Basic Heater Question on RV

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ngranneman

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Taking Camper out first time this weekend, but may be in the 40's at night so may need to use the heater. I am not for sure on the steps on how to use it, however? I have the main thermastat that you can set but there is also a switch on the control panel right when you walk in the trailer.  Any insight on this is greatly appreciated
 

ngranneman

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Pictures to it
 

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djw2112

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I believe the HTR button is your water heater not the air heater.  And then of course the pump is your water pump.    Regarding the air heater, it should all be controlled at the thermastat, just set the temp you want, be sure your propane is turned on at the tank, if you have two tanks, turn one on and leave the other turned off until you need it. 

Looks like that is a digital thermastat only so if there are no button on the therm for heat or AC then it should be in the menu somewhere on the thermastat.  That is all you need to do.

Also just a little tip, when it gets cold i always cover up my inside vent to the roof AC because heat rises and we dont want to heat anything but the inside of the RV.  I use an old windshield sun shade from my truck. I cut it to fit over the AC roof vent (inside the RV) and then used velcro type stuff so i can remove it when needed.  Just remember NEVER NEVER NEVER turn the AC on with that cover on.  I also have a note on mine in big letters TURN AC OFF FIRST lol
 

cavie

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ngranneman said:
Pictures to it


HTR is "Tank Heaters". Keeps the holding tanks from freezing when temps get below 32 degrees. The give away is the association with all the tank levels and the pump switch.  ;)
 

CincyGus

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One last tip, crack a window so you don't get condensation. Running the heater all night with windows closed and people breathing will have you waking to moisture in the RV. If no one is breathing, you can leave the window closed. A little humor there. Darn little ;-)
 

Isaac-1

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Keep in mind that if your are camping off grid with no electric hookup, that RV furnaces can drain your batteries fairly fast.  Assuming a fairly standard 2 12V deep cycle batteries, expect the furnace running an average amount on a cold night to deplete the batteries after only 1 or 2 nights camping.
 

kdbgoat

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cavie said:
HTR is "Tank Heaters". Keeps the holding tanks from freezing when temps get below 32 degrees. The give away is the association with all the tank levels and the pump switch.  ;)

I don't think that's correct. As stated previously, it's the switch to turn the propane burner for the water heater. I'll be willing to bet he has a Suburban water heater. He must have the water heater full of water, then turn on both the breaker and the switch under the outside cover, down at the bottom left to run it off of electric, or turn on the switch in the pic for propane. When the switch in the pic is first turned on, the small DSI light will illuminate until the burner actually lights.
 

Gary RV_Wizard

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HTR could be either one of the two things suggested - both are very plausible. The location of the switch with tank gauges and water pump switch maybe lends credence to the tank heater opinion, but it's anybody's guess..
 

Utclmjmpr

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You really need to experiment/practice with your systems under controlled conditions BEFORE you have to use them to aquaint yourself with the unique way these things operate.>>>Dan
 

Rene T

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Larry N. said:
Unless you have an automatic switchover, in which case both tanks should be on.

Agree. Open both tanks. Let the automatic changeover valve work the way it's designed that is if you have one. You don't want to run out of propane at 1:00 in the morning and then have to go out in the freezing cold and open the 2nd tank. Just keep an eye on the flag built into the changeover valve.
 

djw2112

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Larry N. said:
Unless you have an automatic switchover, in which case both tanks should be on.

Rene T said:
Agree. Open both tanks. Let the automatic changeover valve work the way it's designed that is if you have one. You don't want to run out of propane at 1:00 in the morning and then have to go out in the freezing cold and open the 2nd tank. Just keep an eye on the flag built into the changeover valve.


The problem with leaving both tanks on is that even with automatic changover valve those valve needles can leak ever so slightly causing you to deplete both tanks over time when you think its only depleting one.  This happend to me, i thought it was taking a long time to drain a tank but i was very new and just let it go.  When i went (in the middle of the night) to switch tanks both tanks were empty.  This is when i was informed to leave one tank off until you need it. 

