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Old 12-27-2014, 04:35 AM   #1
mstat
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Heat or lack of ??

I would like to hear of those who own a Cougar 33RES how their furnace/heating system handles temperatures down into the upper 20's, 30's and lower 40's

Does it keep the coach warm without any supplement electric heaters?

Does the furnace blower run constantly when coming from a cold state while the furnace burner cycles on and off?

Any known differences between how the 2014 & 2015 models years had their ductwork run.

I have not seen many postings or signatures out there with this model so I guess I'm also trying to see how many are actually out there.

Thank you.
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Old 12-27-2014, 08:34 AM   #2
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Don't have a Cougar but I have a 35 foot trailer. The heater runs hard to bring it up to temp. Blower runs and the burner cycles on and off for a couple hours if it is real cold. Have camped in the low temps from time to time and the furnace keeps up pretty good. We do put an extra comforter on the bed but we do the same thing at home in the winter. Have never had electric heat in there. Just wish our trailer had a heat vent in the bathroom. We generally leave the door open at night so it is not freezing in there in the morning.
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Old 12-27-2014, 03:41 PM   #3
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I've got a 2014 Cougar High Country 319RLS which is very close to what you have (you didn't mention the year). We spent last night in it and it got down to 24 with the temp set at 71 and it kept up fine. It cycled on and off normally. I don't know how long between cycles because.....I was asleep! We have a 35k btu furnace.

Coming from a cold state; about as cold as it gets when we are using it is if I set the temp to 53 and then push it up to 70. The blower comes on for a few seconds to clear the ducts/furnace I guess and then the burner comes on and stays until it reaches temp, then shuts off with a little pop. If it has been vacated for quite a while and everything has been shut off the furnace comes on the same, just runs longer. We don't use supplemental heat currently because I'm running off 120vac/20amp from a plug here at my house (staying in it while the house is full for the holidays). If I stayed in 20 degree weather a lot, or for an extended period, I would use the fireplace which puts out quite a lot of heat.

The remark you made about the burner cycling on and off worries me. Mine did that on our first trip in colder weather then quit working. Took it to the shop under warranty and they said it was OK. Well, this morning, at 24degrees and snowing, it quit again. It tried to fire up, burner ignited, ran a bit then quit. Did it 4 times this morning and then nothing. I had replaced one of the propane bottles yesterday so it might have been something to do with the regulator and pressure. I turned the directional valve very slowly from one tank back to the other. I then had to open the furnace from outside and remove the power from the control board so that it would work. The control board has an LED that flashes if there is a problem. Mine was showing an ignition lockout fault (3 flashes then a 3 second pause) and wasn't going to work until it was reset. All that said just in case you hit the same issue. Mine is an Atwood unit.

Good luck and stay warm.
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Old 12-28-2014, 06:20 AM   #4
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Hi,

While I don't have the exact same model RV as you,... I recognized your statement: "Does the furnace blower run constantly when coming from a cold state while the furnace burner cycles on and off?"

Yes,... that is exactly the way the past 2 RV's furnace I have owned operated. Usually just the first time it's turned on and it is trying to warm up the RV from a rather cold temperature starting point.

Most all furnaces have an Over-Temp sensor. I believe that when the furnace has to run a long time as when first firing it up, sometimes the Over-temp sensor will get tripped and cause the burner to cycle.
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Old 12-29-2014, 08:33 AM   #5
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if you are in the 20s or 30s ANY trailer will be running the furance, a lot! and they are all noisy to some degree.

yes, supplement heat is required.
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Old 12-29-2014, 08:44 AM   #6
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I would not go out on a limb and say that supplemental heat is "REQUIRED" to camp in cold weather. There are a number of scenarios where supplemental heat (usually electric heat) is not available to be used. Dry camping is one that immediately comes to mind.

While supplemental heat may be "nice to have" or may "make it more comfortable" (by not running the "loud" furnace) it is, by no means, a requirement for camping in cold weather.

Some RV's have more insulation and less air infiltration than others, so each situation is somewhat different.
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Old 03-29-2015, 07:29 AM   #7
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Finally fixed

After three trips, my own investigation our furnace problem appears fixed.

Dealer reversed two registers, removed over 15 ft of flexible duct work, and using actual metal elbows at the furnace plenum the furnace appears to work.

Can really feel air coming from the vents, burner stays on and trailer actually warms up in a reasonable time.
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Old 03-29-2015, 08:07 AM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mstat View Post
After three trips, my own investigation our furnace problem appears fixed.

Dealer reversed two registers, removed over 15 ft of flexible duct work, and using actual metal elbows at the furnace plenum the furnace appears to work.

Can really feel air coming from the vents, burner stays on and trailer actually warms up in a reasonable time.
Could you explain what reversing two registers means? Thanks
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Old 03-29-2015, 06:45 PM   #9
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Reversing registers

"Reversing registers"

As delivered furnace duct work ran from furnace on street side, over to curb side, down the length of the trailer, then back towards the street side and registers. Air came in from curb side towards street side

What technician did was to pull the register out, and reversed them so that a shorter piece of duct work was used.

Now air comes from furnace and basically goes down middle of trailer to register then a short bend towards the curb side into the register. On the one run he probability pulled 10 feet of duct work out.

Was easy to build in factory but not so good on the heat.
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Old 03-31-2015, 03:01 AM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mstat View Post
"Reversing registers"

As delivered furnace duct work ran from furnace on street side, over to curb side, down the length of the trailer, then back towards the street side and registers. Air came in from curb side towards street side

What technician did was to pull the register out, and reversed them so that a shorter piece of duct work was used.

Now air comes from furnace and basically goes down middle of trailer to register then a short bend towards the curb side into the register. On the one run he probability pulled 10 feet of duct work out.

