How Do I Heat My Boat for Late Season Camping? [Archive] - Glock Talk


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10-06-2012, 09:25
I've got a 19' cuddy with a fully enclosed top. The lake is absolutely gorgeous right now, and while the days are still warm the nights are down in the 30's. I'm a total wuss when it comes to cold.

What's a safe way to heat my boat so I can spend a night or two on the lake before I'm done for the year? Maybe a 12v electric blanket or some kind of small cabin heater. And there's always the toilet paper soaked in alcohol trick, but that seems like it could end badly.

Right now I don't have any deep cycle batteries or any other secondary power source, but I could add something.

10-06-2012, 09:53
I think the Coleman propane "Smart Cat" catalytic camping heaters would be a good choice. No open flame, no dangerous fumes and they don't get red hot. Fire, of course, is the main concern on a boat. You would have to make sure it is secured so it doesn't tip over and start melting stuff. I have a "Smart Cat" that works great for camping. It has a small, battery powered, fan in it and will raise the temperature in a 4 man tent 20F-30F over ambient. I would imagine it would be OK for a boat since it is very stable. If you want one, you better act fast, because it looks like Coleman has discontinued all of their camping heaters.

Here's a link to the product on the Coleman site:

10-06-2012, 12:41
If you go with a combustion heater, make sure you use a fule that is [I]lighter[I] than air, unless you want your bildges to fill with explosive gas.

10-06-2012, 13:25
This has bad news written all over it. I'd go with something using DC or even 120V running on an inverter and just do the best you can. A fire on a boat is bad news. Combustion in a small cabin is bad news.

10-06-2012, 13:42
Just dress warm in layers and maybe put some of those chemical heat packs like hot hands between them if your reallh thay wussy about heat.

Just about everything else sounds like its leading to a fire or dead battery to me.

10-06-2012, 14:15
If you sleep in a 30* bag you probably won't even notice the cold.

10-06-2012, 14:23
I would consider some insulation for any exposed parts of the hull inside the cabin, that are at or below the waterline. That lake is a giant heat sync and it will suck all the heat out of the cabin. With decent insulation, even just body heat does a fair job of heating a space that small. Eric

10-06-2012, 18:06
Bundle up, don't use products that produce combustion.

Sleeping bag FTW.

.264 magnum
10-06-2012, 18:09
Electric boat heater only - liquid or gaseous fuel is a no go.

10-06-2012, 18:10
A hot chick or a fat one. Both will keep you warm.


10-06-2012, 18:58
A hot chick or a fat one. Both will keep you warm.


I agree.

I've spent the night in mine a few times on cooler nights and it is still warmer than a tent.

Take a good sleeping bag, wear the right clothes, drink til you're merry, and then enjoy your slumber.

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10-06-2012, 19:01
I finally thought of a way to heat the boat without the risk of explosion or fire. The only difficulty is it's very expensive.

Rub two bikini babes together.

Bruce M
10-06-2012, 19:02
I agree no heater that uses flame, fire, combustion etc. But if you go that route at least set up a video camera that is waterproof and floats.

10-06-2012, 19:06

... by Webasto, a dependable, highly respected firm..

Must say though, I like janice6' suggestion!

10-06-2012, 19:31

... by Webasto, a dependable, highly respected firm..

Must say though, I like janice6' suggestion!


I'll freeze.

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10-06-2012, 19:49
So, you're saying I shouldn't bring the diesel and the old tires?

10-06-2012, 20:18
Camp on shore. Build fire....

10-06-2012, 20:53
I would go for a nice sleeping bag. If you go for a sleeping bag, remember that you will be warmer if you just sleep in your draws. A good sleeping bag will reflect body heat back onto you.