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 > New rig, Winter camping, everything has gone wrong

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No Stress Express

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Posted: 12/10/16 02:55am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

We finally bought our Rig last week (over a month behind schedule we had no choice but to move right in), and thought it was smart to stay local for the next month to educate ourselves about our new home, make sure everything is in good working order and so on.
What we didn't expect...the NC weather to be so cold, the weather to affect the furnace. Then there is the 10 other things that have gone wrong with it that we have to take it back to the dealer to be fixed.
I have years more experience camping than Dan. I camped in the U.P. Michigan every year with an old TT and never had a problem. So, what or why would my furnace (both), stop working when temps dropped below freezing? We weren't using propane, just our 50 amp service. We checked breakers, switches and so on.
Now I'm very concerned that everything is going to freeze and break...black water, gray water, fresh water. The tanks and lines. It's 21 degrees as I'm typing this. We've had to leave the motor home at the campground. I think we are in real trouble. Any help or advice would be much appreciated.


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Y-Guy

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Posted: 12/10/16 03:23am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Can you run your propane furnace? Do you have lights still? Kick on the propane to keep warm.


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NanciL

Bakersville, NC, USA

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Posted: 12/10/16 03:45am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

I don't understand "you weren't using propane" !

All the RV's I know of only have forced hot air by propane heat

Turn the propane on and the furnace should run.

If it doesn't, turn one off the stove burners on to get it flowing. If you can't get a burner going then your tanks might be empty

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Posted: 12/10/16 04:51am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Everything else works. We also ran out of propane. Filling the tank this morning, hoping that will work.

Do you have any clue what would make both stop working suddenly?

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Posted: 12/10/16 04:55am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

If you were heating with electric heat pumps, that could be the problem. Heat pumps only work till about 40 degrees. Then they just blow cold air. Nothing wrong with them, that is how they work by design.

Always keep propane when it's cold out.

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No Stress Express

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Posted: 12/10/16 05:01am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Thank you Scottiemom! That makes sense, oh so much sense. Now that I don't need to worry about them being broken, I can move on to what may have broke because of the lack of heat.

Do you have a recommendation or two for resources to get the most information/education as possible before we hit the road?

ken56

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Posted: 12/10/16 05:37am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

I would be draining the tanks and lines if you are in danger of things freezing and doing damage. At minimum blow out the lines with air. I am in east TN and yep, its cold. Upper teens this morning. My house is heated with an electric heat pump so they do work in the cold weather. Its a bigger unit than what is on a MoHo, I know but read your manuals on their operation and understand the limitations on your units. They are not really meant to be a replacement for the propane furnace in very cold temps. They will also not get heat to the tanks and water lines, only the propane furnace is ducted for that purpose.

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Posted: 12/10/16 05:46am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Probably should mention that if you are turning on the propane furnace for the first time you will get an acrid smell from the oil burning off the heat exchanger and maybe a little bit of smoke too. No, its not on fire, just burning off the oils on the metal. It stinks but it will go away after a while......that means many uses so be patient.

ksg5000

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Posted: 12/10/16 05:48am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Consider buying a couple of inexpensive portable electric heaters - they work great if you have shore power and in a pinch you can always fire up the generator. I prefer them to main heater as they are quiet.


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Posted: 12/10/16 05:57am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

If you have 50A service then X 2 on adding a couple of electric heaters.

Use the furnace to supplement them when it's really cold. But be prepared for heavy use of propane, you'll be refilling more than you care to. Also consider putting a shop light down in your wet bay to keep things there thawed out.


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