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Discussion Starter #1
New build
Good ventilation
Maxx fann plus window inserts
Temps to 35 degrees
Bought camp cheff ranger two with heavy cast iron skillet top
Use at night to take the chill off?
Have all sniffers/detectors
Looking at propane heaters
 

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New build
Good ventilation
Maxx fann plus window inserts
Temps to 35 degrees
Bought camp cheff ranger two with heavy cast iron skillet top
Use at night to take the chill off?
Have all sniffers/detectors
Looking at propane heaters
I love my Webasto heather it use gas from the tank, some guys have the Chinese copy that works with diesel and if the van is a gasser they use an added plastic tank for diesel fuel and they seem happy. These type of heathers produce a dry heat as it takes air from outside and heat it, while propane heathers take the inside air and heat it, resulting in foggy windows, damp heat.
 

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Just get a Mr. Buddy or Olympian Wave - they are cheap and use propane (either the 1 lb canisters with Mr. Buddy or larger tanks -- via an adapter with Mr. Buddy). A small amount of ventilation is adequate, since they use a catalytic heating process that doesn't produce as much CO as an open flame, and they have oxygen sensors that should shut the heater off if the oxygen in the room is depleted. They're more than adequate at 35 F.
 

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Just get a Mr. Buddy or Olympian Wave - they are cheap and use propane (either the 1 lb canisters with Mr. Buddy or larger tanks -- via an adapter with Mr. Buddy). A small amount of ventilation is adequate, since they use a catalytic heating process that doesn't produce as much CO as an open flame, and they have oxygen sensors that should shut the heater off if the oxygen in the room is depleted. They're more than adequate at 35 F.
Extremely bad advice. Your Promaster isn't a tent!
 

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Not a safe idea.

You would much better off with a Propex or Suburban RV furnace.

Using the stove briefly to take the chill off in the morning when its 50F out is one thing, but relying the stove for heat in 35F weather is not a safe way to go.

Gary
 

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There's little difference in using the stove or using a mr. buddy(or similar). The design of the parking heaters (including propex for a propane option) and normal propane heaters are quite different. The biggest issue with a basic propane usage is the moisture production. I've no issue leaving a stove on overnight (stews/broths) in a house from a safety prospect, but you're both more removed from the source in the off chance of issue and moisture is easier to maintain.
 

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Ever thought of just starting the van, letting it warm up a little, and blasting the heat on high? Should at least take the chill off, and its already built into the van.
The PM's heater is actually pretty robust.
 

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Extremely bad advice. Your Promaster isn't a tent!
No it isn’t a tent, but it’s nowhere near like running a stove to heat your van. The Mr. Buddy (for example) needs a ventilation area of 3 x 3” (9 sq in) to be operated safely. Double that for extra safety — crack both windows. Many, many people use these heaters for a quick warm-up in their vans. They are safe if used according to instructions, like a lot of other products.
 

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You’re not talking about warming up, unfortunately you inferred it was a good source of heat.
Makes no difference to us if the OP wants to kill himself we’ve done our duty and warned him and everyone else about the danger. It’s out of our hands anymore.
Thoughts and prayers are all we can offer now.
 

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OR...

Find an outlet*
Plug in van
Plug in a UL approved electric space heater, we use a Vortex heater down to 30 degress outside and it's toasty warm inside, no fumes, no moisture. Overheat protected, tip over protected, not near anything flammable, etc.

* depending on where you are that may require a very long extension cord.

ps. Nick's solution (run the van to take the chill off) works great! I did that while inside then van wonking on my build in the winter... although the AC won't keep the whole van cool on a hot day, the heater will easily keep the van shirt-sleeve warm. If I were in a cold, no shore power scenario, I would not hesitate to use the van heater to provide a comfortable night (CO detector required, of course)
 

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Use at night to take the chill off?


My dad and I used the propane stove in his pickup truck camper as you describe for the better of two decades (Normally with a coffee pot on it). We're both still alive and so is the camper! As long as there's ventilation and you're just running it for a short time and not leaving it on while you're sleeping it's basically a non issue. Think about it, what's the difference between that and cooking on the thing while in the camper? ;)


All that said, you have a heating system in the van that provides unlimited amounts of dry heat, so I second the suggestion to start the van and use that instead.
 

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OR...

Find an outlet*
Plug in van
Plug in a UL approved electric space heater, we use a Vortex heater down to 30 degress outside and it's toasty warm inside, no fumes, no moisture. Overheat protected, tip over protected, not near anything flammable, etc.

* depending on where you are that may require a very long extension cord.
....cut....
I agree and think electric is a no brainer when shore power is available, but expect that if he’s asking about propane, that shore power isn’t an option.

We’ve been using a small 1,000/1,500 Watt electric unit for about 15 years and have never been cold when electric was available. However, we’ve also overnighted down to 35~40 F without heat by just covering up, although it’s not as much fun as keeping van above 50 F at night.



I’d go without heat before I’d rely on propane open flame inside van. Not only would I not feel safe, my wife would never allow it.
 

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Warnings have been given.
The parking heaters in my opinion are the best option, but since you already have propane (for the stove) then a propex is the best solution.

I'm going to say the best solution is insulation, I have a webasto and have never felt the need to leave it running while sleeping since I can use more blankets. I just turn on the heater in the morning before I get up. Before I had the Webasto up and running I just started the van and used the van heater. I have a remote start so I did it from the bed before I had to get out. If I want it warm quickly I still do so, because while the webasto is handy, it doesn't warm the van quickly when it is below freezing.

I've gone without any heat while sleeping down to -5 F, all due to superior insulation and blankets. Was never cold once while sleeping. Now stepping on the cold floor in the morning is a different matter! I am renovating my van right now and thinking about electric floor heating (I have a very large battery) just to make it a little more pleasant in the morning.

There are so many solutions, don't use the stove.
 

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I have the diesel Chinese version of Webasto, 5 kW, $ 135 from Amazon. It works like a charm, no vapour, no smell, low cost. Installation took me 4 hs.
 

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New build
Good ventilation
Maxx fann plus window inserts
Temps to 35 degrees
Bought camp cheff ranger two with heavy cast iron skillet top
Use at night to take the chill off?
Have all sniffers/detectors
Looking at propane heaters
I've been doing this in my van for a year with some caveats:
  • I place an unglazed flowerpot over it to help diffuse and radiate the heat and to provide additional thermal mass that continues warming after I've turned the stove off
  • I never let it run while I'm sleeping or for prolonged periods of time
  • I have a CO detector that tells me the PPM in the air so I can make sure there's adequate ventilation. With one exception when I was at altitude, it's never gone above zero.
Propane that's burning efficiently will only release carbon dioxide and water vapor. Neither of these has been an issue for me. In a low oxygen environment, propane does release CO so I wouldn't try this (or any other non-vented propane solution) over 8,000'.

For my purpose, it's great to warm up the van before bed and again in the morning and, as someone else pointed out, is no different than cooking.
 
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