Thread Tools Search this Thread Display Modes
Old 12-09-2010, 12:16 PM   #1
Wise Elder
Jammer's Avatar
2010 30' Classic
Vintage Kin Owner
South of the river , Minnesota
Join Date: Dec 2009
Posts: 4,166
Alternatives to catalytic heaters

I know many of you have catalytic heaters. While we all make our own choices I don't believe catalytic heaters are safe. While the vented catalytic heaters may be safer, they still don't provide outside combustion air, and have a hot surface that poses fire risks.

There are alternatives. Here is a roundup:

1) The Dickinson Newport propane fireplace. 7500 and 9700 BTU/h output versions available, $700 street price for the 7500 BTU/h including vents. Vents vertically using tri-wall pipe. Outside combustion air is drawn from the concentric area. Requires no electric power though there is 12v blower for air circulation that can be used if desired. Cearance to combustibles - top 18", other 5 surfaces 2", vent pipe 2"

2) Propex heater. Popular with the Westfalia crowd because of the installation flexibility it provides. Imported from the U.K. This is a ducted heater that mounts inside. 1" clearance to combustibles. Unlike Atwood and Suburban heaters, which have rigid vents limiting the installation possibilities, combustion air and exhaust are vented outside through 1" flexible tubing. 6000 and 9600 BTU/h (output) versions are available, drawing 1.4A and 1.9A respectively. $800 street for either size from U.S. dealers.

3) Atwood Everest Star 8012. This is an unducted furnace with a smaller, lower current blower than the duct versions. Zero clearance, direct vent. Draws 1.8A. 9100 BTU/h output. $500 street.

As a point of comparison the vented catalytic heaters often advocated are available in 3000 BTU/h and 5000 BTU/h sizes. Each draws 0.5A. $500 street. For further comparison the (unvented) Olympian Wave 8 is an 8000 BTU heater, $330 street, no electricity required.

Going the other way the larger furnaces from Atwood and Suburban typically have a 26,000 BTU/h output and draw about 10 amps.
Jammer is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-09-2010, 07:00 PM   #2
Rivet Master
Westfalia's Avatar
2008 27' International CCD FB
Boerne, TX / , Evergreen, CO
Join Date: Jun 2005
Posts: 904
Images: 35
Send a message via AIM to Westfalia Send a message via Skype™ to Westfalia
I happen to have a Propex heater installed in an Eriba puck I was restoring. It's a great unit and heats the small but drafty trailer nicely and with little noise. I considered installing it in the Airstream for aux heating uses, but I will probably transfer it to my Westfalia VW transporter.
Chris and Christina- Boerne, TX / Evergreen, CO - TAC TX-7
2008 27'FB Int'l Signature CCD
Westfalia is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-17-2010, 06:16 PM   #3
Rivet Master
DanielB's Avatar
1974 31' Excella 500
Charleston , South Carolina
Join Date: Nov 2010
Posts: 1,073
Blog Entries: 8
Nice comparison. Thank you.
DanielB is offline   Reply With Quote

Currently Active Users Viewing This Thread: 1 (0 members and 1 guests)
Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off

Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
Catalytic Heaters niftypkg Furnaces, Heaters, Fireplaces & Air Conditioning 47 05-24-2016 08:41 AM
Catalytic Heaters tslanier Furnaces, Heaters, Fireplaces & Air Conditioning 2 01-12-2010 02:03 PM
Catalytic Heaters from Vintage dudebb Furnaces, Heaters, Fireplaces & Air Conditioning 12 10-23-2007 04:06 PM
Question on Catalytic Heaters tlavergne Furnaces, Heaters, Fireplaces & Air Conditioning 15 08-23-2007 10:19 PM
Catalytic Heaters - Who Wins? Sav'h Steve Furnaces, Heaters, Fireplaces & Air Conditioning 8 11-18-2002 07:09 AM

Featured Campgrounds

Reviews provided by


This website is not affiliated with or endorsed by the Airstream, Inc. or any of its affiliates. Airstream is a registered trademark of Airstream Inc. All rights reserved. Airstream trademark used under license to Social Knowledge LLC.

All times are GMT -6. The time now is 02:14 PM.

Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.8 Beta 1
Copyright ©2000 - 2020, Jelsoft Enterprises Ltd.