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Old 10-12-2018, 05:07 PM   #1
Scott in Michigan
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Furnace Oddity

Greetings. We are new owners of a 2018 Cougar 32RLI.

I ran the furnace tonight and I noticed the air conditioner runs simultaneously.

So I turned the breaker off in the power distribution center to the AC.

I hate to ask a question like this, but is that normal for a travel trailer? We are new owners.

Also there is a mere whisper of hot air flow from the bedroom outlet. After reading the Forum I'm figuring the usual suspects would be a crushed or disconnected duct. Am I on the right track?

Thanks for your help gentlemen.

Scott and Ginny in Michigan
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Old 10-12-2018, 05:33 PM   #2
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Welcome to the forum.

For the first item, make sure your thermostat is set to AUTO and not HIGH or LOW for fan speed.

I'll leave the second item to those who have experienced this problem.
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Old 10-12-2018, 06:30 PM   #3
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Your 32RLI is longer than our Cougar 5th wheel and we find a noticeable difference in the outflow from the ducts closer to the furnace than those at the end of the run in the bedroom. The smallish furnace fans in RVs don't produce a huge CFM number. Plus, there is no real distribution plenum, at least on our model, to evenly send supply air throughout the system.
That said it would not hurt to look at the duct work (if you can see it) for any crushing or deformity. After all it's just an aluminum foil tube. Also check as best you can for any construction debris that may obstruct the duct work.
You can replace the factory floor registers with the adjustable louver types and force more air downstream to your bedroom by closing the living room vents during the night then open them during the day when heat is needed in the living area.
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Old 10-12-2018, 07:50 PM   #4
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Replacing registers with the closable ones may cause the furnace to “overheat” causing th high limit switch to shuf off the flow of LP before the desired temp is reached. You may want to test it first. Just cover them with something and run the furnace. I would try to set the temp for a run time of at least 10 minutes. If the flame doesn’t shut off then by all means do,what you have to to get the air where you want it.

Factory will NOT allow us to alter the heating system at all under warranty.
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Old 10-12-2018, 07:56 PM   #5
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Replacing registers with the closable ones may cause the furnace to “overheat”

Thanks for the reminder Chuckster. I failed to mention we don't close the registers all the way. We like the bedroom a little cooler for good sleeping and have found simply restricting the living room registers somewhere around 50% or so is about right for us.
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Old 10-13-2018, 02:07 AM   #6
Scott in Michigan
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SummitPond - thank you, sir. Setting the thermostat to auto solved the AC fan running simultaneously with the furnace. As a side note I'm curious why it would be designed that way.

Today I'll investigate the bedroom duct situation, starting with my inspection camera. I'm assuming I can pull the belly insulating pan down to access the ducts from outside. Am I close to accurate with that?

I appreciate the input, gentlemen. Please keep it coming in.

Scott and Ginny
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Old 10-13-2018, 02:35 AM   #7
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It was designed that way to allow you to circulate the warm air when operating the furnace, using the AC system. Only the fan runs not the compressor.
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Old 10-13-2018, 02:50 AM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by chuckster57 View Post
It was designed that way to allow you to circulate the warm air when operating the furnace, using the AC system. Only the fan runs not the compressor.
And it comes in handy for us dog owners that lie to have the ac fan onto create white noise to mask outside noises that may start the dogs barking.
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Old 10-13-2018, 03:06 AM   #9
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Scott, welcome to the forum from the Memphis area. Your furnace problem probably will not give you much grief before it is over. As was suggested, follow the path of the "duct" as best you can to insure there are no obstructions.
I might also add that we have a number of very knowledgeable women on the site, many towing their own rigs. Might want to be careful with the Gentleman term.
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Old 10-13-2018, 03:18 AM   #10
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Congrats on the new Cougar 32RLI - I have the same one, and it is, by far, my favorite camper yet! I installed a second 15,000 btu non-ducted AC in the bedroom, and put adjustable louvers in the AC ceiling vents so that I could close off the vent in the bedroom ceiling. Can't help you with the heat/AC running at the same time, but will be watching to see what the cause was.
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Old 10-13-2018, 03:50 AM   #11
Scott in Michigan
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Circulating the warm air from the ceiling makes sense. Thank you.

