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Old 01-30-2014, 06:16 AM   #1
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furnace

We bought our new 34' fifth wheel last spring. Our previous trailer was a Jayco 30' fifth wheel. Both trailers have the same issue. On a cold morning, when we turn on the furnace (which is located close to the front of the trailer in the area of the steps), all the heat is concentrated in the front of the trailer - the bedroom and bathroom area. The living area, located to the rear, stays cold.

Is is safe to try to block certain vents in order to force the heat to the rear of the unit?

Astrid.
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Old 01-30-2014, 06:42 AM   #2
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I have replaced 2 of my vents with adjustable vents that I purchased at Lowe's. One of these vents is in the living area and one in the bath area. They are closed all of the time and it helps with the heat distribution. If you don't close off more than 2 vents I don't think that you will have a problem. Any more than that could damage the unit by overheating it.
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Old 01-30-2014, 06:42 AM   #3
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I won't tell you it is or isn't safe, but I can tell you what I and several other members have done. I purchased a couple floor registers that can be adjusted. They're just like the ones you have in your home.
One is in the living area, and the other is in the bathroom. That has made a big improvement.
You should be able to pick them up at Lowes or any similar type store.
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Old 01-30-2014, 08:00 AM   #4
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How about putting a pillow over the vents you want to block at time that you want to block them? Would that work just as well?

We have two vents in the living room which are conveniently covered by one of the slides when it is in. When we boondock in cold weather on the way to Florida, we run the furnace at night without putting the slides out. This means the living room vents are then covered up. If we mistakenly have the bedroom and bathroom ones closed, this could be troublesome. We have two vents in the living room, one near the entry, one in the bathroom and one in the bedroom.
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Old 01-30-2014, 08:04 AM   #5
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There can be a lot of heat coming out of those heat runs. I don't think I would want anything flammable laying over them for very long.

Those registers I mentioned are very easy to replace. Normally all that is needed is a screw driver.
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Old 01-31-2014, 02:13 PM   #6
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I posted the question in Chris Dougherty's blog at http://rvmaintenancetips.blogspot.com/ He is an RV tech. Here is his reply:

Closing off registers in an RV is NEVER recommended. The reason is because the furnace is designed to work properly with a certain minimum amount of airflow to make it more efficient, and to keep it from overheating. Closing off registers reduces airflow and can lead to furnace overheating and cycling, as well as overheating of other components like duct work and other registers.


A small electric fan is one option to help circulate the warmer air from upstairs back downstairs. An RV ceiling fan would be another option.
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Old 01-31-2014, 02:49 PM   #7
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When we had the HH that's what the factory rep told me also, but as you can see we don't all adhere to it.
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Old 02-01-2014, 06:50 AM   #8
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In my opinion just because it is "not recommended" doesn't mean that you can't do it. Regulating air flow means just that. With the adjustable registers you can have them open, close them part way or all of the way. I have closed off two registers in the last two trailers that we have owned and have never had a problem with the operation of the furnace. It operates just like it is designed to operate. Additionally, if I didn't close off the register in the bath area it would be like a sauna in there every time the furnace came on. The other register I have closed is the one at rear of the unit. We swapped places with the couch and chairs and the register is now under the couch so I closed it off.

The bottom line is: do what you feel comfortable doing.
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Old 02-01-2014, 07:09 PM   #9
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You may want to remove the large grille that covers the interior access to your furnace and check it for poorly sealed ducting. On our rig this is the big grilled directly underneath the fridge. It is just held in with 4 screws. I had resealed the ducts where they connect to the furnace right after we bought it. I guess I shouldn't say resealed, they were never sealed to start with. That really improved the flow but we also replaced the floor vents with residential style adjustable ducts for better control. This Christmas on our way back from Walt Disney World we overnighted in Chattanooga TN and it was down to 18 degrees when we pulled in. We fired up the furnace and electric heaters and quickly noticed that no air was coming out of the living room and bedroom ducts. I pulled the grille off the furnace and discovered that 1 of the ducts that I had sealed 6 years ago had popped off! I cleaned the old duct tape off, put a couple of screws through it, taped it up and good as new.
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Old 02-01-2014, 08:15 PM   #10
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Don't use regular duct tape, use the aluminum foil tape made for duct-work.
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