Jump to content

What's up with the Furnace Design?


jd1923

Recommended Posts

In the 6 months since we've been Oliver Owners, we've only had the chance to get out twice (mostly work, home, family, maintenance and mods, on the TV too)! We did a summer trip in July and finally got out last week for a few days. Heading out again in two weeks and have a longer trip planned for April.

This was the first use of the OTT furnace, besides testing it. Are there really only two hot air ducts? Why is only the back half of the Oliver heated? Am I missing a heater duct somewhere in the bathroom? Under the dinette would be nice. I always have trouble with the (lack of common) sense of most "Design Engineers." The closet gets cold too! We left both bath and closet doors open overnight but it didn't help much. 

I entered this post under mods, since I'm going to be doing something about this! Not sure what as yet (add a ventless LP heater in the bath?). Why flex ducting, when proper rigid ducting could easily be used? Shoot, the tanks are likely warmer than the occupants and we don't want strong heat in our faces when sleeping. This very small cabin should be warm throughout. And we live in AZ! How do you winter camp in WA state or Montana, or anywhere in the Midwest or Northeast? Sheesh! Please advise, thanks.

Chris & John in Prescott, AZ | 2016 EII #113 | '01 Ram 2500 Cummins!

Link to comment
Share on other sites

It looks like you have Hull #113. There have been many changes through the years to the trailers. Ours has a heat outlet just under the toilet paper holder in the vanity of the bathroom which keeps the bath quite nice and warm. I'm sure many will comment on your post over the next day or two, but my guess is that the problem you are describing is unique to the older units. There have been many threads posted on increasing the heat to various locations in the trailers.

Paste this into the search bar (in the upper right corner of this page) for an interesting modification to help increase the heating to the street side under the bed and battery box, It could be extended to include the bathroom with only minimal effort I expect. 

Paste: "Breaking Subzero" 

Include the quotes to help limit what is retrieved.

the thread was posted by:

By Minnesota Oli
February 11, 2021 in Ollie Modifications

 

Good luck and please keep us posted on what you do

albert

  • Thanks 1
  • Like 2

spacer.png

Albert & Terri Sterns

Paonia, Colorado

Elite II Hull #1125 Standard Floorplan / 2017 Ford F250 gas

Link to comment
Share on other sites

for some reason when I went back and used the "Breaking Subzero" search I had to enter it, hit search, then enter it a second time and hit search again for it to bring up more than just the above post, so you might have to search it twice to find the thread

  • Thanks 1

spacer.png

Albert & Terri Sterns

Paonia, Colorado

Elite II Hull #1125 Standard Floorplan / 2017 Ford F250 gas

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I can’t speak for the older Hull numbers. But I can say our Oliver warms up quickly and keeps us plenty toasty during cold weather. Over the years Oliver has listened to owners and has continued to make changes and many improvements since the early models. We have a vent in the wet bath. As for the closets they are not heated and never really found this to be an issue. You may want to consider a supplemental small plug in heater. Running duct work to the front bath may come with many challenges. 
 

Patriot🇺🇸

 

  • Thanks 1
  • Like 1

 

2020 OLEII - Hull #634 aka-  “XPLOR” 

2021 F350 6.7 liter Diesel Lariat Ultimate Tremor aka- Beast

 

IMG_2879.jpeg

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Thanks @AlbertNTerri I found it and thank you @Minnesota Oli. Wow what an extensive upgrade, very well done! Yep, the only way to the bathroom is the long way around. And yes, our hull #113 is from 2016 and unless I overlooked one, I only see two curbside ducts in the back half of the cabin.

If we lived in Minnesota, first I'd move to Arizona (we lived our first 45 years in Northern IL) but kidding aside, this extensive mod would be necessary up north. Great ideas here. Love the new furnace plate with the added 2" outlet and I had no idea they made 2" duct hose. Food for thought and yes will always share mods. Thanks again!

  • Like 1

Chris & John in Prescott, AZ | 2016 EII #113 | '01 Ram 2500 Cummins!

Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • Moderators
Just now, rideandfly said:

2015 LE2 # 75 has a heat outlet under the toilet paper holder in the bathroom.

 

We’ve got one too, doesn’t put out much but it is there!

