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Old 08-09-2014, 07:20 PM   #1
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1976 25' Tradewind
xxxx , Delaware
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Remove heating system?

Has anyone ever removed the heating system from their AS? I have a 76 tradewind I am fixing up and under the sink is a mess. I have leaks I need to find, the water pump is loud and probably needs to be replaced, and there is old carpet and gross insulation around the ducts, but It's so tight you can't do much in there. I also want to tear the countertop/sink out (it's ugly up top too) but I was considering just removing the whole heater and ducts with it. Any opinions on that? I'm not a cold weather person so I don't ever plan on using it in the cold. I was thinking if it gets chilly on occasion I could just use a space heater, as long as I have electric of course. Opinions for or against?
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Old 08-09-2014, 07:38 PM   #2
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I would leave ducting in case the next owner wants to put a furnace back in. The old furnace may not be safe anymore , so no harm in getting rid of it!


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Old 08-09-2014, 07:38 PM   #3
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I removed the Suburban furnace in my 310 turbo diesel as the furnace was old and inefficient. It has freed up considerable room for storage in the main kitchen cabinet.

I have decided to replace it with Platinum Cats (propane catalytic heaters) eventually, as these vented propane heaters do not release CO2, and any moisture from combusting propane is vented to the outside. The big benefits to the Cats is that they use almost no electricity and propane compared to the old furnace.

Until arrival of the Cats, if plugged in, we have found that even a electric ceramic heater is sufficient to heat up the MH quite nicely.

The only benefit to the placement of the old furnace is that the ducts did travel past the holding tanks keeping the water in them from freezing but you could buy holding tank heaters to keep things moving.

Cheers
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Old 08-09-2014, 08:38 PM   #4
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The Suburban furnace in our '83 Excella was not working perfectly and seeing much rust I decided to replace it. So glad I did. On chilly mornings a flick of the switch and before breakfast in half cooked the coach is toasty warm. Even when dry camping we use it to get the morning chill off. Love it. True, not cheep to replace, but not doing a fleet, only one trailer. Comfort is surely worth little $.


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Old 08-09-2014, 08:54 PM   #5
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1976 25' Tradewind
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I have never tested the heater. Yet. I'm a bit afraid to. From what I gathered the people I bought it from used the trailer for summer vacations only and they had it for 10 years. I definitely want to at least look in and clean the ducts out. So if I decide to replace the furnace, any recommendations on what should I be looking at?
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Old 08-09-2014, 08:59 PM   #6
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1972 25' Tradewind
Hopkins , Minnesota
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I totally gutted my '72 Trade Wind, so removing the heater was not a problem. I bought a Suburban NT20 to replace it, but then decided I wanted to move the location of the heater, from under the kitchen cabinet to forward of the front street side bulkhead. But then I decided to install a Wave 8 instead. Good to almost 300sf and doesn't drain my battery with the fan...nor does it need a thermostat. Need a brand new NT20?
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Old 08-09-2014, 09:21 PM   #7
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I am in the process of installing an Olympian wave 6 catalytic heater. I removed the suburban for two reasons first, the thing makes a racket when it's running. Then you lay there and wait for the thing to come on again..

Also it uses a lot of battery while boondocking.




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Old 08-09-2014, 09:49 PM   #8
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I removed the old NT-22 from my 68 Trade Wind. We use the freed up cabinet space to store the microwave. When at a campground with electricity I use small space heater and it keeps the trailer nice down to around 35 degrees. Below that, and we don't camp much when it is cold, I have another small electric that I'll put in the bathroom. For times when I camp with no power I have a Mr. Buddy catalytic that works fine. If I camped a lot off the grid I would add an Olympian cat. heater. In 4 years we have not really missed not having "central" heat.
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Old 08-10-2014, 05:38 AM   #9
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OP.....I would at least turn on the furnace and test it first before ripping it out. It might be just fine or require a bit of work to get going. One thing though, mine was a huge mouse nest at the back.

For those following this thread just remember that there are two types of catalytic heaters, vented and non vented. The Platinum Cats are vented, Olympia Wave and Mr Buddy's are not.

You can decide what system is best for you.

Cheers
Tony
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Old 08-10-2014, 05:55 AM   #10
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1972 25' Tradewind
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I would never run an Olympic Wave or a Mr. Buddy without having a window or two cracked. But then, I like fresh air ....as they do consume the available oxygen.
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Old 08-10-2014, 07:38 AM   #11
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We removed our furnace, as it was seriously broken and would almost certainly have killed us if we tried to use it. That opened up a lot of storage under the kitchen counter. I did leave the ductwork going to the rear in place, just in case one day I decided I wanted a furnace again. So far, the Wave 6 and heat strip in the air conditioner have worked for us.
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Old 08-10-2014, 07:56 AM   #12
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The electric space heater will hold the inside temperatures in the comfortable range if outside temps are above 40. It is chilly in the bathroom and at the far end from the heater (25 Safari). If it is colder, the inside temps will go down with the space heater running full blast. All space heaters put out 5000 btus of heat.
40 and below is easily reachable in the South in the winter.
I would replace the furnace. It will quickly warm any part of the trailer to a comfortable level. And you can't run the space heater while boondocking with no hookups.
I would never run a non vented propane heater in the inside of the trailer while sleeping.
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Old 08-10-2014, 08:29 AM   #13
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Yes take it out, you will free up weight and a lot of valuable space. I did the same thing in my 1976 Sovereign. These old furnaces that have set for years could be dangerous if you tried to used it, fire hazard or gas leak. I pulled out all of the old duct work out as well, more free space. I still have the duct work stored in my attic for the last 10 years, at least I think it is still there.

Here are some pictures that include the remodel on my kitchen replacing the counter top with Corian and a under mount sink. I also completely redid the the cabinets and shelves and removed the old gas oven and replaced it with a gas cook top. More valuable space freed up as well as getting rid of some more wasted weight. This project was done 8 years ago and still looks great. Good luck with your project. Keep us posted with your progress and include pictures.

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