Diesel “Chinese” heaters (1 Viewer)

Apr 22, 2018
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I want to buy a diesel heater to run in Defender during cold days. Have heard good and bad about them, and watched a couple of really boring vids on YouTube about them. I know a few on here have purchased and played with them, so thought this to be great place to gain some information. Are they all the same unit basically? Are some better than others? Anything I need to be aware of? I assume they all have a thermostat?

Thanks in advance.
Andy
 

MisterB

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Feb 25, 2018
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enough to know i shouldnt touch things i know nothing about ....
mine is working great in my kitchen at home. its on from around 8am until 11pm and a full fuel tank (5 litres) lasts me for around 3 days on the lowest setting, which certainly seems to be at a higher temp than it displays. ours is the all in one model 5kw version, in a red outer case.
 

Two on Tour

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They are for the most part much of a muchness, but there are a few branded ones that a manufacturer is willing to put their name to.
I have three 5Kw Chinese diesel heaters at present, two are unbranded and one is a Lavaner Pro which is the one I have installed on our van, and they all work with no problems.
They come with a controller unit which allows you to control the heat level, plus a rudimentarily timer.
A 5Kw would be overkill in your Defender and you would struggle to keep the heat it produces down to a bearable level, so the 2Kw version would be the one to go for.
 

lynnian

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Sorry to jump in , Two on Tour, would you recommend a 5Kw or a 2kw for a 6m Motorhome only partially winterised Ace Genova with U shaped lounge
 
Apr 27, 2016
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Sorry to jump in , Two on Tour, would you recommend a 5Kw or a 2kw for a 6m Motorhome only partially winterised Ace Genova with U shaped lounge
Knowing nothing about diesel heaters, I know that the Truma heaters fitted in most motorhomes come in 4kW and 6kW versions, so maybe the 2kW diesel heater is a bit on the low side for a 6m motorhome.

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Aug 18, 2014
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Are they all the same unit basically?
Yes
Are some better than others?
No idea. I have 2 bought from differnet suppliers. apart from colour & display they are identical. Just be aware that some of the later ones come with flexible tube which has a tendency to expand when the pump is pumping.You really want the 1/8" (3mm) hard nylon tube .
I assume they all have a thermostat?
Yes .usually it just depends on what you get. My first one in 2018 just has an on/off with rotary speed control & thermostat built in. The later one has the all singing dancing panel but I much prefer the simple one.
so the 2Kw version would be the one to go for.
In reality ,yes. my first one was bought as a 2Kw but in reality is 5kw.
The 2kw ones are supposed to have a body length a lot shorter than the 5 & (kw ones. about the only way you can tell them apart.
My original one heated an uninsulated van at night with no problems & works excellently on lowest setting .
 

Two on Tour

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Sorry to jump in , Two on Tour, would you recommend a 5Kw or a 2kw for a 6m Motorhome only partially winterised Ace Genova with U shaped lounge

The 5Kw is a better option as you can always turn the heat down or off or crack open a window if it gets a bit too warm.
The 2Kw could well be flat out all the time trying to get to the temperature you want and maybe not getting there if it's very cold conditions.
 
Apr 6, 2019
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Is it Lavaner brand that was Russian? - probably wont find any of them now.
I have used MAXSPEEDINGRODS to supply diesel heaters in the past and they have been importing for a number of years now and so I have a bit more faith in them.
Do fit a metal turret where the hot parts pass through your floor and replace the very flexible fuel line with something stiffer - freely available on fleabay etc...
 
Feb 24, 2018
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Is it Lavaner brand that was Russian? - probably wont find any of them now.
I have used MAXSPEEDINGRODS to supply diesel heaters in the past and they have been importing for a number of years now and so I have a bit more faith in them.
Do fit a metal turret where the hot parts pass through your floor and replace the very flexible fuel line with something stiffer - freely available on fleabay etc...
Lavaner are Chinese but appear to have better quality control than generic ones. I wanted a Lavaner 5Kw but no production til sometime February, seem to be built/sold in small numbers.
 

Two on Tour

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Is it Lavaner brand that was Russian? - probably wont find any of them now.

Lavaner are up market Chinese diesel heaters.
Autoterm and Planar are Russian, although I understand that they are manufactured in Latvia

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Last edited:
Jul 27, 2013
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I would just say make sure you get your heater from a reputable supplier. A lot are being shipped in, and some have been stopped and seized as unsafe recently. I guess as for everything really, exercise due diligence.
 
Sep 3, 2012
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I would just say make sure you get your heater from a reputable supplier. A lot are being shipped in, and some have been stopped and seized as unsafe recently. I guess as for everything really, exercise due diligence.
It wasn't the heaters that were unsafe ,it was the instructions, but that's always been the case with Chinese imports (y)
 
Jul 9, 2017
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Fitted one in my workshop about 4 weeks ago works well however uses a lot of diesel a lot of diesel.
20230113_143438.jpg
 
Mar 30, 2019
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Unless you buy a controller upgrade they dont really have thermostats as such that turn them off when a desired temperature is reached. The control is by reducing the amount of fuel pumped in to reduce the heat output. Otherwise the glowplug would be working regularly to re-start the process and would drain your battery quite quickly.
 
