Improperly sealed refers are deadly. - Fiberglass RV


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Old 08-31-2006, 06:38 PM   #1
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Jeremy posted a question in the problem solving board, asking how much of the area behind his new refer should be sealed. Another person said that they dried their wet towels on the counter over the refer.
If they could dry towels on the counter the refer was not vented to the outside properly.
These statements and questions brought back unpleasant memories. I used to be a Deputy Sheriff and along with job came the dubious honor of being a Deputy Coroner.
On 2 seperate occassions I had to investigate deaths caused by improperly vented gas appliances. Both incidents were in small trailers.
Your gas refer MUST be in a sealed compartment so the combustion air comes ONLY from the outside and the exhaust gas MUST be vented to the outside.
Replacing ice boxes with a refrigerator seems to be a popular mod. I am doing it my self and it is a time consuming pain.
I am posting this on this board to let as many people as possible know the danger of an improperly vented gas refrigerator.
Your EGG will do you no good if you or your family dies.
Carbon Monoxide is a silent, oderless killer. It puts you to sleep and your chances of waking up are very slim.

John
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Old 08-31-2006, 06:44 PM   #2
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I saw your post in the other thread. Good idea to do a seperate post to let people know of this danger. Thanks!
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Old 08-31-2006, 07:02 PM   #3
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My advice is: If you have a combustion device and/or propane device in your trailer, the very first thing to do is to install a propane gas detector, a monoxide detector and a fire / smoke detector.

I have 2 carbon monoxide, 2 smoke detectors and 1 propane detector because you never wake up dead.

Put your money where it is absolutely most important first then cool the beer later.
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Old 08-31-2006, 07:49 PM   #4
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Thanks for pointing out the dangers of CO. I've thought about putting a CO detector in my trailer since I got it. It's about time I did that. I found this one that looks pretty good to me. Anybody know any good/bad about it?

Also I haven't quite figured out where the best place to mount one. Any suggestions?
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Old 08-31-2006, 10:34 PM   #5
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I found this one that looks pretty good to me. Anybody know any good/bad about it?

Also I haven't quite figured out where the best place to mount one. Any suggestions?
That's very similar to the model we use. Our is made by Kidde. Its digital display of the CO level is a really nice feature. Some models don't have this display, and you won't realize a problem is developing in your trailer until the concentration of CO has reached a certain threshold.

We have it mounted high on the side of our closet in our sleeping area.

Jeanne
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Old 08-31-2006, 10:39 PM   #6
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I have 3 seperate detectors, Smoke, CO and propane.

The smoke and CO2 are above my head near the bed.

The propane is right at floor level on the front side of the closet. It's around the corner from the propane line to the heater, and directly across from the stove/fridge.
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Old 08-31-2006, 10:56 PM   #7
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I'm replacing my old early 70's vintage Dometic 23a with a new norcold 323t this weekend. The new fridge is 2 inches narrower and 2 inches shorter than the cutout so I will have to frame in some 1x2 boards to get a tight fit. I also plan on stuffing extra insulation from the back side to fill in the space. If a get another 30 years of service on the new one I'll be happy. Mike
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Old 09-01-2006, 05:46 AM   #8
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Thanks John - that is such an important piece of advice.. DETECTORS SAVE LIVES!!
Here's where I mounted my Smoke/CO2 and my Propane/explosive gas detectors. Remember - gas is heavier than air and thus propane detectors must be placed low. I also make it a point to ALWAYS shut the valve on my tank when gas devices are not in use.
If your egg is not equipped with these detectors you are taking a deadly risk!!
Al
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Old 09-01-2006, 08:09 AM   #9
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Thanks for the reminder, again.

A couple of years ago I needed to get a new smoke and CO2 sensor and was going to get a propane detector as well. I even learned that it needed to be mounted low whereas the smoke and CO should be high. I did get a new smoke and CO, but I got bogged down when I tried to find a battery operated LP detector. (I wanted batteries so I wouldn't have to wire it to my 12V system.) Unfortunately, I never got one.

Thanks for the kick in the seat of the pants. I will now get one and wire it into my system!
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Old 09-01-2006, 08:32 AM   #10
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John, thanks for the timely reminder.
I checked the back of my fridge and found that the divider has disintagrated leaving a large open gap between the top of the fridge and the underside of the counter. Replacing it will now be on the list of things to do while refurbishing our little unit.
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Old 09-01-2006, 08:56 AM   #11
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Byron, The CO detector that you displayed is the exact same unit that I have in our camper and in our house. They sell for less than $30 at the wholesale houses such as BJís and Samís and a little more at Home Depot. I think the name is First Alert or nighthawk. The really good thing about these units is they run for over a year on the batteries and you can get a readout of the CO by pressing the button. Even the slightest amount of CO will read even though it may not be to the danger level and that will tell you if there is something suspicious.

The directions state because CO is everywhere, you can basically mount them anywhere.


Suz, I looked all over the place for a battery operated propane detector and could not find one. I remember seeing them before however it appears that they have taken them off the market. Could be that there were problems with them. I purchased a detector thru the Internet, the same model that they sell at camping world and I turn it off when the camper is not in use in order to extend the life of the unit.
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Old 09-01-2006, 09:52 AM   #12
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Suz, I looked all over the place for a battery operated propane detector and could not find one. I remember seeing them before however it appears that they have taken them off the market. Could be that there were problems with them. I purchased a detector thru the Internet, the same model that they sell at camping world and I turn it off when the camper is not in use in order to extend the life of the unit.
Same here. I thought I had seen them and that's why I never did anything. I just ordered a 12V so it should be here before my next outing.

Question: How do you turn it off? Did you install a switch? There doesn't appear to be a switch on the unit.
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Old 09-01-2006, 09:59 AM   #13
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They are not designed to be turned off for safety reasons that's why they do not have a switch. Turning on the detector is my number 1 priority before we move the camper.

I went to the auto parts store (Advance Auto) or (WalMart) and purchased an inline fuse and installed that inline with the power. I have a little box where I store the fuse when I pull it out and the unit is not in use. I used a 20amp fuse that is more than enough and will insure that it will not blow out on that detector.
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Old 09-01-2006, 06:02 PM   #14
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If you want to detect propane, it would have to installed low down, as propane is heavier than air. Might be better to have propane detector installed low, and have separate smoke and CO detector installed up high. Just my tuppence (Brit for 2 pennies)
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