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Old 03-19-2023, 09:40 AM   #1
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2021 25' International
Ottumwa , IA
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Furnace not working temps 26

2021 international 25fbt. Furnace igniter working intermittently (thoughts). Have electric heater how many hours do I have to worry about frozen pipes?
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Old 03-19-2023, 09:55 AM   #2
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I'm assuming that you are in your trailer? Looking at your weather, the sun should help. Most of your pipes are in the coach so the electric heater should be ok. Leave wather heater on and under sink doors open a crack. What the furnace does is keep the tanks from freezing. If the tanks have some water in them (not full) they'll take a while to freeze but shouldn't crack the tanks. Biggest concern is the dump connections if you need to use them. Intermittent ignitor could be a lot of things but top of mind is sail switch or return air blocked, low LP gas pressure, obstruction in burner. Lots of threads on these topics. The real threat is a long (days) period of subfreezing temps with no heat.
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Old 03-19-2023, 02:30 PM   #3
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Will run the electric heater and put a little antifreeze in the black and grey tanks. Would running water from each faucet every hr or so help?
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Old 03-19-2023, 03:36 PM   #4
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Jeff,

Assumption, you have a traditional gas fired forced air furnace correct? Model info can assist members in pointing to ideas.

Do other gas appliances work normally?

Open outside panel again assuming forced air furnace. Look for the control board, see a red light flashing? If so count pulses and refer to the fault code chart on the furnace.

These furnaces have a very specific starting sequence and listening very carefully to what you hear and time interval can be very helpful to diagnosis.

Gary
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Old 03-19-2023, 07:49 PM   #5
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Itís probably the ignition tube - probably has some dust / debris in it. Takes a couple minutes to remove and clean. Thatís the first place Iíd start.
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Old 03-20-2023, 09:31 AM   #6
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1st Thing is to open the drains for all water lines - hot & cold .
Do not forget to open faucets - to allow water to drain .

Do a search here & YouTube for heater issues , a number of possibilities .

You say igniter is intermittent - how do you know ?
I can hear sometimes mine , but best to watch through little window on furnace for blue spark [ if the spark is yellow , orange - failing electric ] .
A common thing bugs get into furnace and make a nest , one common issue there is the nest blocks the the flapper that moves when fan comes on - this sends signal to circuit board to turn on gas valve & igniter .

See if you can find & download a circuit diagram to help with diagnostics .
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Old 03-20-2023, 09:41 AM   #7
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Hi

Unfortunately, there is no simple answer to "how long / how cold?". With the trailer out in a strong wind, the time will be less. With the trailer facing this way, it's better than with the trailer facing that way. Frozen ground is worse to park on than warm ground.

Lots of grubby details ....

As noted above, best to dump as much water as you can as soon as possible.

Bob
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Old 03-20-2023, 12:32 PM   #8
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Propane flow

Propane does not work well at these temps try warming the tanks if possible
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Old 03-20-2023, 01:17 PM   #9
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I had exactly the same issue last week in low 20F nights and below freezing days. Based on advice on this forum I (easily) removed the sail switch from the heater. Cleaned it with a can of compressed air and popped it back in. No more issues.

My symptoms were the fan was coming on for 30 seconds then the furnace failed to ignite so the fan switched off. The sail switch is part of the start up sequence to check the fan is running. If it is , the air from the fan moves the sail and closes the switch. Once the switch is closed gas is plowed in and ignition can take place.

My sail switch was clogged with dirt that prevented it closing.

It may be worth checking. Takes about10 minutes. There is a reset switch on the furnace that can be used to start it from the furnace enclosure.

Good luck.
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Old 03-20-2023, 01:45 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Life is a Highway View Post
Propane does not work well at these temps try warming the tanks if possible
We have never had problems with our propane at temperatures down to 9į F and that includes much time at temperatures into the low 20s and below. Butane, commonly used for RVs in Europe, can have have problems at temperatures starting a few degrees below freezing.

In the US, butane is often mixed with the propane sold, so too much in the mix might cause a problem.

Tim
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Old 03-20-2023, 08:14 PM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Life is a Highway View Post
Propane does not work well at these temps try warming the tanks if possible

Winter full timer here. Furnace, water heater, stove all work great at 10 below F. 26 F is hardly below freezing.
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Old 03-21-2023, 03:43 PM   #12
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YouTube

Well my bad guess thatís what I get for watching the instructors training videos from the National RV training institute.

Iíll call them and tell them to update the curriculum
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Old 03-22-2023, 07:52 PM   #13
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Originally Posted by Life is a Highway View Post
Well my bad guess thatís what I get for watching the instructors training videos from the National RV training institute.



Iíll call them and tell them to update the curriculum


I just reported my experience, as did Tim with his comment. Try not to get overly butt hurt.

But yeah if that course says propane will be a problem below freezing, you either took it out of context or they are nuts. Iím in an rv resort for my 3rd winter and the 70 or so rigs Iím here with are all heating and cooling with propane from their outside tanks.
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Old 03-22-2023, 08:48 PM   #14
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Run the space heater, open the cabinet doors. No need to run water, you'll be fine.

Hope you get the furnace going!

My International set out two nights at 19 deg, at the storage facility, last week and was fine.
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Old 03-27-2023, 10:02 PM   #15
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I recommend dripping into a bucket into your sink. Dump it when it gets full. The bigger bucket you have the less you will have to wake up during the night.
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