  • Thanks 1
  • Like 2

Texas Hill Country | 2016 Elite II #135 | 2020 Ram 2500 6.7L

ALAZARCACOFLGAIDILKSKYLAMDMSMOMTNENVNMNYNCNDOHOKSCSDTNTXUTVAWVWYsm.jpgALAZARCACOCTDEFLGAIDILINIAKSKYLAMEMDMAMS

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I've also seen posts that noted that there was so much redundant heater duct in places that it formed a kink which severely restricted the airflow to the bathroom. You might try taking a peak inside the bath vanity to see if there's heater duct in there that needs to be re attached or straitened and look under the curbside bed to see if the duct has kinked or been crushed thus restricting your bathroom airflow. Since rideandfly's Hull 75 and Mike and Carol's #135 have the bathroom duct, I'm betting #113 does as well. 

 

a

  • Thanks 1

spacer.png

Albert & Terri Sterns

Paonia, Colorado

Elite II Hull #1125 Standard Floorplan / 2017 Ford F250 gas

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Hull 45 has *no* ductwork, it just has a single grill attached to the heater itself. All the early Oliver's I've seen so far have been built this way.

 

  • Thanks 1
  • Like 2

2010 Elite II, Hull #45.  2014 Toyota Sequoia Platinum 4WD 5.7 with tow package.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • Moderators
56 minutes ago, AlbertNTerri said:

Since rideandfly's Hull 75 and Mike and Carol's #135 have the bathroom duct, I'm betting #113 does as well. 

That would be a "sucker" bet in that hull #117 also has the vent in the bath and heat does come out of it.

Bill

  • Thanks 1
  • Like 2

2023 Ford F150 Lariat 3.5EB FX4 Max Towing, Max Payload, 2016 Oliver Elite II - Hull #117 "Twist"

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Our 2022 E2 doesn't put out much noticeable heat in the bathroom. I had to go under the sink for something else and found no kinks. I think the lack of airflow (heat) is  related to the long distance from furnace to bathroom vent. We have the same thing in a bedroom and bathroom furthest from the furnace at home.

  • Thanks 1
  • Like 2

 John & Susan Dorrer, 2013 F250, 6.2 gasser, 4x4, 2022 Legacy Elite 2, twin beds, Hull #1045, Jolli Olli

-ALARCOIDILINIAKSKYLAMEMAMIMNMSMOMTNENHNY

Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • Moderators
53 minutes ago, John Dorrer said:

Our 2022 E2 doesn't put out much noticeable heat in the bathroom. I had to go under the sink for something else and found no kinks. I think the lack of airflow (heat) is  related to the long distance from furnace to bathroom vent. We have the same thing in a bedroom and bathroom furthest from the furnace at home.

There have been a few posts regarding this issue here on the Forum over the years.

The easiest attempt to get more heat in the bath involves adjusting the vents - fully open the bath vent and close down/adjust the main cabin vents - in order to better "balance" the heat flow.  Next is to make sure that the bath door remains open or find a way (mod) that allows air flow both into and out of the bath area.  Next is to modify the duct work - more insulation, improve the kind and length of duct, make sure it is attached properly.

Good luck.

Bill

  • Thanks 1
  • Like 4

2023 Ford F150 Lariat 3.5EB FX4 Max Towing, Max Payload, 2016 Oliver Elite II - Hull #117 "Twist"

Link to comment
Share on other sites

7 hours ago, jd1923 said:

Thanks @AlbertNTerri I found it and thank you @Minnesota Oli. Wow what an extensive upgrade, very well done! Yep, the only way to the bathroom is the long way around. And yes, our hull #113 is from 2016 and unless I overlooked one, I only see two curbside ducts in the back half of the cabin.

If we lived in Minnesota, first I'd move to Arizona (we lived our first 45 years in Northern IL) but kidding aside, this extensive mod would be necessary up north. Great ideas here. Love the new furnace plate with the added 2" outlet and I had no idea they made 2" duct hose. Food for thought and yes will always share mods. Thanks again!

jd1923:

It sounds like you found the vent in the bathroom under the toilet paper holder, which is good.

In my 2018 Oliver Elite II, we had a similiar low amount of air coming out of the vent covers. After talking to Oliver service, we ended up temporarily popping off the vent covers at each vent and removing the plastic diverters behind the cover and then reinstalled the vent cover back on. These plastic diverters were restricting the air flow. You might want to considering removing the plastic diveters, if they are still installed, as their removal greatly improved our air flow.

Also, place you hand in front of the bathroom vent to feel if you are getting air coming out of that vent. If you have no air flow at the bathroom vent. (I have seen on this forum where some people have found that the vent piping was not connected to the vent outlet.) If this is the case, you can remove the front bottle plate (4 screws) in front of the bathroom vanity so you can reconnect the vent piping to the vent cover.

