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Old 01-07-2015, 11:55 AM   #1
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233s heater work on propane and electric?

I'm at work and can't remember if the heater in our 2014 233s works on propane and electric. If it does both, are there specific steps I need to take for it to operate on electric? Thanks.
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Old 01-07-2015, 11:59 AM   #2
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No, there are no electric heat strips - its propane only. You need 12V electric to run the controls, the fan, and the lp detector, but the only heat source is propane.
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Old 01-07-2015, 12:05 PM   #3
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No, there are no electric heat strips - its propane only. You need 12V electric to run the controls, the fan, and the lp detector, but the only heat source is propane.
Ah ok thanks. I couldn't remember it and I'm starting to get things together for our trip at an RV park. Never taken the trailer to a park before, just dry camped a few times.
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Old 01-07-2015, 12:15 PM   #4
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The furnace consumes propane to generate heat, and 12vdc electricity to run its blower.

If you are going to a CG that has 110vac service, bring a space heater. It's better to burn the CG's electricity (which you pay for in your slip rent) than your own propane.

If you are going to a CG that doesn't have electrical service, plan on getting a couple of nights out of a single Group 24 battery for the furnace's blower. If you need more than a couple of nights, you need more batteries, or a generator, or solar, or some combination of those.

If you want to burn propane only (no battery power) you can get a Mr Heater Buddy. They are designed for indoor use, and consume propane only (thus preserving your battery bank). However, lacking a blower, the heat flow will be via convection which may be less effective than a built-in furnace with blower. Plus, they burn through bottles of propane at a pretty quick pace.
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Old 01-07-2015, 12:31 PM   #5
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The furnace consumes propane to generate heat, and 12vdc electricity to run its blower.

If you are going to a CG that has 110vac service, bring a space heater. It's better to burn the CG's electricity (which you pay for in your slip rent) than your own propane.

If you are going to a CG that doesn't have electrical service, plan on getting a couple of nights out of a single Group 24 battery for the furnace's blower. If you need more than a couple of nights, you need more batteries, or a generator, or solar, or some combination of those.

If you want to burn propane only (no battery power) you can get a Mr Heater Buddy. They are designed for indoor use, and consume propane only (thus preserving your battery bank). However, lacking a blower, the heat flow will be via convection which may be less effective than a built-in furnace with blower. Plus, they burn through bottles of propane at a pretty quick pace.
Wow this is great info thanks! I didn't even think of just bringing a space heater lol
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Old 01-07-2015, 05:21 PM   #6
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There is a heater coil that can mount in your ac unit if u don't want space heaters I have consider this.
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Old 01-07-2015, 05:31 PM   #7
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There is a heater coil that can mount in your ac unit if u don't want space heaters I have consider this.
i don't think any of the Dometic a/c's that are in Roo/Shamrock hybrids, have the heat strip option. unless things have changed since our 2007 Roo.
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Old 01-07-2015, 05:45 PM   #8
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I check it out my 2014 233s can have it added my dealer confirmed it
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Old 01-08-2015, 12:14 AM   #9
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We use 2 space heaters in our 233S - one facing forward & one toward the back. You have to run an extention cord from the CG pole for the second heater since more than one will trip the breaker in the camper. The cord runs out the side bunk easily. Use a good gauge cord that's not too long. We like the space heaters because they are "free" and much quieter than the furnace. We usually set the furnace at a lower temp than the space heaters in case they can't keep up but that alomst never happens.
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Old 01-08-2015, 12:51 AM   #10
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Heat strips in air conditioners are of questionable value. Nevertheless, I'll probably be installing one in my AC.

The basics: A typical residential space heater consumes 1500 watts and puts out 5200 BTU of heat. There is nothing that can be done about the 1500 watt maximum draw; that's what residential wiring supports. And the best that 1500 watts of electricity can produce is around 5200 BTUs.

RV furnaces start around 19000 BTUs and go up from there. They consume propane to produce this heat. A tank of propane has about 400k BTU's in it. So a 20000BTU furnace will run for 20 hours straight before exhausting a full 20# tank. Furnaces rarely run for 20 hours straight. Perhaps yours runs 1/3rd of the time at night (10 hours) and not at all during the daytime. So each night it runs 3.33 hours. You'll get 6 nights out of a tank.

Back to electrical heat. The heat strips I've seen range from 900 watts to 1500 watts. So at the high end, they'll produce 5200 BTUs. If they run continually, that's 5200 BTU's per hour. If your 20000 BTU RV furnace were to run 1/3rd of the time, it would produce 6666 BTU's per hour, which is 28% more heat per hour than the heat strip, even though it's just running 1/3rd of the time.

But the heat strip is free heat (electrical, from the CG). But here is why it's inferior to a simple space heater:

1: It's positioned at the top of your RV where thermodynamic convection works against it. Like a basement with the heater vents all in the ceiling, the top of the RV will get warm, but the bottom 5' where most people live will remain cooler.

2: The AC's blower is pretty powerful. Your space heater's blower is fairly weak. The space heater will feel like it's blowing hot air. The AC unit will feel like it's blowing luke-warm air. The total heat output will be the same, but the AC unit will have a more drafty feel.

3: The heat strip is more expensive than the space heater to purchase.

4: The heat strip is located in the AC unit, which is in a fixed location. Space heaters can be moved to where they're needed.

5: The AC blower is probably noisier than most space heaters.

So after saying all those negative things, why would I still consider installing a heat strip?

First, because of the convenience; it's always there, I don't have to remember to pack it.

Second, it won't get kicked over by kids.

Those are the only two reasons, aside from the irrational reason of "because my AC unit can accept one... I may as well install one in it." (That's also one of my reasons, but it's a poor one).

Even after I install one, I'll probably still pack a space heater. The heat strip will just help to assist the space heater as needed, further preventing the propane furnace from kicking on.
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