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Which would be the best heating for a 63 ft boat , gas or diesel

Asked by: David Siverns  | 12.47pm, Thursday 14 November

WW says:

Both types of heating are very good for narrowboats- the key fact being that for any heating system (assuming a wet-central heating system) is to have sufficient radiator space (or blow air matrix heaters) to allow efficient distribution of heat.
Diesel fired heating systems fall into three categories- the very compact forced-air combustion heaters, drip-feed diesel boilers and pressure-jet burner units; roughly in order of increasing cost. Drip-feed ones are very useful for long-term residential use; pressure-jet boilers can be made to work more like domestic heating units. If you are considering the more compact forced air combustion units, then reading the WW article "The Burning Question" might give you some more details about how to ensure these units run with minimal problems (effectively: clean diesel, enough convector space, don't use them just to heat a calorifier and fit 22mm pipework).
Gas boilers tend to be Alde units these days- the tall, slim Comfort boiler and the Compact unit (the last one being more sophisticated, with the Comfort being less efficient but far simpler). Rarely, LPG versionso f domestic Combi boilers are fitted, but these need good 230V supplies and can be quite bulky (and too powerful) for narrowboat use, hence why they aer often not used.
Gas boilers might be easier to run in the long term, while being slightly more expensive to run as LPG prices have increased substantially compared to diesel fuel. However,the choice comes down to how you want to use your heating systems- gas being the most tolerable, followed by pressure jet diesel boilers. The other units might not always function as you would want. If you can afford them, pressure jet units like the Kabola range are excellent and efficient. However, gas units can be far cheaper and easier to also run on 230V to give background heat when connected to shorepower. Gas boilers tend to be better placed to produce just domestic hot water, as they can short-cycle far easier than diesel units. A diesel boiler just trying to heat a calorifier in the summer will cycle on-and-off, which doesn't do it good in the long term.

Mark Langley  | 1.12PM, Thursday 14 November

Readers say:

Thank you Mark for your reply, I think I should have been a bit more detailed, it already has a comfort boiler wth 2 rads, 1 in galley area,1 in bathroom, none in bedroom and a log burner in lounge, I was thinking more on the lines for an up grade and which would be more cost effective for the long term use , thanks David

David Siverns  | 9.43AM, Friday 15 November

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