• Friends: Please double-check the email address you have on file. Make sure that it is current and able to receive email. When our emails are rejected it can damage our ratings and slow down future deliveries.
    Thanks!

Houseboat fuel and range

Bigbassman

Well-Known Member
We’ve got our very first houseboat trip planned for the end of May, and we’re trying to figure out our range for areas to target camping. I thought some of the experts on here could help with the planning process!

We’re leaving out of Wahweap, and we have a 48’ navigator. Also a 19’ powerboat.

I assume the cut will be closed. And with that in mind, we’re hoping to target Last Chance as our destination. Just not sure we’ll have enough fuel to make it there and back, plus the generator running each day.

So our rental has a 115 gal main tank, and a 115 gal toy tank. The houseboat motors run 10 gallons per hour EACH, and I estimate around 10 mph average. So that’s 0.5 miles per gallon.

Generator is estimated at 4 gallons per hour...

We’ll be departing on a Thursday, returning the following Wednesday. Now I just have to calculate the safe range of this rig! :unsure:
 

Ryan

Well-Known Member
What HP do those houseboats run? And Where are you getting your consumption numbers because they sound way high to me.

We have a big generator in our houseboat (22k I think?) and it only seems to run around a gallon an hour. Which still adds up quickly but a big difference than what you are quoting.

And 10 GPH sounds way high even at WOT for an outboard. Maybe I’m wrong.
 

JFRCalifornia

Well-Known Member
...and FYI, with the Cut closed, and taking the most direct line to Last Chance, it’s 26 miles (only 18 with the Cut open). And at current lake levels, you can go about 9 miles into Last Chance as measured from the base of Gregory Butte. So a reasonable case round trip is something like 70 miles total... add a little for sidetracking, but still plenty of fuel to make the trip...
 
Last edited:

Bigbassman

Well-Known Member
Thanks, everyone! The mileage I’m estimating is from the info sheet provided by Wahweap marina. They really estimated 4 gallons per hour in the generator, but good to hear that’s probably an overestimation. The same for the outboards, glad to hear that 20 gallons per hour is an overestimation.

And good info about keeping it to 2500-3000 rpm. I didn’t know about that. I think that will be the plan then, targeting Last Chance!
 

Jackalope

Well-Known Member
You will want to fuel the little boat from Dangling Rope and Antelope Point so you can save some of the fuel for the Genset. I know they say 4gal per hour but I have see them pull over 7... So even at 4 gal an hour that is 80 gal if you use the genset for 20 hours a day.

The rental boats are all electric and I forgot if they still have a BBQ up front, so you will need to run the genset if you are cooking at least and that would be 5-6 hours a day. ~ 20 gal a day, so in 5 days you will be running out...

My Genset pulls ~ 1 gal an hour for a 12KW (I installed flow meters on my houseboat several years back and we track it) I also carry over 500 gal of fuel.

Will you make it to Last Chance and back. No issue ... will you have enough fuel for the genset <-- better question.
Also how many people, because you may want to drag that boat to Dangling Rope for a pump out mid week (I hope they have it fixed this year) and a refuel.

Enjoy ...
 

Bigbassman

Well-Known Member
You will want to fuel the little boat from Dangling Rope and Antelope Point so you can save some of the fuel for the Genset. I know they say 4gal per hour but I have see them pull over 7... So even at 4 gal an hour that is 80 gal if you use the genset for 20 hours a day.

The rental boats are all electric and I forgot if they still have a BBQ up front, so you will need to run the genset if you are cooking at least and that would be 5-6 hours a day. ~ 20 gal a day, so in 5 days you will be running out...

My Genset pulls ~ 1 gal an hour for a 12KW (I installed flow meters on my houseboat several years back and we track it) I also carry over 500 gal of fuel.

Will you make it to Last Chance and back. No issue ... will you have enough fuel for the genset <-- better question.
Also how many people, because you may want to drag that boat to Dangling Rope for a pump out mid week (I hope they have it fixed this year) and a refuel.

Enjoy ...
It might be a good idea to refuel the 115 gal tanks at Dangling Rope, maybe half-way through...seems like a pain to break camp and moor again, though. Definitely when we take the power boat North, we’ll plan to refuel that at DR too. Hopefully fuel can be transferred from the toy tank to the main tank with a bypass?

