As winter temperatures continue to blast all over the country, it is crucial to know how to keep everything inside warm and functioning properly if you are traveling in your rig. Having a cold rig is both miserable and can cause many issues with your trailer that you may be dealing with for a while. Many people wonder if they can run their travel trailer furnace while driving and if there is anything they need to be aware of.
Can you Run your Travel Trailer Furnace while Driving?
A furnace can run in a travel trailer while driving, but even though you can do it doesn’t mean you should. It can be dangerous to have propane running while you are not able to observe it is working properly. Also if you got in a wreck, you can cause a fire or explosion with an open propane tank.
People worldwide use their furnaces on their fifth wheel, travel trailer, or RV while driving to ensure their rig stays warm and everything inside does not freeze. While there are definitely pros and cons of running your furnace while driving, your family will be safe and warm if you take the necessary precautions.
While driving to your camping destination in the cold weather, it is always a thought in the back of your head whether you should run your furnace on your drive to avoid frozen pipes while on your winter camping trip.
In this article, we will dive into all of the pros and cons of running your travel trailer furnace while driving as well as steps to take to make sure you are doing so safely and effectively. We will also dive into why many people choose to run their travel trailer furnace and how it can help protect your rig in freezing temperatures.
Can you run your propane heater while driving your travel trailer?
RVs, travel trailers, and fifth wheels are created to be able to utilize certain functions while driving down the road. The last thing you want to have happened is to head out on a road trip in freezing temperatures and have no way to heat your rig and keep it warm. Freezing temperatures can do massive damage to your trailer if your rig is not heated correctly.
One way you may run into an issue while running your travel trailer furnace while driving is if your unit is not maintained correctly. If the unit is not maintained correctly or taken care of, you may run into more issues than you thought while driving down the road. The same issue can become a problem with your RV refrigerator, so it is imperative to take care of your rig and everything inside.
An issue that you will likely run into if you do not adequately take care of your furnace system is a blocked exhaust valve that can cause many problems and even a fire which you may not be able to notice until it is too late if driving.
How to Power your Travel Trailer Furnace while Driving?
Just like your rig’s refrigerator, a travel trailer furnace can be run on battery power and propane. Once your trailers are unhooked from any outside power source, if your furnace is on, it will automatically switch on. The same goes with your RV refrigerator so having enough propane for your drive is imperative. The battery runs the fan and ignitor, and the propane is the actual heating source.
The only downside about running your travel trailer furnace while driving is that if you are taking a long trip to your next destination, you will have to have plenty of propane. If you run out of propane on your drive, your rig will not be adequately heated. Purchasing propane to keep your RV warm while driving can add up quickly and maybe an expensive investment for your road trip. It is recommended to weigh out the pros and cons and make sure you are prepared before you take off on your journey.
Another aspect to think about before deciding to take off down the road with your travel trailer furnace on is that if there is any kind of accident, your furnace can easily and quickly ignite. While there are pros to running your travel trailer furnace, you should also be aware of all aspects of what could happen and how to be best prepared.
Why you May Need to Run your Travel Trailer Furnace while Driving?
Depending on where you are traveling, you may be passing through some incredibly cold temperatures. It would be a miserable trip if you arrive at your destination only to find that have your food is frozen solid and your rig is miserably cold. Not to mention, any issues that freezing temperatures can do to your rig, causing more issues than are necessary.
There are a few reasons why running your furnace while driving may be a helpful practice when driving through extremely cold temperatures. One reason is that it will keep your rig warm and toasty while you drive. This is especially the case if you have an RV, Class A, B, or C. What makes a warm RV even better is that when you arrive you can walk inside to a comfortable RV rather than have to bundle up in blankets and jackets.
The main reason you would want to run your furnace while towing your travel trailer is that it will of your RV parts and pieces from freezing. Any part of your trailer that is subjected to freezing temperatures can suffer from issues that can significantly harm your rig.
If you drive a motorhome, running your furnace while driving allows you to stay warm on your road trip and keeps you bundled inside a warm rig.
What to Remember if You Run your Travel Trailer Furnace while Driving?
Many people all over the country run their travel trailer furnace while driving without running into any issues or problems. There are a few steps to prepare your trailer to have a furnace run while driving and they will ensure that you and your family are kept safe.
One thing to check is how much propane you have before you hit the road. If temperatures are absurdly cold, propane can be drained quickly which would leave you in an icy rig.
Another item to check before you hit the road with your travel trailer running is to turn on your thermostat. Setting the heat on your thermostat will ensure your furnace will turn on when the temperature drops below what it is supposed to and will keep your trailer warm inside. It may be best to only set your thermostat at 55 degrees to keep it above freezing, but not waste too much propane while driving.
In most trailers, fifth wheels, and RVs the heat will come from the floor up. Many heating vents are on the ground so it is imperative you check them before you take off on your road trip. What you do not want to have happened is something to be on top of or laying over your heating vents. This could cause issues with heat being dispersed to the correct areas as well as a safety hazard for your rig.
When you would NOT want to run your RV Furnace while driving:
The primary time you would need to turn your travel trailer furnace off while on a road trip is when you are getting gas or fueling up your rig. Leaving your furnace on while fueling up your tow vehicle can be a dangerous situation, so make sure always to turn it off first.
In many areas, it is required by law to have the furnace turned off before you even pull into the gas station. The issue with pulling into a pump while still having your propane running is that if there is any kind of gas or leak at the pump, it can ignite fumes and lead to a dangerous situation.
Another reason is that some states ban you from having your propane tank on while driving on the road. If you were to get into an accident, a ruptured propane line can cause an explosion or fire.
There is the ultimate debate between driving with your propane fridge on and leaving a RV furnace on would be its equivalent.
Personally, I would not waste the fuel while driving, if I were in need of heat in the trailer, I would stop, heat it up, turn it all off, and keep driving. Propane is expensive and you only have a limited amount, wasting it while driving may not be in your best interest especially having to fill up before camping.
If you are looking to stay warm while on your camping trips, this article should cover the basics to keep you warmer on your next winter camping adventure.
Lastly, as mentioned earlier in this article, always remember to turn off your furnace anytime you need to fuel up. A smart and proactive step you can take is to fuel up before you hit the road and be intentional about the places you stop.
It is vital to know if you can run your travel trailer furnace while driving to keep your family safe and warm. Always make sure to prepare yourself for any issues you may run into so you can fix them before they become a large issue.
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