How To Make A Hybrid Heat Exchanger

Feb. 23, 2014


Materials used in a hybrid heat exchanger


Here is the new video on how to make a hybrid heat exchanger using copper and plastic. The heat exchanger similar in design to the first heat exchanger. The difference being that I used copper fittings and pipe to make the outer chamber in the first build.

By using PVC fittings and pipe in the new heat exchanger build I was able to reduce the cost of building by 85%.You still need to use copper as the material for the heat transfer material. Plastic is a great insulator but is a horrible heat conductor.

All copper built heat exchanger

Picture of an all copper heat exchanger


If you plan on having fluids run through the exchanger that are above 160°F, do not bother using plastic. At this point you need to do an ALL copper build.

Materials used for this build

2- 2″PVC Tee

2- 2″Plastic/cast x 1-1/2″ copper MJ coupling

2 feet 2″ PVC pipe

2.5 feet 1-1/2″ type L copper (blue writing)


You will need to purchase PVC purple primer and schedule 40 glue. BOTH are needed to properly glue PVC fittings and pipe.

10 Responses to How To Make A Hybrid Heat Exchanger

  1. Ken R says:

    Thanks for the great info.

    I need to do this for potable water at very low pressure (under 4 PSI). As you mentioned, I need potable MJ couplings, but I’m having trouble finding them. Any source you know of?


  2. Peter says:

    Can these be adapted to a cold water 3/4 pipe?

  3. Chris says:

    Maybe a dumb question, but which pip carries the drain water, copper or plastic. If copper, then what pressure can pvc handle?

  4. Mike Bulpin says:

    Perfect timing. Looking to heat hot tub from outdoor boiler. If i reduce my inside copper to 3/4 should i also reduce the outer PVC?
    I see the gap between the 2 is very small. Is there a reason for that?
    I do know you said it would be in the next video.

  5. Mj Armas says:

    What is the procedure making this het exchanger?

  6. Sammy says:

    Can this one be used as a pasturing machine?

  7. Sammy says:

    Do u first heat the liquid and the pump the system ie plate heat exchanger?

  8. Anonymous says:

    Pode ser usado para resfriar mosto?

  9. Brian says:

    Hey Rob, what is the heat transfer like per foot?
    Also you mentioned ganging them but I don’t see any article or video re this.
    Thanks for the good how to video.
    I am planning to install a heat exchanger on the side of my DHW tank to pull some heat for my garage to keep it from freezing. Plan on using a car radiator and circulating pump on the garage loop. Fan behind rad.

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