Reply
 
Thread Tools Display Modes
Old 01-13-2019, 09:52 PM   #1
Member
 
Join Date: Apr 2018
Location: NC
Posts: 49
Will LP furnace run on DC/battery?

We have a new to us 2015 Coachman Clipper 16B (TT) that we have only camped in 3 times. I tested everything on one of out outings at a full service camp ground this past fall.


One thing I did not test because it was not needed is whether the LP gas furnace will work on battery/DC power. I guess the controller for the furnace and the fan are the only things that need power but I can't determine by looking at the diagrams or reading the manuals if this will work or if AC power is required. If AC is required, does this model have an inverter that kicks in from the battery power in order to make that happen? If not, can I add an inverter that will make that possible. (I'm going to be adding a good solar panel, controller, and upgrading my batteries in early spring so that we can do more "off the grid" camping.)


The current factory configuration is:

Furnace: Suburban NT 20 SEQ
Converter: WFCO, WF8735-PB


If no one knows for sure, who would I need to call at Forest River to be sure I was getting correct info?


Thanks for your help.
Outsider
__________________

Outsider is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-13-2019, 09:59 PM   #2
Site Team
 
Mr. Dan's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2014
Location: Grayson County, Texas
Posts: 13,113
Your LP furnace does not need AC power although it does suck quite a bit of battery power. All this assumes itís a common furnace.
__________________

__________________
SEARCH is your friend!
FR Wildcat 295RSX / GMC Sierra

Nights Camped: '13 = 49/'14 = 74/'15 = 74/'16 = 85/'17 = 110/'18 =111/'19 = 86; booked = 39
Mr. Dan is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 01-14-2019, 01:13 AM   #3
Site Team
 
bikendan's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2007
Location: Camano Island, Washington
Posts: 20,294
As Mr. Dan said, RV propane furnaces are 12v powered, NOT 110v AC powered.
They are the biggest battery drain in your RV. It uses 12v power to ignite the propane and to run the fan.
All shore power will do is recharge the battery while the furnace is being used.
__________________
Dan-Retired California Firefighter/EMT
Shawn-Musician/Entrepreneur/Wine Expert
and Zoe the Wonder Dog(R.I.P.)
2016 PrimeTime TracerAIR 255, pushing a 2014 Ford F150 SCREW XTR 4x4 3.5 Ecoboost w/Max Tow Package
Equalizer WDH
bikendan is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-14-2019, 01:20 AM   #4
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Jul 2010
Posts: 349
Just a note, the battery should be in good condition, and pretty much charged when you start the furnace. A gentleman found out the hard way that his battery was a bit low on water and therefore the furnace would not fire, the fan ran fine, just not enough juice to make the furnace fire!
__________________
2018 Flagstaff 832IKBS Travel Trailer.

2015 Silverado High Country.
jackhartjr is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-14-2019, 01:50 PM   #5
Junior Member
 
Join Date: Apr 2018
Posts: 8
Quote:
Originally Posted by bikendan View Post
As Mr. Dan said, RV propane furnaces are 12v powered, NOT 110v AC powered.
They are the biggest battery drain in your RV. It uses 12v power to ignite the propane and to run the fan.
All shore power will do is recharge the battery while the furnace is being used.
The converter will power the furnace directly, it doesnít refill your battery as you use it. The charger will charge your battery also but if the shore power is connected the load is pulled from the converter not the battery.
casey_b is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-14-2019, 01:52 PM   #6
Senior Member
 
Grapehound's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2015
Location: Narvon, PA
Posts: 192
We found out the hard way about having a weak battery while using the furnace overnight in a dry camping situation. We ended up camping on a 25 degree November night in the Walmart lot near Roanoke Rapids, NC. We got permission from the store and parked near some grass at the edge of the Walmart parking lot and turned on the propane furnace.

About 3AM I woke to something spattering off the side of the RV. I could see my breath in the trailer. It was cold! The furnace had turned itself off when the battery power gave out. No power to run the furnace fan. When I opened the door to the outside, I found that the Walmart lawn sprinklers had turned on and were spraying an icy coating on the side of the trailer. Yipes!

I started and locked the diesel TV, got 12 v. power back, started the furnace and went back to bed for a couple more hours till dawn. But it was cold lesson in the need for a fully charged battery to keep the trailer warm overnight. (I'd add a second battery and maybe bring an inverter if we dry camped often and needed the furnace. the furnace fan does suck 12 v. power.)
__________________

2014 Rockwood Signature 8282 Ultra-Lite
2008 RAM 3500 HD DRW Laramie Megacab
6.7 Cummins Turbo Diesel
Grapehound is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-14-2019, 01:54 PM   #7
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Jun 2017
Posts: 407
Just so everybody knows... YES the furnace does suck a lot from the battery, but here's my experience:

Outside Temp: 20's at night
Thermostat :65 evenings and night / Off in the Day (Because we're outside hiking or whatever)
Two deep-cycle marine batteries

We lasted 3 days 2 nights with about 50% of usable capacity left.
I wouldn't want to push it past 3 nights though, and we are very conservative with our power.
kfergiez is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-14-2019, 02:32 PM   #8
Senior Member
 
rracer5's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2011
Location: Full Timing It
Posts: 2,609
The furnace is normally the highest 12v draw in your TT. The furnace, water heater & refrigerator also have a 12v propane valve that opens to allow propane flow when the unit needs to start. They all also have a 12v flame igniter.
In the case of the furnace however, you also have the 12v blower motor. This makes the furnace the highest drain on the batteries.

