I have a '73 Super Beetle, the channel heat is very poor in this one, the previous car I had was actually quite good.  Is it all right to hook up a small 12 volt external heater, direct wire to battery, the type that are intended for autos?  Probably a stupid question.....
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I would stay away from the 12V heaters unless you have a large alternator. One thing I have seen some of my buddies do is on their cars is get some 2" hose the aluminized stuff that go from the fan shroud to the heater boxs. Put it on the tubes that come out to heat the rear seat area and run the tubes up under the seat. If you make the tubes long enough you can even use it to defrost the front window.
66 Ghia, "Dexter" 76 flat window Beetle
It's not a Car it's a VolksWagon!
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A lot of people are very interested in those electric heaters in winter in Australia but I haven't spoken to anyone who has used them..
they do use a lot of power -
so I wouldn't use anything that uses more than 400 watts.
even though a standard VW alternator puts out around 600 watts ..
the idea by olspeed seems Good..
all You need to do is take that hot air from the heater boxes to inside the car...
I always use My vents under the rear seat to heat My beetle and they work well...
so using hose up to those will heat Your car, but You will have to block off the side heater channels under the rear seat..

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