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Old 11-03-2018, 09:48 AM   #1
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Planar Hydronic Heater

I am considering installing a Planar hydronic diesel furnace. Does anyone have experience with the Planar hydronic units?
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Old 11-04-2018, 07:15 PM   #2
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I’ve read the threads about Planar heaters but they address the air heaters. Does anyone have anything to add about Planar heaters in general? How about installation assistance and parts availability from the rep in BC?
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Old 11-04-2018, 07:28 PM   #3
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Looking on their website I only see hydronic units that are used for engine coolant heating, not entire boat heating. Plus the following warning posted on their website about Chinese knock offs.
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Old 11-04-2018, 09:11 PM   #4
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Hydronic heaters are not maintenance free. Talk to the respected heater dealers in your selected cruising area to see who provides best parts and service backup.

Where is your boat going to be berthed?
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Old 11-05-2018, 07:58 AM   #5
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Boat will be in the PNW. There was an 18 year old Hurricane heater installed that was completely shot because on no maintenance. The Planar is less than half the cost of a Hurricane or Webasto. In theory these things are pretty simple. I’m not interested in a knock off. Thanks for the warning link!
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Old 11-12-2018, 06:36 AM   #6
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" There was an 18 year old Hurricane heater installed that was completely shot because on no maintenance."

18 years with no maint makes me think it should simply be replaced, if it cant be repaired.

The Hurricane comes in different configurations and sizes , perhaps optomizing it for your use would lower cost?


Remember to figure in operating requirements like DC draw when comparing other units.
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Old 11-12-2018, 10:12 AM   #7
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Hydronic heat is a great system when it works, but I’m not convinced its the answer. Ive spent way too much time, effort and $$$ to keep our Hurricane running. By far, it is the most time consuming system we have on the boat. As old as your current system is, you can pretty much count on the whole system needing to be replaced. We just had all the hose replaced, over 250 ft, because the old hose was dry rotted as well as new circulation pumps. So before you jump on a less expensive heater, you might want to get quote’s on the entire system, not just the heater.
Best of luck on what ever you decide.
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Old 11-12-2018, 10:41 AM   #8
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The Hurricane II in my sailboat is 10 years old now, no more than minimum routine maintenance and no problems whatsoever. The internet is nearly overwhelmed with complaints about the Webasto/Espar boilers, so the consensus is they are not more reliable.

In a larger boat, the Kubola and Olympia boiler have a following. They are power hungry though.

If replacing the hoses or a new install, consider using XPE pipe such as Wirsbo. The heater hose commonly used in these installations is a weak link with a definite lifetime. XPE should last 4 or 5 decades minimum.
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Old 11-12-2018, 10:58 AM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Crusty Chief View Post
Hydronic heat is a great system when it works, but I’m not convinced its the answer. Ive spent way too much time, effort and $$$ to keep our Hurricane running. By far, it is the most time consuming system we have on the boat. As old as your current system is, you can pretty much count on the whole system needing to be replaced. We just had all the hose replaced, over 250 ft, because the old hose was dry rotted as well as new circulation pumps. So before you jump on a less expensive heater, you might want to get quote’s on the entire system, not just the heater.
Best of luck on what ever you decide.
Crusty, our Hurricane has done well. But we are fortunate to have a very good high quality installer and trouble shooter adjacent to our marina. After 10 years the unit came out for an R&R and new exhaust run.

An offbrand unit like a Planar seems a risk given the necessary PMs these systems need. But there is more to it than the heater itself. A reall crackerjack installer can insure all the system electrics, fail safes, fuel system, hoses, plumbing runs, Radiators, heat switches etc are setup and working properly.

The guys at Hurricane tell me the issues they normally see are primarily related to two thing:
-- lack of PMs
-- installer

Add to this the leaky radiators that needed fixing due to a " bad batch " made by a TX supplier but still labeled ITR. Rain brand made by Sure seem the best.
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Old 11-12-2018, 07:38 PM   #10
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Hurricanes are extremely easy to maintain and repair compared to webasto and espar. That said, I keep a spare compressor, fuel pump, blower and nozzle as parts do fail.

I would have a qualified tech look at rebuilding it before I gave up on it.
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Old 04-20-2019, 08:01 AM   #11
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I just wanted to repost and see if anyone had updates on Planar hydronic heaters?
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