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Old 11-22-2017, 02:53 PM   #1
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Van Furnace Options - Discussion Thread

There is always great discussion here and there in various threads about what furnaces people like, have used in the past, currently using and would like more info about a particular unit.

Thought this would be a good place to talk about various units all in one place:

- Dometic/Atwood/Suburban
- Espar Airtronic
- Propex
- Truma Combi (Euro)
- Webasto
- Wallace Duo XC
- Planar

.... and any other units that come up.

I want to start if off with just a few comments from another thread.
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Old 11-22-2017, 02:56 PM   #2
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By MOUNTAINBIKEROAMER

"That Truma Combi looks like a pretty sweet "holy grail" all-in-one furnace/water heater.

....but....am I missing something? Is there some reason why you would not to be able to safely actually drink any of the water that the Truma Combi heated up? (Apart from the obvious "wait until it cools down enough to safely drink...." )

Just spent some time going through the technical notes on the manufacturer's website, and came across this bizarre-sounding statement on a page that dealt with routine decalcification of the boiler:

"Do not use the water from the Truma Combi as drinking water."

source: https://www.truma.com/int/en/faq/dec...bi-heater.html

No making hot tea or ramen noodles? I would hope these aren't meant to only safely heat water for showers and washing dishes.....
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Old 11-22-2017, 02:58 PM   #3
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Transferring a great comment from Bbasso

"Why are you thinking old school with those huge, heavy, power hungry and noisy units that require massive sized holes in your vans?
https://www.eberspaecher-na.com/prod...t-heaters.html "
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Old 11-22-2017, 03:01 PM   #4
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86Scotty

"There is no way I'd do a new build with an old school Suburban/Atwood. They are huge boxes which take up way too much precious space in a van and also require a hole to be cut in the side. Technology wins. Go with a Propex if you are doing propane. If you don't need propane otherwise I recommend a Webasto/Espar/Planar etc. diesel type. They are tiny, quiet and powerful. I just installed a Planar (made in Canada) which came with it's own fuel cell. Oh, I forgot, there is a gasoline version of these.

https://esparparts.com/air-heaters-c-860.html

The gasoline version is on this page. Don't pay much attention to that price. I paid less than $500 for my Planar."
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Old 11-22-2017, 07:08 PM   #5
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"There is no way I'd do a new build with an old school Suburban/Atwood"

I would echo this. The Suburban in my trailer makes WAY too much noise to put in a van, requires a large hole in the body, an uses lots of amps.
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Old 11-23-2017, 11:49 AM   #6
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Is anyone ever tempted to buy the Chinese VVHB version of the Espar? I typically buy the name brand with local customer support. But I always wonder if this stuff is just copies or if the name brand product is built in the same factory. Just something I came across.

https://www.amazon.ca/gp/product/B01...f_rd_i=desktop

Another one:
https://www.alibaba.com/product-deta...6975d1b1tiHYBs
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Old 11-23-2017, 12:12 PM   #7
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[QUOTE=gnty;216605]... But I always wonder if this stuff is just copies or if the name brand product is built in the same factory..."

I've had the same thought on many products and their clones. I think the biggest difference is probably support vs. lack of support. Do you feel lucky?


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Old 11-23-2017, 01:46 PM   #8
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Just wanted to comment on this by MOUNTAINBIKEROAMER

"I know we're largely splitting this conversation off into the new thread that just got started, but thought I'd address this point ---

I've read now on a couple other RV forums that while the Truma Combi IS indeed available in the USA, it can *only* be purchased by certified RV manufacturers for inclusion in their new builds. No sales to private individuals yet here in the USA.

(This may of course be subject to change, or be info that's outdated now though.)"


This is true, I contacted the North American branch and the Combi is not even offered to install shops, only OEM factory builders. They offer the AquaGo water heater, even then it is only sold to "certified, trained" dealers and cannot be re-sold as a DIY install. Only installed by that certified dealer.
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Old 11-23-2017, 03:04 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by gnty View Post
Transferring a great comment from Bbasso

"Why are you thinking old school with those huge, heavy, power hungry and noisy units that require massive sized holes in your vans?
https://www.eberspaecher-na.com/prod...t-heaters.html "
I had one of those days... lol
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Old 11-23-2017, 07:55 PM   #10
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[QUOTE=BroncoHauler;216606]
Quote:
Originally Posted by gnty View Post
... But I always wonder if this stuff is just copies or if the name brand product is built in the same factory..."

I've had the same thought on many products and their clones. I think the biggest difference is probably support vs. lack of support. Do you feel lucky?


Herb


I rather liked this thought by Herb. I wonder the same. There are a million copies of Espar/Webasto these days.

Glider will weigh in soon on her satisfaction with her Wallas, which I like the idea of too. I really like the idea of safe and efficient diesel but Iím no expert. I have not used my Planar in the wild one time yet. That will change this week.



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