1. Safety first: Propane is a clean and safe fuel, but it still comes with a small risk of injury if you don't take some safety precautions while performing certain tasks. Never use a quick fix-it will get you in trouble every time! A carbon dioxide detector should be installed, if you don’t already have one in the RV. (Propane and carbon dioxide are a deadly combination if you don’t have a CO2 detector). Routinely check for leaks, especially if the RV has been sitting all winter long or if you suspect you have loose fittings.
2. RV furnace cycling: “Cycling” is a normal function of the RV propane heater. The RV furnace usually takes 15-30 seconds to come on after you turn on the thermostat. The blower will then run for 15-30 seconds before you will feel heat. Once the proper temperature has been met, the burner will shut off, and the blower will continue to run for a short period afterwards.
3. Strong furnace odor: It is not unusual to smell a strong odor when you first turn on the furnace, especially if it has been turned off for the season. You will notice that it goes away after it has been running for a while. Be sure to make sure that the outside exhaust vent is clear and the compartment doors aren’t open and blocking the vent (especially if it is low).
4. Air flow importance: Because RV propane heaters do not have air filters in them, air flow must be kept at a maximum by keeping all air vents and floor ducts clear. This includes pet bowls that are placed on the floor near them. Be sure they aren’t blocking or covering up the floor vents. While this is just common sense, sometimes these things happen inadvertently.
5. Shut-off valve: RV propane heaters have a manual shut-off valve for the furnace. It pays off to familiarize yourself with it. If you’re having trouble getting your propane furnace to come on, be sure make sure that the shut-off is in the “on” position.
6. The “smell” of propane: Propane has an additive in it so that you will smell an odor if there is a possible leak. In its natural form, propane has no smell. The additive, Ethyl Mercaptan, is what gives the propane the noticeable odor. If you suspect a leak, shut off the gas supply at the propane tank, and call for service
7. LP gas regulators: The propane tank has a small gas regulator that keeps the gas pressure regulated as it’s going through the mechanics of the heater. Regulators can go bad due to age and wear, and this is not something that can be repaired. If it goes bad, you will need to need to buy a replacement regulator. To check for a bad regulator you will want to do the following: Light all the stove burners and check the flame. What color do you see? You should see a blue flame with a slight yellow tip. If you’re not seeing a blue flame and there is very little or no yellow, this could indicate that your regulator is going bad. Don’t make any adjustments to the regulator. If you suspect it needs to be adjusted, take it to a certified RV service technician. It is a good idea to have the LP gas regulator tested and checked for leaks annually. It is also a good idea to carry a spare with you. All RVs have some type of LP regulator protection cover. It would be wise to use it.
If you have any questions, please give our service department a call at 816-587-1500 or 866-426-2247 Toll Free!
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