  • Thanks 1
  • Like 7

2018 Oliver Elite II, Twin Bed, Hull #354 

2024 RAM 1500, 4 x 4; Gas. 5.7L V8 Hemi MDS VVT Torque; 3.21 rear axle ratio

Maine 

 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I agree with “dewdev” on the grill dampers. I removed the damper from behind the grill at the kitchen and the one from behind the grill in the bath. I typically have the one under the bed mostly closed allowing the heat to flow mostly towards the front of the camper so that the furnace return will draw the warm air back towards the rear. Seems that the rear stays pretty warm compared to the front so hopefully this helps balance out the heat distribution some. Remember that the outer hull is insulated so even if the basement is heated, the floor will be warm. 

  • Thanks 1
  • Like 3
Link to comment
Share on other sites

11 hours ago, jd1923 said:

Why is only the back half of the Oliver heated?

Your observations on the inferior design of the HVAC (furnace) "system" is spot on.  I think Oliver has maybe not given this issue sufficient design attention because a large proportion of Oliver Owners probably winterize their trailers and don't care much about the furnace.  I use my Oliver throughout the year, store outside, and do not winterize.  My primary concern is the ability to keep the plumbing from freezing even when the cabin is warm.  I have placed internet connected thermometers in the basement by the outside shower hoses and other spots, and found that the basement temperatures can fall to 30 degrees or more below the cabin temperatures when outside air temps drop into the low 20's or teens.  I found that if the outside temperatures go very much below freezing, I have to keep the cabin at least 65 degrees to keep most of the basement areas (except for right around the furnace itself) above freezing.  I determined the problem is insufficient warm air circulation through the basement (i.e., no return air vents in the front of the trailer (bathroom).  Oliver did add a small return air vent in the bathroom in more recent models. 

I have resisted running new ductwork or cutting holes in the trailer to address this while I studied the issue in the field.  Finally, and just recently, I tried a non-invasive hack that appears upon initial testing to work quite well.  The outside temperatures last week dipped into the mid-teens for several days, yet my basement temps stayed within 15 degrees of the cabin temps (the Oliver was in outside storage).  I am heading out next week and will test the cabin and bathroom comfort in temperatures expected to be just below freezing,  and I expect to find a much warmer bathroom and more comfortable trailer, as well as the warmer basement temps.

What I finally did was easy.  I removed the "front bottle plate" from the bathroom vanity and disconnected the flex duct  from the bathroom vent, creating a 3'' (or 4") return air vent in the bathroom.  I then left the disconnected air duct loose under the sink to put extra heat into the front of the basement.  Combined with the new return air vent in the bathroom, the warm cabin air flows forward into the bathroom and the warm air bathroom air is pulled under the bathroom and shower to be slowly circulated from front of the basement to the back of the basement when the furnace fan is running, more effectively heating all the plumbing and battery box.  I do need to keep the bathroom door cracked (but not open) for this to work, unless or until I install a vent between the bathroom and main cabin. 

I am not sure if a functional return vent like this would cause problems in Olivers with the composting toilet.  I have the standard toilet.

 

 

  • Like 6

Steve and Lornie

LE II Standard  Hull #657  2004 4Runner 4.7 L V8

Oregon

COIDKSMOORTNUTWYmed.jpg

Link to comment
Share on other sites

4 hours ago, dewdev said:

It sounds like you found the vent in the bathroom under the toilet paper holder, which is good.

The absence of return air vents in Olivers before 2022 also impedes air circulation, and, therefore, distribution of warm air to the front of the cabin.  For your Oliver, I recommend the ductwork upgrade detailed by Minnesota Oli.

My Hull #1291 came new with upgraded ductwork.  Yet, I have also added more 4" round return air vents to the closet and under the front dinette seat. 

See this thread:

As noted in that thread, our Hull #1291 came with a return air vent (as well as a supply air vent) in the bathroom.  In your earlier model, I would add such a 4" return air vent for the bathroom as well.

With these return air vents in the bath, closet and under the front dinette seat, the flow of heated air in our 2022 Elite II is much improved.  The front of the trailer is no longer cold.

Good luck!

  • Thanks 1
  • Like 3

 

Hull #1291

Central Idaho

2022 Elite II

Tow Vehicle:  2019 Tundra Double Cab 4x4, 5.7L with tow package

ARCOIDNMOKORTNTXUTsm.jpg

Link to comment
Share on other sites

7 hours ago, topgun2 said:

The easiest attempt to get more heat in the bath involves adjusting the vents - fully open the bath vent and close down/adjust the main cabin vents - in order to better "balance" the heat flow. 

