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Furnace and high altitude performance


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Was reading wyofilm post about his new trailer furnace not working.  I'm I correct in assuming the Oliver heater is not suppose to work above a certain altitude?  But some of them do work?  And, if you are one of the unlucky  and yours won't work, you can get a high alt. kit for it.  How much do those cost?  If you get the kit does it function at lower altitudes ok?  Wondering why Oliver isn't installing a furnace that works everywhere or just puts the kit on each unit.  I'm guessing you can't have a furnace that will work in both low and high altitudes.   Otherwise, I would think Oliver would be using that brand.   Are those of you that have a furnace that doesn't work in high alt. using a generator with a small space heater?   I live out West and most of my camping will be at high elevations and even in summer a little heat in the AM is welcome.  This is a concern for me as I don't like the idea of using a generator every time.  What is everyone one doing for a solution.  I've never owned an RV and maybe this is just the way it is and you live with it.  But gezzzz, we put a man on the moon, cant  there be a furnace that works everywhere?  I'm missing something here.

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We have had no problems with our heater.  We have camped in the desert and at as high as 8,700 feet without problem.


Andrew, Carianne and Buffy | San Diego, CA

2019 Legacy Elite II Hull #468 "California Burrito" | 2018 BMW x5 35d 

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Oliver used to offer the choice between a Suburban or Atwood (Dometic) furnace and based on anecdotal evidence here, the Suburban seems to work better at altitude. I don’t know why - it could be the design or it could be that the Atwood electronics are more sensitive. Suburban does have a high altitude kit and it’s probably a good idea to install it if you’re going to be running it for some time at high altitude, to avoid getting soot buildup. I think I read once that the suburban also has a flow valve that can be adjusted. 

I don’t know if Oliver will still install the Suburban. I believe that it’s more difficult to service since it can’t be removed from the curb side.

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  • 3 months later...

I will add an update to this - This June, in Northern CO, at approx. 9654.39' above mean sea level, the furnace in our 2018 EII did NOT function properly. It work just fine at much lower altitudes. It would cycle on and off, seems ignition was hit or miss.  I repeatedly rest it through the thermostat, and it eventually ran - sort of....

I haven't done  any research on it yet, but with 1" snow and 31degrees, the darn thing (Atwood) needs to work.


Cindy,  Russell and  "Harley dog" . Home is our little farm near Winchester TN

2018 Oliver Legacy Elite II - 2018 GMC 2500 Duramax 

"Die young - As late as possible"





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