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Old 11-03-2021, 01:46 PM   #1
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Winterizing/ Engine and Cabin Solutions

I have a 32' Twin Screw Diesel Engine Bayliner 3270 and I'd like to get set up for my first Winter in the PNW on the docks.

I'd like a solution to keep the engine room and cabin in good shape while the temps cool down. For the engine room I'm leaning towards either two 300w Xtreme Heaters or one 600W Xtreme heater...or two of the Caframo 400W heaters. My engine room is kinda spacious for the size boat and fits two 150HP Yanmar Diesels, two 99 gallon fuel tanks, and my battery bank.

For the cabin I was thinking one Caframo Stor-Dry for the V-Berth and one for the aft cabin.

Curious on feedback. Heard some people use oil pan heaters and some use the oil filled heaters...

Thanks for the feedback! Looking for the safest, most efficient and low power solution to keep my boat between about 42 - 55 Deg F!
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Old 11-03-2021, 02:06 PM   #2
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I think that in Bellingham with your boat sitting in the water, you will be fine if you do nothing. Maybe a medium size heater of 600 watts down in the engine room that will also heat the cabin above a bit to keep the potable water system from freezing. That is what I did in New Bern, NC where the winter temps are a degree cooler than in Bellingham according to Weatherspark.com.

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Old 11-03-2021, 02:11 PM   #3
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For engine room heat, I'd be inclined to put some form of heater on the engines themselves. Either block heater, oil pan heater, or circulating coolant heater. It'll keep the engines warm and they'll radiate enough heat to keep the rest of the engine room warm.
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Old 11-03-2021, 02:26 PM   #4
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Originally Posted by rslifkin View Post
For engine room heat, I'd be inclined to put some form of heater on the engines themselves. Either block heater, oil pan heater, or circulating coolant heater. It'll keep the engines warm and they'll radiate enough heat to keep the rest of the engine room warm.
I just leave the water heater on. Radiates to keep the whole ER warm enough.
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Old 11-03-2021, 02:27 PM   #5
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I just leave the water heater on. Radiates to keep the whole ER warm enough.

That definitely helps as well, although mine doesn't make a significant difference to engine room temp. If it did, I'd be adding better insulation to it.
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Old 11-03-2021, 05:02 PM   #6
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Hi JustOne,

I'm absolutely NOT a fan of the Caframo heaters. I prefer simple oil-fired radiant heaters, sold all over the place like Lowes, Home Depot, etc. No moving parts, tipover shutoffs, etc. One or two in the staterooms topside works great, lasts long time.

Another good option is engine block heaters, which also keep your engines condensate-free, and heat the rest of the boat as well.

Don't forget-you're in an approximately ~48 deg infinite heat source (the water your boat floats in) 24/7. Little danger of damage to the boat, even in prolonged cold snaps and/or snow. In my opinion, anyway, our climate doesn't warrant "winterizing". Comfort while aboard's an entirely different subject, however.

And along with onboard heat, don't forget ventilation. VERY important to keep the onboard air circulating. Fans are your friend, as are open (but raintight) ports.

Regards,

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Old 11-03-2021, 05:17 PM   #7
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Thanks Pete, and all.

I don't plan to actually "winterize" for the same reason you mention. Just put that in my post because the nature of winter planning - though perhaps I should be more proper with my terms!

I do like the idea of engine block heaters as something that heats the inside of my engine sounds like it'll take care of my engine better as opposed to an engine room heater that will heat from 41-55 Deg F and not get my internal engine heated that much. I'll keep looking into those options...

Yes, it seems that people that own the oil fired heaters really like them...
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Old 11-03-2021, 05:57 PM   #8
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We have used a little bit of everything over the last 4 years on the water here in Seattle. First year in our 53 Tolly I really didnt do much of anything except when we got ready to use the boat (which was usually 3-4 times/mo), and i would fire up the diesel furnace an hour or two before we arrived. I also had my engine block heaters so i could remotely turn them on and would do that if i was ever worried about extreme cold (which we never really get). We had a Caframo that we would use here and there but wasnt needed much.
Next vessel was a bit more modern but didnt have diesel heat. I had one of the oil radiator style heaters in the stateroom on low. was actually overkill, but kept it nice. For the engine room, we had one of those thermostat controlled engine room heaters that would only turn on if temps dropped below 40.
The newest vessel honestly seems to never get cold at all. We have several of the oil heaters and caframos but none tend to get used. If I turn on my engine heaters the engine room is nearly 90 degrees in hours so I have to really watch that one.
All that to say, I dont think you can really go wrong. If you dont plan to use it at all over the winter, less is better. just get some of those Caframo Stor-Dry air circulators. put a few of them around the boat and be done with it.
Best of luck and I do encourage you to get out over the winter. some of the best boating in our opinion. Last year we put 140 hours in from Oct 1 to end of March. Not sure we will be able to match it this year, but will certainly try

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Old 11-03-2021, 06:32 PM   #9
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Thanks, Wade.

