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Old 11-11-2019, 09:21 PM   #1
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Haze in trailer when running furnace

We have been on the road for a couple months. The last week, the furnace has been running off and on, mostly at night. The temperature where we are now is about 28 degrees. The furnace has been running pretty continuously. We left for a couple hours and when we returned, the trailer had a haze to the air. No alarms or smell. Is this normal? Not so sure I want to go to sleep
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Old 11-11-2019, 09:25 PM   #2
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the haze is excess humidity

open a window and run the fan

the excess water is a product of the combustion process
in a home, there are means to remove the moisture, but no so in an AS
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Old 11-11-2019, 11:08 PM   #3
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Ummh, not totally correct statement. The combustion process in the furnace vents the gases outdoors as there is Carbon Monoxide in the gasses which would kill you. Maybe the poster meant heating process, which would make their statements correct?
So maybe a humidity situation, or a dust in ducts situation?
So there is some valid information in the prior post.
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Old 11-12-2019, 08:57 AM   #4
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If you have a brand new furnace it could be the oily residue on the unit that has been vaporized. There would be an oily smell in the air.
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Old 11-12-2019, 09:01 AM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by waninae39 View Post
the haze is excess humidity

open a window and run the fan

the excess water is a product of the combustion process
in a home, there are means to remove the moisture, but no so in an AS
Quote:
Originally Posted by bweybright View Post
Ummh, not totally correct statement. The combustion process in the furnace vents the gases outdoors as there is Carbon Monoxide in the gasses which would kill you. Maybe the poster meant heating process, which would make their statements correct?
So maybe a humidity situation, or a dust in ducts situation?
So there is some valid information in the prior post.
Not at all correct with regards to water vapour.

Running the furnace (heating the inside air) raises the dew point of the air and would not cause any visible water in the air. As mentioned by bweybright all of the combustion gases (including water vapour) are exhausted outside.
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Old 11-12-2019, 10:18 AM   #6
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I wondering if it's a fine dust? This is a forced air system so if not used in a while dust in the ducts and generally on the floor???
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Old 11-12-2019, 10:50 AM   #7
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I suggest not using the gas furnace until professionally checked for safety. As a certified construction industry inspector, my training suggests a cracked or faulty heat exchanger within the furnace. Combustion produces water vapor and CO2 which normally are exhausted outside. Use a small electric heater until receiving the safe to use from the repair technician. By the way, I also have found numerous faulty CO2 and smoke alarms over my 18 year career. Error on the safe side. Let us know what the final outcome is.
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Old 11-12-2019, 11:01 AM   #8
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We had the propane detector go off in our first trailer due to low battery voltage and thus low furnace fan volume. We think the poly ducts overheated and released a vapor that the detector sensed as a gas. The plastic smell was pretty obvious but there was no haze.
Was your battery voltage OK?
Was there any odor in the haze?
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Old 11-12-2019, 11:20 AM   #9
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Need details: year of trailer. Less then 1 year old is much different then many years old and didn't do this in previous years. New could be normal oil burn-off or sloppy gobs of sealant in vents out-gassing when heated(not normal should not even be in heating system, someone else reported having this problem). Older is more likely to be bad/damaged combustion chamber which is very dangerous. New could also be damage during install or not properly installed.
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Old 11-12-2019, 11:28 AM   #10
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Have a humidity and temperature unit sitting on a counter.

Do you have condensation on your windows?

If it did not smell, high humidity. If it was exhaust from your furnace, you would not be posting any longer.

Like others said... crack open windows and vents.
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Old 11-12-2019, 07:51 PM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Gary W View Post
I suggest not using the gas furnace until professionally checked for safety. As a certified construction industry inspector, my training suggests a cracked or faulty heat exchanger within the furnace. Combustion produces water vapor and CO2 which normally are exhausted outside. Use a small electric heater until receiving the safe to use from the repair technician. By the way, I also have found numerous faulty CO2 and smoke alarms over my 18 year career. Error on the safe side. Let us know what the final outcome is.

You stated CO2 twice so I am guessing you did mean CO2, but are you sure you don't mean CO?
It is my understanding that we exhale CO2, CO2 goes into soda pop and beer as well. Feel free to correct me if I am wrong.
I do wholly agree with your statement about error on the safe side.
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Old 11-12-2019, 09:23 PM   #12
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Gary W's mention of CO2 the first time is correct. Complete combustion of propane produces CO2 (carbon dioxide). CO (carbon monoxide) is produced with incomplete (oxygen poor) combustion. I thinks his second mention should be CO. CO detectors are what are usually installed in our trailers.

CO is well known to be poisonous, but too much CO2 in the air resulting in too little oxygen can also kill.