We'll keep the white noise feature in mind. We have chain barks here. The Corgi hears everything. He barks, and the German Shepherd jumps in, thinking he missed something. I don't suppose anyone else has that problem.
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Old 10-13-2018, 05:22 AM   #12
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An inspection camera is a great way to look for any ducting problems in the belly of the trailer. I'd suggest removing the registers and looking down the inside of the duct work as well. Stuff sometimes gets in there during construction.
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Old 10-13-2018, 06:05 AM   #13
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Another thing to consider when inspecting the ducting is that the factory "INTENTIONALLY" leaves the long, precut flexible ducting to "meander through the underbelly" for a purpose. There is a significant "heat transfer" through the uninsulated aluminum foil. That heat transfer is an integral part of the "Artic package" or the "Polar package" that's advertised to keep the tanks from freezing "down to 0 degrees"... If you start pulling the ducting so it runs straight to the bedroom vent, bypassing that "turn between the tanks" and cut off the extra ducting length, you will "improve bedroom airflow" but at the expense of removing any heat protection to the tanks.

An RV is not designed or built like a S&B house. What many people think is a "factory oversight" or "sloppy workmanship" is actually a "designed in feature". Just because it's not that way in your house heat ducting doesn't mean it's supposed to be the same in your trailer.

Remember that camping in cold temperatures requires heat not only in the cabin, but also in the "basement" below your trailer. That area, typically is even less insulated than the cabin and requires much of the heat produced by the furnace "just to keep it from freezing".... While some airflow into the bedroom vent is necessary, consider the "tradeoff" of keeping the tanks from freezing when you start "rearranging what the factory screwed up".....
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Old 10-13-2018, 08:03 AM   #14
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And it comes in handy for us dog owners that lie to have the ac fan onto create white noise to mask outside noises that may start the dogs barking.
That is true. Our Husky hates the sound of raindrops on the roof.
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Old 10-13-2018, 10:57 AM   #15
Scott in Michigan
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This afternoon I pulled the register grill, and the inspection camera gave me a great view of the basement.

Said another way - the duct hose was not attached to the outlet shroud. It had been laying loose in the basement.

Since the shroud is only held in place by the carpet and the grill screwed through the flange, it was easy enough to deform and remove.

I retrieved the duct and they are reconnected and happily providing warm heated air to the bedroom.

Thanks to all, for your help.

Scott and Ginny
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Old 10-13-2018, 12:15 PM   #16
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Good on Ya' Glad to see it was an easy fix.
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Old 10-18-2018, 08:10 AM   #17
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Set fan setting at Auto when using heater. We keep forgetting and just did it on this trip!
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Old 10-18-2018, 09:21 AM   #18
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I found out that most all the rv makers use Part Time Help form the local school and college students. Not all are trained properly or even car if they do the job correctly.
Inspectors should find these problems but an awful lot slip by. That’s what the 1 year warranty is fire to catch these gross errors on construction. Wish I had something better to say but this is getting more common in business when all they are concerned about is THE BOTTOM LINE. THE HECK WITH THE CUSTOMER. But what they don’t understand is the customer is the one who keeps them in business. It would behoove them to listen to the customer.
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Old 10-18-2018, 10:33 AM   #19
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Are you sure that's not a design feature to keep the tanks from freezing?!

Quote:
Originally Posted by Scott in Michigan View Post
This afternoon I pulled the register grill, and the inspection camera gave me a great view of the basement.

Said another way - the duct hose was not attached to the outlet shroud. It had been laying loose in the basement.

Since the shroud is only held in place by the carpet and the grill screwed through the flange, it was easy enough to deform and remove.

I retrieved the duct and they are reconnected and happily providing warm heated air to the bedroom.

Thanks to all, for your help.

Scott and Ginny
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Old 10-20-2018, 08:17 AM   #20
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We have a new 2017 Cougar 30 RLI TT bought in April this year. Here in Canada with cool spring and fall nights, one would expect a new trailer to have decent heat from the heater.
Not so with ours, we complained right off the bat and the dealer said they would take care of it.
We left it till now, the end of the season, as they said they would have to drop down the underbelly and see what was the matter.
Once doing so, they found the flexible clothes dryer type ducting, coiled around and kinked in places this restricting the flow. They also removed about 9-10 feet of excess ducting making less distance for the air to flow.
The manager showed me pics of this issue as well as the thermostat temp when unit got up to a set setting.
We assume all is good now but will have to wait till spring to tell for sure.

Hope this helps some of you with similar situations.
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