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Old 11-09-2010, 08:45 AM   #1
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Electric Space Heater

What type electric space heater does everyone use? Do you run it all night? I have one of the oil filled radiator type. It has no moving parts so I am comfortable running it all night. It also has a low temp no freeze setting that I use when the MH is stored. I want to get one with a fan as it should put out more heat. Don't think I would run it all night, but would use it while up watching TV etc.
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Old 11-09-2010, 09:05 AM   #2
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I use two cube heaters to heat the inside of my MH and I run them at night. They have been great and saved me a great deal on propane. One thing about the cube heaters though is that their thermostats are very inaccurate and inconsistent. I built a thermostat that I plug my cube heater into and that does the trick. It might be worthwile to buy a larger heater with good thermostat, but storage consideration come into play.
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Old 11-09-2010, 11:42 AM   #3
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Before I use My space heaters in the motorhome I allways Check with the Park manager;; A lot of parks do NOT allow the use of Electric heaters Because it is a constant load on the brakers and they will over heat. Exmp; A 20 amp. braker if a continual Load of 15 anps it will get hot and over heat causing problems; 20 or what ever the rating is it is ment.{argueable} for a surge On the load; This has been our experiance; in our park and when we are on the road. If disputed Do it civily;;
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Old 11-09-2010, 12:36 PM   #4
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Pete & Linda,

We use up to 3 ceramic heaters as needed. The model we use is the Dayton 1VNW9.
It has 3 heat settings as well as an adjustable thermostat. More importantly it has a knock over cut off switch mounted in the bottom as well as internal overheat protection. Our cats tested out the knock over safety one night when they knocked the heater over- they were a couple of cold cats in the morning.

As far as power usage is concerned, I tested 2 of our heaters for this post. These numbers are for our 2 oldest (1 year old) heaters. We used them in our home in Florida in the winter as well as our motorhome for the last 5 1/2 months. Because of an unusually cold winter in FL last winter and us spending most of the summer at higher elevations in the Rockies, these 2 heaters have at least 1800 hours of run time on them.

Here is their current power usage (ave of the two): Fan only= 21 watts, .24 amps; low heat= 530w, 4.4a; medium= 705w, 6.15a; high= 1041w, 9.3a. A note about these numbers- when they were new, I seem to remember the power usage numbers being a little higher. Something in the area of Low= 590w, medium= 950w, and high= 1300w. But I did not write the numbers down.

In our motorhome we run one heater in the living area on low or medium heat and one in the bathroom/bedroom area on low. We very rarely run the heaters on high heat. We have a 3rd unit on board but rarely have had to use it- when we do it is in the living area also.

These units have worked out great for us.
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Old 11-09-2010, 06:30 PM   #5
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I don't think a heater with a fan will put out any more heat than a heater without a fan. It may circulate the warm air faster but I don't think they actually put out any more heat. We use 2 oil filled electric radiant heaters and think they work great. 1 at each end of our motorhome, no fan noise, no drafts, and very efficient heat. They have 2 power settings-900 and 1500 watts and a thermostat control. We never use them on the 1500 watt setting since the 900 watt setting has always been more than enough to keep our rig comfortable even when it drops down to freezing temps at night. We even used them to keep our house warm just 2 weeks ago when we had a new furnace installed in our house. But if you are looking for something to heat up a cold motorhome faster then I would agree the fan type would work better, but once it's warmed up to temp the radiants will work just as good, and we start ours up as soon as we get to where we're going while our motorhome is still warm and leave them on until we pack up to go again.
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Old 11-09-2010, 07:49 PM   #6
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The oil filled or the cube quartz type all put out the exact same 1500 watts. The cube type with a fan will spread the heat and make the room feel more even in temperature.

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Old 11-09-2010, 08:23 PM   #7
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We use one electric coil, fan forced cube heater. It really warms up the motor home. We do not run it overnight due to safety concerns. We also want the furnace to run to keep heat in the underbelly in below freezing temps. We sometimes run electric heat just to avoid the chore of getting more propane, but think the rig is more evenly heated and more comfortable using the furnace.

