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Old 09-23-2022, 01:34 PM   #1
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Propane Coach heater troubleshooting

This has been the summer of HVAC issues. Spent a while working on my Coleman mach basement AC a few months ago. Took our 2002 Winnebago Adventurer out this weekend for a nice fall trip. Everything was fine until last night.

Temps dropped into the 40s and we had no heat. We had been using the Coleman Mach Heat pump feature the two nights before when the temp was in the low 60s and it was able to come on and heat the coach to a comfortable temp easily. But last night it was too cold (I assume) for the heat pump and it would not stay on.

The propane furnace, which we used on one trip much earlier this spring with no issues. Setting the thermostat to gas heat it would click, we could hear a click coming from the furnace under the bedroom floor but nothing happens. The blower does not come and the furnace does not try to light. Nothing happens at all. When driving if I hit the "Coach Heat" switch on the dashboard that usually turns on my gas furnace for the coach, the blowers come on but even after waiting for a while the unit does not light like it should.

I was thinking sail switch at first but if that is the case should not the blower come on when the thermostat calls for heat (just like the rocker switch on the panel). I'm wondering if it is a control board issue.
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Old 09-23-2022, 05:26 PM   #2
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EDIT to add that after looking at my system I know now that the "coach heater" button on the panel heats it off of the engine with a different blower; I always assumed when I hit that while driving it fired up the propane heater.
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Old 09-23-2022, 05:29 PM   #3
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Blower motor?
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Old 09-23-2022, 05:40 PM   #4
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Generic>
Fuse is supplied with a Constant 12VDC from Fused source
That Fused source also is 12VDC to Thermostat
When Thermostat closes the 12VDC goes back to furnace

It either goes to a Timed Delay Relay OR Power Circuit on the circuit board
When it returns from Thermostat it triggers 12VDC to Fan Motor

Nothing happens until Fan starts

So could be the Local On/Off CB Switch *at furnace is tripped
OR Timed Delay Relay has failed
OR Blower Circuit on circuit board has failed

Brand/Model of Furnace?????

2002 Vintage would most likely used the Timed Delay Relay
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Old 09-23-2022, 06:25 PM   #5
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Suburban SF 35 I believe.
I hear a "click" from the relay when the thermostat calls for heat. I'll have to pull it out next weekend to run some tests on it.
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Old 09-24-2022, 03:55 PM   #6
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Check the blower motor fuses, NOT visual but actual multimeter check. They don't call them idiot lights/fuses for nothing.
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Old 09-24-2022, 06:27 PM   #7
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My experience with the SF30-35 series is as follows.

It you can hear a clicking noise at the furnace, I would expect the circuit board.
If you have an outside cover for the furnace, remove it. Locate the circuit board on the left side of the furnace. Have someone turn the thermostat on calling for heat.
If you hear the click comming from the circuit board and the motor does not start, the relay on the cirucit board is bad. Replace the circuit board.

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Old 09-24-2022, 08:37 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by A1RVTraveler View Post
My experience with the SF30-35 series is as follows.

It you can hear a clicking noise at the furnace, I would expect the circuit board.
If you have an outside cover for the furnace, remove it. Locate the circuit board on the left side of the furnace. Have someone turn the thermostat on calling for heat.
If you hear the click comming from the circuit board and the motor does not start, the relay on the cirucit board is bad. Replace the circuit board.

Matt
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2002 vintage should have Timed Delay Relay vs incorporated into circuit board
Suspect TDR has failed
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Old 09-24-2022, 10:04 PM   #9
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Propane Coach heater troubleshooting

Quote:
Originally Posted by kkocan72 View Post

..Temps dropped into the 40s and we had no heat. We had been using the Coleman Mach Heat pump feature the two nights before when the temp was in the low 60s and it was able to come on and heat the coach to a comfortable temp easily. But last night it was too cold (I assume) for the heat pump and it would not stay on.
Im not familiar with the workings of the Coleman heat pumps. Perhaps theyve installed some sort of lockout circuitry. But weve been fulltiming 10 years with Dometic roof units. We routinely use our heat pumps down into the low-mid 40s (OAT) depending on wind and other factors. They do just fine producing heat at those levels. When its close to 40 we switch over to propane
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Old 09-25-2022, 01:06 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by A1RVTraveler View Post
My experience with the SF30-35 series is as follows.

It you can hear a clicking noise at the furnace, I would expect the circuit board.
If you have an outside cover for the furnace, remove it. Locate the circuit board on the left side of the furnace. Have someone turn the thermostat on calling for heat.
If you hear the click comming from the circuit board and the motor does not start, the relay on the cirucit board is bad. Replace the circuit board.

Matt
RV Tech
Thanks, that is what I am thinking, bad circuit board or perhaps the limit switch on the backside of the furnace. I am going to pull it out next weekend. I had my wife turn the thermostat on while I sat outside by the furnace listening and I definitely hear a loud "click" from the furnace when she turns the thermostat on.
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Old 09-25-2022, 01:09 PM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JFXG View Post
Im not familiar with the workings of the Coleman heat pumps. Perhaps theyve installed some sort of lockout circuitry. But weve been fulltiming 10 years with Dometic roof units. We routinely use our heat pumps down into the low-mid 40s (OAT) depending on wind and other factors. They do just fine producing heat at those levels. When its close to 40 we switch over to propane
This is the first time we used ours as a heater in 3 years; we've just always used the gas furnace on the few times we have needed heat. Last week the first couple of nights were comfortable with no heat, but the last night temps dropped fast and into the low 40s.

When I went to bed the heat pump was on and keeping the rig at a comfortable 67-68 easily. I woke up at 5am and it was in the upper 50s inside and quite cold and the heat pump would not come on. I tried turning it on/off several times and it would click and start for a second then shut off. Later that day when it got a bit warmer out the heat pump worked fine so I assumed there was a low limit setting that the heat pump won't work at because it is too cold outside.
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Old 09-25-2022, 01:37 PM   #12
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Limit switch ....furnace has to start/heat/overheat for Limit switch to open and stop heating cycle

Fan MUST start/come up to speed before ANYTHING can happen
*Open Limit Switch will stop heat cycle but not the fan from running
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Old 09-25-2022, 08:05 PM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Old-Biscuit View Post
Limit switch ....furnace has to start/heat/overheat for Limit switch to open and stop heating cycle

Fan MUST start/come up to speed before ANYTHING can happen
*Open Limit Switch will stop heat cycle but not the fan from running
But can't they go bad and effectively kill the 12v supply to the circuit board? I will have to pull my furnace and check the limit switch for continuity to rule it out.
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Old 09-26-2022, 10:23 PM   #14
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But can't they go bad and effectively kill the 12v supply to the circuit board? I will have to pull my furnace and check the limit switch for continuity to rule it out.
Yes the Hi Temp Limit Switch can go bad preventing return of DC to circuit board for Ignition

But that is downstream of Fan circuit

You stated in your 1st post
The blower does not come and the furnace does not try to light. Nothing happens at all.

Got to have 12VDC to furnace & thermostat and then to Fan Motor when thermostat closes
Fan MUST run before rest of circuits can come into play
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