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Thread: pump heaters

  1. #1
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    Question pump heaters

    I'm looking for information on pump heaters for our emgines. how do they work? How much do they cost to install, and are they really worth it? FYI our high temp right now is +1.


  2. #2
    Forum Member ff43065's Avatar
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    Pump heaters work much like the heater in your car. They are plumbed to a heater core with a blower from the radiator.

    They work good, but only if the rest of the components are there.

    Such as:

    1) Heat pan. This is the pan that encloses the bottom of the pump compartment. If you are loosing the heat, it does no good.

    2) Is the pump compartment designed to keep the heat in or is the top of the pump compartment wide open with grating or other design.

    3) Install a thermostat. It is better than just a switch. That way when it is cold enough, the thing will kick on with out someone forgetting to hit the switch.

    4) Look at the BTU output of the pump heater. They range from 20,000BTU through 60,000BTU, but I do believe most are in the 33,000 - 46,000 range.

    Jusat because you install a pump heater it may not be the fix all. You may need additional insulation for extreme cold weather operations and maybe even the MC Products gauge heater system.

    A trained pump operator, in most cases is pretty good about making sure water is circulating and that is was it takes, EXPERIENCE!!!

  3. #3
    IACOJ - Proud member.
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    1) Heat pan. This is the pan that encloses the bottom of the pump compartment. If you are loosing the heat, it does no good.
    we had these on our old '68 GMC\John Bean & '84 GMC\FMC gas jobs. Not sure how effective they were, but the old timers swore by them.

    When we bought the '98 Freightliner/Pierce, there was a big in-house debate about including one in the specs. At that time, NFPA required gauge heaters (IMHO this is where the real problem is, when running with wet pumps).

    In talking with the factory folks said that they don't install a lot of these anymore, but tradition won out and we got it (around $900-1100 extra). Due to the design of the chassis and pump configuration, it hangs pretty low and cuts down on our ground clearance.

    About 3 years ago, we had an operator cut short a driveway, and we spent $2400 to have the pan rebuilt and replaced. (No damage to chassis or pump, but all the metal for pan was damaged)

    Needless to say, the new '03 pierce DIDN'T come with the pump heat pan. We've got weather at night -3'F and haven't had a pump freeze up yet, but we'll also pretty good about circulating water when out on runs.
    Chief Jim Bator
    www.hopewellfire.org

    IACOJ
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    I can think of no more stirring symbol of man's humanity to man than a fire engine. ~Kurt Vonnegut

  4. #4
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    Thanks for the input, our main concern is when we have our T/L with only 250 gallons idling for autos, automatic alarms, or even fires that water is going to heat up and eventuly overheat, so we're looking into ways to keep our pump warm.

  5. #5
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    It is a good idea to use the pump to circulate water. I have my operators engage and circulate any time it is below 20 degrees F. Your 250 Gal. tank would take 65 minutes to heat the water from 75 degrees to 212 degrees if you were operating a single stage pump at 200 psi. I usually circulate at idle or slightly above. I have left my aerial circulate for four hours with a 300 Gal. tank and the intake fittings were not warm to the touch.

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