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Old 04-08-2015, 08:24 AM   #1
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Motoraid water heater in all Winnebagos?

Looking to upgrade the water heater in my non-Winnebago C to one with MotorAid.

Do all Winnebagos have Motoraid (engine coolant heat) in the water heater system? I'll snag one if I can find one at salvage, otherwise they're about $600 new.
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Old 04-08-2015, 09:30 AM   #2
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We have the Motoraid system. Works great. We just remember to turn on the electric heater when hooking up and the hot water costs us nothing in propane and hot showers are available immediately. It also increases cooling capacity for the engine. Not sure how that works. Would an after market install require replacing or adding onto the engine cooling system?


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Old 04-08-2015, 09:40 AM   #3
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I would likely tap or tee the coolant lines that come back to the heater core.

I have a friend who has motoraid hot water in his Revcon and he loves it.


It would definitely increase cooling capacity for the engine. Your biggest way to disperse engine heat is through the radiator. 2nd is the heater core (a small internal radiator). I would imagine the MotorAid could pull as much heat as the heater core, but not as much once the tank gets hot. Still, it would be a big heat sink that could help keep the temps from pegging.

I would probably add an under-bed rear auxiliary heater at the same time.
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Old 04-08-2015, 09:40 AM   #4
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You could add the Motoraid "heater" for less than $50.

I've posted it before, but here's what it really is (I think I even posted it at Pirate when someone was looking for a heat exchanger to do the same thing):



A short piece of tubing and a trip to a welder would get you the same thing.

Winnebago also installs some rear heaters in the kickpanel area of the kitchen cabinets. Let me see if I can find a drawing.....


I haven't found a kickpanel type installation yet, but did find a basement one (in a Class C). It's on page six:
2010 31C heating

(In the mid 2000's and up Class A models, the heater is also in the basement, but integrated in the gas furnace ducting. Gas heater at the back, heat exchanger, with another fan, up front.)
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Old 04-08-2015, 10:01 AM   #5
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Seems like a lot of piping to get back to that WH without much surface area touching the tank.


My understanding was that the motor aid had a coil of pipe wrapped completely around the barrel of the WH tank, under the insulation??
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Old 04-08-2015, 10:20 AM   #6
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That's a picture of my father-in-law's 2008 Navion. He doesn't have Motoraid, but the water heater is set up for it.

It's the same as my '04 Adventurer, I've looked at it (replacing check valve) just don't have a picture.

It works quite well. I was surprised when I learned how small of an area it heats up, but given that coolant is around 190, any better setup and the water could get TOO hot?
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Old 04-08-2015, 10:34 AM   #7
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In the past Motoraid system was offered as an option - don't know about recent years. Many Winnebago's have it but not all.
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Old 04-08-2015, 10:52 AM   #8
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I found one. Almost. Under a dinette seat (page 5):

2010 29B Heating

The toekick one I was thinking of is just like this one, just in the bottom of a kitchen cabinet instead of a dinette seat.

My point is, you wouldn't have to steal space under the bed, if you didn't want to. You could stick a heater core, a fan, and some ductwork about anywhere. Winnebago has used a few different places.
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Old 04-08-2015, 11:04 AM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by tderonne View Post
That's a picture of my father-in-law's 2008 Navion. He doesn't have Motoraid, but the water heater is set up for it.

It's the same as my '04 Adventurer, I've looked at it (replacing check valve) just don't have a picture.

It works quite well. I was surprised when I learned how small of an area it heats up, but given that coolant is around 190, any better setup and the water could get TOO hot?

Awesome. VERY good to know. Thanks for the data point.
This will be a lot easier than I expected. As you said in your first post, I could simply add a thin strip to the existing tank. I have friends who can TIG it for me.

Thanks, too, for the cutaway view of that motoraid rear aux heater. I hadn't thought of mounting it in a dinette...which would be very easy.
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Old 04-08-2015, 07:16 PM   #10
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The Winnebago Motoraid water heater tank has piping welded to the back side of the tank that curves around somewhat like the refrigerator coolant piping looks like. Somewhere on irv2.com is a picture of such a tank with the insulation removed.
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