water heater for 2006 Gulf Stream Vista Cruiser

CaseyCraig

New member
Hi there, our van needs a new tankless water heater. Its original one is a Chronomite SR-20L/120, 120v. Do we need to replace it with a similar model, or is there something better out there now? TIA!
 

bcolins

2004 158" Vista Cruiser
same question here. I have an aquaintance with a T1N Vista Cruiser who converted his to a propane heater. ,.....seemed like quite a bit of work to do it,.....and all things he was capable of,.......and I wasn't too sure of my ability to do it,....and have it be a safe system,.....in regards to properly venting the exhaust.
 

zootman

New member
I added a 6 gallon water heater to my Vista Cruiser. Electric not propane. Fits easily under rear bench seat. Works great. Affordable and easy to plumb.
 

Davis Carver

New member
Hi there, our van needs a new tankless water heater. Its original one is a Chronomite SR-20L/120, 120v. Do we need to replace it with a similar model, or is there something better out there now? TIA!
I have one that was taken out of our 2006. It is a stock 20 amp 120v. It was replaced with a 4 gallon tank. I have not tested it, so I'm not 100% sure it works, but if you want it, let me know. $50.00 plus 12.00 shipping.
 

shaschar

New member
I added a 6 gallon water heater to my Vista Cruiser. Electric not propane. Fits easily under rear bench seat. Works great. Affordable and easy to plumb.
A little late to the conversation, but I am considering purchase of 2006 gulfstream vista cruiser G-26 and I understand water heater is insufficient on this van. It seems you might have found a work around. I would lover to know more - pictures, supply list? Thanks Sharon
 

Mikolia69

Once in a while you get shown the light....
So I made a “on demand” McGiver style water heater for less than $75 of parts at Lowe’s.

I Patched into the hot water line behind the shower wall (besides the microwave, which I took out a long time ago and converted to an extra closet) and ran a line of hose Out and back (about 6 Feet long). I took a length of copper tubing and wrapped it around a wine bottle to make a coil.

the way it works is that I put a pot of water on the stover and drop the coil into it. Wait for the water to boil and then I have hot water from the copper coil heating up the water that flows through it. I’ll post some pics when I can. It’s a bit ghetto, but it works!
 

Mikolia69

Once in a while you get shown the light....
So I made a “on demand” McGiver style water heater for less than $75 of parts at Lowe’s.

I Patched into the hot water line behind the shower wall (besides the microwave, which I took out a long time ago and converted to an extra closet) and ran a line of hose Out and back (about 6 Feet long). I took a length of copper tubing and wrapped it around a wine bottle to make a coil.

the way it works is that I put a pot of water on the stover and drop the coil into it. Wait for the water to boil and then I have hot water from the copper coil heating up the water that flows through it. I’ll post some pics when I can. It’s a bit ghetto, but it works!
58313275-9E25-4E00-9BAF-D4D7053DF844.jpeg
 

Highway1

New member
I’ve been looking at the Vista Cruiser G-24 model because of the floor plan. How does the stock Chronomite hot water work? Do you have to be plugged in or will it work off battery? Noticed that some are looking at replacing with other types. Is this due to the tankless type? This looks like something that is used for hot water for sinks only.
 

bcolins

2004 158" Vista Cruiser
I’ve been looking at the Vista Cruiser G-24 model because of the floor plan. How does the stock Chronomite hot water work? Do you have to be plugged in or will it work off battery? Noticed that some are looking at replacing with other types. Is this due to the tankless type? This looks like something that is used for hot water for sinks only.
I dont think you will find anyone who says the original water heater works well. I'm on my second one,.....(bought a used one) Have yet to ever have hot water.
 

bcolins

2004 158" Vista Cruiser
I added a 6 gallon water heater to my Vista Cruiser. Electric not propane. Fits easily under rear bench seat. Works great. Affordable and easy to plumb.
could we get some pictures and a list of parts you used to do this?
 

NewfD90

Member
I gave up on the Chronomite inline heater. It only ever worked well if on constant city water. It ended up chasing the pressure of the pump. I even tried an accumulator tank to smooth out the pressure spikes. It was better, but still marginal to lame.

So I just put in a Bosch 4 gal. It is the exact width of the upholstered hump in the garage and wedged in nicely between the sidewall and my bike drawer system. With everything packed around it, no mounting needed as it's not going anywhere. I long ago removed the doors on the plumbing and electrical compartments in back, so it was easy to remove the inline heater, put an electrical outlet/box there and put a couple flex lines on the cold and hot water lines down to the water heater tank.

From 52deg well water to 117deg, it took about 20min of generator time. So approx 3deg/min. The water was still warm/shower acceptable 12hrs later.
 

bcolins

2004 158" Vista Cruiser
Gringo Rick from this forum has installed a propane tankless unit like you might use at a campground in the area behind where the original electric unit is mounted. Immediate hot water as soon as you turn a faucet or the shower on. He sent me pics of it a while back,....I'll see if I can find them. It seems like the best solution,....however I was concerned about venting the hot exhaust. Wondering if a stainless steel duct could be welded up to vent it properly through the side of the van,.....then wrap it in some kind of heat proof insulation??? I've attached a couple pics.
 

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bcolins

2004 158" Vista Cruiser
Gringo Rick from this forum has installed a propane tankless unit like you might use at a campground in the area behind where the original electric unit is mounted. Immediate hot water as soon as you turn a faucet or the shower on. He sent me pics of it a while back,....I'll see if I can find them. It seems like the best solution,....however I was concerned about venting the hot exhaust. Wondering if a stainless steel duct could be welded up to vent it properly through the side of the van,.....then wrap it in some kind of heat proof insulation??? I've attached a couple pics.
Here is some new additional information from Rick on his Propane water heater build:

"I didnt do any other internal venting except what's seen in you pictures. The box cover I put on has fireproofing on the upper half, and I fireproofed the upper part of the walls where the heater is mounted also. So about the upper 1/3 of iris interior space is lined with a fireproofing material. I turn on the vent fan when using hot water and it sucks fresh air from around the grey tank floorboard cutout, and blows it out the vent. The final temp coming out of the vent is only warm. I can hold my hand there indefinitely without it getting too hot. Also, the Excel water heater I installed is advertised as safe for use indoors. It has a sensor in it that shuts it off if it senses too much gas or exhaust fumes."

I stapled a layer of this stuff all around the upper third of the compartment.

Flame Retardant Material
https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B001GFW5Q0/ref=ppx_yo_dt_b_search_asin_title?ie=UTF8&psc=1

You can see the end of the fan sticking out of the wall in your picture, it is white. I screwed it in place, anchored to the wood panel 1x2 or 2x2, whatever was behind there. Sorry, I dont quite remember. And used a bunch of aluminum tape on both ends to attach it securely to the vent flange and inside of the compartment. Basically to make a seal in and out of the water heater compartment so no exhaust leaks between the body panels.

Exhaust Fan, 12v, 3 inch ( this isn't the exact one I used, but its close)
https://www.amazon.com/Attwood-1731-4-Blower-White-3-Inch/dp/B001O0DE8K/ref=sr_1_1?dchild=1
 

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