which hot water system to buy?

Submitted: Wednesday, Apr 29, 2009 at 16:08
ThreadID: 68357 Views:5566 Replies:12 FollowUps:10
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Hi all'
I have a poptop van with no hot water fitted and the wife and I always thought we will put one in when we need to,so we are planning this big trip next year and I was looking at our options at the Rose hill show last week ,our options were.

1. fit a H/W System from coast to coast or Camec gas/elec type then fit external showerpocket (little fold down door with taps and hose)Takes up valuable cupboard space, around $800-$1000

2. Buy a colman carry around system with shower attachment which takes gas cannisters or a hose adaption for 4,9 Kg bottle it still needs charging for the pump is a bit bulky (trying to save weight and space in van ) but can also come with us if we leave the van behind? $500

3. Under bonnet H.W.S a few differant brands $450-$550 I fit it

Im not sure which way to go and want to hear your thoughts as Im leaning towards the under bonnet setup for simple operation ,less chance of brake down and no need to charge up or regas,so what do you guys think?

Kind Regards John.
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Reply By: Member -Dodger - Wednesday, Apr 29, 2009 at 16:19

Wednesday, Apr 29, 2009 at 16:19
We have your fist option fitted in our van.
Viz 22ltr Suburban Gas hot water system with the external shower etc.
We love having hot water in the van on tap so to speak.
I made a shower tent/toilet tent that fits off the side of the van over the shower pocket which gives privacy etc.

We went to this system from your coleman type set up as it is a lot more convenient. Plus set up time is a little less and it all runs off the van gas system.

There is also a similar type called truman.

Plus if you buy either you can have a 240v element in them for water heating when in a van park.
I used to have a handle on life, but it broke.

Cheers Dodg.

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AnswerID: 362278

Follow Up By: Johnny boy - Wednesday, Apr 29, 2009 at 17:09

Wednesday, Apr 29, 2009 at 17:09
Hi dodger ,
That was our plan until someone asked us if we planed on exploring when on our trip and if it meant leaving the van behind to think about a portable system ,that's our dilemma at the moment LOL!

Regards John.
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Follow Up By: Member -Dodger - Wednesday, Apr 29, 2009 at 17:42

Wednesday, Apr 29, 2009 at 17:42
Billy on fire then an APC when camping.
Works for SWMBO and I.
Then a big tub when back to van.

Mostly take the van though, as its an orf roader however there are times when one must use a tent.
I used to have a handle on life, but it broke.

Cheers Dodg.

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Reply By: Member - Uncle (NSW) - Wednesday, Apr 29, 2009 at 16:24

Wednesday, Apr 29, 2009 at 16:24
I think when our Coleman decides to pull the pin again, we'll go for one of these...Site Link
AnswerID: 362279

Follow Up By: Johnny boy - Wednesday, Apr 29, 2009 at 16:52

Wednesday, Apr 29, 2009 at 16:52
Hi Uncle ,
May I ask what you mean by pull the pin AGAIN! as Im a little worried if that means you have had trouble with it, and thanks for your reply I had a look at that unit and it looks good but once again I have to store it as it comes off the bracket when not in use and Im not sure how it will go if I leave the van at a park for a week and camp they all still need to shower?

Regards John.
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FollowupID: 630030

Follow Up By: Member - Uncle (NSW) - Wednesday, Apr 29, 2009 at 17:02

Wednesday, Apr 29, 2009 at 17:02
Coleman apparently had a batch of units that had faulty regulators on them, ours was one of them. I can't complain about the after sales service though, it was fantastic. Just recently though our unit has started to become a bit more frigid, when operating it.
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FollowupID: 630033

Follow Up By: Best Off Road - Wednesday, Apr 29, 2009 at 20:51

Wednesday, Apr 29, 2009 at 20:51
Agree with Unc.

We've had two Colemans (first one rplaced under warranty). layest one failed at at Easter.

Even when working they are a fidddly temperamental thing. Hard to adjust the water temp, flame blows out when windy, the temp of the output water varies according to the temp of the input water, they tend to shut down if you add water to the input bucket whilst operating.

