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Mar 25th, 2012
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How much ventilation is needed when using a propane heater? #7023279
01/03/18 08:11 PM
01/03/18 08:11 PM
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The recent tragedy that resulted in the death of a father, son, and grandfather from carbon monoxide poisoning brings to mind a question that I'm sure others have asked themselves before. That is, how much ventilation is needed when using a propane heater.

The industry standard is 1 square inch of ventilation for every 1,000 BTUs of heater output.

Sound correct?


Dan,

Spring, Texas
Re: How much ventilation is needed when using a propane heater? [Re: Texas Dan] #7023296
01/03/18 08:23 PM
01/03/18 08:23 PM
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you pretty much have ot think of air as a liquid, and how much ventilation would you need if you were trying to fill the area with water given enough time...it doesn't take much. and in most situations, anything is better than nothing. A small leak of air will fill into a CO2 rich environment so I would guess your 1 sq inch/1000 btu is pretty accurate.

Re: How much ventilation is needed when using a propane heater? [Re: Texas Dan] #7023311
01/03/18 08:37 PM
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I don't know an exact figure but I keep at least 1-2 windows open in the blind anytime I'm using a heater. If I close the windows I just turn the heater off.

Re: How much ventilation is needed when using a propane heater? [Re: Texas Dan] #7023348
01/03/18 09:02 PM
01/03/18 09:02 PM
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when I use mine at the cabin, I have a window cracked to allow fresh air. I know when the heater buddy runs out of fuel, the cabin cools off pretty good from that window being cracked. But after the incident from this weekend, I believe I will take a CO2 detector with me and place in the cabin for now on.


Re: How much ventilation is needed when using a propane heater? [Re: Texas Dan] #7023349
01/03/18 09:03 PM
01/03/18 09:03 PM
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That sounds about right, my motor home has a built in furnace and the door has a window with a permanent opening across the top about 18"w x 1.5". I believe this opening is for venting.

Also many years ago I installed a wood stove in my mobile home and had to install a special vent kit to meet the code. It was about 3"x 6" and went from the firebox thru the floor and drew air from under the trailer so that the fire would not suck all the oxygen out of the living area.

Re: How much ventilation is needed when using a propane heater? [Re: Buddy] #7023355
01/03/18 09:08 PM
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Originally Posted By: Buddy
when I use mine at the cabin, I have a window cracked to allow fresh air. I know when the heater buddy runs out of fuel, the cabin cools off pretty good from that window being cracked. But after the incident from this weekend, I believe I will take a CO2 detector with me and place in the cabin for now on.


Yea I just bought a new detector for my trailer at the lease. $25 bucks on Amazon and will be here tomorrow for this weekend.

Last edited by rexmitchell; 01/03/18 09:21 PM.
Re: How much ventilation is needed when using a propane heater? [Re: Texas Dan] #7023360
01/03/18 09:11 PM
01/03/18 09:11 PM
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I have a large Dearborn heater in my cave. Itís a very tight insulated building with a garage door. I also have a CO detector in there. Iíve run several hundred pounds of propane through it over the years with no complaint from the CO detector. I figure the garage door leaks enough to ventilate the building.

Now, is it possible that my heater is just tuned correctly and does not emit CO? Doesnít the absense of a yelllw flame mean itís burning clean?


Cast



I have a short attention spa
Re: How much ventilation is needed when using a propane heater? [Re: Texas Dan] #7023363
01/03/18 09:14 PM
01/03/18 09:14 PM
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I've been thinking about this as well. I run an 80,000 btu propane heater, but my shop has two ridge vents and 3 roll up doors that do not come anywhere close to sealing tight. No problems running the heater yet, thankfully, and if 1" per BTU is a good rule, with the gaps in my doors there is more than enough fresh air leaking in.

Regardless, even though I don't sleep in shop and most time would think I am aware enough to notice a change, I am going to go buy a CO (fixed) detector just because.

Last edited by Dalroo; 01/03/18 09:24 PM.

Dalroo
Deep in the Heart of Texas
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Re: How much ventilation is needed when using a propane heater? [Re: Texas Dan] #7023371
01/03/18 09:18 PM
01/03/18 09:18 PM
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Thatís a CO detector.


Cast



I have a short attention spa
Re: How much ventilation is needed when using a propane heater? [Re: Texas Dan] #7023377
01/03/18 09:23 PM
01/03/18 09:23 PM
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I can not advise someone on something this potentially dangerous.You should get advice from a propane supply company.


I know allot about everything-Everything about nothing!!!!
Re: How much ventilation is needed when using a propane heater? [Re: Texas Dan] #7023514
01/03/18 10:43 PM
01/03/18 10:43 PM
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I ran a buddy heater in my old camper many times. I just cracked a window and opened a roof vent. I also installed a CO detector to be extra safe.

Re: How much ventilation is needed when using a propane heater? [Re: Texas Dan] #7023548
01/03/18 11:02 PM
01/03/18 11:02 PM
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If you stay awake an excellent CO detector is you!!! The first sign of a head ache, turn the heat source off and open whatever will get fresh air in cold or not! Sleeping is a different story!!!!







