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Old 10-21-2015, 12:55 AM   #1
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Propane furnace on battery?

How does one heat when boondocking?

I would like to be able to use my Sunseeker this winter, so I'm figuring out heating /antifreezing strategies for when on and off shore power.
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Old 10-21-2015, 12:57 AM   #2
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Furnace will run off the battery, but maybe not all night on one battery. We need more info on your intentions on use.
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Old 10-21-2015, 06:41 AM   #3
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The fan blower uses a lot of battery. If you only have a Grp 24, it probably won't last the night as it only has about 75AH. I upgraded to a Kirkland Grp 27 with 115AH for my first boondock and a year later went with dual Trojan T105 GC2 golf cart batteries with 220AH.
Set your thermostat lower than you would on shore power. We do 62 during the day and 55 at night. You can supplement with a Mr Buddy or Olympian Heater to reduce fan use as well. Just remember that the propane only heaters will not heat your plumbing.
We got 3 days off the Kirkland in the Grand Tetons with freezing at night and 60s during the day.
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Old 10-21-2015, 07:05 AM   #4
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How are your tanks heated? What daytime high and nighttime low are you expecting? The furnace fan draws about 10Amps, what is your battery setup?
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Old 10-21-2015, 07:59 AM   #5
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Not sure if this is common, but my 2000 Gulfstream 30 ft "C" has heat ducts directed into the 2 tank bays.

In weather below 30, we don't use portable electric heaters. We use the furnace since it heats the tank bays.

Above 30 we run the portable electric heaters to save propane, if we have power.

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Old 10-21-2015, 08:19 AM   #6
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We use a Big Buddy heater and a down comforter on the bed. This allows minimal use of the furnaces, reducing battery and propane consumption.
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Old 10-21-2015, 08:33 AM   #7
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As others have said, it depends on your batteries. Our latest trailer came stock with group 24 battery, and it would last the night based on a setting of 60 or so. That meant we had to run the generator each day, a pain. We upgraded this year to golf cart batteries with 220Amp hours. Now we only have to use the generator every 2 days. We do wear sweaters as needed during the day, but where we camp it generally is plenty warm during the day. We sleep,warm with a nice comforter, and we kick up,the heat when we get up.
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Old 10-21-2015, 08:42 AM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SkiSmuggs View Post
The fan blower uses a lot of battery. If you only have a Grp 24, it probably won't last the night as it only has about 75AH. I upgraded to a Kirkland Grp 27 with 115AH for my first boondock and a year later went with dual Trojan T105 GC2 golf cart batteries with 220AH.
Set your thermostat lower than you would on shore power. We do 62 during the day and 55 at night. You can supplement with a Mr Buddy or Olympian Heater to reduce fan use as well. Just remember that the propane only heaters will not heat your plumbing.
We got 3 days off the Kirkland in the Grand Tetons with freezing at night and 60s during the day.
There may be a camper out there that does not heat the water system, but every one I worked on had heat directed to the water service areas. However,some are better than others
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Old 10-21-2015, 12:53 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by wplate View Post
How does one heat when boondocking?

I would like to be able to use my Sunseeker this winter, so I'm figuring out heating /antifreezing strategies for when on and off shore power.
Please add a signature to your profile that includes the information on your rig. We could spend all day guessing about what you have. It is easier if you tell us.
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Old 10-21-2015, 02:50 PM   #10
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Please add a signature to your profile that includes the information on your rig. We could spend all day guessing about what you have. It is easier if you tell us.
Hmm, perhaps I was too quick. It appears "Sunseeker" is a Class C RV - sorry about (signature would still be nice).

Like Vince, I typically snuggle under a down comforter or two and leave the heat off at night. However; I try to stay in places where the overnight temp does not fall below freezing. If it does, I set the furnace to 35-40 degrees to prevent frozen pipes. I had a Big Buddy heater in my last RV that I used but it got lost in the transfer. I may get another as it worked quite well.
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Old 10-21-2015, 03:36 PM   #11
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We never run furnace at night time, use bigger blankets. We camp in the 30's and 40's many times and it cracks me up every morning when some of our fellow campers come out of their coach with dead batteries. Mr Buddy indoor propane heaters work great too, quick and efficient.

Like others have mentioned, state your coach and what exactly your intentions are.
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Old 10-21-2015, 04:06 PM   #12
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Half the issue of running overnight is heat loss that can be addressed.
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Old 10-21-2015, 04:18 PM   #13
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Half the issue of running overnight is heat loss that can be addressed.
That is an excellent point!

I do have the insulated pillow things that go in the ceiling/roof vents, big blanket to cover the dash, and reflectix for the windshield. My last rig and terrible windows but current rig is pretty great in that regard so I don't do anything with them.

I have some full-timer friends with Class C's and they pretty much close off the entire driving/cabin area.
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Old 10-21-2015, 04:54 PM   #14
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I would run it at home to get an idea of battery drawdown. I assume you have a generator to recharge the batts while off the grid.
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