A dead set pain in the arse.

Good old fashioned heat the kettle and add to a bucket of cold water is far easier.

Cheers,

Jim.

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FollowupID: 630077

Reply By: sharris - Wednesday, Apr 29, 2009 at 16:52

Wednesday, Apr 29, 2009 at 16:52
Hi John

We have had a twine under bonnet system for four years now (has been trasferred from one car to another in that time) and find it extremely reliable and very convenient.
It is simply a matter of ticking the engine over (diesel) for a few minutes and then throwing the hose into the water source and away you go.
Cheers
Steve
AnswerID: 362282

Follow Up By: Johnny boy - Wednesday, Apr 29, 2009 at 17:04

Wednesday, Apr 29, 2009 at 17:04
Hi Sharris,
I went to TJM and they had a Pirana for about $550
a Bushranger for about $490 was $440 at the show
and another brand that I cant remember for about $490 also but they were not sure if the pumps could be submerged if I do a river crossing ,if i do buy one it will be going into a 1998 /100 ser diesle with A/M turbowhat is yours in ?

Regards John.
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FollowupID: 630034

Follow Up By: sharris - Wednesday, Apr 29, 2009 at 18:48

Wednesday, Apr 29, 2009 at 18:48
John...
I reckon the deluxe twine is around $465... or at least it was last time I looked....they have their own web site you can order from. The deluxe unit has a Shuflow pump which gives you 7 litres per minute. We have a two metre hose to put into a 20 litre Jerry can which works well; but also carry another four metres which we connect to the shorter hose so we can throw it in the river or lake if we are camping near water. Currently we have a 2008 Mitsubishi Pajero and previously had a 2005 Prado.
To my knowledge they can be fitted to almost any vehicle but they actually work better from my experience coz you can adjust the temp via the heater control in the cabin....this is more difficult via the new electronic temp controllers.
I do recommend that you ask for the extra length exchanger twine make (costs a little extra and you have to ask for it !) that I don't think the others make. The extra length means the water is in the heat exchanger copper coils for longer and comes out hotter. This is of particular advantage with modern diesel engines coz they tend to run cooler so if the exchanger is longer the "warm up time" is shorter and you don't need to rev the engine as high to get the water hotter.
Everyone has their own opinion and some systems are better than others based on their own needs (I have camped with people using the Coleman unit) but I would not be without our Twine unit; and as stated earlier it has been very reliable particularly if your major use for a unit is showering.

Cheers
Steve
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FollowupID: 630064

Reply By: Axel [ the real one ] - Wednesday, Apr 29, 2009 at 17:13

Wednesday, Apr 29, 2009 at 17:13
My vote goes to the Coleman , all in one unit sans water , totally portable so no restrictions on where to shower unlike under bonnet units , does 160 lt per cannister [refill ours with a MacCoupler] ,, use at home during power outages , use for hot water at park /bush BBQs ect ect ...5+ years on and still going strong.
AnswerID: 362285

Follow Up By: Best Off Road - Wednesday, Apr 29, 2009 at 20:57

Wednesday, Apr 29, 2009 at 20:57
You've been lucky Axel, I haven't had anywhere near that sort of satisfaction. And I've had two of the mongrel things.

Cheers,

Jim.

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FollowupID: 630079

Reply By: Kim and Damn Dog - Wednesday, Apr 29, 2009 at 17:16

Wednesday, Apr 29, 2009 at 17:16
If you only want the hot water for washing dishes etc, have a look at the little ECO instant unit distributed by www.rvhotwater.com I think you can pick them up for around $250.

It’s not a gas unit, and can only be used in a caravan park.

My preference is the Glind unit I've got under the bonnet of the car. The only down side to it is you have to get the motor warm in the morning for it to work.

I’m a bit of a fan of the Glind, because after six years of hard work it’s never given me a problem. Having said that, there are also similar products on the market who have an excellent reputation.