I also believe that constant 12v is also needed to keep the propane valve open while the appliances are running (someone correct me if I'm wrong......don't tell DW I said that...)
__________________
"PT Crew Members Since 9/2010"
2011 RAM 2500 HD 6.7L CTD Crew
2014 Sanibel 3250
rracer5 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-14-2019, 02:38 PM   #9
Senior Member
 
rracer5's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2011
Location: Full Timing It
Posts: 2,609
Borrowed from another thread....this may help.

http://www.forestriverforums.com/for...ml#post2005060
__________________
"PT Crew Members Since 9/2010"
2011 RAM 2500 HD 6.7L CTD Crew
2014 Sanibel 3250
rracer5 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-14-2019, 02:41 PM   #10
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Jun 2017
Posts: 407
Quote:
Originally Posted by rracer5 View Post
Borrowed from another thread....this may help.

http://www.forestriverforums.com/for...ml#post2005060
That chart is great!
kfergiez is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-14-2019, 02:49 PM   #11
Grammar Pedant
 
67L48's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2017
Location: Frederick, CO
Posts: 1,391
You can look up your Suburban furnace and see that it will consume 2.7 amps.

It's a good assumption that your furnace will run for 5-6 hours in a typical night, with moderate temps, and a low (~66 F) setting. So, 13-16 amps per night. If you camp 3 nights for a long weekend, that's 40-50 total amps. Because you shouldn't discharge your battery below 50%, that will mean you want at least 80 - 100 amp-hour battery. And, that's just for the furnace.

Add up your other uses -- lights, water pump, CO detector, etc. You can mathematically determine how large your battery must be.

Good luck.
__________________
Every time you use an apostrophe to make a word plural, a puppy dies.

RV: 2018 Rockwood Mini Lite 2504S
TV: 2019 F-350 Lariat 4WD CCSB 6.7 PSD 3.55, 3,591 lb payload
Former RV: 2007 Fleetwood/Coleman Utah
Former TV: 2005 F-150 King Ranch 4WD SCrew 5.4L Tow Package
67L48 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-14-2019, 03:42 PM   #12
Senior Member
 
A32Deuce's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2012
Location: Mount Laurel, New Jersey
Posts: 8,553
Anther thing to know. Your thermostat is also 12 volt and gets its power from the furnace. Also, If you can stand it, at night Ill set the temp for 55 degrees and throw on an extra blanket. All the wet compartments are heated in mine when I use the onboard heat, no freezing then.
__________________
2012 SunSeeker 3100SS Toad-1962 Futura Average 100 + days camping
A32Deuce is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-14-2019, 03:52 PM   #13
Senior Member
 
rracer5's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2011
Location: Full Timing It
Posts: 2,609
Quote:
Originally Posted by A32Deuce View Post
Anther thing to know. Your thermostat is also 12 volt and gets its power from the furnace. Also, If you can stand it, at night Ill set the temp for 55 degrees and throw on an extra blanket. All the wet compartments are heated in mine when I use the onboard heat, no freezing then.

Pheewww!! That's warm. We turn our furnace off at night unless it's going to be below freezing ......and then, we only set it at 45.

Nope!....I ain't kiddin'
__________________
"PT Crew Members Since 9/2010"
2011 RAM 2500 HD 6.7L CTD Crew
2014 Sanibel 3250
rracer5 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-14-2019, 04:00 PM   #14
Senior Member
 
A32Deuce's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2012
Location: Mount Laurel, New Jersey
Posts: 8,553
Quote:
Originally Posted by rracer5 View Post
Pheewww!! That's warm. We turn our furnace off at night unless it's going to be below freezing ......and then, we only set it at 45.

Nope!....I ain't kiddin'
I set it at 40 overnight when home and dont winterize between trips during winter as long as day temps are in the high 30s to 40s. If Im in it overnight, I dont like going to the bathroom and freezing my butt!
__________________
2012 SunSeeker 3100SS Toad-1962 Futura Average 100 + days camping
A32Deuce is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-14-2019, 04:06 PM   #15
Senior Member
 
rracer5's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2011
Location: Full Timing It
Posts: 2,609
Quote:
Originally Posted by A32Deuce View Post
I set it at 40 overnight when home and dont winterize between trips during winter as long as day temps are in the high 30s to 40s. If Im in it overnight, I dont like going to the bathroom and freezing my butt!

I try to make those quick trips but, sometimes the ole prostate don't cooperate!
__________________
"PT Crew Members Since 9/2010"
2011 RAM 2500 HD 6.7L CTD Crew
2014 Sanibel 3250
rracer5 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-14-2019, 04:17 PM   #16
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Jun 2012
Posts: 10,472
Shamelessly stolen from wmtire:

The below is a copy and paste, and I usually recommend it to those just starting out. Some of it, you may already know, or may not be applicable to your particular RV. You will be able to filter out what pertains to your situation or not. I would suggest you read the electric threads and energy management first, and then the converter thread. This will help explain your different electrical systems of your RV, and how they operate...as well as what the converter does. The very first link will explain what operates off what system.

