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Old 12-29-2013, 11:34 AM   #11
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Originally Posted by boowho View Post
Anyone seen this?? Or maybe even installed one??

CheapHeat

Opinions?? Comments??

My propane furnace barely blows enough warm air to even feel a draft from the floor registers. I'm think that the ducts may be plugged or maybe the squirrel cage fan may not be tight on it's shaft.

I'm told that these propane heaters are at best, around 50% efficient. As a full-timer, I need something better.

Boowho??
You may have already checked this but the first time I used our propane heater we had no air flow from the vents but it got real hot in the sink cabinet (where the heater is mounted). I pulled the intake screens off and found that on the end of the furnace is a panel held on by two screws that directs the air into the ducts. One of the screws that held the panel on had pulled out and allowed the panel to open. Once I put a larger screw in place everything worked fine.
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Old 12-29-2013, 03:46 PM   #12
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We recently found on our 39RB that they forgot to install vents in the foot of the couch. The heater is ducted underneath the couch and blows right into the back of this panel. Without the vents the air has no place to go thus keeping the living room cold. They are sending me the cents to do myself or have a dealer do. Has anyone else experienced this?
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Old 12-29-2013, 03:55 PM   #13
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Originally Posted by Terrilegacy View Post
We recently found on our 39RB that they forgot to install vents in the foot of the couch. The heater is ducted underneath the couch and blows right into the back of this panel. Without the vents the air has no place to go thus keeping the living room cold. They are sending me the cents to do myself or have a dealer do. Has anyone else experienced this?
Man! How does this pass inspection? I worked one summer before college at a mobile home plant. Our inspector would tag red tape over everything that was not right. We'd spend the last hour each day correcting things. Even a screw that wasn't sunk deep enough would get red flagged. It seems no body even looks at these units after they leave the assembly line. My 8282 had some obvious items over looked.
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Old 12-29-2013, 04:51 PM   #14
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Originally Posted by Terrilegacy View Post
We recently found on our 39RB that they forgot to install vents in the foot of the couch. The heater is ducted underneath the couch and blows right into the back of this panel. Without the vents the air has no place to go thus keeping the living room cold. They are sending me the cents to do myself or have a dealer do. Has anyone else experienced this?
Well I do believe that they didn't have any return air in my unit. As far as doing it, take it to the dealer and have them do it. Once they take your money they will send you stuff but do not want to pay for the labor that you paid for already. If you do it and something screws up then it's on you not them.
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Old 12-29-2013, 09:45 PM   #15
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Also who told you that the efficiency of a propane furnace is only 50%?
I would think this is about right. Old home gas furnaces only ran 50-60% efficient. It's only been in the last 25 yrs or so that high efficiency (80-90%) home furnaces have been around. (I bought an 85% efficient one in 2001 to replace a 22 yr old POS that was lucky if it was getting 50%.) High efficiency furnaces need Stainless Steel heat exchangers and fancy pre-heaters and after-coolers and several fans blowing the combustion air around in order to get that kind of efficiency. I'm pretty certain NONE of us have any of that in our puny little RV heaters.
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Old 12-30-2013, 04:27 AM   #16
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I would think this is about right. Old home gas furnaces only ran 50-60% efficient. It's only been in the last 25 yrs or so that high efficiency (80-90%) home furnaces have been around. (I bought an 85% efficient one in 2001 to replace a 22 yr old POS that was lucky if it was getting 50%.) High efficiency furnaces need Stainless Steel heat exchangers and fancy pre-heaters and after-coolers and several fans blowing the combustion air around in order to get that kind of efficiency. I'm pretty certain NONE of us have any of that in our puny little RV heaters.
Well you are pretty close before around 1982 the Standard furnace was rated at 78% they couldn't make or sell anything less. To convert a natural gas to propane you had to change the burner orifice and gas valve spring because of the pressure needed for propane which is 11.5 inches in a water colloum. In the mid 1980 they increased the eff. to the min. of 80% where it is still is now. in the late 80's they came out with the condensation furnace which used PVC flues at 90%plus. Get you btu input and get your btu output that will give you the percent. There is no way possible for a 50% eff. furnace. The btu rating of a pound is higher then natural gas. If your unit was SP 30 lets say thats input 30,000 btu's the output would have to be listed at 15,000 BTU's....:
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Old 12-30-2013, 05:50 AM   #17
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Well you are pretty close before around 1982 the Standard furnace was rated at 78% they couldn't make or sell anything less. To convert a natural gas to propane you had to change the burner orifice and gas valve spring because of the pressure needed for propane which is 11.5 inches in a water colloum. In the mid 1980 they increased the eff. to the min. of 80% where it is still is now. in the late 80's they came out with the condensation furnace which used PVC flues at 90%plus. Get you btu input and get your btu output that will give you the percent. There is no way possible for a 50% eff. furnace. The btu rating of a pound is higher then natural gas. If your unit was SP 30 lets say thats input 30,000 btu's the output would have to be listed at 15,000 BTU's....:
Lets just say that a electric heater is considered "100% efficient" in that all the energy that you buy goes into producing heat. While a gas water heater might make 80% of the BTU input into Btu output, if you leave it hot overnight, you will see that you spend about 15 minutes running the heater, without taking out any hot water, that heat being lost to cold air going into the burner and out the exhaust flue pipe. That is also happening at your home gas water heater too.