Mar 30, 2019
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Wow they have increased in price, I bought one from Amazon for about £80 back in the summer. Some chancers have them for sale for over £300 :mad:

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Dec 2, 2019
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They're all pretty much the same inside tbh. The weak point on all of them is the thermostat but it's only a fiver to change it. If the heater is switched off without allowing it to go through the cooling down process then the thermostat gets too hot from the heat sink effect and fails.
Installation needs to make sure that the exhaust is safely sent outside with no chance of it coming back into the cab and also some distance from the inlet pipe. The exhaust also needs to have a fall away from the main unit to make sure water condensate can escape without blocking the pipe.
They need a fair bit of electrickery to start them and the fan and pump can be a bit noisy during operation. They can also be abit diesel smelly at start up but once running they are fine.
 
Jul 4, 2016
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What is the exhaust pipe noise like on a 5kw? We had an Eberspacher on the boat but the exhaust used to roar. Always could tell who had the heating on in the marina. Inside there was just a soft ticking noise from the fuel pump.
Great heat though.
 

Wingingit#1

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I'm gonna by one for our other van soon so watching this with interest. .
 

Two on Tour

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What is the exhaust pipe noise like on a 5kw? We had an Eberspacher on the boat but the exhaust used to roar. Always could tell who had the heating on in the marina. Inside there was just a soft ticking noise from the fuel pump.
Great heat though.

I have gone to a fair bit of effort to quieten our Chinese diesel heater for us and others that may be parked up close to us when our heater is on.
People seem to get fixated on the exhaust noise when in fact the air intake noise can be getting pretty noisy too.
On our heater, I have recently fitted a new design of silencer which not only reduces the noise level but also changes the note of the exhaust which is more pleasant on the ears.
I have also wrapped the whole length of our exhaust in exhaust wrap which helps to cut down the noise at radiates from the exhaust pipe itself.
I next turned my attention to the air intake for our heater. I have my air intake pipe running through a length of Armaflex pipe insulation to help absorb the noise, and I have also made and fitted a silencer which has helped greatly.
When on startup and flat out we still produce a fair amount of noise, but way less than the standard heater setup, but when the temperature is reached and the heater backs down to level to maintain the temperature, then it is barely audible.


This is a sample taken of the background noise.

1673727322906.png



This is the reading 400mm away from the air intake with the heater running a 2Hz heat setting.
The rod in the image was to maintain the same distance for each measurement.

1673727533246.png



The exhaust with the heater running a 2Hz heat setting.

1673727737918.png



Exhaust pipe wrapping, the silencer is now also wrapped.

1673727820421.png



Intake silencer.

1673728241409.png


1673728252879.png


1673728262938.png

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Last edited:
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Landy Andy
Apr 22, 2018
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Noise isn’t an issue for me as it’s going into a Defender, and mainly to keep my now old dog warm whilst I’m working, and he is in the Defender. But I also don’t want to cook him. Battery power, I have to big batteries used for winching and stuff, also daily drive so don’t think power will be an issue. The smaller the heater the better.

Thanks all for your input so far.
 

Wingingit#1

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A lot of people say the 3/2kw is ideal for a vdub van so i reckon thats the one i'd be going for in the defender.
They also say its best to make a little one 'work' as an idle biggun will soot itself up .
 

trevor 87

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I want to buy a diesel heater to run in Defender during cold days. Have heard good and bad about them, and watched a couple of really boring vids on YouTube about them. I know a few on here have purchased and played with them, so thought this to be great place to gain some information. Are they all the same unit basically? Are some better than others? Anything I need to be aware of? I assume they all have a thermostat?

Thanks in advance.
Andy
The Chinese heaters are a copy of the webasto D2 and the D4 there all made in the same factory In china The important bit on these heaters is the controllers the 6 bladed fan controllers have an engineering mode which allows you to fine tune the heater ect where as the. New controllers have only 3 bladed fans on the controller and do not have an engineering mode. They also have a shorter glow plug timer so tend to smoke a bit on start up Also some controllers will allow you to select auto temp mode where you set the temp the heater will then reach that temp shut down and then start up again when the temp drops 2 degrees ( uses mor battery. Power. Where as the other ones just go into low heat mode Hope this is helpful
 
OP
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Landy Andy
Apr 22, 2018
6,853
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Herts.
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Adria Coral lowline
The Chinese heaters are a copy of the webasto D2 and the D4 there all made in the same factory In china The important bit on these heaters is the controllers the 6 bladed fan controllers have an engineering mode which allows you to fine tune the heater ect where as the. New controllers have only 3 bladed fans on the controller and do not have an engineering mode. They also have a shorter glow plug timer so tend to smoke a bit on start up Also some controllers will allow you to select auto temp mode where you set the temp the heater will then reach that temp shut down and then start up again when the temp drops 2 degrees ( uses mor battery. Power. Where as the other ones just go into low heat mode Hope this is helpful
How will I know, before buying, if it’s 6 or 3 bladed?
 

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