An idea for a safe electric space heater - Fiberglass RV


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Old 02-05-2008, 11:05 PM   #1
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My problem with a space heater is that I'm worried the dogs would knock it over. But it occurred to me that if I put a metal grill in the door of one of the base cupboards, I could put the heater inside it, pointed out, and they couldn't get to it, but the heat would have nowhere to go except out. One of those little cube heaters might work quite well that way.

Any input on the idea?

If it sounds feasible, what kind of material could I use for the cupboard door? I'd probably save the old door (use it as a pattern) and make a new door to fit. It might even just be a grate fastened over the opening. I'd also probably want to add some insulation behind it as currently the walls inside the cupboards are not insulated.

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Old 02-06-2008, 07:54 AM   #2
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All the cube heaters I've seen have tip-over switches to protect from the random dog event.
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Old 02-06-2008, 09:02 AM   #3
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All the cube heaters I've seen have tip-over switches to protect from the random dog event.
I'm also concerned about the dogs burning themselves or getting things up next to the heater and starting a fire. Keeping a hot space heater on the floor with them is not an option unless it is protected from them.
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Old 02-06-2008, 09:02 AM   #4
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I'd worry about the cupboard getting too hot on the inside and a metal grate could get hot enough to burn skin, or dog fur. I put my cube heater on the stove top when I use it.
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Old 02-06-2008, 12:31 PM   #5
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My Pelonis gets hot on high but not enough to burn you. I think you could give dogs credit that they wouldn't stick their nose on it (more than once, if at all) or lay down on it. The risk is probably a tail wag knocking it over and like most heaters it has a tilt switch. Knocking it face down I don't worry about carpet melting or something like that.
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Old 02-06-2008, 01:26 PM   #6
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My Pelonis gets hot on high but not enough to burn you. I think you could give dogs credit that they wouldn't stick their nose on it (more than once, if at all) or lay down on it. The risk is probably a tail wag knocking it over and like most heaters it has a tilt switch. Knocking it face down I don't worry about carpet melting or something like that.
The lowest possible risk is the tail wag as I have Corgis... But even just having it in the middle of the floor is a problem- too many dogs, too little space.

I'm trying to find an alternative to perching on the stove for several reasons. One is that it can be cold using the stove since the heat has to be off when I'm using it.

I do see how a cupboard might heat too much. The heater I use now has a blower, though, and would blow heat out- thus cool air should be sucked into the cupboard. I don't think it would get that hot inside if the front of the cupboard were open. I can test that with the current heater and no grate, though, and see how it does.

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Old 02-06-2008, 02:48 PM   #7
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I personally wouldn't use the cupboard.
After doing a bit of cold weather camping with a cube heater and now a Mr Buddy propane heater, the dynamics of the cube heater barely keeps up with the space on cold nites and putting it inside something would probably reduce the efficiency by quite a bit. I wouldn't want to give up the premium storage space either.

Like Donna, we set the cube heater on the stove top cover which is a great location with four of us in the 13. Haven't had any incidents with it up there, but we don't cook inside and do all the cooking outside under the 10x10 awning.

It would seem that if you have the cupboard space then you could go with an Atwood furnace or some such that is permanently installed. I don't hear of any problems with the dog folks that have the furnaces, and then it would be on a thermostat as well.
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Old 02-06-2008, 06:22 PM   #8
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I dunno, I kind of thought that the cupboard idea might be feasible. When we use our cube heater, we set it in the "tunnel" created under the bed to keep from stepping on or kicking it in the middle of the night, and point it straight at the bathroom door. It heats our whole trailer more than adequately on a mid-range setting most of the time; and we have no insulation whatsoever. I'll have to check the wattage rating.

If I were you, I'd line the cupboard with aluminum sheeting in addition to making a ventilated door. My "flue" for the refrigerator was only wood, and it dry-rotted from the heat of the exhaust gasses. I lined it with a thin gauge aluminum panel to help reflect the heat out.
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Upper_Fridge_Vent.jpg   Upper_Fridge_Vent_Open.jpg  

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