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Old 12-14-2015, 07:32 AM   #1
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How to add furnace to vintage trailer

My 55 Flying Cloud needs a propane furnace added. Looking at Suburban "Q" series. First question is where to put it. The units are nominally 21" long. If they have a grill at each end (one for exhaust and one for warm air), it seems they should be mounted in a cabinet with a depth close to 21". The only spot I have that is close is directly below the fridge (just in front of wheel well). Not sure it is ideal to have hot air exhausting directly below the fridge vent, but it is otherwise a convenient spot in that it has a propane line and 12 volts readily available.
Other candidate locations are under the gaucho in front or under the bed in the rear, but both of these locations are much further from the shell. Can I use a ducted unit entirely underneath furniture and just run a single duct to the face of the cabinet?
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Old 12-14-2015, 07:43 AM   #2
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Consider noise. These things are loud so putting it under a bed might not be a good idea. Make sure you can get to it for maintenance. You probably don't want anything flammable near the outlet of the unit. That part of the skin will get hot.

Perry
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Old 12-14-2015, 08:20 AM   #3
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Did you check under the kitchen sink?
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Old 12-14-2015, 08:28 AM   #4
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Good point

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Originally Posted by perryg114 View Post
Consider noise. These things are loud so putting it under a bed might not be a good idea. Make sure you can get to it for maintenance. You probably don't want anything flammable near the outlet of the unit. That part of the skin will get hot.

Perry
Q series is supposedly much quieter but that is a relative term I am sure. Fan is the noisy part. My 64Bambi had the water heater on the curb side and you had to remember to stay clear of it...
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Old 12-14-2015, 09:37 AM   #5
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Have you considered a catalytic heater?
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Old 12-14-2015, 12:22 PM   #6
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Selling mine

[QUOTE=68 TWind;1722878]Have you considered a catalytic heater?[/QUOTE
Trailer came with one (for sale in classifieds) but prefer a furnace...
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Old 12-14-2015, 02:33 PM   #7
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my last rv (not an AS) had the furnace under the fridge from the factory
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Old 12-14-2015, 04:54 PM   #8
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I would not hesitate to locate the furnace below the fridge. The only time the furnace would be running would be in cold weather and that is the weather that the fridge is most effective. I placed my furnace in that position 8 or 10 years ago in my Boles and have had no trouble. I did seal off under my fridge so the warm air would not transfer up through the cabinet and around the fridge.

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Old 12-14-2015, 05:55 PM   #9
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Most all your new travel trailers have the furnace under the refrigerator so that should be no problem.
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Old 12-14-2015, 06:04 PM   #10
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You might also look at putting it next to your water heater - if there's space (like me, you may have to cheat the water heater over a smidge & then use the access door for the combo vent/flue outlets), & since there is LP & 12v/110v there also.

That WH cabinet or under the front dinette may be my only location choices in our 1960 Avion T20, when I can get around to it.

A vintage AS restorer here also recco'ed the small Atwood unit over the Suburban, due to lower 12v fan draw & quieter operation, as well as possibly better quality. It should be adequate for your 22' AS also.

Everest Star 7900 II Series Heating System - Atwood Mobile

Please posts results when you do it, for the benefit of others tackling it .... like me!

Good Luck!
Tom
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Old 12-14-2015, 07:27 PM   #11
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You may consider the Dickinson propane heater "fireplace" out of BC Canada. It is expensive, but very well built, quiet, surface mounted with concentric combustion air/ direct vent SS ducting. It is SS for marine environment and looks great in vintage trailers. Street price around 800$. I use one in my '55 FC.
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Old 12-14-2015, 07:36 PM   #12
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I consider catalytic heaters hazardous and would not have one in my trailer.

If you are not satisfied with mounting options or are concerned about noise, you could look at the Dickinson propane heater, which has a roof exhaust and does not require a fan (though one is provided that you can use if and when you wish). I don't have one but they are highly regarded for vintage trailer refitting as well as in the tiny house movement and among marine users.
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Old 12-14-2015, 09:01 PM   #13
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Dickinson propane heater might be an option for you. It's wall mounted and takes little space. They even do a wood burning and diesel version.
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Old 12-15-2015, 07:06 AM   #14
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Agree about the catalytic heater. One came with the trailer and my wife refuses to use it so it is gone. On closer examination it appears I can put the furnace under the kitchen counter by giving up the lowest drawer. I feel better about having the exhaust vent on the street side as opposed to the curb side where we sit under the awning. Can tie into LP for stove but will have to run 12 volt wiring to that location.
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