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Thread: How to install a heater

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Dec 2015
    Location
    Denver, CO
    Posts
    922
    Boat
    2007 22ve

    How to install a heater

    Hello again fellow Tige’ owners! I recently decided to install a heater in my 2007 22VE with a MP 340 engine.
    I live in Denver so I do a fair amount of boating in the mountains and while I’m not scared of a little cold water, there aren’t many things in boating that beat a heater hose up the shorts after a brisk run


    I wanted to put together a write up of the process and a couple areas that I put a bit of thought into to make it work and the install come out clean. Hopefully this can be of help to somebody else thinking of doing it to their boat.
    I went with a 2 outlet heatercraft 200 kit. The kit includes pretty much everything you’ll need (plumbing, electrical, and venting)
    I added a couple items that I think finish off the system better and provide better functionality.


    -I bought a 1/2 inch brass shutoff valve from Home Depot so I could turn off the system at the intake of the manifold if I had an issue with it.
    -I purchased a different Carling switch to give me factory functionality of the switch to illuminate when in use and when the nav lights are on. (The switch that comes with the kit has no illumination capabilities)
    The switch I purchased was a Carling VJD2 10 pin DPDT switch. I sourced it on eBay.

    Getting started-
    1.) Choose a location for the heater core/fan assembly to be installed. Everything else revolves around this. The major things to consider when choosing a spot are the routing for intake and return water hoses and the placement of heater outlets and flex ducting.

    The factory location for most of our boats is under the helm in the forward locker. I thought of a couple of other spots but this proved to be the best use of space for me.
    I began by test fitting the heater assembly to get an idea of where and at what angle/direction to mount it. You need to know where you’ll be routing the flex heater hoses and the intake and return water hoses to get an idea. I planned to route my flex hose to the kick panel connected to a driver foot heater and the other to a extendable hot tube that came out in the center walkway. Be sure that the spot you’re going to mount the heater assembly won’t interfere with your hot tube location. (Mine was very close)
    The water hoses got routed on top of the gas tank along side the steering cable, throttle cable and my bow ballast hoses.
    Here’s where my install got a little tricky....
    I was also installing a new 12” sub in a box I custom built for the space under the helm in this locker so I was having to combine two projects into one for a good part of this install. The sub box was going to sit over the majority of the gas tank vent tube hole so I needed to come up with a way to connect the ram air vent to the hole for ram air to vent the bilge gas fumes and because rain and splashing water get into that vent intake and need to be routed to the bilge.
    I had to lose the 4” flex duct and was left with about 1.5” between the sub box and the helm sidewall. I came up with an idea (thx Freeheel for helping me brainstorm) that would combine the routing for the vent hose/drain and the intake and return hoses for the heater. I decided to bring the hoses up through the gas tank vent hole in that locker and cap it with a 4 inch drain that I found at home depot.
    I drilled 3 holes in a line along the side of the drain cover and used silicone to seal the rest of it up so it’s close to airtight.
    I used a bit of epoxy to seal the cover into the floor.

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    Here’s a couple pics of the contraption I came up with from various Home Depot parts. (I cut a small circle hole in a 4” rubber pipe cap and epoxied a few pvc couplers into it then I connected it to a washer drain hose cut to size)
    I realize that it is a 3/4 reduction in vent from the 4” it was but I did this out of necessity. There is still another 4” vent hose in the port side locker. Thankfully I didn’t smell a single hint of fuel the first time I took it out. All in all it works perfectly and is out of sight so I’m not constantly staring at this monstrosity!

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    I was unsure exactly how thick the fiberglass was in the area I was going to hang it so I had planned on roughing up the fiberglass a bit and attaching 2 pieces of square cut hdpe with epoxy so I had something else to drill into. The heater core/fan is pretty light so I wasnt worried about the weight. (I doubt I could pry those hdpe chunks off the fiberglass if I wanted to.)
    I also wanted the heater core and fan assembly to hang pretty near level because I’m OCD like that so after adjusting the side mounts as much as they would allow (the heater assembly mounting plates are adjustable up and down on each side about 2”) I measured how much I need to supplement the mount to get the assembled to hang close to level. I used a single piece of 1/2” hdpe for one side and double stacked the other side and mounted the heater core and fan assembly by predrilling and using stainless screws of an appropriate length.

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    I oriented the core so that the intake and return fittings were facing the helm wall (towards the walkway) so the hoses could go right up that wall, turn 90 degrees and connect.

