All electric, or gas and electric? - Fiberglass RV


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Old 10-04-2007, 07:55 PM   #1
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I am about to purchase my first RV in many years, probably a Casita or an EggCamper. They are lighter and cheaper in all electric, but I am unsure about using the electric in "primitive" camping. The dealer assures me that all electric works well when you carry a Honda 2000i generator. I am seeking input from those with experience. Also, anything else I can't live without?

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Old 10-04-2007, 08:00 PM   #2
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Does your all electric include electric heat?
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Old 10-04-2007, 08:03 PM   #3
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I personally would go with both gas and electric. I have a 12volt only fridge in my present unit with dual batteries and it worked well for me for a weekend with no hookups. I did have gen set for backup.
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Old 10-04-2007, 08:10 PM   #4
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Quote:
I personally would go with both gas and electric.
I would agree with Ches, especially when it comes to space heating in "primitive" or "Boondocking" situations.
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Old 10-04-2007, 08:16 PM   #5
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Quote:
Also, anything else I can't live without?
Having converted my Fiber Stream's interior lighting to all LED (Light Emitting Diode) and CCFL (Cold Cathode Florescent), I would highly recommend it, even if you do not use solar panels, which I feel I cannot live without either.
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Old 10-04-2007, 08:27 PM   #6
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Does your all electric include electric heat?
Yes, electric heat and hot water and hot plate for cooking. I like the idea of gas cooking and heat when in the boondocks. I can always use an electric heater while we are plugged in. The problem is the 1K extra cost and the extra weight. Plus my wife is afraid of propane heat as friends lost children when a heater was vented wrong in their new RV many years ago.

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Old 10-04-2007, 08:31 PM   #7
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Yes, electric heat and hot water and hot plate for cooking. I like the idea of gas cooking and heat when in the boondocks. I can always use an electric heater while we are plugged in. The problem is the 1K extra cost and the extra weight. Plus my wife is afraid of propane heat as friends lost children when a heater was vented wrong in their new RV many years ago.

Homer
battery operated CO detectors come in very handy to help prevent problems, as well as ease the fears. Just make sure you do the research on which model to buy, to avoid one that is prone to false alarms.

I haven't purchased one for our camper yet because we've been camping out of a teardrop for the last 3 years, and had no heater. Our household CO detector was very touchy and prone to false alarms when installed in a tight corner hallway during high humidity times.
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Old 10-04-2007, 08:36 PM   #8
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IMHO the 1k and propane heater would not mean much to me. The gas detection devices on the market now are really good if installed properly. The heater can be doubled check before using. MY wife was also afraid/cautious of propane BUT when i showed her the right way to do things in reguards to propane she now handles it ok. I guess there are things we must overcome in life.
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Old 10-04-2007, 08:56 PM   #9
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Quote:
The problem is the 1K extra cost and the extra weight.
I would like to understand this a little more. I have not encountered an all electric RV before, and thought that gas (propane) appliances were standard. Maybe it's because my trailer is 30 years old.

What percentage of the total price is this $1000 difference?
10% ? comparing a $9000 electric and a $10,000 gas equipped trailer
5 % ? comparing a $19,000 electric and a $20,000 gas equipped trailer

I am similarly curious about the weight differences. What are the totals?
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Old 10-04-2007, 09:08 PM   #10
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What percentage of the total price is this $1000 difference?
I am similarly curious about the weight differences. What are the totals?
Not that much, from about 14 to about 15

Don't really know, couple of tanks, some tubing, and a heavier heater, maybe a hundred lbs or so. Not much in the grand scheme, but it all adds up. I am going to pull it with a Jeep Liberty and I think it is best to keep the weight down.

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Old 10-04-2007, 09:32 PM   #11
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Almost all of my camping is without power. I camp in primative areas whenever possible. If someone set up next to me and started ANY generator within hearing range, we would be having a discussion. I realize that the Hondas are quiet but I want more than quiet, I want silent, except for the wildlife, not the people kind. Solar is a wonderful source. Running a generator all night to power a heater is downright rude in my opinion.

I was just about asleep one night at around midnight and some guy about 400 yards away decided to fire up his RV's generator to charge his batteries, we tried talking to him but he would not open the door. The nice ranger offered to tow his RV (with him in it) before he would open the door. He could not understand why we were upset.

My propane heater cannot be heard outside the camper and requires no power other than my propane tank. The same goes for the stove and gas lights. I realize that I may be a little extreme (ok, alot extreme).
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Old 10-04-2007, 11:52 PM   #12
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You can run your all-electric kitchen with a Honda 2000i, but consider: do you really want to run that generator all night to keep the heater running? And what happens when you're at a campground that has a no-generators rule? Or people looking for a (very) affordable Honda 2000i?