That's what's we do. The first vent under the curb bed is closed.

  • Like 2

Stephanie and Dudley from CT.  2022 LE2, Hull #1150: Eggcelsior.

Tow vehicle: 2016 GMC Sierra 6.0 gas dually 4x4.

Our Oliver journey: Steph and Dud B's RV Screed

Where we've been RVing since 1999:

ALAZCACOCTDEFLGAIDILINIAKYLAMEMDMAMIMNMSMOMTNENVNHNMNYNCNDOHOKORPASCSDTNTXUTVTVAWAWVWIWYmed.jpg.b96241bad6752dec89d25af6ffbc8d99.jpg

Link to comment
Share on other sites

We have similar issues with our late 2018 Elite I, with two differences from most of the Elite II configurations being discussed on the forum:

  1. There is very little clearance between the 2 hulls of the Elite I to route flex or solid ducting
  2. The furnace is under the forward side dinette seat, with one outlet blowing directly into the aisle (towards the refrigerator & entrance door) and the second outlet going through the adjacent wall into the bathroom low and to the left of the toilet. The return vent to the furnace is on the face of the forward dinette seat facing the space under the dinette table.

I have read most of the referenced threads and have a tentative game plan that I will begin to implement over the winter:

  1. Install remote temp sensors in both rear corners near the water pump and the outside shower plumbing, and also low in the vanity area under the bathroom sink. My current temp monitoring system only has 3 remotes, but I might try to find & place a 4th of some kind under the sink near the kitchen plumbing.
  2. Add some vents with 12v fans on each side of the aisle under the rear dinette/bed, pushing some heated cabin air into these two plumbing spaces
  3. Add a return air vent (shielded against spray intrusion) from the bathroom into the space under the sink (which, with the bathroom door closed, should funnel some heated air from the bathroom into the space under the sink)
  4. Maybe add a return air vent from the space under the bathroom sink into the adjacent closet
  5. Add 2 vents to the closet, one high and one low as referenced elsewhere.
  6. Consider partially opening one of the kitchen drawers to allow some return air flow out from the space under the sink.

We do have a small electric space heater, which helps save propane when we have shore power available, but the airflow is a little different from when the propane furnace is running.

We are from upstate NY and don't usually camp in the winter any more (we used to do so in a tent), but we do encounter sub-freezing temps in the western states in the spring and fall "shoulder" seasons; especially at altitude.

It seems like a little fine tuning of the airflow (which is almost non-existent now) should make a difference 🙂

  • Like 4

Tom & Holly

2018 Oliver Legacy Elite I #409 - 2017 Silverado 1500, 5.3L Gas, 4x4 Z71, Dbl Cab, Std Bed

 

2023-10-16OliverCampedStates(medium).jpg.8e9964c26c7927a0077806565b9dcfc2.jpg

 

 

 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

8 hours ago, dewdev said:

It sounds like you found the vent in the bathroom under the toilet paper holder, which is good...

Honestly, I did not find the vent until reading this and previous replies! Thank you.

When @AlbertNTerri was first to reply and I read the upgrade post from @Minnesota Oli and I was like Oh Man, don't think I'm ready for that extensive upgrade, and we don't live in Minnesota!

Good news, I had to go look and hull #113 has a vent there, yes! I would have noticed it during our short trip if it had worked at all. Get up to pee in the night, furnace on, bathroom cold! I've worked inside and outside this trailer for months now, but no work on the bathroom to date, but it looks like that vanity panel is coming off soon. While I'm in there I have to tie down the PEX plumbing or whatever bangs around in there making loud noise when the water is running.

I will test it this week, but pretty certain it is disconnected at the outlet of mostly blocked along the path. I will close the one by the beds to divert more air forward. Does any know the full duct path from the furnace to the bathroom vanity?

  • Like 1

Chris & John in Prescott, AZ | 2016 EII #113 | '01 Ram 2500 Cummins!

Link to comment
Share on other sites

35 minutes ago, jd1923 said:

Does any know the full duct path from the furnace to the bathroom vanity?

Dunno if this will help you?

