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Old 09-15-2005, 04:13 PM   #1
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Can I Use Home HVAC??

I have an extra furnace and a/c unit sitting in my garage. The original intent is to install it in the garage. But, once I get a skoolie, I'll need climate control in there.

I was wondering if the home hvac unit would work? Has anyone installed one on their skoolie? Do you have pictures? What troubles/snags did you run into.

Thanks!

-Micah
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Old 09-15-2005, 04:20 PM   #2
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I don't know diddly about HVAC, but I would venture to guess that it is a 240VAC unit if it's a regular household kind of unit. That in itself would not present a problem, necessarily. It would be easiest to supply power to it if you outfitted your bus with 50 Amp electrical service for campgrounds so equipped, but you could theoretically supply it by using two 30 Amp hookups. Using two 30 Amp hookups probably would be kind of a jury-rigged approach to it, though.

Again, I don't know diddly about HVAC, so that speculation could be all wrong.
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Old 09-16-2005, 12:31 AM   #3
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Yeah there is a good chance it is all 240V. Is the furnace electric or Propane? If it is electric you are going to have a hard time finding a campground with enough power for it. Most of them are 13KW units. If it is Propane you might have issues with tank capacity. Unless this is a really small system it would take a lot of space up in the bus. You might want to consider window type heat pumps depending on your climate. They can be built into a cabinet in the bus or mounted under the bus and the air ducted in.
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Old 09-16-2005, 08:58 PM   #4
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If it is a gas unit, it will only need 120v. should work fine. My concern is the construction of a home unit won't tolerate much vibration and jarring before heat exchanger failure. (I may face this problem with my window AC unit, time will tell). To use the AC, you will need the condensing unit placed outside, just like your house. Takes up a lot of space, I suppose you could put it on a back porch. If you use an 80% efficiency furnace, you will have to run a type B flu (double wall) A 90% uses PVC, much easier, but also needs an external intake (PVC also) and a condensate drain. A 90% unit should not be exposed to freezing temps when not in use, as condensate can freeze and damage components. Not good for unheated winter storage.

Anythings possible, just a lot of space and penetrations.

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Old 09-16-2005, 11:29 PM   #5
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Some gas units use 240V for the blower. The one in our basement in fact does. That would not be a big problem though just replace the motor or get a voltage converter. With all the work and the space that would go to waste I would not bother with it. That is just me though.
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Old 09-19-2005, 10:08 AM   #6
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Going in the garage

Thanks for your input. I had assumed the condenser would go on a back porch. It is a gas unit that will be converted to propane.

Considering all of the points that ya'll brought up, I think it will be installed in the garage. I never pass up the opportunity to have climate control when working in the workshop!!

Thanks again. If there are other points that I should consider, don't hesitate to help me out.

-Micah
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Old 09-19-2005, 11:22 AM   #7
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IT was as different type unit from what you have, but i used a standard propane house furnace to heat my bus for a couple of years. I would un-install it during the summer months because it took up a lot of room. This used 110 volts, and the squirrell fan was small enough to run off of a 750 watt inverter while running rope lighting and other accessories.

it worked well, but was way overkill. The temperature would fluxuate tremendously from a bit chilly when the furnace first clicked on, to hells kitchen by the time it shut off. It was good for the jacuzzi use however. I could open the giant flaps on the side of the bus allowing for good ventilation, and even at 10 degrees F outside i could keep the inside of the bus nice and toasty.

the price was right however....
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Old 09-19-2005, 11:30 AM   #8
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This bus has central air and heating. You can see the house AC unit on the roof and there is a house furnace in the inside. I think it vents out the side. I've seen it around for about five years so it must work out pretty good.
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Old 10-28-2012, 08:31 PM   #9
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Re: Can I Use Home HVAC??

Hello all, I was looking through the older posts and found this. I was planning on using a House furnace that has been converted to Propane and was wondering if anyone else had any better luck at doing this or should i scrap that idea, pony up and buy a RV type of furnace?
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Old 10-28-2012, 09:57 PM   #10
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Re: Can I Use Home HVAC??

Kimber....

I am in HVAC school right now. The diff from a natural gas and propane unit is the oriface the use to mix fuel and oxygen. So as before the issue was experssed about the heat exchanger. What that piece is kind of a big grill that the blower pushes air across it to move heated air. If they crack it sends carbon monoxide in the air flow so cracked exchangers are bad.

We havent covered RV units so Im not sure how they work. Size wise a home unit is pretty sizeable compared to an RV.

Just as a hip shot I would scrap it and go RV but thats me.
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