school busses it's because they're at the end of their useful life and are no longer economical to keep in good/safe running order. In the north, that often means death by rust from road salt; in Florida, the specific problems are likely different. In any case, it's only reasonable to expect worn suspension parts and bushings and such like things, even if the vehicle is in basically decent shape.


Southern California

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Posted: 05/25/21 09:08am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

As long as you are pulling radiator hose consider a second space heater on the return line. Or does a bus already have this to provide heat to the rear seats?

2001 F150 SuperCrew
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Bermuda & Maryland Eastern Shore

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Posted: 05/25/21 09:40am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

My 32' Albin boat had a two way water heater. Less than half hour from cold start engine the fresh hot water was a blistering 170 plus degrees. That heat carried overnight & into the next day no problem.

Our cruising habits meant that the genny was hardly ever started to provide 120VAC to heat the water.

A system like that would be great as a regular feature for class As. Yeah, I know, extra cost that nobody wants to pay for in plumbing & the two way heater.

Boat: 32' 1996 Albin 32+2, single Cummins 315hp
40+ night per year overnighter

2007 Alpenlite 34RLR
2006 Chevy 3500 LT, CC,LB 6.6L Diesel

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