IMG_0842.thumb.JPG.c148f7123c9b1c0851cfaff222bfea8b.JPGIMG_0845.thumb.JPG.58cd8d0bae087cc86d2d713d2a18c133.JPGIMG_0844.thumb.JPG.b9145f080647e651e3c0277f542b5496.JPGIMG_0843.thumb.JPG.3b0516716f3e59bc9febfd4346c90020.JPG

  • Thanks 1
  • Like 2

2023 Elite II, Hull# 1386, Lithium Platinum Package (640AH, 400W Solar, 3000W Xantrex Inverter)
Truma water heater & AC

TV: 2024 Silverado 2500HD 6.6L 10-Speed Allison

Link to comment
Share on other sites

4 hours ago, jd1923 said:

 

I will test it this week, but pretty certain it is disconnected at the outlet of mostly blocked along the path. I will close the one by the beds to divert more air forward. 

Our hose fell off of the of the heat outlet in the bathroom. Don’t know how your hand towel holder/soap dish is secured, but ours was installed with only 3M sealant. Did not like how ours was secured, so used four screws with caps and U seal around the hand towel holder/soap dish edge to prevent removing sealant again. 

 

  • Thanks 1
  • Like 2

Bill #75 LE2 Tundra

 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

My bathroom stays pretty cold as well.  So far, I just leave the door open and that helps.  I can feel a very minute amount of air coming out of the vent in the bathroom, but it seems like a poor HVAC decision to put more airflow in by the intake vent rather than on the opposite side of the trailer.  I think I will check under the vanity to see if it is connected properly and block one of the vent under the bed.

  • Like 1

2014 Ram 2500 Cummins Diesel 4X4 Truck

2024 Oliver Legacy Elite II Hull 1460

ARILINIAKSKYLAMIMNMONMOHOKPASDTNTXVAmed.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

5 hours ago, rich.dev said:

Dunno if this will help you?

It does, thanks Rich. Yours is a much newer model, looks like maybe a Truma furnace. Mine was born with Suburban (I think) and was replaced with an Atwood in 2018. I'm thinking the ductwork must be run the same direction. I can remove the kitchen drawers to take a look and likely the issue is under the bathroom vanity. Mine has really cheap flex ducts (see pic), not the black look of yours, that appear more substantial.

I upgrade the water pump and the water valves to motorized valves, Next I should run new ductwork wherever possible. Your pics show me the reason why I have so much bangin' plumbing noise, under BOTH sinks. Why the black tape EVERYWHERE! They really could tie stuff down with proper hardware!

As-was water system1.jpg

  • Like 1

Chris & John in Prescott, AZ | 2016 EII #113 | '01 Ram 2500 Cummins!

Link to comment
Share on other sites

1 hour ago, rideandfly said:

Our hose fell off of the of the heat outlet in the bathroom. Don’t know how your hand towel holder/soap dish is secured, but ours was installed with only 3M sealant. Did not like how ours was secured, so used four screws with caps and U seal around the hand towel holder/soap dish edge to prevent removing sealant again. 

Thanks Bill, I will do this soon enough and modify as @Frank C demonstrated:
Bathroom Vanity Cubby Modification - Mechanical & Technical Tips - Oliver Owner Forums (olivertraveltrailers.com)

  • Like 2

Chris & John in Prescott, AZ | 2016 EII #113 | '01 Ram 2500 Cummins!

Link to comment
Share on other sites

2 minutes ago, jd1923 said:

It does, thanks Rich. Yours is a much newer model, looks like maybe a Truma furnace. Mine was born with Suburban (I think) and was replaced with an Atwood in 2018. I'm thinking the ductwork must be run the same direction. I can remove the kitchen drawers to take a look and likely the issue is under the bathroom vanity. Mine has really cheap flex ducts (see pic), not the black look of yours, that appear more substantial.

I upgrade the water pump and the water valves to motorized valves, Next I should run new ductwork wherever possible. Your pics show me the reason why I have so much bangin' plumbing noise, under BOTH sinks. Why the black tape EVERYWHERE! They really could tie stuff down with proper hardware!

As-was water system1.jpg

Mine has the Truma and the black ducts are very stiff and substantial.  They also provide an adequate amount of conduction that heats the fresh water tank and the pipes around it.  If it wasn't so late, I would provide a picture.  My Pillow is calling me like a siren song.

  • Thanks 1
  • Like 1

2014 Ram 2500 Cummins Diesel 4X4 Truck

2024 Oliver Legacy Elite II Hull 1460

ARILINIAKSKYLAMIMNMONMOHOKPASDTNTXVAmed.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now
×
×
  • Create New...