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Old 11-17-2013, 09:59 PM   #1
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1966 20' Globetrotter
Seattle , Washington
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Would like some input regarding H2O heater and heating

all,

i'll be remodeling my airstream as an office/hang out/ occasional guest space and the trailer will remain in our back yard. it will be sewer direct for both black and gray water, meaning i have a city sewer pipe that i added to my back yard 2 years ago when i begun my search for an airstream.

i am building the design so if i decide to take it on the road, i can easily convert the sewer system so i can use the holding tank.

i would like to get some suggestions/preferences for the following items:

lp/electric water heater
water pump
heating - lp catalytic - also good electric heater


also, can anyone tell me if pex plumbing lines need to be drained for winter?

thanks in advance!
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Old 11-17-2013, 10:24 PM   #2
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1966 24' Tradewind
1995 34' Excella
Lynchburg , Virginia
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I have an Atwood lp/electric wh and it works fine. I think my water pump is Sureflow. It works fine. I recommend an electric oil filled radiator heater if it is not too cold.
You need to drain the Pex lines. The Pex can freeze, but not the valves or the copper fittings.

Dan
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Old 11-17-2013, 11:07 PM   #3
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lp/electric water heater: I have a Suburban pilot-style ( rather than electronic ignition) lp/electric 6 gallon that has performed flawlessly.

water pump: Not sure of the model, but mine is a Sureflo as well. No problems, but noisy.

heating - lp catalytic - also good electric heater: I considered an oil-filled like Dan suggested, but ultimately went with a Pelonis ceramic due to size considerations. I don't like the lp catalytics due to oxygen depletion possibilities and potential moisture problems. I fire up the refurbished Suburban lp furnace when the electric cannot keep up or when boon docking.

Please keep in mind that my wife and I are currently full timing. As such, our considerations may be markedly different from yours given intended use.
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Old 11-18-2013, 01:56 AM   #4
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1966 20' Globetrotter
Seattle , Washington
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Quote:
Originally Posted by louaxtjr View Post
lp/electric water heater: I have a Suburban pilot-style ( rather than electronic ignition) lp/electric 6 gallon that has performed flawlessly.

water pump: Not sure of the model, but mine is a Sureflo as well. No problems, but noisy.

heating - lp catalytic - also good electric heater: I considered an oil-filled like Dan suggested, but ultimately went with a Pelonis ceramic due to size considerations. I don't like the lp catalytics due to oxygen depletion possibilities and potential moisture problems. I fire up the refurbished Suburban lp furnace when the electric cannot keep up or when boon docking.

Please keep in mind that my wife and I are currently full timing. As such, our considerations may be markedly different from yours given intended use.
i've read that the furnaces burn a lot more lp gas than the catalytic heaters - is there a great difference?

unfortunately the furnace in my trailer is gone as well as all the other pumps/appliances - when the previous owner did the floors he removed everything.
i will be re-plumbing the trailer and also running new lp lines - the lines were removed when the floor went in and not replaced.

i haven't begun to shop yet for the above items but will be soon.

really appreciate everyones help and i'll have some photos of interior soon.
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Old 11-18-2013, 02:32 AM   #5
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1966 20' Globetrotter
Seattle , Washington
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does a good atwood lp 6 gallo water heater have enough recovery for a decent shower?

do most use a 10 gal?
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Old 11-18-2013, 06:14 AM   #6
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1986 34' Limited
1966 24' Tradewind
Conifer , Colorado
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Ah, the joy of a hot shower in your own trailer! I have a 6 gallon atwood LP and have never been short of hot water. The atwood makes very hot water, maybe close to 140 degrees, so it is mixed with lots of cold for the ideal shower temp.
The water heater heats our water pretty quickly when we start it after a day of traveling in colder temps.

I will put a 6 gallon gas water heater in my Trade Wind. It is a well developed design that works well.

David
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Old 11-18-2013, 07:10 AM   #7
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Hot Showers

You won't be taking any 20 minute hot showers, but there is plenty of time to get in, wet down, shower and rinse - even washing your hair with a six gallon tank.

I do recommend that you get in the habit of conserving water. I carry a small plastic bucket which I fill by cranking the shower control to the hottest position, then letting the shower head and pipes warm up while the bucket fills. By the time the bucket is full, the water is hot, but pleasantly so. I use that to scrub down completely, then I turn the water on again to rinse. It gives me a few extra minutes to loll around the shower if I want to. If you have a spouse or partner leaving the tank lukewarm will speed the warmup for the next camper.

I can pretty well deplete the tank, but it will reheat in about 5 minutes with gas... about 15 with electric.

Paula
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