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Old 06-10-2010, 10:27 PM   #1
Bus Nut
sportyrick's Avatar
Join Date: May 2006
Location: mid Mo.
Posts: 900
Year: 1976
Coachwork: bluebird
Chassis: F33695
Engine: 427 chevy converted to 466
Rated Cap: 84
Re: Air Conditioning & Heating

I have that exact heater you have a picture of, even the same crap brown and I believe it's 12000 btu and it is just ok. We usually just heat the front half of the bus and curtain off the rear garage area and it does ok in cooler weather but I wouldn't rely on it for below 32 degrees. Maybe if you have fewer windows or real RV windows it would work better. As far as window units we cut a 15000 btu unit in half and put just the evaporator upstairs and the rest under the bus. I can't tell you how many watts it draws but we don't care because we are usually plugged in when camping or run the generator if necessary. It's 220 and not 110 but rarely find a campground without 50 amp service anymore so it needing 220 is fine. It has a hard time keeping up in really hot weather or if in direct sunlight when hot outside. I just didn't want a hole in my roof and fight leaks or the extra wind drag. sportyrick

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Old 06-11-2010, 12:00 PM   #2
Bus Nut
JakeC's Avatar
Join Date: Dec 2009
Location: MN
Posts: 732
Year: 1991
Coachwork: Wayne
Chassis: International 3800
Engine: DT466
Rated Cap: 72
Re: Air Conditioning & Heating

I also have that exact furnace in my bus. I got it out of a 98 popup starcraft. I have tested it down to around 30* and it worked fine. I would guess that it was running around 50%. I think 2 would heat a fullsize bus great.
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Old 06-11-2010, 12:24 PM   #3
Bus Geek
lornaschinske's Avatar
Join Date: Jun 2004
Location: Roswell, NM
Posts: 3,588
Year: 1986
Coachwork: BlueBird
Chassis: 40 ft All American FE
Engine: 8.2LTA Fuel Pincher DD V8
Rated Cap: 89
Re: Air Conditioning & Heating

We have an old suburban in our RV. It heats good (22 ft Class C). These furnaces are notorious for sucking batteries dry over night when boondocking and being very inefficient when it comes to propane use. We tend to use electric space heaters but we are either paying for metered electric or its included in our site rental. We will use a hydronic system paired up with the old rear heat exchanger ducted under the bus. We will supplement that with a little LP blue Flame unit in our fireplace mantle. David says I was designing a heating system worthy of spending snowy, freezing winters in the mountains... we don't plan on "doing" snow anymore. We will head to TX where it's not cold for long periods of time and snow rarely happens.

We also have an RV rooftop AC unit (Coleman TSR 13,500 BTUs, also old... it can be powered with our 2.5KW genset... barely). It keeps up in 100+ temps. Doesn't freeze us out but keeps up. RV AC units are also very inefficient when it comes to power usage and limited on the BTUs. They are 110VAC so I can't really see the advantage of using an RV rooftop over a 100VAC home style AC unit if you can use one. And I dislike the AC unit "piddling" water all over the roof... it invariable dribbles on me somehow. We plan on installing a window unit under the bus and ducting it. The AC unit then can "piddle" water to it's heart's content underneath the bus. I know in NM, I will never step into a puddle from it.... the ground here just sucks water up like it never happened (rain storms are interesting out here... puddles tend to only last 5 or 10 minutes). I like the idea that if my AC unit craps out, Then all I have to do is stop at the local Wally World and grab one off the shelf and pop it in. Also I don't want to put any more holes or other stuff up on the roof than I absolutely have to.
This post is my opinion. It is not intended to influence anyone's judgment nor do I advocate anyone do what I propose.
Fulltime since 2006
The goal of life is living in agreement with nature. Zeno (335BC-264BC)
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