Dismiss Notice
Join Physics Forums Today!
The friendliest, high quality science and math community on the planet! Everyone who loves science is here!

Need your advice/help!

  1. Jun 28, 2012 #1
    Hello Physics Forum.
    I need help/validation with a DIY electric heating system for my camper van.

    The goal:To create a low noise(19 dB), low voltage (12v), high output (1000w) heater fan, using a 140mm 12 volt computer fan, and a correct nichrome wire coil setup.

    1. Will this work?
    2. How do I calculate the required length of nichrome wire to have a (1000) watt load @ 12 volts.
    3. How many hours can I draw 1000watts from my battery?

    Fan: Phanteks PH-F140TS_WT
    Fan Size: 140mm
    RPM: 1200 ± 10% rpm
    Air Flow: 78.1 CFM
    Noise Level: 19 dB
    Input Current: 0.15 A
    Rate Voltage: DC 12V
    Input Power: 1.8W

    Heating Coil: Custom nichrome wire coil calculated to 1000 watts.
    16 AWG (gauge)
    .051" dia.
    0.260 ohms/ft

    Battery: LifeLine GPL-8DL 12v 255ah Deep Cycle
    Nominal Voltage: 12 volts
    Amp hour capacity at 20 hour rate: 255 amp hour

    Control System: On/Off switch for now.
    Would love to hear ideas, because I don't even know where to start.


  2. jcsd
  3. Jun 28, 2012 #2


    User Avatar

    Staff: Mentor

    Hi voxvox. Welcome to Physics Forums.

    Will it work? Sure, why not.
    Just looking at it roughly. You will be exceeding the battery's 20 hr rate, so will be lucky to get 200AH out of it. At 12 volts, 1000W equates to 83 amps. This looks like about 2.5 hours, and that's being overly optimistic.

    It should take the chill off the inside of a cold van, but one battery won't even see you through 'till supper time. There won't be a lot of air movement if you employ a computer fan, but that's a separate issue.
    Last edited: Jun 28, 2012
Share this great discussion with others via Reddit, Google+, Twitter, or Facebook