Jump to content

How do you manage your furnace on a cold night?


Recommended Posts

The original Dometic thermostat in our 2002 Knight (built in 2001) died a couple of years ago, so I decided to replace it with a programmable residential thermostat so I wouldn't have to get up in a cold motorhome in the morning. According to articles on the Internet, some folks have had success. I used a Honeywell RTH7600D, and it worked fine for both the AC and the furnace for quite a while, but ultimately I experienced issues with the control of the AC or the furnace. I eventually went through three of these, and I am ready to give up. I guess I will have to go back to the original, old fashioned unprogrammable Dometic.

What do you do? Do you manually turn down the thermostat when you go to bed and then get up in the cold morning and turn it back up? Do you leave it warm all night, wasting battery power (I'm talking boondocking here) and propane? Or have you found a programmable thermostat that works? Our front Dometic AC is so old it would be very expensive to modify it to accept a modern, programmable Dometic thermostat.

Thanks in advance.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Depending on temps.  Above freezing I'll leave the furnace off.   If I get a little cold I'll flip it on and let it cycle a couple times. 

Last Nov I was in central AZ and temps dipped below 20F, went to bed with the furnace off but let my system heat on.  I keep a remote temp monitor near the bed and periodically checked and finally relented and turned the furnace on but also turned on the generator.  Let it cycle on/off for about 1 hour then shut both off.  I had installed a Microair thermostat with Bluetooth so I was able to monitor temps via my phone under the covers and turned the furnace on using the phone.  I did have to reach one arm from under the covers and turn on the generator. 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

We have an aquahot on diesel when boondocking in the cold but that really does not matter, still runs pumps and fans similar to yours. We recently got back from Georgia and Florida and went through the cold spell earlier, we dry camped half of that time. It wasnt freezing but certainly disappointing. We set the front zone to something like 70 for the night and leave it. Center was set to about 67 and may kick in once a while. Sometimes one of us can't sleep and moves up front to watch TV for a while so it is decently warm there. It is cooler in the bedroom, just right for us under the blanket. I could change the temps from the bed but did not need to. Batteries lasted fine until it was coffee time and the generator got started and then solar did its job. In daytime, the wife is in control of the temp but we don't spend much time inside if we can help it. Don't really care to have schedule set up, the only setting that changes is the microair up front.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Several years ago I replaced the old analog thermostat with a basic digital Honeywell thermostat with a battery in it. It's not programmable but it holds the temperature way more accurately than the analog did. I turn it way down at night but not off in cold weather (we've stayed where it's in the teens or single digits at night.) Unfortunately I have to get out of bed and turn it up in the morning but I usually get back in bed till it warms up a little. Even when dry camping I don't usually run the generator until we get up. The batteries will handle the heater blower all night with no problem.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

5 hours ago, jacwjames said:

 I did have to reach one arm from under the covers and turn on the generator. 

You poor baby 😁

I set my furnace at 55F this past weekend and was roasting.  Had to turn it back to 50F.  Electric blankets are the bomb. 

- bob

  • Sad 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

7 hours ago, Tom Wallis said:

Several years ago I replaced the old analog thermostat with a basic digital Honeywell thermostat with a battery in it. It's not programmable but it holds the temperature way more accurately than the analog did. I turn it way down at night but not off in cold weather (we've stayed where it's in the teens or single digits at night.) Unfortunately I have to get out of bed and turn it up in the morning but I usually get back in bed till it warms up a little. Even when dry camping I don't usually run the generator until we get up. The batteries will handle the heater blower all night with no problem.

Thanks Tom. If I can't find a programmable option I may go that route. Do you happen to know the Honeywell model number?

Link to comment
Share on other sites

1 minute ago, Jim McGarvie said:

I don't think so, Gary. I don't think you use the power wire anyway.

There is power supplied to the thermostat via the communication cable. 

Not sure if it makes a difference or not on the voltage for a residential type thermostat but I think they are powered by 24 AC current. 

  • Like 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

On 2/10/2022 at 2:50 PM, Gary 05 AMB DST said:

Not up to date on this stuff. Do residential thermostats now come with communication cable jack. The last one I installed had to be hard wired from the transformer.

Gary 05 AMB DST

Been many years since I installed a programable thermostat in my house, but it had no communications jack. 

Red and black twisted wires going to the furnace. Believe you needed a third wire to run your furnace fan in 'summer' mode.

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
 Share

×
×
  • Create New...