Safety note: if your heater has the auto shut off if tipped over, test that feature periodically. My heater's auto shut off lasted only the first year.

Safe travels,
Gene
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Old 11-09-2010, 08:31 PM   #8
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If noise is a factor. I shall relate something an engineer once told me - "anything that moves air creates noise. Anyone who tells you otherwise is a salesman"
Nuff said.
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Old 11-09-2010, 08:33 PM   #9
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heat

Quote:
Originally Posted by Pete & Linda View Post
What type electric space heater does everyone use? Do you run it all night? I have one of the oil filled radiator type. It has no moving parts so I am comfortable running it all night. It also has a low temp no freeze setting that I use when the MH is stored. I want to get one with a fan as it should put out more heat. Don't think I would run it all night, but would use it while up watching TV etc.
Been using 2 oil filled radiators for over 10 years in both our MH when travling or at home. They work great and keep a steady quite heat.
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Old 11-10-2010, 11:01 AM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bachler View Post
Before I use My space heaters in the motorhome I allways Check with the Park manager;; A lot of parks do NOT allow the use of Electric heaters Because it is a constant load on the brakers and they will over heat. Exmp; A 20 amp. braker if a continual Load of 15 anps it will get hot and over heat causing problems; 20 or what ever the rating is it is ment.{argueable} for a surge On the load; This has been our experiance; in our park and when we are on the road. If disputed Do it civily;;

Your coach is connected to either a 30a single pole breaker or a 50a dual pole breaker. Using a 15a appliance continuously will have NO detrimental effect on either and they are fully rated to carry the nameplate label amps continuously. Normal design is for 80%. Park owners do not and cannot have any say in what appliances you use inside your coach. The electric is included in the daily rate and most charge seperate for longer term rentals.

There is absolutely NOTHING wrong with using a 1500w heater on any properly installed 20a 120v circuit. And yes, I am qualified to offer a professional opinion on the subject.
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Old 11-10-2010, 11:06 AM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by genecurp View Post
We use one electric coil, fan forced cube heater. It really warms up the motor home. We do not run it overnight due to safety concerns. We also want the furnace to run to keep heat in the underbelly in below freezing temps. We sometimes run electric heat just to avoid the chore of getting more propane, but think the rig is more evenly heated and more comfortable using the furnace.

Safety note: if your heater has the auto shut off if tipped over, test that feature periodically. My heater's auto shut off lasted only the first year.

Safe travels,
Gene

If you want a fan forced heater, the ceramic element cube heaters are far safer than the electric coil variety. The element has a positive temperature coefficient which means as it gets hotter, the resistance goes up and the heat produced goes down. The effect is that the element only gets so hot. Well below the ignition point of paper or fabric and even if air flow is blocked by tipping or a blanket or whatever, it will not overheat and catch fire.
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Old 11-10-2010, 11:17 AM   #12
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We have a ceremic heater with thermostat and blower, we run it all night with no trouble. It is very quiet. Brand name Lasco, model 755320. Purchased at Wal-Mart. Does a good job keeping the coach warm right now with the temp outside about 48 at night.
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Old 11-10-2010, 04:28 PM   #13
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As a safety feature they all have tip switches. If it tips over the unit shuts down.
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Old 11-10-2010, 05:07 PM   #14
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Quote:
As a safety feature they all have tip switches. If it tips over the unit shuts down.
That's what I thought too ...but I tested the small ceramic heater we just bought and it continues to run even face down on the carpet !!!

We have one space heater that we run ONLY when someone wants to stay up reading half+ the night ...which the DW almost always does. She runs the space heater up front while I sleep in the cooler rear. For "normal" heating we run our heat pump which does a very good job of keeping us warm down to the high 30's, then we use the LP furnaces because in addition to giving us heat they ALSO give the water tanks/lines/pump/etc some heat. We might use the ceramic space heater some during the day if temps are low enough to lock out the heat pumps and still be above freezing. In my experience, two space heaters ...and especially MORE than two ...would be pushing the electrical limits.
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