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Old 08-31-2008, 07:59 AM   #1
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1973 27' Overlander
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73 overlander furnace question

I have finished the main areas in my 73 Overlander so I can use it. I never took the time to really look at my furnace until today. The only thing I know about a furnace is how to light the pilot. I got my flash light and looked down the hole where the pilot light is and I came to the conclusion this furnace has never been used. The pilot area looked like new. The paint and every other thing I could see looked like brand new. So I decided to see if I could light the pilot. It lit and when I released the button it blew a frame out the pilot hole about 1 1/2' . Man did I jump and turned off the gas. I know that we have been living in an area that has had unusally dry weather for several years. I also know that when I pulled the belly pan off this trailer the only rust I saw was on the rails by the toilet. I am wondering if this furnace is still good. I would think it should be.

I may try to call a furnace service tech who works on home furnaces to check it out. The last time I took my trailer to an RV place they soaked me for $475 and all they did was check out a list of 4 things to see if they were working.

Should I worry about the furnace blowing up if I try to light the pilot again?

Lothlorian

Brian
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Old 08-31-2008, 08:48 AM   #2
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Sounds like you had the thermostat set to call for heat. I did the same thing, the first time. scared the crappe out of me when that flame came a-shootin' out at me.

you have to make sure the thermostat is set to "off", or "all the way down" before you start the furnace. get the pilot lit, and then keep holding that button down for 30 seconds or so, until the thermocouple heats up, and allows the gas to continue flowing. when the pilot will stay lit without the button being held, put the cap back on. THEN, you can go turn up the thermostat.

its really far out that your furnace looks so pristine...unless the trailer spent most of its life in the desert, or something. You may not have had alot of rain recently in Georgia, but its still humid, right? that'll make things rust up and decay, too. no matter, I guess. if its good, its good. just go with it.
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Old 08-31-2008, 11:05 AM   #3
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I agree with Chuck. I also would add that pulling the furnace is easy, and wouldnt be a bad idea considering the age and carbon monoxide fears. It sits on rails. You can also dismantel it very easily. Maybe spider webs in the burn surface. It is a primitive unit, I like it. The air from the fan blows open a switch which lights the burner. I the burner is plugged it will blow back out the end. I would try it a few times anyways with thermostat off.
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Old 08-31-2008, 05:58 PM   #4
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I know there are lots of threads on removing the furnace. I have read where it is very east to do. Can it be removed without taking the kitchen cabinets and stove out?

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Old 08-31-2008, 07:25 PM   #5
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If you do a search you will find a lot of information, most of which says get rid of the furnace. If it is a NT22 there is a long outdated recall related to the crossover tube deteriorating contaminating the area with combustion gases. You may have a hard time finding anyone willing to work on a furance that old because of liability and insurance issues. There are some old stock parts available out of Elkhart Indiana, but generally parts are not available. The newer ones work much better anyway. You can replace your dinosaur with a new NT30 or consider some of the other alternative heating systems. I messed around with keeping my old furnace going for several years and finally decided to replace it. It was not worth the hassle and worry.

If you go for lost causes, the furnace will need a good cleaning and check inside the combustion chamber for bug nests.

No need to take out cabinetry to remove the furnace. Take off the exhaust / intake port on the outside skin, disconnect the gas and electric lines, ducts and screws holding it to the floor and voila. The furnce guts actually sits inside a cabinet and slides out after uncrewing a couple of screws. You can get er done in an hour or so. I was able to use the furnace cabinet bottom as a plenum for the new furnace which allows using the old furnace ductwork.
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Old 09-16-2008, 11:50 PM   #6
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1974 27' Overlander
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I have the same problem as Lothlorian on my 1974 Overlander. I double checked that the thermostat was set to off and it is. I hold the reset button so the thermal coupler will heat up and a flame came out and burned the hair right off my arm. Pretty scary thing. Its a NT32 so it does not appear to be included in the recall. Anyone familiar with this kind of problem? I did notice that there are some small flames burning on the burner while I am starting the pilot. I am sure there should be no gas output on the main burner untill you raise the thermostat. Could there be some kind of gas leak internaly? Thanks in advance for any help.
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Old 02-12-2009, 11:55 AM   #7
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Ronsgto, i'm having the same problem. I get continual burning of the burner with furnace just on 'pilot' setting. I'm told it's a bad gas control valve but am still learning. I've also heard the part is not available. Does anyone know?

thanks, eric
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Old 02-12-2009, 02:29 PM   #8
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Get rid of it. When I got my last Overlander down in the desert ( a 1970) I found tucked into the various papers I got a recall on the furnace due to CO problems. Of course I was high up in Joshua Tree at the time in the middle of a blizzard and just about froze my butt off. I got rid of it. Just not worth the risk with an odorless killer like CO.
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Old 02-13-2009, 09:53 AM   #9
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1974 27' Overlander
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I have done extensive research and the gas valve is not available. Yes there was a recall on this system and you would have to determine if the recall work was done. But ofcourse that does not sovle the problem with the gas valve. Like Vox said the best thing is to replace it. The gas valves leak LPG is bypassed builds up then woof. You can take the valve out clean it and see if that takes care of the problem. I pulled out my furnace hooked it up to LPG put a baloon on the line going to the main burner. The ballon started to inflace thus the indication of a leak. Took valve apart cleaned it and corrected that problem. Problem is I still had a gas leak from the main valve going into the coach. Not much you can do about that. Hope this helps nice talking to all.
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