But should be change to all electric to save fuel? Because a electric heater is 100% efficient and the gas is only 80%? Not really. The LP gas generator might consume 1 gallon of propane per hour while making 4,000 watts of electricity. If this is used in a 100% efficient water heater, it can make about 13,500 Btu's of electric heated water, or produce 13,500 Btu's of heat with a electric space air heater. Yet your 40,000 Btu furnace can produce 32,000 Btu's of hot air per hour while running 2.5 hours on one gallon of LP gas.

The water heater is 8,800 Btu's per hour gas input, and heat the water with about 80% of that gas input, so about 3,600 Btu's are lost to in-efficientcy, so about 5,200 Btu's is put into the hot water tank. That compares with running the heater for 12 hours on a gallon of propane, VS 2 hours to make the same amount of heat the 4 KW generator will make.

So the propane furnace and water heater are more energy effective than a electric one. This is the best I can find to prove my point on Eff. rating. Hope it helps.
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Old 12-30-2013, 07:48 PM   #18
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This may get long, but bear with me.

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So the propane furnace and water heater are more energy effective than a electric one. This is the best I can find to prove my point on Eff. rating. Hope it helps.
All true, IF you're paying for the electricity and IF you haven't yet purchased a furnace. In theory, any comparison of overall cost would be:

"electric furnace cost + cost of electricity" vs "propane furnace cost + cost of propane"

If you were actually going to have to pay for each of the inputs to this equation, then efficiency might become important. (It would be much more important if you were choosing between two gas furnaces with different efficiencies, but you're not.)

In this case, whether you're using propane OR electric, you're paying the CG the same amount, since they usually charge a flat fee to have an electric hookup. So, for all intents and purposes, you're NOT paying for any electricity you might use for electric heating instead of the propane. (Although you'll soon raise the electric hookup cost for the rest of us if a lot of you do this!) Furthermore, you've already got the gas furnace, so that cost is sunk no matter what you do; since it's already spent, it's effectively zero. So now you've got $0 for cost of electricity on the left side of the equation and $0 for cost of the propane furnace on the right side of the equation.

Therefore, removing these zero costs leaves:

"electric furnace cost" vs "cost of propane"

So the only calculation you need to do is see how much propane you think you'll save and how long it will take to equal the cost of the furnace. This will give you your payback time. For example, if you think the CheapHeat will cost you $1000 installed and you think you'll save $100/yr in propane with the electric furnace, you've got a 10 yr payback time.

Most businesses will only consider capital investments if they pay for themselves in 2-3 years, meaning you'd have to save $333 - $500 per year in propane to make it a wise "business" decision.

Of course, we're not in business, so it's up you. Also, consider if you'll still have the RV by the time the payback period is up.
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Old 12-30-2013, 09:29 PM   #19
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The only wrinkle in that, rockfordroo, is that many parks charge for electricity once you stay more than a week.
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Old 12-30-2013, 10:30 PM   #20
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If you have poor air flow now the electric furnace will not improve the flow. It is an add on that attaches to the front of your gas furnace and uses the duct work already in the unit. You would be better off purchasing one or two small electric heaters. We have heated our trailer using a oil filled heater in the living room and a small ceramic heater in the bedroom. Outside temp. have dropped to low 20's. Trailer stayed at 70+ inside. We also used a dehumidifier to keep the moisture down. We were on a metered site and it cost us $150/month for electric. The people who were heating their trailers with propane were paying $75/ month for hydro and they had a problem keeping the heat at 70degrees in side during cold spells.
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