I froze my tail off that night, the next day i went and filled my tanks and also bought 2 portable electic heaters.
 

ngranneman

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Geez, alot of information that I need to learn more on. I believe the htr is for the water heater, it is a suburban. That was another question I had, there is a switch on the water heater itself and then the htr switch inside the RV. If wanting to use electrity and have regular hookup, do I just switch on the swith on the main unit (once it has water so don't burn the element out) and leave the HTR switch inside the RV off or do you do both?

I have 2 propane tanks, is there a way to tell looking at them if they have automatic switch off, etc?
 

cavie

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The HTR switch is a 12 volt switch for tank heaters. The lighted switch described above is for GAS heating. You turn on the switch, you will see a separate light come on. You will hear the WH attempt to light with clicking noise. If it does, the light will go out if it starts, if not you must turn off the switch then try again. If the light comes on at any time while the heater has been working it means that the heater turned on the burner or you are out of gas. The WH gas switch is located elsewhere in the rig. The outside switch needs to remain on if you want to use electric heat. There may or may not be an inside WH AC switch. The PO of my rig added an inside AC switch to mine under the kitchen sink. You can use both AC and Gas at the same time for quicker recovery time.
 

ngranneman

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Someone was describing the suburban water heater and will need to do both "breaker and switch under the outside cover" before it will kick on. How do you reset the breaker? Is that the 2 button things?
 

mel s

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CincyGus said:
One last tip, crack a window so you don't get condensation. Running the heater all night with windows closed and people breathing will have you waking to moisture in the RV. If no one is breathing, you can leave the window closed. A little humor there. Darn little ;-)
CincyGus
All propane fueled RV furnaces are designed so that they DO NOT add any moisture into the air they heat.
 

cavie

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ngranneman said:
Someone was describing the suburban water heater and will need to do both "breaker and switch under the outside cover" before it will kick on. How do you reset the breaker? Is that the 2 button things?


15 amp breaker in the main breaker box.  push the 2 button things in to reset. Those are temp overloads not breakers. You need to do a google search on these things. You are on overload.
 

ngranneman

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Was a good Google question as suggest. Per other post, it appears it is likely to the water heater. This guys RV is 2 years older than mine but same make so suspect same set-up. I don't see any additional switches, so is it possible I don't have a heater for the water storage tanks?

http://www.forestriverforums.com/forums/f24/htr-switch-on-2012-grey-wolf-26rb-24682.html

 

cavie

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OK. unplug your trailer from electric. turn your gas on. turn that switch on. If it's for the WH the light will come on and your will hear clicking noise of the heater igniter. The heater will light and the light will go out. If the light comes on and stays on it's for the tank heaters and is there so you don't have them on when not needed. I've been known to be wrong. I like the taste of crow. let me know.
 

Rene T

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djw2112 said:
The problem with leaving both tanks on is that even with automatic changover valve those valve needles can leak ever so slightly causing you to deplete both tanks over time when you think its only depleting one.  This happend to me, i thought it was taking a long time to drain a tank but i was very new and just let it go.  When i went (in the middle of the night) to switch tanks both tanks were empty.  This is when i was informed to leave one tank off until you need it. 

The thing is, you don't have to get up in the middle of the night to switch tanks because it does it automatically hence the name "automatic changeover valve".

If you have a minor leak, you should be able to smell it. These valves are designed to have both tanks open all the time. If you have a leak issue, just replace the valve assembly. I've been using these valves for close to 30 years and never had an issue. Keep in mind, when opening the tank valves, make sure you open them all the way. Some have a backseat which prevents gas from leaking around the tank valve stem. That may have been where your propane was leaking from. When using my propane grill at home, I always open the valve all the way to prevent a stem leak. I then shut it off only because I roll my grill back into the garage so if there is a leak, I don't want propane building up in the garage and eventually getting into the basement of my house.
 

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