Was easy to build in factory but not so good on the heat.
I wonder how many trailers are built this way with too much duct work just because it was easy? The consumer feels it in the winter with the inefficient runs....
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Old 03-31-2015, 08:29 AM   #11
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Angry

Just have to ask if these extra runs, coiled extra heating duct are actually part of what establishes these polar, extreme, arctic, etc ratings . DO these packages supply extra heat to the belly/tank area? YEAP
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Old 03-31-2015, 01:04 PM   #12
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Originally Posted by PARAPTOR View Post
Just have to ask if these extra runs, coiled extra heating duct are actually part of what establishes these polar, extreme, arctic, etc ratings . DO these packages supply extra heat to the belly/tank area? YEAP
I've considered the same thing. As heat is "released" in the basement, it warms the underbelly and keeps it usable to lower temperatures. All of that ductwork "meandering" through the unheated space has to supplement that 2" duct that can't possibly warm the entire belly.

I've thought for some time that "balancing heat loss" in the basement with "lower efficiency" in the cabin is a compromise that is likely to be a big part of the "below freezing" ratings that Keystone calls a "polar pack" or "arctic insulation package" or whatever else the marketing department comes up with.

Granted, the aluminum bubble wrap and the coroplast coupled with a 2" duct run can't keep up with heat loss in that area, so there may be more to the "long runs with lots of bends" than just cabin heat velocity.
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Old 11-17-2016, 06:30 AM   #13
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Re: Heat or lack of ??

We just returned from a week long trip to Branson in our new 2016 33RES. At 38 degrees and below the furnace could not keep the coach at the set temp of 65 degrees. The air flow out of the three registers is barely a whisper. Since this unit is new I am not wanting to pull the bottom panels yet.

I have emailed Keystone and await a reply but with the Polar Package the heating in this unit is very poor.
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Old 11-17-2016, 07:08 AM   #14
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Re: Heat or lack of ??

Quote:
Originally Posted by PaulandJan View Post
We just returned from a week long trip to Branson in our new 2016 33RES. At 38 degrees and below the furnace could not keep the coach at the set temp of 65 degrees. The air flow out of the three registers is barely a whisper. Since this unit is new I am not wanting to pull the bottom panels yet.

I have emailed Keystone and await a reply but with the Polar Package the heating in this unit is very poor.
There apparently is something "not right" with your furnace system. At 38 degrees, our furnace will literally "run us out" of the camper within 15 or 20 minutes. Even with temperatures in the teens, it's comfortable in the trailer and the furnace cycles off and on, usually on for 4 or 5 minutes and off for 20-30 minutes, sometimes off for much longer, depending on other sources of heat such as the stove or oven.

There is a "reduced airflow" in the upper deck area (bath/bedroom) vents, but with the heat rising from the lower level, we really don't notice much of a temperature difference during the day. We sleep with the thermostat set on 60, and in the morning, it only takes a few minutes to get back up to 70+ degrees, even if the outside temp is in the teens or lower.
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Old 11-19-2016, 09:07 PM   #15
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Re: Heat or lack of ??

Quote:
Originally Posted by PaulandJan View Post
We just returned from a week long trip to Branson in our new 2016 33RES. At 38 degrees and below the furnace could not keep the coach at the set temp of 65 degrees. The air flow out of the three registers is barely a whisper. Since this unit is new I am not wanting to pull the bottom panels yet.

I have emailed Keystone and await a reply but with the Polar Package the heating in this unit is very poor.

I have a 2016 5er ~~ 303RLS with a 35,000 btu furnace. Down to the low 20s the furnace keeps up easily. It cycles 2 - 3 times per hour in the 30s with other sources off. We turn it on rarely any more as we are usually connected to full hookup. The fireplace does a great job and we use the heat from the bedroom AC unit at night. With those going there is no need for the furnace down to 36 when we run it to warm the underbelly.
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Old 11-20-2016, 02:34 PM   #16
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Re: Heat or lack of ??

If you are running auxiliary heat sources how does your furnace ever come on? I would think it would stay too warm for the furnace to kick on.
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Old 12-01-2016, 03:49 PM   #17
mstat
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Re: Heat or lack of ??

PaulandJan,
Welcome from St Charles. I too was very unhappy with how the heat worked in our 2014-2015 33RES, but I was maybe luckier. I found out at home

Took multiple trips back to the dealer and a bit of work on my part but they finally fixed it.

Couple of things:

Is the furnace burner shutting off then relighting after a period of time with the fan running the whole time? If so it's most likely going out on the high temperature limiter. Ours was.

The register at the end of the kitchen counter. Does the ductwork connect on the street side or curb side? Register in bathroom: Ductwork connect from the front or rear?

I was able to measure the static pressure in the furnace and found that it was way above what was supposed to be. Meaning the air flow was really restricted. It's on a furnace label what the max is supposed to be. I'm thinking something like 0.2in water. Isn't much. I was able to measure it with some equipment I borrowed from work. Outlet temperature was also really high.

The furnace has three outlets on the right side when facing forward. The ductwork is so crimped making the 90 downward bend that it really cuts down on the air flow. Plus I found a lot of extra duct above the bottom skin.

Final fixes were: Dealer installed actual metal elbows at the furnace to remove the crimp, and reversed the registers at the kitchen and bath which allowed rerouting and removal of alot of the extra duct.

Now furnace runs without tripping temperature limiter and keeps trailer warm.

When I saw the date of your posting, we left Branson on the 17th of November.

Writing to Keystone may not help. Talk to the dealer. And seeing you are from Columbia MO, I can figure out which one it was. There is a good chance we brought ours from them also.

Good Luck
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