Q: What's the difference between the Vehicle Camping Shower (RED UNIT) and the Hot Water System (BLUE UNIT)?
The Vehicle Camping Shower (This Unit) has about 2.8 meters of heating coil and is designed to deliver shower temperature water directly from the unit. The Hot Water System has about 4.2 meters of coil and will deliver much hotter water.
Q: Where can I mount the exchanger?
Mounting the heat exchanger is not vehicle specific - they can be mounted anywhere there is space. Because the units are internally ducted, they can be mounted vertically or horizontally and any angle in between. The units are usually mounted on the firewall. Some other mounting points are inside wheel arches, on the chassis rails, under battery holders and behind the bullbar. Helton Exchangers are compact size makes them easier to fit inside the modern crowded engine compartments. The mounting brackets come with a 6mm mounting bolts. Do not mount your exchanger directly on the engine. Constant vibration has the potential to cause metal fatigue and void warranty.
Q: Will fitting a heat exchanger affect my cabin heater?
No you cannot detect any difference in the output.
Q: Series or parallel fitting?
Most new vehicles have a constant flow cab heater system and series installation is easiest for these vehicles.
That is, the exchanger is plumbed directly into one of the cab heater hoses.
Parallel installation using “T” pieces is appropriate if you vehicle cab heater system incorporates a water tap, usually located against fire wall in engine bay, which is operated by the cab heater controls. In this situation, parallel installation using “T” pieces is best as no coolant water flows through the cab heater hoses with the cab heat turned off. “T” pieces are placed in both cab heater hoses, with the “T’s” then connected to the heat exchanger. Temperature control can be achieved by adjusting the cab heater controls and our kit control valve is not required in this situation.
Q: How do control the temperature?
There are two ways of controlling the temperature output from an exchanger.
Change the fresh water flow rate or the engine coolant flow rate.
Decreasing the fresh flow rate or increasing the engine coolant flow rate will increase the shower water temperature.
Increasing the fresh water flow rate or reducing the engine coolant flow rate will reduce the shower water temperature.
The kit shower rose has a slide to reduce water flow. The hot water kit has an in line valve to vary the engine coolant water flow.
Q: What shower temperature can I expect from my heat exchanger?
As explained in General Information, several factors influence the output of an exchanger.
Blue Shower Units are designed to achieve a shower temperate range of 38 to 42° C for shower purposes at a fresh water flow of 3 litres a minute for the camper needing to be conscious of water conservation in a situation where water is transported. From experience, a fresh water flow rate of about 3 litres a minute is adequate for a bush shower, but less than one would expect from a shower at home.
A Red Hot Water Unit is designed for a shower temperature range of 38 to 42° C on turbo charged/intercooled diesel engines at a fresh water flow of 3 litres a minute.
A Red Hot Water unit has achieved 80° C from a hot running petrol engine in testing.
As it is expected the red Hot Water units will produce temperatures too hot for a shower on some vehicles, the Hot Water kits include a valve (tap) to be installed in one of the engine coolant lines. This valve can be partly closed to reduce the output to a comfortable shower temperature. If in doubt, purchase a Hot Water unit.
Q: Manufactures Warranty?
Helton Heat Exchangers are hand crafted in Miles, Queensland, Australia from 100% silver soldered copper.
Our exchangers are very well made and expected to last a lifetime.
Exchangers are sold with a replacement five (5) year warranty, against faulty manufacture.
Components in the kits other than the exchanger carry a 12 month replacement warranty.
Mounting the exchanger directly to the engine will void warranty due to constant vibration having the potential to cause metal fatigue.
Q: Specifications and configurations
Helton makes two basic models of heat exchanger being the blue and red units.
The units are manufactured with all 4 hose connections at one.
Both units are a 76mm diameter canister, 200mm long plus 35mm long hose connections.
A bare shower exchanger weighs about 1.45 kg and Hot Water exchanger 1.9kg.
Q: What is in a kit? (Kits are available in our Store, click here)
A Red Hot Water Kit includes:
1 x hot water unit, 2 x mounting brackets, 2 x metres of 16mm Heater hose, 3 x metres of 10mm Fresh water hose, Bracket for bumper with inlet and outlet barbs,
10 x Hose clamps, Temperature regulation valve, 12v pump “Turbo” shower, Zip ties and DIY instruction sheet.
A Blue Shower Water Kit (This Kit) includes:
1 x blue shower unit, 2 x mounting brackets, 2 x metres of 16mm Heater hose, 3 x metres of 10mm Fresh water hose, Bracket for bumper with inlet and outlet barbs,
8 x Hose clamps, 12v pump “Turbo” shower, Zip ties and DIY instruction sheet.