4 x 4 Australia - - Contents -

THE Cole­man Hot Wa­ter On De­mand (HWOD) unit is the sec­ond gen­er­a­tion por­ta­ble hot wa­ter heater from this highly re­spected out­door equip­ment com­pany. There are two mod­els in the range and we have been us­ing the Elite ver­sion for the past few months, which will cost you a hun­dred bucks or so more than the stan­dard model. While the RRP for the Elite is $549, you’ll get it con­sid­er­ably cheaper if you shop around – we’ve seen it as low as $379.

The unit weighs 8.5kg and packs a big punch in its 42x25x53cm pack­age. While the heater core is made from cop­per and the wa­ter con­nec­tions are quick-con­nect brass fit­tings, the rest of the unit is made from light­weight alu­minium and ABS plas­tic.

A dig­i­tal dis­play on the front of the Elite shows the bat­tery sta­tus of the on-board lithium-ion bat­tery, pi­lot light ac­ti­va­tion, wa­ter flow, out­put tem­per­a­ture, and a num­ber of warn­ings such as low bat­tery and low wa­ter flow. Two USB charg­ing points are in­cluded and are a handy ad­di­tion for all those items that seem to rely on USB power these days. The bat­tery can be charged or the unit can run on 12V DC or 240V AC power with the ca­ble adap­tors supplied (and which are housed in the heater’s han­dle).

Two hoses – an in­let hose with pump, which con­nects to the supplied col­lapsi­ble wa­ter con­tainer, and the 2.4-me­tre-long shower hose, which con­nects to an ad­justable shower head – are in­cluded. A mesh bag to hold the shower hose and a bracket to hold the shower head com­pletes the kit.

Once you have charged the in­ter­nal bat­tery, con­nected the hoses and gas bot­tle, and filled the wa­ter con­tainer, the unit is ready for use. Turn on both the mas­ter switch and the power but­ton and en­sure wa­ter is flow­ing through the unit. Ig­ni­tion is au­to­matic once you turn the knob to ‘Pi­lot’. Then sim­ply ad­just the knob to the wa­ter tem­per­a­ture re­quired – at ‘Max’ it’s very hot.

Cole­man says a nor­mal 438g dis­pos­able gas can­is­ter will give 150 litres of hot wa­ter, but that de­pends on how cold the wa­ter is to start with and how hot you want it. With the price of

It makes a lot of sense to buy a Cole­man gas hose that con­nects to a 9kg gas cylin­der. You’ll save money if us­ing the wa­ter heater fre­quently

Cole­man can­is­ters often more than $10 per car­tridge, it makes a lot of sense to buy a Cole­man gas hose that con­nects to a 9kg gas cylin­der. You’ll save money if us­ing the wa­ter heater fre­quently. Plus, the hose will fit more Cole­man prod­ucts than just the wa­ter heater.

Due to safety rea­sons there is no tap or switch to pause the wa­ter flow when hav­ing a shower, which is a lit­tle an­noy­ing, as bush camp­ing where wa­ter can be dif­fi­cult to ob­tain means try­ing to con­serve as much wa­ter as pos­si­ble.

The bush-wash­ing tech­nique – wa­ter on, wet your­self down; wa­ter off, soap your­self up; wa­ter on, rinse your­self off – means you need to have ready ac­cess to the heater and the con­trols.

The flow rate at 2.3L/min (as stated in the spec sheet) means you go through the wa­ter in the stan­dard wa­ter con­tainer fairly quickly. We often used a bucket and sim­ply dropped the pump assem­bly into the wa­ter and it worked fine. You can also con­nect a gar­den hose to the unit, if you can find one in the bush, but make sure the wa­ter pres­sure isn’t too high.

An op­tion that could be worth con­sid­er­ing is the Cole­man carry bag ($80). It not only helps pro­tect the unit, but it keeps all the hoses, as­so­ci­ated equip­ment and Cole­man can­is­ters in the one place.

AVAIL­ABLE FROM: www.cole­m­anaus­tralia. com.au RRP: $549 WE SAY: Light­weight, easy to use, im­prove­ment on pre­de­ces­sor.


Sim­ple oper­at­ing dial, and easy-to-read dig­i­tal dis­play. Fit a gar­den hose and wa­ter the gar­den. Just keep the pres­sure low.

The Cole­man HWOD will chew through the 438g gas can­is­ters.

The hot wa­ter unit pumps out 2.3L of wa­ter per minute.

Con­ve­nient stor­age com­part­ment for all power ca­bles.

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