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How To Choose The Best Diesel Heater

Diesel Heater Impossible Trinity

Introduction

In this article, we will tell you more about the diesel heater. You will learn why they are growing in popularity, who should buy them, and ultimately, how to choose the best diesel heater for your needs.

These devices are a very convenient way to stay warm during cold weather.

You are about to find out why boat and camper van owners and professional truck drivers all over the world love these devices.

Plus, if you choose the right model, you can expect it to last a lifetime, which makes a quality diesel heater an excellent investment.

Let’s dig a bit deeper into the world of diesel heaters.

Why Are Diesel Heaters A Good Investment?

Diesel heater for campervan

Unmatched Convenience

Diesel heaters are an extremely convenient way to keep your camper van warm while its engine is off.

With them, you will never have to enter a freezing car when driving to work in the morning, during those cold, winter months.

And no wasting time on de-frosting the vehicle, and then compromising your safety while driving.

With a diesel heater, your car is ready for driving and safe, even before you turn its engine on. No more frozen windshields!

Although car owners can benefit from diesel heaters, truck drivers, camper van, and boat owners have more reasons to buy diesel air heater.

It is one thing to drive to work in a cold car, it’s an entirely different story to spend a whole night in a freezing cabin, over and over again.

If you drive trucks for a living, you know how hard it can be to fall asleep during the winter in that sub-zero tin can. Well, a diesel heater is a simple solution to end all that.

Efficient Way To Get Warm

VVKB Heater

Diesel heaters need to be connected to the fuel tank of your vehicle, which means they will slightly add to the fuel costs. While there is no denying that, they are still a very convenient and efficient way to keep you warm. And diesel fuel is very affordable, which means you won’t feel the difference in total costs.

If your choice is to spend nights in a freezing cabin, then yes, you will save some fuel/money. If not, your only option is to turn on the 600+ horsepower beast under the hood. Not only that it is noisy, and stinky, it also uses an enormous amount of fuel, and you can’t keep the engine on with other truck drivers or campers sleeping around the lot.

Also, time-saving costs are a huge factor. With diesel heaters, there is no wasting time on cleaning up the snow and ice in the morning before you drive kids to school. The pre-warmed car will be waiting for them, so no need to wake up early and waste time.

They Are More Affordable Than You Think

How to choose the best diesel heater

Diesel heaters are more than just an accessory. If you spend a considerable amount of time inside your RV, or on your boat, you know how cold it can sometimes get, especially during the night. Nature is sometimes brutal, and spending your nights in the middle of nowhere, exposed to the cold can ruin your vacation. You only need one of those experiences to understand that diesel heaters are actually more affordable than they first seem.

If you get a quality diesel air heater, you will be able to enjoy van life in your car, you can expect it to last a lifetime. We will discuss this later in more detail.

There is a lot of Chinese diesel heater that are also very reliable in quality. All you need is to find a reliable quality Chinese diesel heater manufacturer.

It’s a straightforward device, but it works. Getting a quality one will pay off long term, even if you pay a little bit extra up front. They require almost zero maintenance, and as long as you use them at least once per month, they should remain fully functional.

Also, the diesel heater adds to the value of the vehicle, and if you decide to resell it, you can expect a much better price. Or you can choose to keep your diesel heater and install it on your new vehicle. Like we said, quality ones last a lifetime, so there’s no need to replace your diesel heater with every new car you buy.

How To Choose A Diesel Heater—Essential Parts

Diesel Heater

A diesel heater usually consists of around twenty parts. Although all are important, the quality of these parts is crucial, and will separate good diesel heaters from poor ones:

The Diesel Heater Motor and Combustion Chamber

Combustion Blower Motor

Diesel heaters use diesel fuel to warm up the cold air from the outside and blow it inside the cabin. The motor and its combustion chamber are where the magic happens, and are the most essential parts of any diesel heater.

The quality and efficacy of the motor will determine not only how much fuel it consumes, but also how noisy it is while working. If you plan to sleep in the cabin, you will want it to be as silent as possible.

