Eberspacher D3LC vs Chinese brand vs Planar Russian ( Latvian)

Rappey

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Its impossible to import goods and parts from russia and fit them in european made goods and retain the origin status of made in latvia. The money cannot go to Russia even if they wanted it too because governments are stopping transfers to Russia and there is no route to send or receive monies. Etc
Thank you. That was very well explained . (y)
This is a discussion and i have learnt from it.

Im still a fan of cheap chinese heaters though ;)
 

Elessar

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On the other hand would you use lifejackets that were a 1/4 of the price of a fully certified branded lifejacket just because it was cheap?
It wouldn’t be necessary. The lifejacket manufacturers haven’t been convicted of price fixing and there is plenty of competition so you get what you pay for.
 

ChromeDome

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Our boat came with a genuine Webasto that ran for a winter, then died with a shorted glow plug. For this model, a spare would've cost ~300€ with a month of shipping time.

Amazon delivered a Chinese heater for 120€ the next day. Was easy to swap the devices reusing all existing piping.

This heater again ran for a full winter (more or less 24/7 usage), then died in the spring with some obscure fan fault. The vendor (after some "please try the fix in this YouTube video" exchanges), sent us a new replacement unit free of charge.

Since we winter sail (and anchor), we keep a second Chinese unit as a spare. As we learned last time, swapping them takes maybe 20min.

Based on our experiences, a lot of boat neighbours have since installed similar Chinese heaters, all without issues (except some self-inflicted installation mistakes).
I like that - especially because it is based on informed decisions.

Your final remark
..without issues (except some self-inflicted installation mistakes).
points to common sources of disappointment for DIY users who would blame the heater, the Chinese, lack of usable instructions or anything. If in need of support to remedy the error, the FB army will be the go-to oracle as mentioned.
If happy with that then fine, if not then a different supplier should have been chosen in the first place.

IMHO.
 

owen-cox

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It wouldn’t be necessary. The lifejacket manufacturers haven’t been convicted of price fixing and there is plenty of competition so you get what you pay
Autoterm have not been convicted of price fixing either and I you get what you pay for In heaters as well. The cost of warranties, customer support, training dealerships, attending shows, running websites with technical info and the high cost of all the certifications required to make a decent well supported and proven safe product is expensive to maintain. Which is why most chinese heater sellers don't bother with it. You get what you pay for.
 

NormanS

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For many people, the electrical consumption of a heater is a major deciding factor. Can your battery bank cope with the demand, or are you obliged to use, for example, a non electric drip feed heater?
The initial current demand of the various "parking heaters", is high, and then settles down depending on demand.
Are some makes of heaters more electrically efficient than others, or are they all much the same?
Another question: for years now I've been running my Eberspacher on kerosene, with some advantages and no apparent disadvantages. Can other makes of heaters run successfully on kerosene?
 

wingcommander

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Information re Chinaspacer outputs. I fitted a 2kw version , first in garage, then transferred to boat. Three years old still working. So decided to buy second unit as a spare. Orderd what i thought was same model. Arrived, has much bigger diameter outlet ( 2kw is 60mm ) and larger body so I can only assume its 5 kw. This has a permanent residence in my garage. Will still buy a second 2kw as a spare.
Agree all the fittings especially exhaust components need replacing with better quality. Also a 316 skin fitting will be required for a boat. The electronics are not as protected from moisture as a more expensive make..
Still would recommend.
 

PaulRainbow

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For many people, the electrical consumption of a heater is a major deciding factor. Can your battery bank cope with the demand, or are you obliged to use, for example, a non electric drip feed heater?
The initial current demand of the various "parking heaters", is high, and then settles down depending on demand.
Are some makes of heaters more electrically efficient than others, or are they all much the same?
Another question: for years now I've been running my Eberspacher on kerosene, with some advantages and no apparent disadvantages. Can other makes of heaters run successfully on kerosene?
I think they should all run on kerosene.

@owen-cox have you tested the Planar heaters on kerosene Owen ?
 

ChromeDome

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For many people, the electrical consumption of a heater is a major deciding factor. Can your battery bank cope with the demand, or are you obliged to use, for example, a non electric drip feed heater?
The initial current demand of the various "parking heaters", is high, and then settles down depending on demand.
Are some makes of heaters more electrically efficient than others, or are they all much the same?
Another question: for years now I've been running my Eberspacher on kerosene, with some advantages and no apparent disadvantages. Can other makes of heaters run successfully on kerosene?
Electrical consumption: Only a few realize that the digital controllers drink amps even when the heater is off. Just like your phone, a screen needs power. It varies as the latest versions actually turn the screen down or off.

Initial current: The heater needs to feed the glow plug to get the burning process started. Up to 10A, but not for long. The idea of putting the performance down when approaching the set temperature is to prevent stop/start procedures and help the battery and glow plug lifetime.

Fuel types: As opposed to passive feed systems, anything involving a pump requires lubricating, most commonly by the diesel. The metering pump in a heater is no exception (if compared to diesel cars you'll notice that injection pumps are lubricated separately, not depending on the fuel). Kerosene comes in different grades, so kerosene in the US, UK, EU states and countries can't be seen as one and the same. In some countries not even called Kerosene (petroleum, nafta, Erdöl etc.).