You can just peruse at your leisure:

Basic electric:

Basic RV Electricity - RV Information (RV Maintenance)

RV Electric

Your very important converter:

RV Converters and Amp Draw - RV Information (RV Maintenance)

Installing a dedicated 30 amp RV outlet at home:

http://www.forestriverforums.com/for...tml#post231880

Suburban water heater (if applicable to your RV):

http://www.forestriverforums.com/for...tml#post327988

http://www.forestriverforums.com/for...ml#post1527599

Water Heater bypass/crossover valves:

http://www.forestriverforums.com/for...st-103381.html

And the newest additions to help understand what constitutes a true full cylinder in refilling vs exchanging propane cylinders... as well as how the automatic propane changeover regulator works:

http://www.forestriverforums.com/for...ng-133760.html

http://www.forestriverforums.com/for...ml#post1649595

Inverters and residential refrigerators in RV's:

http://rveducation101.com/articles/rvinverters.pdf
__________________
1988 Coleman Sequoia - popup (1987-2009) - outlasted 3 Dodge Grand Caravans!
2012 Roo19 - hybrid (2012-2015)

2016 Mini Lite 2503S - tt (2015 - ???)
2011 Traverse LT, 3.6L, FWD
2009 Silverado 1500 Ext Cab, 5.3L, 4x4, 3.73
2016 Silverado 2500HD Dbl Cab, 6.0L 4x4, 4.10
rockfordroo is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 01-14-2019, 05:07 PM   #17
Lacey's Spring, AL
 
formerFR's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2017
Location: Lacey's Spring, AL
Posts: 2,570
Cool

Quote:
Originally Posted by Grapehound View Post
We found out the hard way ... in the Walmart lot near

yep, and the only time it ever happened to us was fairly early on, while overnight at the CORPORATE Walmart lot in Bentonville, Arkansas, of all places!

It got extremely cold, windy, and freezing rain started thru the night - our furnace was running non-stop, yet I had not had a lot of experience with the generator, or better yet, the AGS(auto generator starter)...which is a life saver in these situations where you really want the generator to start automatically and recharge the batteries AS THEY NEED thru the night, without having to 'worry' while you sleep.

Because the batteries went too low, I couldn't even start the generator when I realized it at 2a.m... so I soon picked up a new LESSON - use the 'battery boost' Switch on the dash of the motorhome - tie in the Chassis and House batteries together - and voila!, the generator would start : )
__________________

The Turners
'14 Thor Palazzo 33.3 compact diesel
KingTailgater2 Dish, 100w/5amps roof SOLAR, BlueOx, 100,000+mi since '14... US, Alaska, and Canada... from WC GA, then W NC, now N.E. AL : )
formerFR is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-14-2019, 06:12 PM   #18
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Nov 2009
Location: La Crescenta, CA
Posts: 195
I read you question differently that the others. The heat of the furnish is fueled by LP. The fan operates on DC. You need both.
Big bird is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-14-2019, 06:24 PM   #19
Site Team
 
Mr. Dan's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2014
Location: Grayson County, Texas
Posts: 13,113
Quote:
Originally Posted by Big bird View Post
I read you question differently that the others. The heat of the furnish is fueled by LP. The fan operates on DC. You need both.
The OP was speaking of a furnace. The entire question is "Can it run on 12v (DC) or does it need to have AC power?" OP knows it needs propane - see LP in the title?
__________________
SEARCH is your friend!
FR Wildcat 295RSX / GMC Sierra

Nights Camped: '13 = 49/'14 = 74/'15 = 74/'16 = 85/'17 = 110/'18 =111/'19 = 86; booked = 39
Mr. Dan is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 01-14-2019, 06:48 PM   #20
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Jul 2017
Location: California
Posts: 5,487
My furnace takes 5A based on my Victron 712 current measurements. Take anyone else's chart/numbers with a grain of salt since it isn't the exact furnace you have in your rig. With mine running 50% of the time, that's 25AH for a night. Personally, don't trust the numbers the manufacturers list. That number may be with just the fan driving no venting. If the fan motor is loaded down at all with venting, it's a whole different number. Measure it yourself.


On our very first camping trip with a 70AH RV/Marine battery, the battery was at 50% after only one night with the thermostat set at 50 and outside temps at 25 to 30.


Now that we have 2 100AH Battleborns, we don't need to worry much.
__________________

__________________
2017 Coachmen 233RBS
2018 Ford F150 Lariat 3.5 Eco
"Common sense is not very common"
babock is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply

Tags
battery, furnace

Thread Tools
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off



» Featured Campgrounds

Reviews provided by

Disclaimer:

This website is not affiliated with or endorsed by Forest River, Inc. or any of its affiliates. This is an independent, unofficial site.



All times are GMT -5. The time now is 03:55 PM.


×