Regards

Kim
AnswerID: 362286

Reply By: Member - Mark C (NSW) - Wednesday, Apr 29, 2009 at 17:37

Wednesday, Apr 29, 2009 at 17:37
Just purchased a Rain Man Camp Shower unit for up coming trip.
Shared one with another couple on a six week trip up the csr etc last winter . Very simple unit no motors just heat up ss cylinder and pump it up an out comes enough hot water for 2 full showers.
AnswerID: 362289

Reply By: Dremus - Wednesday, Apr 29, 2009 at 20:02

Wednesday, Apr 29, 2009 at 20:02
Had nothing but trouble with our coleman. Something goes wrong with it on every trip, until recently, as it now lives in the shed as I have lost my receipt and and it wont work at all.

We now use the $25 shower head and submersible pump set up and just boil the kettle on the gas first. It works everytime and isn't much hassle even with the 2 litlle kids to wash.

When it dies I'll just buy another one!
AnswerID: 362320

Follow Up By: Best Off Road - Wednesday, Apr 29, 2009 at 20:54

Wednesday, Apr 29, 2009 at 20:54
Agree,

Fiddly, inconsistent, temperamental thing.

After owning two (first one replaced under warranty) I wouldn't accept one as a gift.

Simplicity is a far better option.

Cheers,

Jim.

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FollowupID: 630078

Reply By: Member - Paul W- Esq (VIC) - Wednesday, Apr 29, 2009 at 20:21

Wednesday, Apr 29, 2009 at 20:21
i fitted a 10 litre "Duetto" to our pop-top to wash dishes and bath the littlies and it works great,connected it to a flickmixer on the sink,mounting it in the cupboard to the right of the sink,it runs on 240v or 12VDC. only takes 10 min or less to come up to your set temp, a little longer on DC. looks like it came from Jayco with it.
AnswerID: 362329

Follow Up By: Member - Paul W- Esq (VIC) - Wednesday, Apr 29, 2009 at 20:23

Wednesday, Apr 29, 2009 at 20:23
eerrr i forgot to add it was $300
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FollowupID: 630074

Reply By: Tony - Thursday, Apr 30, 2009 at 07:24

Thursday, Apr 30, 2009 at 07:24
I'm a great fan of the under bonnet HWS. Have had Twine on the last two vehicles. The best part is after a long day on the road, and after setup, the engine is still warm so a warm/hot shower is the best thing. Little run time is needed to get the water hot.

Its always with the vehicle, takes up no extra room and quick to setup.
AnswerID: 362390

Reply By: Member - Taipo (VIC) - Thursday, Apr 30, 2009 at 16:14

Thursday, Apr 30, 2009 at 16:14
We have had acoleman for 6 yrs, has been through a garage fire which melted much of the plastic, still works great!
AnswerID: 362452

Reply By: Axel [ the real one ] - Thursday, Apr 30, 2009 at 16:59

Thursday, Apr 30, 2009 at 16:59
One of the reasons that you get the nay sayers for the Coleman unit is that they do need a little bit of maintenance done every now and then , [ no its not in the hand book ] .. For better temp control undo the screw and remove the temp control knob , remove spring , replace knob and screw,,, temp control now easier and constant ,,, clean filter gauze on pickup pump on a regular basis , if not using unit for more than a week or two fully drain the unit , if storing for longer run a solution of CLR thru unit and fully drain ,, if in constant use a CLR solution every 4-6 weeks stops any scale buildup ,, if have used muddy /creek /bore water ,flush with fresh as soon as able ,,, Never a problem with ours ,, could not begin to add up how many thousands of litres have gone thru.....
AnswerID: 362458

Reply By: arnoldo - Friday, May 01, 2009 at 23:18

Friday, May 01, 2009 at 23:18
HI JOHNNY BOY
I have a golf single axel golf outback caravan .
was going to buy a colmans hot water on demand shouwer.
to mutch muking arond have altwood hotwater system instaled with outside shouwer and extra water tank have know 150liters of water for acost of around $1500 best thing a ever done


kind regards ARNOLDO
AnswerID: 362713

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