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Old 11-09-2015, 11:01 AM   #1
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1977 29' Ambassador
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Heating System evaluation

Just purchased a 29 Ambassador. I'm a bit timid in refitting and testing the heater since the existing propane tank and stove had been removed.

Ideally, I'd love it if I could find someone who could walk me through all of the airsteam systems. That might take some locating. I'm at the moment willing to settle for an introduction to the suburban furnace operation.

Does it require 12v to run the blower? Probably yes. what happens when the 12v runs out.. ie will the furnace still heat the front space?
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Old 11-09-2015, 11:12 AM   #2
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12v is needed for the fan as well as the gas control valve and ignition system. No 12 volts, no heat.
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Old 11-09-2015, 11:25 AM   #3
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I would consider replacing the 38 year old furnace. Parts are next to impossible to find as are techs willing to work on it. If it is a NT22a it also had a recall.New ones are quieter, easier, more efficient and safer.
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Old 11-09-2015, 11:39 AM   #4
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We have a 76 Ambassador and the original furnace which works well. I do suggest that you have the furnace checked completely by someone that knows furnaces well. Ours needed a good cleaning and adjustment of the "sail" switch. It needs above 12 volts to run so a low battery can be a problem.

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Old 11-10-2015, 06:53 AM   #5
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Where should I look to find good replacement suggestions?
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Old 11-10-2015, 07:50 AM   #6
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Where should I look to find good replacement suggestions?
The Suburban NT35 furnace is often used as a replacement. The combustion air and exhaust holes are in the same position relative to each other so you can use the same holes. The NT 35 even though it puts out equivalent or greater heat is a bit smaller so it has to be raised an inch or so off the floor. Your ductwork will also have to be adapted, but you can modify your old Suburban plunum (bottom) of the old furnace. There are past threads on this subject in the forums. You can find Suburban dealers from their website. Palomino RV has been about the cheapest, around $500, but you have to know exactly what you are ordering and they won't give you DIY support. It is not rocket science to do the replacement but if you want to do the work yourself you should have some basic skills. If you have someone else do it check them out and make sure they know what they are doing. The replacement basically is making some modifications to get the furnace to fit, connecting the gas line and connecting about half a dozen or so 12v wires,
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Old 11-27-2015, 08:42 PM   #7
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Any thoughts on replacing with a catalytic heater? Just need to take the chill out in Fl and the heater is 42 yrs old.
Happy Thanksiving y'all. bj
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Old 11-27-2015, 09:43 PM   #8
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Many of you won't like what I'm about to say, but I would NOT TRUST MY LIFE to any LP furnace that is over 20 years old. I don't care if it works or doesn't. ANY LP FURNACE of that age is a death trap waiting to happen!!!!! Combustion chambers rust, seals wear out and leak, safety devices like sail switches, time delay relates and over temp. safeties fail. Controls malfunction………...

The cost of replacement is minimal compared the value of your life and that of your loved ones.

When I was still repairing LP appliances (I have since ceased ALL LP REPAIRS), I had a 10 year limit on ANY REPAIR for an LP appliance due to liability issues.


Do yourself a favor and REPLACE IT!!!!!
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Old 11-27-2015, 09:52 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MACINRIC View Post
Just purchased a 29 Ambassador. I'm a bit timid in refitting and testing the heater since the existing propane tank and stove had been removed.
Something no one has mentioned yet… If the existing stove has been removed, is the propane line that used to lead to the stove capped off? If so, is the cap pressure-tight? If not, then you have an instant propane leak just as soon as you hook up a propane cylinder. Check the line to the (former) stove before you do anything else to your propane system!
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Old 11-27-2015, 10:01 PM   #10
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Any thoughts on replacing with a catalytic heater? Just need to take the chill out in Fl and the heater is 42 yrs old.
Happy Thanksiving y'all. bj

No ...
A catalytic heater burns cabin air and exhausts into the cabin ...
If the lack of O2 doesn't get you, the CO will ...
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Old 11-27-2015, 10:22 PM   #11
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Any thoughts on replacing with a catalytic heater? Just need to take the chill out in Fl and the heater is 42 yrs old.
Happy Thanksiving y'all. bj
Catalytic Heaters need some venting, like a window or a roof vent. But, new catalytic converters also have a CO sensor that will shut the unit down if CO reaches beyond a safe limit. When people get croaked from CO is when they are asleep, but it does happen. BUT, CO poisoning happens more often with old furnaces.
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