Eberspächer electricity usage

Many people using Webasto or Eberspächer fuel heaters have issues with batteries running out. This is just a short video showing the electricity used when the heater is used.

Car alternator can load the battery with 12Amps. At least Toyota seems to use that current.(Current changes depending on the battery charge level. The Eber heater pulls first 2 minutes 13 or so. After that it uses 6amps. 6amps x 12 volts is around 70Watts. So it uses little more than normal 60Watt bulb, (imagine the heat of the 60Watt lamp and you get the idea of the power level).

So using the heater for 20 minutes and driving for 20 should keep the battery charged enough, issue is that if the battery is very cold, it cannot take charge well before it warms up. But usually same time usage vs driving works, but if you heat the car for 30 minutes and drive for 10, the battery is going to run out.(or you need to charge the battery periodically with external charger.

Toyota actually has Eberspächer heater, but a Webasto clock/timer unit.

-JP

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3 responses to “Eberspächer electricity usage

  1. Hello,
    Firstly, thanks for posting the video about this issue. I found your video about annoyed hiccups with Toyota Avensis via Youtube. Generally, I found your opinion as well as your whole blog is very helpful and interesting.

    I’m going to get my new Toyota Avensis 2013 around this May with pre-installed Webasto parking heater. So for sure your info and experience have cleared thing up a bit for me. However, I found the issue with Webasto draining battery severely is really contradicted to the whole idea of parking heater.

    What’s the point of get warm engine and cabin while battery is flat and I can’t start the car no more. Or does Webasto can sense if my battery voltage is too low and it turn itself off?. Otherwise, I have to keep eyes on battery voltage before start using it. I’ve also noticed that you got an external battery charger to combat this problem. However, I chose Webasto because I have no access to electrical outlet (street side parking), so battery charger is not feasible option for me. Actually, if I have got proper parking place with electrical outlet, I would have already gone with normal DEFA block and cabin heater which is much cheaper.

    I’ve read Webasto manual and video on the internet, and they said warm air will be blown into cabin with existing car ventilation fans. But I’m wondering how could that possible when I have already locked the car and walk away. Does Webasto somehow be connected to car computer and turn those ventilation fans automatically?

    By the way, besides that parking heater related matter, can you clarify this fact for me? I’m going to get the Wagon version of Avensis, but I’m not sure if there is additional 12V socket in boot/luggage compartment of the Avensis or not. I’ve been searching around on the internet but so far no answer.

    Thank you very much.

    • There is 12volt socket inside the center console box. But I have to check the rear luggage space, I haven’t noticed any plugs there.

      The webasto actually uses the inside ventilation fans, and this is what consumes some of the power, if you leave the fan at power 3, it consumes lot of power, so it’s best to use the power 1. With power one the power drain is not that bad. I have kept the heating cycle at 25minutes lenght and it has worked ok. If you drive for 25 minutes, you should never run out of battery. As the webasto consumes 12 amps for 2-3 minutes, then it drops down to 6 amps. And when driving the battery gets 12 amps load, so it should be ok.

      But if you use the fan power 3, it can consume up to 14-16 amps, and then it’s going run dry after some days.

      I asked maintenance is it better to use short time and high fan power, or longer time and low fan power. They suggested to use longer time(25min) and fan power 1, as the avensis webasto heating power is quite low, I think only 4kW. So using more fan power is not going to help. It needs more time and less fan speed.

      This causes some extra effort as every time before shutting the car down, I need to modify the fan speed and when starting up, I again need to change the fan speed to higher speed.

      I have Ctek comfort indicator and loading port attached to the front of the car. During winter when I used the webasto two time every day, I loaded it ones a week at work. This is because I only drive for 15 minutes each way and there is no way the battery could keep up with that without external loading. After all it’s easier to load it one time each week compared to block heater which would need to be plugged and unplugged many times each day.

      https://corecatcher.wordpress.com/2012/12/13/ctek-comfort-indicator/

      JP

      P.S. Toyota actually has eberspächer heater with webasto clock, but it’s easier to talk about ‘webasto’, as it’s sort of common name for fuel heaters…

      • Thanks for you fast reply!

        Ok, so battery drain issue is not that bad as I had imagined, and once a week fully charge battery seems to be quite reasonable. What about wear and tear for the battery? I assume that I got this car for less than 1 year, so no easy way to tell how much lifespan has been trimmed away by extensively use charge and discharge. However, I’ve read somewhere on the internet said they have to replace battery every 1 year or so (normal usage should be about 3-4 years).

        🙂 about the rear 12V socket, I’m going to have a cool box for summer, so it would be nicer if I could plug it in boot compartment instead of wiring all the way from front console.

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