I do plan on and look forward to using it on some of those clear streaks that we have in the Winter season. I agree those are some of the most beautiful!
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Old 11-06-2021, 11:33 AM   #10
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Watch carefully through the first year. Minimal heat is fine. But I found air circulation is important or dead spots may occur where mildew can then form.
On my first boat mildew was a problem mostly because I did not pay enough attention.
Later,I may have gone overboard but for 10 yrs we were travelling for 4-5 months so I was extremely watchfull for any signs of mildew. I did not expect my caretaker to look after those problems, rather I had to prevent them.

I got it, mildew, even with some heat and circulation.
I eventually added two small dehumidifiers draining to the sinks and lot of ver small fans to force circulation into even the dead areas.

Our climate can be very wet, NAH, and humidity high so be watchfull for any signs of mildew as closed boats still breath and the moisture will get in, not out.
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Old 11-06-2021, 11:43 AM   #11
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Be careful of appliances and water lines (such as cockpit showers....often missed in winterizing) exposed to the outside or in spaces with a lot of exposure to the elements more so than warmer cabins...such as lazerettes under cockpits, etc.

While some spaces like living cabins get warmth from the water, areas with a lot of exposed surface compared to underwater sections can be quite different in temps.
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Old 11-06-2021, 02:11 PM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JustOne View Post
I have a 32' Twin Screw Diesel Engine Bayliner 3270 and I'd like to get set up for my first Winter in the PNW on the docks.

I'd like a solution to keep the engine room and cabin in good shape while the temps cool down. For the engine room I'm leaning towards either two 300w Xtreme Heaters or one 600W Xtreme heater...or two of the Caframo 400W heaters. My engine room is kinda spacious for the size boat and fits two 150HP Yanmar Diesels, two 99 gallon fuel tanks, and my battery bank.

For the cabin I was thinking one Caframo Stor-Dry for the V-Berth and one for the aft cabin.

Curious on feedback. Heard some people use oil pan heaters and some use the oil filled heaters...

Thanks for the feedback! Looking for the safest, most efficient and low power solution to keep my boat between about 42 - 55 Deg F!
I actually have a Caframo bilge heater I no longer need. If you want send me a message.
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Old 11-08-2021, 12:04 AM   #13
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[QUOTE=JustOne;1050415]... I'd like to get set up for my first Winter in the PNW on the docks.

A nice winterization video by Ranger Tugs factory folks:


I have wireless thermometers monitoring my boats so I always know the exact humidity and temp. During the wet months (Oct-March), with humidity in Seattle ~95%, the avg. humidity inside my boat is ~70%. I find remote monitoring of a great help as I or my caretaker can always react just in time.
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Old 11-12-2021, 08:25 PM   #14
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I'm obviously farther north with a Bayliner 32 Explorer. For heat: Engine room has a oil filled heater that fits under a desk $47 (Amazon) 700 watt (6 amps). In the cabin: Dehumidifer 48 watts (really!) Amazon $89 plus a desk top heater set on low fan and 50 degrees (6 amps). Since I live near my boat, not worried about loss of shore power.
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Old 11-13-2021, 04:25 PM   #15
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JustOne,
I recommend installing a Wolverine Oil pan heater on (each) the engine that is left running 24/7 (assuming access to shore power). They only draw about 250 watts and one kept my Cummins 6BTA engine and ER warm all winter. No rust problems on engine or anywhere else in the ER. With the oil warm, winter starts are cleaner and easier and oil flow is more quickly facilitated. Personally I would not rely on the hot water heater. It draws more power than the Oil pan heater, and the tank is insulated limiting the amount of "leaking" heat?? Keep the ER hatches open to facilitate air movement.
Mold or mildew can be a huge issue, even if the amount is small (meaning smells). Keep your bilges dry and facilitate air movement throughout the boat by keeping all cabin and cabinet doors open. I suggest running a dehumidifier you can buy at Home Depot (eg. 35 pint, etc.). Some allow you to set the humidity level. You can either visit your boat regularly to empty the tank, or set it up to drain overboard using a short hose and the galley (or head) sink drain. If using a dehumidifier, you would keep exterior windows closed and would use a fan anywhere needed to help with air circulation. You could also strategically place small heaters (even 100 watt) where needed to "keep the chill off" if you desired.