Re: How much ventilation is needed when using a propane heater? [Re: Texas Dan] #7023640
01/04/18 12:05 AM
01/04/18 12:05 AM
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I used to run a 20 lb propane with dual burner
In an 8x20 cargo trailer

Heater is set by the door
I cracked the door 1"
With smoke alarm high on ceiling
And CO alarm at cot height

Everything went fine

Until one day I decided to run propane lantern
Inside with the heater going

Almost died and gone to heaven That night

CO alarm alerted me at 2 am

Where I was having shortness of breath

Thought I was having a heart attack

Then alarm goes off

Heater with cracked door is ok
Never run lantern inside without the door half open

Carry on

Last edited by cabosandinh; 01/04/18 12:06 AM.
Re: How much ventilation is needed when using a propane heater? [Re: Texas Dan] #7023702
01/04/18 12:40 AM
01/04/18 12:40 AM
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All good information. Anyone think of a wall mount heater or even floor heater that has external vent that could be used in blinds, trailer, cargo box. I know electric would be the best answer but.


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Re: How much ventilation is needed when using a propane heater? [Re: Texas Dan] #7023879
01/04/18 03:09 AM
01/04/18 03:09 AM
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They make propane heaters that are vented, if properly installed and maintained there would be no problem. Unfortunately there are some people think they are qualified to install and maintain them.


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Re: How much ventilation is needed when using a propane heater? [Re: Texas Dan] #7023947
01/04/18 03:47 AM
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I am beyond paranoid about combustible fuel heaters. Have had several acquaintances die as a result of faulty stoves and heaters over the years. Had several carbon monoxide detectors in my small camper, and made my contractor install one in every room in my new house. Cannot be too careful.

Re: How much ventilation is needed when using a propane heater? [Re: Texas Dan] #7024399
01/04/18 03:20 PM
01/04/18 03:20 PM
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I was always told that you should crack open at least 2 windows in your deer blind if using a propane heater. As far as a cabin, deer camp or whatever, you should always have a carbon monoxide detector inside THAT WORKS! And keep a window or two opened slightly. Never should your sleeping quarters be "air tight." I was also told that the carbon monoxide detector is best kept about 2 feet above the floor. Also....don't forget your smoke detectors.

Re: How much ventilation is needed when using a propane heater? [Re: Texas Dan] #7027344
01/06/18 07:30 PM
01/06/18 07:30 PM
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Vertical opening. One-inch free area for each 4,000 Btu/hr. input of gas burning appliances in the room.

Horizontal duct opening. One-inch free area for each 2,000 Btu/hr. input of gas burning appliances in the room.


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Re: How much ventilation is needed when using a propane heater? [Re: Texas Dan] #7027821
01/07/18 03:59 AM
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I thought CO was lighter than air. That would mean the detector should be near the ceiling.

Re: How much ventilation is needed when using a propane heater? [Re: Texas Dan] #7027881
01/07/18 05:06 AM
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1 inch crack to get steady air plus a co detector close by.

Re: How much ventilation is needed when using a propane heater? [Re: Cast] #7028689
01/07/18 11:26 PM
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Originally Posted By: Cast
I have a large Dearborn heater in my cave. Itís a very tight insulated building with a garage door. I also have a CO detector in there. Iíve run several hundred pounds of propane through it over the years with no complaint from the CO detector. I figure the garage door leaks enough to ventilate the building.

Now, is it possible that my heater is just tuned correctly and does not emit CO? Doesnít the absense of a yelllw flame mean itís burning clean?


How old is that CO detector?
Also- Is is one of the ones (millions) that have been recalled (defective-donít register CO)??

Re: How much ventilation is needed when using a propane heater? [Re: Texas Dan] #7029137
01/08/18 06:10 AM
01/08/18 06:10 AM
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I would not use a propane heater inside period. Why chance it when you can buy a wood burning stove. Others lives may be worth it but my sure as hell isnt.

Re: How much ventilation is needed when using a propane heater? [Re: Pintail711] #7029163
01/08/18 11:38 AM
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Originally Posted By: Pintail711
I would not use a propane heater inside period. Why chance it when you can buy a wood burning stove. Others lives may be worth it but my sure as hell isnt.

Wood burning stoves also produce CO.

Re: How much ventilation is needed when using a propane heater? [Re: jnd59] #7029311
01/08/18 02:01 PM
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Originally Posted By: jnd59
I thought CO was lighter than air. That would mean the detector should be near the ceiling.


The CO and gas detector the manufacturer placed in my trailer is just a foot off the floor.

A separate smoke detector was placed on the ceiling.

Last edited by Texas Dan; 01/08/18 02:01 PM.

Dan,

Spring, Texas
Re: How much ventilation is needed when using a propane heater? [Re: Texas Dan] #7029511
01/08/18 04:04 PM
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Be safe, use oil heaters.

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