Of course, a quality motor will make your heater safer, after all, small explosions happen non-stop inside the combustion chamber, and it runs on volatile fuel. Therefore, you want it to be top-quality. Also, cheap, low-quality chambers tend to leak exhaust fumes inside the cabin, which can jeopardize your health.

This might not happen straight away, but it will, sooner or later. So don’t think short-term, buy quality now, and enjoy the benefits in years to come.

Diesel Heater Glow Pin

Glow Plug

The diesel heater glow pin is the cousin of spark plugs but is used in diesel engines. Although they work on a different concepts, the purpose is the same—starting up the chain reaction inside the motor.

So you may think that this little device is unimportant, at least when compared to the engine itself. That’s not the case.

The diesel heater glow pins will make or break your diesel heater experience. Many cheap Chinese diesel heater companies choose to install cheap glow pins into their diesel heaters.

These will work under normal conditions, however, when the outside weather goes sub-zero, you might find it hard to start the diesel air heater.

If you don’t want to spend a whole night shivering and cursing your “budget” choice, and fearing the diesel air heater won’t start every time you need it, get a quality model with Kyocera glow pins.

This company makes the best, field-tested glow pin, able to withstand even the coldest weather. And no power failure.

Diesel Heater Fuel Pump

Fuel Pump

The diesel heater directly uses diesel fuel, and the heat generated by burning diesel fuel enters the camper van cab through the heat exchanger and provides heat to the camper van cab.

Diesel heaters use the fuel reservoir of the camper van, so no need to have a separate tank. But, to function correctly, they rely on one small device—the fuel pump.

These devices are there to make sure the optimal amount of fuel travels to the combustion chamber, thus ensuring safety and efficacy.

It consists of different clamps, pipes, brackets, and a standpipe, all of which are important, and need to be quality made. Rust-resistant materials are a must, as diesel air heater fuel pumps are often exposed, installed outside the camper van.

The diesel air heater fuel pump is usually exposed to the outside of the camper van. You will find that some diesel air heater fuel pumps after a period of use will have severe corrosion in their housing.
You should now corrosion-resistant diesel air heater fuel pumps.

Diesel air heater fuel pumps operate with a fixed frequency of vibration. This can potentially affect your users’ sleep. The mounting bracket of the fuel pump can isolate part of the vibration.
Ordinary mounting brackets made of rubber material are not effective in isolating vibrations. You need to choose the mounting bracket made of TPE material.

Nowadays, there are also many manufacturers who offer diesel air heater with silent fuel pump, and you can choose this diesel air heater.

Diesel air heater heat exchanger

According to the working principle of diesel air heater, the combustion of diesel fuel will produce toxic exhaust gases such as carbon dioxide and carbon monoxide as well as sulfur dioxide.

Diesel air heater heat exchangerDiesel air heaters are used in very little space and in a sealed space. In this space, there is no fresh air, and people may worry that the combustion exhaust gas may enter the car and affect people’s life safety.

This concern is well-founded.
The heat exchanger is produced by the aluminum die-casting process, a process that has the potential to leave the heat exchanger with trachoma.
Moreover, the temperature inside the heater is very high, and at high temperatures, the trachoma is likely to be corroded by toxic combustion exhaust gases, and combustion exhaust gases will enter the vehicle interior.

Diesel air heater heat exchanger

However, the products of regular diesel heater manufacturer will not have trachoma situation.
Taking Vvkb diesel heater as an example.
When Vvkb heater engineers design the heat exchanger mold, they reserve the exhaust port for aluminum die casting. This will make it easier for the air inside the heat exchanger mold to flow out. The appearance of the heat delivery will be very nice.

Heat exchanger aluminum die-casting workshop
Aluminum material will contain impurities inside. In our aluminum die casting shop, we will perform a drossing step for the melted aluminum material and will do a thorough drossing. This step can completely solve the problem of trachoma.

Diesel Heater Exhaust Pipe

A side effect of diesel-burning inside any engine is exhaust gasses. However, getting rid of them is not as simple as putting a pipe that goes outside of the cabin—exhaustion can create a lot of noise.

Diesel heaters also produce a lot of noise when the diesel heater work, and most of this noise, is generated when diesel fuel is burned. The noise produced when the diesel air heater is working can seriously affect the rest of your customers.

