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Old 06-03-2014, 05:43 PM   #1
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Furnace question

We will be doing our first "dry camping" in a few days and it will probably be the first time we will need our heater. I've been going over the instructions for the heater and am a little confused by what I'm reading (so, what's new ... ). From the manual:
3. Turn "OFF" all electric power to the appliance
5. Open the control access panel
6. Turn "OFF" switch (circuit breaker or manual switch) to the "OFF" position

Then we get to:
9. Turn the valve power switch to the "ON" position
10. Close access panel
11. Turn all electric power to the appliance "ON"

Right now, the switch behind the furnace panel says "RESET / OFF" (no "ON" in sight...) and it's in the "RESET" position. What other electric power are they referring to -- the digital thermostat (which does have an "ON/OFF" mode) or the circuit breaker (which would be the entire trailer)? Also, should we be turning "OFF" the furnace (via the access door) when we're moving the trailer? I'm thinking it's not a problem as it's evidently been in the "RESET" position since we picked up the trailer in Chilliwack ...

And, speaking of circuit breakers, we read (somewhere) that when you plug your electric cord into a campground receptacle, the main circuit breaker should be "OFF" ... and then you do the same when you unplug. This is SOP ... right?

Sorry, this upcoming trip has me a little unnerved ...
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Old 06-03-2014, 05:49 PM   #2
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None of those instructions make any sense to me. I assume you are talking about the furnace, not the water heater?
To operate the furnace on my 17B, there is a lever on the top of the thermostat that I flick toward me. Then I turn the thermostat up to the heat required.
I'm expect your digital thermostat is similar in operation.
I don't mess with anything behind the furnace panel.
Have you tried not reading the instructions you have found and just turning up the thermostat ( with the propane tanks turned on )?
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Old 06-03-2014, 06:23 PM   #3
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Furnace

Sorry, had to run and take photos. Yes, it's the furnace not the water heater. I'm thinking that it's probably all set up as Reace showed us how it operated during our orientation; however, there was a flurry of activity about then and we were distracted. Anyway, the photos show what is behind the panel as well as our Dometic thermostat (the RESET/OFF switch is in the first photo, upper right). Before we tried turning the furnace on, we wanted to be sure there wasn't something else that we needed to be doing as we don't need anything breaking at this point ...

The thermostat controls both the heater and A/C but I don't even want to THINK about running the A/C ....
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File Type: jpg Heater Panel.JPG (393.7 KB, 12 views)
File Type: jpg Heater Thermostat.JPG (266.2 KB, 12 views)
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Old 06-03-2014, 06:26 PM   #4
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We also picked up our Escape 19' in January. All we did to use the furnace was to open the valves on the propane tanks and use the thermostat to operate the furnace. No need to remove the furnace panel at all in our experience.
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Old 06-03-2014, 06:28 PM   #5
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I've had the same heater on two trailers now, and I've always turned on (reset) the switch behind the furnace panel when I'm ready to operate the furnace, and then turned it off when traveling. I suppose one COULD leave it in the reset position, but there might be a chance the furnace could come on when the trailer is unoccupied, especially if one hadn't paid any attention to the thermostat setting when the trailer was closed up.

I don't understand the first set of instructions at all, it's something I've never done. And I've never turned off my inside master switch before plugging in shoreside.
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Old 06-03-2014, 06:36 PM   #6
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Thanks to all. I'm thinking the instructions are referring to turning OFF the thermostat which makes sense if you're lighting the furnace for the first time (or after having it off for an extended period). And thanks Bob your insight into the shore power. We left the breakers on the first time we plugged in and noticed a delay in powering up the trailer ... which is why we thought we should have turned off the breaker, but we were probably okay.
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Old 06-03-2014, 08:41 PM   #7
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It is a good idea to turn off the breaker on the pedestal when plugging/unplugging the trailer. This prevents an arc on your plug (as well as the campground's receptacle) that causes pitting & extra wear...

I don't turn off the trailer breaker. If you have a Progressive Industries Power Protector that is an option from Escape, that will cause a delay when plugging or turning on the pedestal breaker. It can be set for 15 seconds (factory setting) or 136 seconds.
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Old 06-03-2014, 08:42 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by CADreamin View Post
Thanks to all. I'm thinking the instructions are referring to turning OFF the thermostat which makes sense if you're lighting the furnace for the first time (or after having it off for an extended period). And thanks Bob your insight into the shore power. We left the breakers on the first time we plugged in and noticed a delay in powering up the trailer ... which is why we thought we should have turned off the breaker, but we were probably okay.
If you have the ETI-installed surge protector (small black box with red display on the road side dinette) there is about a minute delay after plugging into AC before the trailer goes hot.

The furnace directions are for initial setup. Assuming ETI demoed it during the orientation you do NOT need to mess with it. I have NEVER turned off the furnace (in any RV) other than with the thermostat except when I removed the furnace to make some electrical mods.
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Old 06-03-2014, 09:55 PM   #9
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Thank you Doug and Jon. We do have the ETI installed surge protector so we're good on that end. I will look for the breaker on the pedestal as my first experience with that delay was enough to make me a little more than nervous. And the furnace is going to be left alone. When we get around to thinking about the A/C, I'll probably ask a few more questions ...
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Old 06-03-2014, 10:17 PM   #10
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If you mean air conditioner and have the digital thermostat - not much to it: plug in to 120V, set thermostat to cool, and enjoy.
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