You can quietly boondock for several days in trailer with 12v lights and propane for the heat and stove. Longer if you have a noise-free solar panel to top off your 12v battery, and you'll save money as compared to gasoline. As for safety, a small investment in a carbon monoxide and smoke detector and perhaps a propane gas detector would provide peace-of-mind. And no one seems to steal propane tanks.

Our trailer has 12v lights and a 120vac to 12vdc converter, a propane/120v 'fridge, a gas water heater into which we will be installing an electric coil that automatically heats the water up when we're plugged in, a built-in propane furnace and a portable $10 120VAC cube heater. We also have a solar panel. Yes, it adds a wee bit of weight, but with this setup we can camp just about anywhere.

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Old 10-05-2007, 05:28 AM   #13
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And the one topic no one has addressed. Resale value. Will an all electric model sell for the same price (more... less) than a standard propane/electric model.

I think an all electric would probably sell for less. AND might be harder to sell.

I've thought about removing all the propane from my Scamp. Then someone one here on the forums stated they moved into their trailer when they lost power at home during a winter storm. A week later, they were still in the trailer! In the winter... Having propane certainly helped.
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Old 10-05-2007, 09:21 AM   #14
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Speaking for myself only, I wouldn't want an all electric trailer. It would do me no or very little good. My fridge is 3 way and I run it on 120 when available, otherwise it's on propane. I have one 120 light, that if I had it do over it would be gone. As Peter says you can go for several day with battery and propane.

Safety detectors, even with all electric you still need a smoke detector. CO and propane detectors are a very small investment.

Running a generator adds noise, pollutants, and a reduction of funds.

If you're only going to stay in RV parks with electricity, then maybe all electric. But you give up the ability to say, without noise in dispersed camp sites, remote campgrounds, and use the trailer as a life boat.
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Old 10-05-2007, 09:41 AM   #15
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the next advantage to having an off the grid rig, if you store it at home, is it serves as an emergency pod for extended power outages, or..

in the case of a couple people I know here.. a place to live when doing work on your house and the house is inhabitable, or, at least, not a pleasant environment to be in.

*she says as she is in the process of replacing all the cloth wire in her 1950 built cabin*
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Old 10-05-2007, 10:05 AM   #16
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After we got caught on the east side of the Sierras late in the day by a fast moving early winter storm, finding refuge in a Forest Service campground with no services, I have been eternally grateful for my propane heater!

And so will the person you sell your trailer to some day.
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Old 10-05-2007, 02:12 PM   #17
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And the one topic no one has addressed. Resale value. Will an all electric model sell for the same price (more... less) than a standard propane/electric model.

I think an all electric would probably sell for less. AND might be harder to sell.
This is true, I went and looked at a Trillium 4500 this spring, looking to get a few more feet of space, the price was good, the condition was good, but all the propane had been ripped out and it was all electric. We decided to stick with what we had, it took a long time for that trailer to sell.

Out of 28 days camping this year, in campgrounds from Saskatchewan to California, we only managed to stay 3 nights in camp sites with electricity. It wouldn't have been much fun without having propane fridge/stove/heat.
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Old 10-05-2007, 02:57 PM   #18
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And we went the other way--- no electrical (12V or 120V) in our Scamp. The icebox is now a cupboard and a large icechest sets right inside the door while traveling and is the first thing unloaded. LED puck lights (surprisingly enuff to read by) and an LED lantren that gets moved to various hanging spots. Most of the places we like to go to only have currant bushes, and I haven't ever figured out how to wire them in....... Heat is a Mr Buddy--even keeps me warm during Elk season in the snow. (also have propane lantrens stowed under the dinette-and in nasty weather they provide heat inside also--) As far as resale value, I dunno, my heirs will have to find out.... Larry
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Old 10-05-2007, 08:38 PM   #19
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Out of 28 days camping this year, in campgrounds from Saskatchewan to California, we only managed to stay 3 nights in camp sites with electricity. It wouldn't have been much fun without having propane fridge/stove/heat.

The dealer tells me that the current propane heaters draw 14 Amps for the fan. This seems excessive to me, does this sound accurate? If so it would deplete a battery in short order when the furnace was running. Other than that I think you have convinced me to buy the one with propane heat and water heater and cooking. Thanks for the in-put.

Homer
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Old 10-06-2007, 09:33 AM   #20
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If I were always camping where there was suitable electrical service, I would certainly consider all-electric as a simple and convenient system; however, the trailer would have at least 30A electrical capacity (likely a 2x50A service instead), and I would not expect full functionality with any generator I were willing to carry.

I see two issues in running an all-electric trailer with a generator, in addition to those already mentioned.

A 2000W generator will not be able to provide sufficient power to run any two of the space heater, water heater, and cooking appliances at the same time, let alone all of them.

Even a 2000W generator is likely at least as heavy as the propane system, and almost as expensive.
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