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Old 04-08-2013, 05:29 PM   #1
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1970 31' Sovereign
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Is the furnace necessary?

When I bought my Airstream, the furnace was missing, the ducting was still there and so was the box that I assume the furnace sat in? I undertook a huge remodel project and every I pull one thing out... I find more to do and pull out... it's almost empty now... lol. Including stripping the vinyl off the walls. Anyway, in the process of trying to get all the gross carpeting out... I pulled the duct work out (just one piece and easy to put back) but I'm wondering if I truly need it. I have a infrared heater that heats quite nicely, plan on putting heating tape on anything that might freeze... just wondering if I need the furnace... has anyone opted out of the furnace? They are pretty expensive to replace and require some modifications.
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Old 04-08-2013, 05:48 PM   #2
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The furnace will help keep your tanks from freezing when the temps drop unexpectedly. I don't think your area heater would help that at all. Additionally, the area heater won't help you (or a future owner) when boondocking.
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Old 04-08-2013, 06:09 PM   #3
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When we bought our '65 Caravel, the furnace had been removed. The replacement catalytic does a fine job when needed, however, it can not be used when the goucho is pulled our at bedtime.

Our '83 has a forced air furnace which is great for taking the chill off in the morning or upon returning in the evening. It also did a great job of keeping everything, tanks included, from freezing when it never got above 20 degrees for three days at South Padre Island in February two years ago. It was a freak cold storm, but odd things do happen.
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Old 04-08-2013, 06:09 PM   #4
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After camping with no hookups in our 29' and using the furnace only to have battery issues, and using an Olympian in our 34' while boondocking-
we elected to NOT install a furnace in our '63.

We will add an Olympian but for now we use a Big Buddy Mr. Heater to knock off the morning chill (it's rated for indoor use). I know some folks disagree with the Cat heaters but that's how we do it. I also KNOW that the next folks to buy the '63 are gonna say...'WHAT? NO HEATER?"
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Old 04-08-2013, 06:44 PM   #5
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You live in Durango CO and would consider no furnace? You are a braver man than me.

Even if you don't use it much yourself, I believe that the resale value or ability to resell it would suffer greatly without one. Others have pointed that out, of course, I am just reinforcing it.
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Old 04-08-2013, 07:16 PM   #6
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I'm going to have A heater...& I bought it without a heater (so what are you saying... &#128521... But im getting the consensus to buy a furnace. Don't plan on boon docking any time soon. At least I have a few months to save... Other things take priority for now.
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Old 04-08-2013, 07:23 PM   #7
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Our furnace is a wonderful part of our Airstream!
Can't imagine life without it.
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Old 04-08-2013, 07:57 PM   #8
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I am happy with no furnace. We use a little heater cube that keeps us toasty int the low 30s. no propane gas death to worry about either.
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Old 04-08-2013, 08:08 PM   #9
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cold and winter

If you plan on taking your "new to you" baby out in areas that get really cold, or if you plan on camping on mountains that might be cold, you will want that furnace. It is good for keeping those pipes that run under the floor and such warm enough to not freeze. We have a heat strip in the AC that keeps the chill away in the living area if we need it. But we carry a small electric heater that does a great job of heating the whole AS if we are plugged into power. But that would not take care of the plumbing issue..hence the furnace gets used as needed.
Good luck with your remodel job!
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Old 04-08-2013, 08:09 PM   #10
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The NT -22 furnace in my trailer was not safe so I removed it. After lots of reading on the forum and talking with people I decided to not try to replace it. In Mississippi we don't have a lot of really cold WX and if we do I'm not going camping. We use one or two small electrics if we are at a campground and a Mr. Buddy propane if I'm at the farm. Either heaters will keep use cozy down to the hi 20's I keep the microwave in the cabinet where the furnace was.
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Old 04-08-2013, 08:15 PM   #11
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While running an LP gas furnace, you can flat the battery relatively quickly, or just plain run out of gas.

Or if you are travelling, a good 120V connection may or may not be available.

Well, I don't like getting cold unnecessarily, so I replaced the original Suburban heater last summer, and we keep a good portable electric heater in Henri the Sov.

MMmmmmmmmmMMmmMmm... Toasty warm at the beginning and end of the season!
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Old 04-08-2013, 08:32 PM   #12
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In addition to the furnace, our '83 also has an Olympian, and we carry a small electric which we use much of the time. If we get into a cold trailer, on comes the furnace. In a very short time the living area is warm and on goes the small electric.

The small electric can be moved to the rear bath for use on cool evenings.

We have used the Olympian only a couple of times.
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Old 04-08-2013, 09:19 PM   #13
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I dry camp in the Pennsylvania area. No hook ups

One Fourth of July in got down to 28 degrees at night. While it is true that the blower in the furnace can deplete the battery in a night or two, All I really need the furnace to do is heat the trailer so the bedding is warm when I go to bed. Once I get under the blankets, I turn the heat way down. Body heat from me and the dogs, keeps me warm enough. The furnace also dries the camper out very quickly. I would suggest replacing the furnace, for camping and traveling versatility, and for resale reasons.
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Old 06-28-2013, 02:26 AM   #14
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I am going with one of these.

I am gonna go with one of these instead of our old furnace.
DickinsonMarine.com - Propane Fireplaces
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