Suburban RV Furnace Troubleshooting Guide

Suburban RV Furnace Troubleshooting Guide

Is your Suburban RV furnace not working? Then you need to fix the problem at the earliest to avoid serious consequences. That’s because a troubled RV furnace can result in frozen pipes, particularly if you’re camping in colder climates

The good news is that you can troubleshoot your issue on your own without waiting for a technician to reach you. Yes, you can get your RV furnace running in no time by following these steps.

This guide will discuss some Suburban RV furnace troubleshooting methods to keep your vehicle toasty despite the chilly weather. 

Troubleshooting Steps For Fixing Suburban RV Furnace

The first step to fixing any problem is identifying the root cause of the issue. So how can you determine what’s causing your Suburban RV furnace to malfunction? 

These simple steps will help you out:

Check the Furnace Power

You must ensure that your RV furnace receives electricity from the main power supply. You can check the electrical supply with a voltmeter. But first, you must discover a grill or door that allows you to access the inside of your furnace. 

Once done, you can attach the voltmeter to the RV furnace electrical wires. If you find the current flowing to your furnace, you can tell that a defect in the furnace is causing the issue.

Clean Debris and Dust

Excessive debris and dirt can often get trapped in your Suburban RV furnace intakes. As a result, the air passage may become clogged, reducing airflow to the furnace. This inhibits the furnace from proper functioning.

So, you should check your furnace air ducts and remove the accumulated junk or dust. While doing so, the chances are that you might discover a mice family enjoying the time of their life within your RV furnace. 

So, cleaning your RV furnace is a crucial step of the troubleshooting process

Check the Furnace Fan 

Is your furnace making a lot of noise? Perhaps it isn’t blowing enough air. If that’s the case, the fan could be to blame. 

To inspect the fan, you’ll need to remove the furnace from its metal encasement. You can do this by unscrewing your furnace’s back panel or opening the access door. Then, you’ll be able to find the wheel that contains the fan once you’ve located the furnace. 

If this fan is blocked, damaged, or clogged, the furnace will not be able to pump hot air down the duct into your RV effectively. 

Check Thermostat 

The thermostat is responsible for turning the RV furnace on. So, there’s a good chance that the issue lies within this component. If you find the furnace motor not turning on when needed, the thermostat needs to be checked. 

Inspect the Motor

If the thermostat is all fine, you need to check the motor since it can wear out over time. You can identify a faulty motor if your furnace is not starting or produces a squeaky sound when it runs. 

Check your moto’s health by removing it from the compartment near the furnace fan. In case you find the shaft a bit loose, your furnace’s motor needs repairing or replacing. 

Check the Relay Wire

If the RV furnace makes a clicking noise and the fan doesn’t turn on, you should check the relay wire. However, this can only be done with a Suburban RV furnace manufactured before 2001 since newer furnace models do not have any relay wires. 

The time delay relay wire receives power from the power switch and then transfers it to the motor. However, if this wire is damaged, the motor will not turn on or receive any power. 

Again, you can use a voltmeter to check where the electrical issue is. Stick the meter to the wire and check if it receives any power. If your RV motor is not receiving power while the control board is, you need to fix the relay wire.

Check Your Furnace Control Board 

Lastly, you may check the control board to find the fault. For example, if your control board is receiving power and the RV isn’t working, you can easily replace the panel in a few simple steps. 

Diagnostic Lights and Codes

If you have a newer model, you can easily spot tiny LED lights attached to your furnace’s ICB. The LED may flash several times if the furnace is having any issues. You can identify the issue by evaluating how many times the light flashes. For this, you can refer to the chart present on the furnace surface. 

Gas Pressure

All appliances that run on gas are operated with a supply pressure of 3psi. This is a standard for all gas appliances. A propane tank has more pressure than 3psi. Therefore, a propane regulator is used to control excessive pressure. 

However, if any residue is present within the propane tank, it may interfere with the propane regulator. As a result, the device will fail or not work correctly. 

Usually, an empty gas tank has no gas pressure. So, you must check the gas pressure. If the gas regulator is at fault, the furnace will not receive enough gas. In this case, you need to replace the regulator. 

Contact Suburban Customer Support

If you can not figure out the problem after carefully attempting all steps, you must contact customer support. The professionals will surely help you identify and fix the issue. In addition, you can also call for a technician to resolve the problem. 

You should move to this step right away without attempting any other steps if you’re uncomfortable working with electrical wires. Doing so may prevent you from complicating the problem even more. 

Safety Tips for Operating an RV Furnace

When dealing with an RV furnace, you must keep your safety in check. Follow these steps to stay safe while troubleshooting your faulty Suburban RV furnace:

  • Avoid using a battery charger for powering or testing your RV furnace, as they can often release more than 14.5 DC volts, potentially damaging the RV furnace’s module board. 
  • You should never operate your RV furnace if the electrode wire is disconnected. In addition, running your RV furnace is equally dangerous if the electrode assembly has been removed. 
  • If the furnace is running, you should never use any tool such as a screwdriver on the electrode assembly.
  • You must ensure that no electrode spark reaches the portion for sensing flames. This part can be found in the electrode assembly. 
  • Make sure that all electrical components of the furnace are dry and do not come in contact with water.
  • You must wire the battery directly to the furnace whenever possible. 
  • When tightening the furnace gas connections, you should use two wrenches on the gas fittings.
  • Before troubleshooting, check the furnace voltage. In addition, never use a 120 volt AC with the 12 volt DC.
  • You should never modify the furnace in any manner.
  • Never vent your RV furnace to an enclosed outside porch or any obstructed or covered vent area.

Final Thoughts

RV furnaces are essential for keeping your RV warm during winters. If the furnace isn’t working as it should, it can create several problems for you. 

You can follow simple troubleshooting steps such as checking the motor or electric supply. Once the problem has been identified, you can eliminate the issue for good. 

If none of the methods work for you, call the helpline for immediate customer support. Besides, you should keep your safety in check as even the slightest mistake can lead to serious health hazards. 

Warwick Braith

Warwick Braith is a thrill seeker at heart. He loves getting outdoors and testing his limits in the wild. As a blogger for YapQ, Warwick provides readers with insights and tips on how to get the most out of their outdoor experiences. Whether it's hiking, camping, or simply exploring nature, Warwick knows how to make the most of it.

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