Diesel Heater Exhaust Pipe

To make the system as quiet as possible, good diesel heater manufacturers use quality tubing. Their stainless steel tubes have a unique, spiral thread design to soak up as much noise and vibrations as possible.

Also, pipes made from this type of steel are easier to bend, making the installation process quicker and cheaper.

Unfortunately, the exhaust system is another bottleneck for budget manufacturers. Here, they choose regular, non-spiral steel exhaust pipes, which are not only noisy but also very hard to install.

Diesel Heater Exhaust Pipe Clamps

Exhaust Pipe Clamps

The diesel heater exhaust pipe clamps are also often overlooked, but in a diesel heater, they play a crucial role. diesel air heater exhaust pipe clamps keep everything connected and working properly.

The diesel heater is installed on moving vehicles with engines of their own, and they have their own engines too. That means a lot of vibrations and movement from different sources. Clamps absorb all that, keeping every part in the perfect position.

So make sure to pay close attention and follow the instruction manual carefully if you are installing the diesel air heater on your own.

The diesel air heater exhaust pipe clamp is especially important. If this one doesn’t hold in place, the exhaust pipe might start leaking toxic fumes inside the camper van cabin, which is extremely bad for health, and can be life-threatening.

So don’t neglect clamps, they only seem insignificant when compared to some other more complicated parts, but they are actually vital for the whole system.

Diesel Heater Electronic Control Unit

Electronic Control Unit

The diesel heater electronic control unit is the electronic heart of diesel heaters.

The “brain” of the machine will not only allow you to use it but is also responsible for keeping everything in order, making it essential for the safe operation of the device.

Good diesel heaters have control systems that automatically check all the parts every time you turn them on, making sure everything is in perfect order.

The best mode of data transmission for the electronic control unit of the diesel heater is to use the CAN system. the CAN system data transmission, which is also the common mode of data transmission for vehicles, does not cause the data to be interfered by electromagnetic waves generated by other electrical parts of the vehicle.
This means that using the CAN system to transmit data, the diesel heater will work very stable.

The automatic altitude adjustment function of the diesel heater is one of the functions of the electronic control unit.
The automatic altitude adjustment function allows the heater to operate properly at higher elevations of 12,000 feet above sea level.

Diesel Heater Control System

Control System

It is also vital for the electronic control unit to be simple to use, and convenient. The display should be clear and easy to understand, but you also want different control options.

Vvkb Diesel Heater Control Panel Uses Video

Besides manual, you want remote controls, but also smart mobile apps. An automatic timer is also very convenient to have.

You can program it to start the heater at a set time, which will ensure a warm vehicle waits for you when you get up.

Diesel Heater Case

Diesel heater

Lastly, we will mention the casing. It is what protects the components inside from mechanical damage, but it should also make the parking heater easy to install. It is important for the case to be made from durable, but heat-resistant material, such as aluminum and nylon.

Besides durability, case material matters for health reasons and should be non-toxic. The device generates heat after all, and you are likely to spend a lot of time inside the cabin. Only high-quality, durable, but safe materials should be a part of the heater you choose.

Vvkb Apollo-V Diesel Heater—The Best Option On The Market

Parking heater

Vvkb Apollo-V Air Diesel Heater meets all the criteria we have mentioned above, and that’s why we decided to choose it as the best option on the market.

There are actually two versions of this heater: Apollo-V1 is 2.5kw and Vvkb Diesel Heater Apollo-V2 is 5kw. But both have the same quality parts. Here are the details behind our choice:

Diesel Heater Quality Hardware

Parking heater

A 2025 stainless steel diesel heater burner you can find inside every Apollo-V ensures maximal safety, as it is entirely fireproof.

The design is also highly efficient and will get your cabin warm with minimal fuel consumption. Parts are die-cast aluminum or high-grade plastic, and the heater is built to last. Their fuel pump is iron, guaranteed to stay rust-free for 8+ years.

Diesel heater burner

Clamps used for Apollo heaters are heavy-duty and will hold in place no matter how bumpy the roads are. The exhaust clamp stands out, as it is very thick, and will never allow leaks. As we noted before, clamps are much more important than it first seems, and are often what separates quality heaters from cheap ones that won’t last.

