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Old 12-28-2008, 08:32 PM   #1
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Catalytic Heaters

Searched Catalytic Heaters no results. Question: What size for my 27' Overlander and where can I buy one in Phoenix Az? Leaving for Texas in a week. I boondock along the way. It's cooooled. Suburban dioesn't work and would draw too much from batt. for over night stay. I plan to install it near the door on the left.
I saw a trobleshoot chart for these Suburban Heaters some where in the forumns???
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Old 12-28-2008, 09:03 PM   #2
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Unfortunately, the forum search tool doesn't work well - if you use the Google choice in the search drop-down menu for catalytic heaters, you will get a lot of entries. But then you have to do a lot of reading.

There are a lot of opinions on this forum about the way to go. The Olympic Wave seems to be the most popular of the currently readily available, along with the Buddy if you want portability. I've found people in the 23'-27' trailer range that pick the Olympic go with the Wave 6, although it may be undersized if you rely on the manufacturer's recommendation (they have a Wave 4 and Wave 8).

Don't know Phoenix well enough, but I know Camping World carries the Olympian, and the Buddy.

In my case, I've bought the Wave 6 but haven't yet installed it.
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Old 12-28-2008, 09:06 PM   #3
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Most good RV stores should carry Cat heaters, prices will vary. Camping World carries them, but their store is located in Mesa which is 45 minutes from my house in North Phoenix. Olympian Wave 6 Catalytic Heater - Item - Camping World
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Old 12-28-2008, 09:18 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by niftypkg View Post
Searched Catalytic Heaters no results. Question: What size for my 27' Overlander and where can I buy one in Phoenix Az? Leaving for Texas in a week. I boondock along the way. It's cooooled. Suburban dioesn't work and would draw too much from batt. for over night stay. I plan to install it near the door on the left.
I saw a trobleshoot chart for these Suburban Heaters some where in the forumns???

We run an Olympian Wave 6 in our 31' Sov...Works well for us. Make sure you install some type of LP, CO, Mother In-Law Alert Detector while you are putting in the the heater.

Good Luck,

Kevin
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Old 12-28-2008, 10:30 PM   #5
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Too bad you don't have more time to look around. I found The Platinum Cat on the web and it looks interesting. It has an outside venting system. Take a look The Platinum CAT power vented catalytic heater for RV, Boat, unique 12Vdc propane zone/space heaters. A & L Enterprises
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Old 12-28-2008, 10:46 PM   #6
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If you don't have time to get a permanently installed catalytic heater, check out the portable one we found from Coleman (Coleman® ProCat" PerfectTemp" Propane Catalytic Heater ) that runs off a propane canister and has a fan built in. It will run ~7 hours on a propane canister and the fan will run ~200 hours on 2 "D" Batteries...we got it because we don't have wall space in the Bambi for a wall-mounted unit... Here's info and a review: Coleman ProCat PerfectTemp Propane Catalytic Heater We got ours from Amazon.com for about $80 and are very pleased with it. We do not leave it on while sleeping and you must keep a window or vent cracked for fresh air. It's a good stop-gap solution and has lots of other uses beyond the trailer.
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Old 12-28-2008, 11:12 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by azflycaster View Post
Most good RV stores should carry Cat heaters, prices will vary. Camping World carries them, but their store is located in Mesa which is 45 minutes from my house in North Phoenix. Olympian Wave 6 Catalytic Heater - Item - Camping World
I am a bit new to this topic but like the idea of quiet heat. I was reading the description from camping world and it states "Catalytic Heaters should never be used inside an RV as a portable unit (with leg stands and/or not permanently mounted). Catalytic Heaters should only be used outdoors as portable units"

Does this mean that you really shouldnt ever use these for alternative heat while sleeping? Would you then suggest electric heat vs. the forced air?

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Old 12-28-2008, 11:27 PM   #8
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....<snip>...

Does this mean that you really shouldn't ever use these for alternative heat while sleeping? Would you then suggest electric heat vs. the forced air?