I did this successfully for many years with both former boats (one sail, one Nordic Tug). Never had rust, mold, or mildew (or smells for that matter). Again, remove any standing water in bilges regularly (if any).
Remember, watch carefully your amp draw and never draw more than 20 amps continuous on a 30 amp boat.
Good luck.
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Old 11-28-2021, 02:10 AM   #16
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New England winters

Im in my second year as full time liveaboard in new England and it gets plenty cold here,my setup is a dickinson drip heater with double turn hooked up to thermostat bypass that heats the foc'sle,engine block and oil pan also have Chinese diesel heater in engine compartment with a 2 way t fitting one blows hot air in engine compartment and other comes out between steps leading down to foc'sle which is insulated to about 20 r value and on the coldest of new England nights down to negative temps my whole boat is plenty warm and at about 20-30 percent on the hygrometer and also a few 1500w ceramic heaters to shore power when im at work
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Old 11-28-2021, 01:34 PM   #17
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Quote:
Originally Posted by firehoser75 View Post
JustOne,
I recommend installing a Wolverine Oil pan heater on (each) the engine that is left running 24/7 (assuming access to shore power). They only draw about 250 watts and one kept my Cummins 6BTA engine and ER warm all winter. No rust problems on engine or anywhere else in the ER. With the oil warm, winter starts are cleaner and easier and oil flow is more quickly facilitated. Personally I would not rely on the hot water heater. It draws more power than the Oil pan heater, and the tank is insulated limiting the amount of "leaking" heat?? Keep the ER hatches open to facilitate air movement.
Mold or mildew can be a huge issue, even if the amount is small (meaning smells). Keep your bilges dry and facilitate air movement throughout the boat by keeping all cabin and cabinet doors open. I suggest running a dehumidifier you can buy at Home Depot (eg. 35 pint, etc.). Some allow you to set the humidity level. You can either visit your boat regularly to empty the tank, or set it up to drain overboard using a short hose and the galley (or head) sink drain. If using a dehumidifier, you would keep exterior windows closed and would use a fan anywhere needed to help with air circulation. You could also strategically place small heaters (even 100 watt) where needed to "keep the chill off" if you desired.

I did this successfully for many years with both former boats (one sail, one Nordic Tug). Never had rust, mold, or mildew (or smells for that matter). Again, remove any standing water in bilges regularly (if any).
Remember, watch carefully your amp draw and never draw more than 20 amps continuous on a 30 amp boat.
Good luck.

On our NT37 in Poulsbo WA we do similarly, except that we have two Caframo heaters (one in the main berth, and one aft in the salon) rather than the Wolverine. We plug the engine room air intakes with large insulating foam tubing, and run a 30-pint de-humidifier in the galley sink. We disconnect the spray head from the cockpit shower, and leave water valves in sinks and showers open. Interior hatches and fridge and cabinet doors open. Works well - five winters so far.
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Old 11-29-2021, 07:02 AM   #18
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Oil pan heaters work and are quick to install, compared with a block heater that warms the engine coolant.

The hassle is the heat is concentrated at a single spot , which can get hot enough to coke the oil.Some of the coked oil chunks will be in the circulating oil on engine start.

Visit an overhaul shop , they can show you oil pans with mounds where the magnetic oil heater was installed.

Block coolant heaters do not have this flaw.
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Old 11-29-2021, 07:36 AM   #19
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Oil pan heaters work and are quick to install, compared with a block heater that warms the engine coolant.

The hassle is the heat is concentrated at a single spot , which can get hot enough to coke the oil.Some of the coked oil chunks will be in the circulating oil on engine start.

Visit an overhaul shop , they can show you oil pans with mounds where the magnetic oil heater was installed.

Block coolant heaters do not have this flaw.

Definitely a good idea to not use a super high powered oil heater (unless it has an internal thermostat to avoid cooking the oil) for that reason. A physically larger pad or 2 of them to spread the heat out also helps.


In general, you'll never get as much heat from an oil pan heater as a block heater (which is why most of the stick-on oil pad heaters are fairly low power unless they're very large). The ideal case for really cold weather is a circulating coolant heater (not a freeze plug heater) and a small oil pan heater, as that does the best job of getting everything warm. But it's also overkill in most cases, particularly in a boat where you don't have wind trying to keep the engine cold.
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Old 11-29-2021, 07:43 AM   #20
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As you can see, there are a number of ways to winterize your boat.
One way that has not been discussed is, moving it to a yard much further south, to a place such as Florida.
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