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Old 11-12-2019, 11:20 PM   #13
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Gary W's mention of CO2 the first time is correct. Complete combustion of propane produces CO2 (carbon dioxide). CO (carbon monoxide) is produced with incomplete (oxygen poor) combustion. I thinks his second mention should be CO. CO detectors are what are usually installed in our trailers.

CO is well known to be poisonous, but too much CO2 in the air resulting in too little oxygen can also kill.

Tim
You clearly know more than a whole lot of us including me (I would say 98% but then get slammed). Can you help us understand more the CO2 issue? This is something I was not aware of, outside of confined space concerns....unless you are figuring trailers can become confined spaces?
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Old 11-13-2019, 08:17 AM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Tim A. View Post
.........

CO is well known to be poisonous, but too much CO2 in the air resulting in too little oxygen can also kill.

Tim
Yep. Remember Apollo 13?
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Old 11-13-2019, 08:47 AM   #15
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Newer trailers should have a CO alarm mounted on the wall in the bedroom.
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Old 11-13-2019, 12:25 PM   #16
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Can you help us understand more the CO2 issue? This is something I was not aware of, outside of confined space concerns....unless you are figuring trailers can become confined spaces?
Trailers are confined spaces. Perhaps not confined enough to cause problems with CO2. Despite that, my wife and I are firmly in the camp of always having adequate ventilation in our 19' no matter the outside temperature.

CO2 is heavier than air and can collect in low spaces without other confinement. For example, an episode with Lake Kivu in Africa demonstrated the danger (https://www.bbc.com/news/magazine-16394635). The higher the concentration of CO2 in air, the less oxygen there is to breath. The effectiveness of CO2 to block out oxygen is shown by CO2 fire extinguishers.

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Old 11-13-2019, 01:49 PM   #17
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that is why CO2 devices are located close to the ground ( heavier than air)
and smoke detector are mounted higher up. (lighter than air)
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Old 11-14-2019, 09:04 AM   #18
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Quote "CO2 is heavier than air and can collect in low spaces without other confinement."


Not true:
CO2 is dispersed throughout the atmosphere. The article demonstrates the CO2 Fire Extinguisher effect. A sudden release of CO2 due to volcanic eruption, not a slow accumulation in a basin.
Molecular weight of CO, CO2, Nitrogen, and Oxygen are all very close, and the Brownian movement (molecules bumping into one another) keeps the 4 molecules evenly distributed in our atmosphere.

True if you confine someone to a sealed environment they will eventually suffocate as Oxygen in the air is used up and replaced by CO2.

Same issue for CO. If the air in the room is not replaced the CO will eventually build up to toxic levels and poison you by tie-up of the red blood cells that carry oxygen to your system
Too much CO2 and you suffocate for lack of oxygen

Too much CO and you are poisoned, by an action that is the same as suffocating

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Old 11-14-2019, 09:36 AM   #19
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Quote:
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that is why CO2 devices are located close to the ground ( heavier than air)
and smoke detector are mounted higher up. (lighter than air)
Hi

The detector in your trailer detects carbon monoxide ( = CO) and not carbon dioxide (= CO2) . CO2 is a very normal component of the air we breathe every day ( about 0.04%). CO is not present in any meaningful concentration in normal air.

If you work in a plant that uses CO2 in major processes, a leak can be hazardous. In that case sensors are / should be deployed. It turns out that what you deploy are oxygen sensors. They alarm when the CO2 displaces enough of the oxygen for it to become a hazard. They are a *very* different beast than a CO detector.

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Old 11-14-2019, 12:20 PM   #20
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JCWDCW View Post
Quote "CO2 is heavier than air and can collect in low spaces without other confinement."
Not true:
CO2 is dispersed throughout the atmosphere. The article demonstrates the CO2 Fire Extinguisher effect. A sudden release of CO2 due to volcanic eruption, not a slow accumulation in a basin.
Molecular weight of CO, CO2, Nitrogen, and Oxygen are all very close, and the Brownian movement (molecules bumping into one another) keeps the 4 molecules evenly distributed in our atmosphere.
Please notice the word "can" which does not mean that it must. Brownian motion will keep CO2 mixed with ambient air if it is already mixed. If the CO2 is emitted in a pure form into a non-mixing environment, it will sink and can (that word again) collect in low spaces. Here is a little video showing that

Another African lake had a major emission of CO2 which reportedly killed 1700 people (https://www.theguardian.com/world/20...e-kivu-co2-gas). Note in that article that "a landslide - caused a huge cloud of carbon dioxide to bubble up from its depths and to pour down the valleys that lead from the crater lake. Carbon dioxide is denser than air, so that the 50mph cloud hugged the ground and smothered everything in its path."

My point really is that good ventilation is a healthy thing in our trailers.

Tim
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