Clamps

The finish is extraordinary, and one look at the device gives you peace of mind, knowing that you are installing something low-quality that can cause a fire.

Reliable In Extreme Conditions

VVKB Heater

Apollo-V can operate from -35℃ to 45℃, which means that you will never feel the outside cold, even if you are stranded inside your RV, high up a mountain, in the middle of nowhere. The above-mentioned Japanese Kyocera glow plug ensures the heater will start in any weather conditions, which is crucial. VVKB heater won’t let you down, no matter the circumstances.

Quiet operation

VVKB Heater

While hopefully, you won’t have to sleep in your car too often, RV, boat, and truck owners know how vital it is for the heater to operate quietly.

Vvkb ensured that Apollo-V is close to silent by installing an excellent exhaust system with spiral pipes. This type of pipe absorbs as much noise as possible, which means that you won’t need a silencer. But, one comes in the package, which makes Apollo one of the quietest heaters you can buy. The muffler is also useful for preventing insects from entering the diesel heater exhaust pipe.

The combustion chamber design also contributes to quiet operation, and so do motors and impellers. You won’t have trouble sleeping next to this machine.

Latest Electronics

Electronic Control Unit

Vvkb Apollo-V has a smart German Heraeus temperature sensor, which will make sure the temperature inside the cabin always stays optimal. This will not only give you the best comfort possible, but will save fuel too, and reduce the noise, as the heater won’t work full-power unless needed.

This unit has a 32-bit processor which receives the data from the sensor and then sets the fan speeds and combustion conditions accordingly.

The electronics system is the heart of the heater’s safety too, as it has advanced safety diagnostic features that run every time you operate the device. It will check the voltage before starting, only continuing if it is in the right range.

That will ensure everything is in perfect condition as soon as you press the “on” button, preserving both the heater and the car battery.

Convenient Control Options

Diesel Heater Control Panel

You can adjust the temperature via manual or digital controls, but also wirelessly, which means you will have a warm car waiting for you in the morning. There is also AUTO mode, that will keep the temperature at the desired level, without you having to worry about that constantly.

Apollo-V is exceptionally easy to operate and very intuitive, everything working just the way you would expect it.

Honorable Mentions:

Webasto Air Top 2000 STC

Webasto makes great diesel heaters, and there’s no denying that. Air Top 2000 STC is a perfect example of that. This is a high-quality device that runs silently and is perfectly safe.

It also has smart sensors and different control methods. It is very fuel efficient, and won’t dent your gas budget too much.

The only downside of  Webasto is that it is very expensive. Yes, you do get what you pay for, but we feel that VVKB heater is a better value for money.

PLANAR 2D-12

Planar is a Russian manufacturer, and they also make very good diesel heaters.

Planar 2D-12 works instantly, and doesn’t need to “ramp up” before producing heat, which minimizes fuel consumption. It is quite easy to install and operate, and works very quietly too. Overall, a very good device, and you won’t make a mistake if you decide to pick this one.

They are more affordable than Webasto or  Eberspaecher, and are slowly gaining trust among drivers and boat owners. It was a close call between VVKB and Planar, they both have great value for money.

Eberspaecher D2

Eberspaecher is another high-quality, but also quite expensive German manufacturer. They have some outstanding heaters, but we have decided to pick D2.

It is compact, quiet, and won’t let you down. It is also very fuel efficient, and won’t eat away your tank. Eberspaecher D2 only uses top quality parts, and you can expect this heater to last a lifetime. They’ve taken care of everything, from screws and clamps to motor and combustion chamber.

However, similar to Webasto,  Eberspaecher heaters are only for those of you with a very deep pocket.

Conclusion

Truck heater

We hope that our article helped you decide whether or not a parking diesel heater is a good investment. We also explained what to look for when buying a parking heater and gave you an excellent model to consider.

Vvkb Apollo-V is a terrific choice, a top-quality device that will last a lifetime. It is carefully designed to guarantee safety, but also quiet operation, with maximal fuel efficiency. In our humble opinion, it is the best parking heater you can find on the market today.

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