I believe the grill is propane, and the range, and hot water are propane too.

We’ll have 5 people on board, so hopefully we won’t need a pump out!
 

Jackalope

Well-Known Member
It might be a good idea to refuel the 115 gal tanks at Dangling Rope, maybe half-way through...seems like a pain to break camp and moor again, though. Definitely when we take the power boat North, we’ll plan to refuel that at DR too. Hopefully fuel can be transferred from the toy tank to the main tank with a bypass?

I believe the grill is propane, and the range, and hot water are propane too.

We’ll have 5 people on board, so hopefully we won’t need a pump out!
No, the range and hot water should be electric unless it's an old boat. Please correct me if I am wrong...

With 5 you should be good to go for the week ... Enjoy!
 

BartsPlace

Moderator
Staff member
It's should be easy enough to put the hose from the toy tank into the engine tank and pump the gas there, if necessary. I really don't think you'll have a problem. They size the tanks (fuel, water, sewage) on the rental boats specifically to last one week of average use on Powell in the hot summertime. In spring or fall there should be even less of an issue since you won't be running A/C. I wouldn't be planning to break camp just for gas mid-week unless really strange things were happening.

I don't know which brand gensets are on that boat, but Westerbeke's published spec on their generators is 0.1 gph per kw/h under full load - meaning that an 8kw/h would consume ~0.8 gallons per hour fully loaded. I'm not sure where Aramark got the 4 gph number, but I have seen it on their docs.
 

Bigbassman

Well-Known Member
It's should be easy enough to put the hose from the toy tank into the engine tank and pump the gas there, if necessary. I really don't think you'll have a problem. They size the tanks (fuel, water, sewage) on the rental boats specifically to last one week of average use on Powell in the hot summertime. In spring or fall there should be even less of an issue since you won't be running A/C. I wouldn't be planning to break camp just for gas mid-week unless really strange things were happening.

I don't know which brand gensets are on that boat, but Westerbeke's published spec on their generators is 0.1 gph per kw/h under full load - meaning that an 8kw/h would consume ~0.8 gallons per hour fully loaded. I'm not sure where Aramark got the 4 gph number, but I have seen it on their docs.
Yep, probably not gonna need A/C, so that’s good. And I’m hoping 4 gph is a gross overestimation on the genset!
 

Ryan

Well-Known Member
And I’m hoping 4 gph is a gross overestimation on the genset!
Like I said earlier, I think they are WAY out of line on fuel usage in both the Genset and the drive engines. I know that the 350's in our houseboat don't run 10 GPH. Heck, I don't think the LS3 in my Malibu runs 10 GPH at full ballast.

If you know what engines they use to power the boat, you can likely look up fuel consumption online.
 

Jackalope

Well-Known Member
Thanks for correcting me, its been almost 30 years sense I have been on a rental boat. I discussed with a planner years ago (big boat show) and they were saying that they want to move away from propane do to the fire hazard... And now I could have screwed that up with Lake Shasta...
 

svivian

Well-Known Member
Like I said earlier, I think they are WAY out of line on fuel usage in both the Genset and the drive engines. I know that the 350's in our houseboat don't run 10 GPH. Heck, I don't think the LS3 in my Malibu runs 10 GPH at full ballast.

If you know what engines they use to power the boat, you can likely look up fuel consumption online.
The old two strokes of the 90's and early 2000s were known to be easily calculated HP/10 @ WOT = GPH but with newer motors I agree that those figures have to be off.
 

Bigbassman

Well-Known Member
Like I said earlier, I think they are WAY out of line on fuel usage in both the Genset and the drive engines. I know that the 350's in our houseboat don't run 10 GPH. Heck, I don't think the LS3 in my Malibu runs 10 GPH at full ballast.

If you know what engines they use to power the boat, you can likely look up fuel consumption online.
I guess I don't know the exact engines on the boat, but the spec sheet says twin 60 hp 4 stroke outboards. Estimated at 10 gph per engine. This might be an overestimate, but who knows. I looked up Yamaha's F60LB, and in their performance testing, at 3500 RPM it runs at around 10.4 miles/gal, and about 1.8 gal/hr, with an average speed of around 19 miles/hr. That wasn't pushing a houseboat, though, so I'm not sure if those numbers are comparable. But 1.8 gal/hr sounds a LOT better than 10 gal/hr!
 
Top