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    2.) Run your water hoses.
    The intake attaches to a threaded hole in the manifold near the water pump housing. Simply remove the allen head bolt and attach the included brass hose bard (See pic below) route it to the heater asssembly and then route the return hose from the heater assembly back to the low idle Y. Leave yourself a good amount of slack so you don’t end up cutting a hose too short. I ran the intake hose first and cut it with 2’ of extra. Then I connected the return hose to the Y and left a couple feet extra at the heater side. I trimmed and connected the sides to the heater last after I had the hosing routed exactly like I wanted and zip tied in place.
    I chose to place the Y right next to my drive outlet and a couple feet before the transmission cooler.


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    I drilled a couple small holes to run zip ties into on the locker divider support bar, that’s where I chose to run the heater hose so it cleared everything and was out of the way. I also chose to install a 1/2” brass valve inline on the intake hose here so I could shut off the flow if I needed to. Finish routing the intake hose to the heater core and attach.

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    I routed the return water hose the same way only it terminates into the low idle Y. The Y needs to be installed with the 5/8 piece angled toward the heater (away from the impeller). You’ll need to remove the section of your water pickup hose from your drive to your transmission cooler to make it easiest to install the Y.
    Cut a small section of the water pickup hose (equivalent to the length needed to accommodate the Y without changing total length) and install the Y between the cut portions of your pickup hose and install the return heater water hose on the 5/8 inch portion of the Y. Route the water pickup hose back to the trans cooler and reattach then reattach the drive portion of the pickup hose.

    ***The low idle Y***
    Basically this Y is a substitute for connecting the return at the water pump. It’s installed inline in your water pickup hose after the drive but before the trans cooler and impeller and provides suction on the heater return line for better flow at low power settings. I had read quit a few gripes online about people installing this new “low idle Y” piece and still not having great heat at idle so I did some digging and ended up using another Tige owners solution to his lack of heat. (Thanks Duffymahoney)
    The Y is a section of one inch pipe maybe 5” long with a 5/8 piece of tube welded onto the middle of the pipe at an angle with on a 1/8” hole in it to the 1” portion. I drilled it out to 3/16” so that there was just a touch more flow. I didn’t want to take a chance with it not providing heat at idle for me. I’d recommend doing it from the get go as it the heater works awesome even at idle.

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    Attached Images Attached Images
    Last edited by Jetdriver; 07-10-2019 at 07:23 AM.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Dec 2015
    Location
    Denver, CO
    Posts
    922
    Boat
    2007 22ve
    CONTINUED...


    3.) Mark and cut your holes and run the hosing for your heater outlets.
    You’ll need a 3” and a 4” hole saw for this task. I used the 3” to cut a louvered type foot vent into my kick panel and a 4” for an expandable hot tube in the walkway to the bow. I reinforced the backing for the hot tube with another piece of HDPE cut to size and epoxied to the fiberglass in the locker.
    After letting that dry I marked the center and drilled a small pilot hole from the rear (lockerside) through to the front. That way I new exactly where to drill the 4” hole with the hole saw.

    **Always drill through gelcoat in reverse! After you’re through the gelcoat you can go into forward. This avoids cracking and splitting gelcoat.
    After the 4” hole is drilled you can insert the hot tube and mark the spots for the screw holes that you’ll need to pre drill.

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    4.) Run your electrical
    This step was pretty easy with the exception of the switch tripping me up. There are 4 wires that come off the fan, low, medium, and high speeds and a ground. I was installing into a 3 position rocker switch so I could use any combo of 2 of the speeds and the fans ground went directly to the grounding post at the helm.
    I chose to use an unused accessory switch spot on my panel. I unscrewed the panel and used an ohm meter to test which wire was power in. After identifying that I marked it and got some help here from our resident Tige’ expert Chpthril as to what the other daisy chained blue wires were. Those are the night lights that turn on when the nav switch on. The other wire used is the black ground for the light bulbs in the switch. I removed the switch and reinstalled the new switch.
    I purchased a Carling VJD2-U66B 10 pin double pole double throw switch so I could have all the factory functionality as far as the lights. I also purchased a Carling contura 2 defroster switch cover that matched my other switches. Both sourced from eBay.
    After the switch arrived it was as easy as connecting my fans medium wire to pin 1, power in to pin 2, the high speed fan wire to pin 3, ground to pin 7, and the daisy chain nav lights to pin 8.

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    Finally I just needed to clean up the front of the sub install and fabricate a plate for the hole in the floor where the steering and throttle cable come up. It was just an open hole with a box around it and I was constantly getting whiffs of fuel vapors so I wanted to close it off more completely. Another piece of HDPE cut to suite and covered in carpet fit the bill.

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    I used 3m spray adhesive to re-bond any areas of carpet I removed. The stuff works great if you spray both surfaces and allow it to tack up before sticking them together.

    I hope this helps somebody out or is at least an entertaining read for all you tinkerers.

    Cheers!
    Last edited by Jetdriver; 07-10-2019 at 07:19 AM.

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