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Small Cabin Forum / Off-Grid Living / Water Heaters
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paulz
Member
# Posted: 13 Sep 2020 09:44 - Edited by: paulz
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I've had good use out of my L5, particularly showering outdoors where I stand next to it and manipulate the heat output, which varies according to air temp. Soon though I'll be back to using the indoor shower, which is plumbed with cold water as well to adjust temp that way. But it's always been finicky. Too little cold and it's too hot, too much and it cuts pressure to the L5 and turns it off. And always a spike of extra hot when first turned on. Never seem to get a reliable temp for any duration.

Anyone else use an L5 this way. Is it a basic negative to tankless heaters? Is there a better alternative?

Brettny
Member
# Posted: 14 Sep 2020 07:14
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These portable units are not made to use with a mixing valve in a standard shower. Your experience is why.

Best bet is to make a single valve in your shower and set the heater.

paulz
Member
# Posted: 14 Sep 2020 10:46
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Thanks Brett. I have separate knobs in the shower, but invariably the hot alone will be either too hot or too cold. I've though about cutting an arm hole in the wall to reach outside..

What's the difference between the L5 and home tankless heaters that work with a mixing valve?

A neighbor offered me a propane tank heater. We alternate between the cabin and house every 2-3 days so that would mean the tank would cool off and have to be reheated every time unless I left the propane on, which I don't do now.

Brettny
Member
# Posted: 14 Sep 2020 13:46
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When I bought my current house it had an old standing pilot 40gal propane heater. Let me tell you after almost 30days of cold showers I had enough and repaired it(prior to going electric) every day about 45min before I wanted a shower I would open up the 20lb propane tank and light the water heater. If i remember right it would last me 2+ weeks of showers.

As to what's dif between a mixing valve on demand and a portable I'm not sure. If your on limited water it can be tough to get the right temp water from a portable on demand as they can be finikey

scott100
Member
# Posted: 14 Sep 2020 15:55
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We have had the same issues with our L10 so I think it's just the nature of the beast.

What has worked well for us has been to set the flow low enough so it comes on with whatever faucet in the place has the lowest flow. I set the temp just a little higher than you might want for a shower. That gets it hot enough for dish washing. We always start by turning the hot on all the way and the cold off. If the shower gets too hot, then we add a small amount of cold to temper it but not too much or the thing will turn off. It has been pretty much set and forget after we got it tweaked right.

Also there is a procedure for adjusting the flow of the heater so it comes on at a lower flow rate if your pressure is low. This might help you some. I did this on our L10 but really didn't notice whether it helped, or I just got better at tweaking the settings dials.

https://support.eccotemp.com/hc/en-us/articles/360019638834-How-to-do-a-Water-Pressur e-Adjustment#:~:text=To%20make%20the%20adjustment%3A&text=The%20hole%20that%20is%20fu rthest,water%20pressure%20by%20restricting%20flow.

https://support.eccotemp.com/hc/en-us/articles/115013416408-Ticket-Example-My-L10-is- not-staying-on

paulz
Member
# Posted: 14 Sep 2020 17:24
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Thanks Scott. At least I am not alone. But I have never messed with the flow knob, if that can keep it from shutting off when I add cold maybe that's the ticket. I'll give it a try this week.

scott100
Member
# Posted: 14 Sep 2020 19:30
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Yeah, also try turning the heat down so if you have to add any cold its only a little.

scott100
Member
# Posted: 14 Sep 2020 19:32
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FWIW, we're running off a Sureflow pump. I'm assuming that the operation would be better if we were running off a standard domestic supply.

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