Boating with Heritage

Narrow boats and Wide-beams

Living off grid has long been a desire for many in the U.K, and with hundreds of miles of canals and river-ways originally used for transporting goods, narrow boats and Wide-beams have been a popular way of getting away from the bustle of towns and cities and entering into an idilic environment not always achieved with conventional property purchases.

Being able to live in such an environment has become an enviable way of life for so many around the country. Waking up to a quiet and peaceful area, waterways teaming with wildlife, and the attraction of a relatively inexpensive way of living, it’s not difficult to see why so many enjoy this life.

With a whole industry revolved around new and second hand boats, holidays, permanent moorings, and a massive choice in styles, types, and levels of fixtures and fittings, It’s clear that canal boating is an ever growing industry within a long standing tradition.

Challenges of boating

One of the challenges of this way of life had been heating and cooking on boats. With the preferred method being small wood-burning & Multi-fuel stoves to heat, small boilers for some hot water or radiators, and LPG gas for cooking facilities. There is a lot to think about especially when having to acquire different fuels and transport them onto the boat.

A safety consideration which has long been a weakness with boating is LPG storage on boats. Due to boats essentially being bucket shaped, this leaves them open to a dangerous environment when twinned with LPG. As a gas when released into the atmosphere, LPG sinks and unless there is some way for it to escape there is no way for the dangerous build up to be removed. With so many safety aspects to be considered due to unfortunate accidents through each year involving LPG, it makes you think whether this fuel is worth the risk when other options are available.

Options available

Heritage Range Cookers have been installed on boats for the last 20 years, one of the mains reasons, being the ability to remove the danger of LPG being stored on a boat. Along with this, the capability to have a single appliance control Cooking, Heating, and Hot water gives many boaters the same luxuries of living in a house, without the inconveniences.

With a short flue run Heritage cookers work in the same way as a conventional house installation due to force fed style of pressure jet burner, meaning that as long as you have got a well designed flue, you will never have any issues with downdraft or poor flue pull. Even when you have to go under low bridges, flue’s can be designed to be removed and reattached with relative ease.

It seemed like an answer to all our questions…

One boating couple who installed a Heritage Range cooker onto their boat are Andrew and Wendy. They have given us an incite into their decision making when looking at the option of Cooking & Heating on their wide beam boat.

What made you move from a house to a boat? – i.e tell us about your life before boating

What options did you consider when looking at Cooking, Heating, and HW?
LPG, SF, Electric.

Was the safety side of LPG something that concerned you?
Storage, Ventilation,

So you chose a Heritage Compact boiler model, why this particular one?
The compact over the Uno gave more control and larger cooking capacity, you had the room available.

How much planning went into getting the cooker installed into your boat?
Flue, air, plumbing electrics, site build

What does the Heritage control?
Underfloor, radiators, cylinder.

How does the Heritage fit into your daily life?
Cooking, room heating, boiler

Would you recommend looking at a Range Cooker in general? On the surface, is it the obvious answer?, size, weight, expense?

How has your experience been with Heritage cookers?

Fantastic obviously, but no mention that we are friends!

Looking at this picture, you would be forgiven for not immediately realising it was on a boat. For a full size kitchen to have a range cooker in you would assume it was land based. As with all wide beam boats you have more options when it comes to size, however Narrow boats have also accepted the small form size of the Compact depending on layout of the boat. If the size of the compact is really to much then the Uno with a single hotplate, oven and burner will happily supply 3-4 average radiators as well as hot water with a back-boiler.