Edit: Build-up of soot may well be different with different fuels.

Boats running on so-called marine diesel (vegetable juice low or free) e.g. feeding the heater from the main tank, have no concerns.
 
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rotrax

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(if compared to diesel cars you'll notice that injection pumps are lubricated separately, not depending on the fuel).

Not very often in my direct experience.

I have recently removed, sent for repair/overhaul the Japanese made, Bosch licenced rotary diesel injection pump from our Yanmar and refitted it. It has no separate luberication, the same as the Rotodiesel pump on my diesel Fiat. The newer car, the Diesel Fiesta, has a common rail system, again the pressure pump is lubed by the fuel.

I have, of course, in my 50 plus years of repairing engines come across diesel injector pumps with their own lube-one very large CAV unit even had a dipstick. The internal oil in this case lubed the camshaft in the eight cylinder in-line pump.
 

vyv_cox

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I think they should all run on kerosene.

@owen-cox have you tested the Planar heaters on kerosene Owen ?
I am pretty sure I recall that the higher combustion temperature of the Planar would cause serious problems if run on kerosene.

One of the most common faults addressed by Owen is poor fuel quality, a result of FAME, long storage duration, contamination, etc. Fresh diesel is the only recommended fuel.
 

Rappey

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I ran a force 10 heater on kerosene for over 20 years. Never once did i have to clean the jet. It wasnt really powerfull enough to heat the boat nicely though.
So many have said, running on kerosene for a few hrs cleans the combustion chamber out.
Heating oil is currently around 70p per litre yet the local marina will want around £1.60 with a 60/40 split ? Not sure how that works.
From the numerous videos around it would seem the fuel consumption and power consumption rate is quite accurate whereas the power output can be somewhat questionable.
 

oldgit

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Apropos nothing.................
Way back in the diesel smoke of time a fellow boater who on occassion assisted his brother,an approved supplier/installer of Eber heaters, purchased a couple of Chinaspachers at the now long gone impossibly cheap price of somewhere around £60.00 each.
His intention was to strip them down and see if they would provide a source of low cost spares for repairing genuine Ebers for boaters on a tight budget.
His conclusion was there was virtually nothing that could be directly used and of any use, units were reassembled are still doing sterling duty to heat his garage.
He also imported one of the first " Russian" Heaters, the price was good but by the time all the charges had been added and the 6 weeks it took to arrive, it was more trouble than it was worth but he did say it was very well put together and good value for money .
Shortly afterwards the Planar was on sale in the UK and purchased a 2K version, only regret should have bought the more powerful version .
 

boomerangben

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Like NormanS, I am thoughtful of the Planar’s ability to use Kerosene (heating oil or Jet fuel). In my lottery winning dreams, I would love to go all electric on a sailing boat, except of course space and water heating that would have demands that would require substantial battery capacity. But as the industry heads increasingly towards electric propulsion in the longer term, I suspect hydrocarbon powered space and water heaters will be come more popular. If I was ever in that position, with no other need for diesel on board, space and water heating would be done from a small tank holding…….. well the cheapest would to siphon heating oil from my ch tank at home or go down to the local garage and by a 35l jug of the stuff. I’ve heard it said that our heating oil is in fact JetA1 because living on an island with an airport, it makes sense to minimise the number of different fuels imported. So being able to run a heater off other fuels seems to be to a good thing, especially fuels with a higher specific energy density.
 

ChromeDome

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Output Kw should be relatively easy to work out a maximum if you have the fuel consumption figures, a set quantity of fuel has a set energy density and can't release any more, I say max as some energy goes out the exhaust hose.
Agree.

And in there lies the fact about 5kW vs 8kW: The same unit and pump working at the same rate (up to 5 doses per second), will and can only produce the same kW. As long as the units are physically identical and burn clean, they will make the same heat.

All are 5kW or 8kW. I'm sure 5kW is the right answer.
 

Aja

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I suspect the same Vyv. The genuine Planar/Autotern is nothing like the Chines Eber copies, or genuine Eber/Webasto.

By the time you've replaced all the Chinese fittings that are made of cheese, you're nearly up to the price of a Planar.
I love the fanatics of Chinese produced heaters who say that they are potentially so cheap that it is better to buy two heaters so that you can easily replace one when it potentially goes up in flames :)
 

Aja

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That's correct, just replaced a 5.5kw Webasto with a 4kw Planar, which is quieter and puts more heat out, enough to heat a 45ft motor boat in the current weather.


I did this in the summer. To replace an old (35+ year) smelly, inefficient, smoky Eberspacher DL3 (non-compact) with a warm, working Autoterm 4kw heater which took two of us less that 4 hours to remove old and replace, prime and start new. The deal I got in the summer sale was if I remember £510 delivered.
 

Aja

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Has anyone seen one catch fire? The heater unit I mean not the installation around it as that can easily happen on any make.
I'll be honest - I don't know of anyone that would have one on their boat, so no I haven't seen one catch fire.
 

PaulRainbow

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Has anyone seen one catch fire? The heater unit I mean not the installation around it as that can easily happen on any make.
It has been reported on here, by a marine electrician that i know, that (as a test in the workshop) covered up the air intake and the heater got so hot the casing melted. There should be a safety cut out to stop that happening, obviously.
 
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