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Old 12-12-2017, 10:19 PM   #1
1 Rivet Member
1986 Argosy
bolinas , California
Join Date: May 2009
Posts: 5
Advice and guidance about furnace long unused

My charming '86 33 foot trailer needs to awaken it's heating potential. I'm hoping to connect to stationary propane and reduce electricity use. I have the full manuals. Is therre anyone knowledgeable and willing to give me a little general advice on waking up my furnace. Any comment also on connecting to stationary propane would be appreciated. Many thanks

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Old 12-13-2017, 02:29 AM   #2
Vintage Kin
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Fort Worth , Texas
Join Date: Nov 2006
Posts: 7,627
Images: 1
Better to pull it and install new.

Iíve never turned on the furnace in my 1989-build Silver Streak, capping the propane line was one of the first jobs.

The chance of incomplete combustion and/or pinhole leaks isnít worth the risk.

1990 35' Silver Streak Sterling; 9k GVWR.
2004 DODGE Cummins 305/555; 6-manual; 9k GVWR.
Hensley Arrow. 9-cpm solo, 15-cpm towing
Sold: Silver Streak Model 3411
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Old 12-15-2017, 11:10 PM   #3
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1999 34' Excella
Currently Looking...
Hillsboro , Texas
Join Date: Feb 2013
Posts: 5,976
Images: 2
It is nothing to trifle with. It may be in good shape but it may kill you. That doesn’t mean a new one won’t hurt you but chances are you will be better off new.

There are rv dealer folks who might check it out. They can remove and “bench test”...

If you plan to keep the trailer, get a new furnace.

If your trailer has a thermocouple / pilot, time to upgrade.
Peace and Blessings..
WBCCI# 30676
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Old 12-16-2017, 09:08 AM   #4
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1991 25' Excella
Santa Ynez , California
Join Date: Jan 2017
Posts: 452
What is the visual condition of it? Last time it was used?
Not sure if 86 had electronic ignition or not but my 91's original does and the heater works fine with no deaths to my knowledge.
If it looks serviceable I would not hesitate to fire it up and see how it works.
Get in there and take off the cover and post a picture of it.
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Old 12-16-2017, 10:32 AM   #5
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1958 18' "Footer"
Idyllwild , California
Join Date: Aug 2006
Posts: 528
Agreed pics will help with advice. BUT if you are not familiar with the operation of the furnace it would be good to have a repairman take a look at it. Most of these older units should be similar & someone with experience should have first hand knowledge even if you need to take it to them.

My 1982 MH (Newell not AS) has Suburban Furnaces. They sat for at least 7 years with no use and when I went to test them I simply pulled each one, mounted on a bench and plumbed them one by one. I found that Mud Daubers had built nests in two of the three & that hindered the fan operation. One of them needed a new Circuit Board so I went to Dinosaur Electronics for that;

I would not replace simply to replace from non-use. There are professionals that can get these going if they are not in poor condition & would be able to advise.
1958 California Built 18' #18-4092
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