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Old 10-09-2012, 08:21 PM   #1
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'74 Argosy motorhome furnace vent patch?

It's amazing at how often you can look at something and not see the forest for the trees. I've been shopping for a new furnace so this evening I took a look at the exhaust/intake piping that attaches to the outside of the motorhome.

In five years of ownership I never noticed what appears to be a patch panel where the furnace piping exits the wall. Is this a patch like I think it is or is this normal? If it is a patch it was nicely made with beveled edges.

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I will be removing the furnace sometime this winter and will have the opportunity to see what it looks like from the inside. I had just assumed that that Suburban NT-16 furnace was original to the motorhome. Now I'm not so sure.

Brad
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Old 10-09-2012, 08:27 PM   #2
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Ok, I've got a question. What are the two small rectangular grids just to the upper right of the rear tires? Are they furnace intake/exhaust openings?

If so what brand furnace uses that style?

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Brad
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Old 10-09-2012, 08:54 PM   #3
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The furnace vent on my Argosy looks like that . The patch may even be a little bigger than yours.
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Old 10-09-2012, 09:02 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bkahler View Post
It's amazing at how often you can look at something and not see the forest for the trees. I've been shopping for a new furnace so this evening I took a look at the exhaust/intake piping that attaches to the outside of the motorhome.

In five years of ownership I never noticed what appears to be a patch panel where the furnace piping exits the wall. Is this a patch like I think it is or is this normal? If it is a patch it was nicely made with beveled edges.
.....

Brad

Brad, I have one of those patches and mine was done with olympic rivets. I assume a furnace replacement with slightly offset exhausts.
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Old 10-09-2012, 09:14 PM   #5
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I guess between Jo and Peter having the same issue I shouldn't feel too bad that I have a patch there

Thanks for the feedback.

Brad
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Old 10-10-2012, 08:52 AM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bkahler View Post
Ok, I've got a question. What are the two small rectangular grids just to the upper right of the rear tires? Are they furnace intake/exhaust openings?

If so what brand furnace uses that style?

Brad
Brad,

Those are your original furnace intake and exhaust vents! Those are the same ones my SolAire furnace uses!
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Old 10-10-2012, 08:54 AM   #7
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Originally Posted by bkahler View Post
I guess between Jo and Peter having the same issue I shouldn't feel too bad that I have a patch there

Thanks for the feedback.

Brad
Could the patch simply be for better access? These 20' units are SO tightly packed that access to certain areas is nearly impossible or flat-out impossible! Keep in mind that you have gas and vent conections back in there!
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Old 10-10-2012, 09:06 AM   #8
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Could the patch simply be for better access? These 20' units are SO tightly packed that access to certain areas is nearly impossible or flat-out impossible! Keep in mind that you have gas and vent conections back in there!
Interesting. Yesterday I did a search on Airforums for SolAire and the only references I found were for barbecue grills. I just did a check on Sol Aire and came up with your thread on troubleshooting your furnace!

Sol Aire furnace troubleshooting

You might have a point as to why the opening is so big. I have no way of knowing if the Suburban NT-16 was original to my Argosy or not. I do have the original literature for it but that doesn't mean it came with it originally. Over the years I've saved a lot of Argosy pictures as I find them on the internet and only yours seems to have the Sol Aire furnace vents showing.

The Suburban furnaces have their wiring and plumbing access located in the discharge side of the furnace. If the Sol Aire wiring is on by the inside wall I can see where a larger opening would be needed.

I've been trying to figure out if my 20' Argosy should have a 16,000 btu or 20,000 btu furnace. So far I haven't had any luck in that quest.

Thanks for the info!

Brad
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Old 10-10-2012, 09:17 AM   #9
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Originally Posted by bkahler View Post

I've been trying to figure out if my 20' Argosy should have a 16,000 btu or 20,000 btu furnace. So far I haven't had any luck in that quest.
The 1977 Argosy MH brochure says the 20' had a 25,000 BTU furnace. The 24' and 28' units came with 30,000 BTU units.

All I know is my Sol Aire furnace PUMPS out the heat and it can get hot quickly! 25,000 BTUs is probably overkill for such a small unit.
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Old 10-10-2012, 09:34 AM   #10
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The 1977 Argosy MH brochure says the 20' had a 25,000 BTU furnace. The 24' and 28' units came with 30,000 BTU units.

All I know is my Sol Aire furnace PUMPS out the heat and it can get hot quickly! 25,000 BTUs is probably overkill for such a small unit.
Fred, thanks for the info! That tells me the 16,000 unit that was installed is probably a little small so hopefully the nice new NT-20SE 20,000 btu furnace I managed to get off of ebay for $40 plus $17 shipping will work just right. It was a floor display model at an RV place and the fan control module was removed (found one for $85) and used in a customers trailer. So after buying a fan control module I will have about $142 in a new furnace.

The savings will go towards a nice new water heater

Brad
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Old 10-29-2012, 07:29 PM   #11
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Well I found out why my Argosy has a patch panel where the furnace ducts are.

The first picture shows how close the furance is to the vent pipe from the black water tank. The second picture should be self explanitory.

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Just goes to show, even Airstream can make a mistake...

Brad
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Old 10-29-2012, 07:47 PM   #12
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Wide right! Whoops! Maybe your serial number is EARLY 1974!

I am going to have an Atwood furnace put in my argosy that will have the exterior access panel. They are doing that prior to painting so everything matches and should hide the panel.

One thing to consider is the proximity to your water pipes. My 345 had the furnaces co-located with the water system. Using the furnaces warmed up the areas subject to freezing.
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Old 10-29-2012, 08:42 PM   #13
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Makes me wonder whats behind my patch.
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Old 10-29-2012, 08:42 PM   #14
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Wide right! Whoops! Maybe your serial number is EARLY 1974!
Serial number 0159. Of the documented Argosy motorhomes it is number 3. It sure does have a lot of interesting and unique features

Quote:
I am going to have an Atwood furnace put in my argosy that will have the exterior access panel. They are doing that prior to painting so everything matches and should hide the panel.
I'm looking forward to seeing how that looks.

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One thing to consider is the proximity to your water pipes. My 345 had the furnaces co-located with the water system. Using the furnaces warmed up the areas subject to freezing.
Good point, I hadn't considered that when I was looking at it earlier today. There is also a nice big hole in that closet area that leads under the sink in the bathroom which would do a nice job of heating that area as well.

Brad
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