Vinnie
The disclaimer against using non-wall-mounted catalytic heaters inside an RV is because of certain safety features and the fire danger of overturning the heater. We do not leave ours on while sleeping or unatented... the portable model we have is very stable...not propped up on legs and the housing does not get hot (not the same story with most portable catalytic heaters)...

Permanently wall-mounted catalytic heaters can be safely used while you sleep if you follow the instructions and use common sense. We use the catalytic heater when we are dry camping and do not want to use battery to power the furnace fan. We use a small ceramic electric heater a quiet alternative to the furnace if we have shore power and the temps do not fall below freezing. (If it's below freezing we use the propane furnace in order to keep the tanks warmed, which an electric heater will not do.)
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Old 12-28-2008, 11:33 PM   #9
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ok great.

I then think we are in the market for a ceramic heater for nights that are not freezing but a bit nippy while plugged into shore power. I perfer it cold when i sleep but my wife likes its a bit warmer.

Thanks Vinnie
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Old 12-29-2008, 01:17 AM   #10
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I have the 3p12 platinum cat on out 27, it takes the chill out in the front of the trailer but it is definitely not over sized. I would opt for the 6p12. These are nice because they work off a thermostat so being too large is not a problem and they have a fan to remove any fumes (at a low 12v draw). Still need to keep a window cracked for air, installation is more involved due to the exhaust line which is pvc. If you are looking to heat the whole trailer I think one forward and one aft would be the only answer.
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Old 12-29-2008, 06:06 AM   #11
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You can see what I thought of my new Olympic Wave 6 installation and how it performed in the worst weather in the NW in 30 years, here
http://www.airforums.com/forums/show...1&postcount=25

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Old 12-29-2008, 09:23 AM   #12
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Great advice from all. I only need the Cat heater when boondocking. With shore power I have a heat strip and a ceramic for cool nights. South Padre Island has moderate temps in Jan-March. Friends told me that they did get frost recently.
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Old 12-29-2008, 04:50 PM   #13
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Just a thought. I bought a Big Buddy portable (Mr. Heater). It puts out 18,000 BTUs on high, 9000 BTUs on Medium and 4500 BTUs on low. It has a built in blower that runs on 4 D cell batteries, or if you have shore power, there's an optional adapter for 110v. It can run from the little 1 pound bottles, it can handle two of them. Or it can be hooked up directly to a 20 pound bottle without a regulator (it has a built in regulator, but you need the optional 12 ft hose). Note the 20 pound bottle has to be outside the Airstream. It also has a quick disconnect fitting that bypasses it's built in regulator and you can run it from the normal 11 inch Water Column pressure that is supplied to your existing furnace or stove. That's how I hooked mine up. I put in a separate isolation valve at the normal furnace connection and hooked up the other optional 12 ft quick disconnect hose. The hose rolls up and stores in the cabinet when not needed and the heater can stay at home or go with you depending on the time of year.

If I knew how to do one of those web site links, I could have shortened this story considerably. Search the web for Mr. Buddy Heater, if you want more specs. This is our first winter with it, so we're early in the testing phase. In Pennsylvania, you can get the heaters at Home Depot or Lowes or any good camping store. I found the hose and adapter at a nearby Cabela's. (you might have to have those shipped.)

Good luck,

Roy
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Old 12-29-2008, 10:18 PM   #14
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I have a 29' trailer. I have a wave 6. It is not big enough. Get the largest unit you can and run it on low.
I found a detailed article on cat heaters on a canadian govt/university web site a couple years ago that said, the cat heaters they had tested work fairly good (low emissions) on low output but, they generally degraded as the gas volume increased.

My catalytic heater made it two years, wass tested at the factory and only explanation was dirt must have degraded the pad.
I should have spent my money on a generator and used the furnace.

$329 +$110.5 is a lot of money for 6000 btu's and one more year of warranty. Half of a Honda generator.
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