What is a Gas Catalytic Heater?
It is a heater than runs on propane (LPG) that produces radiant heat. Using a catalytic pad, heat is generated by the means of a flameless catalytic combustion process. Radiant heat (or energy) is transmitted through space and the energy is released when it strikes people or objects. This is how the sun heats things up. This is different from a forced air heater that draws cold air into the furnace and heats the air, sending warm air back into the living space.
Because a forced air heater moves large amounts of air with an electric-powered fan, it can heat quicker than a catalytic heater. For camper owners who are using a battery bank to power their furnace, catalytic heaters are desirable because they use no electricity. Additionally a catalytic heater uses about 25% of the gas the same BTU rated forced air heater will use.
Wave 8 Specifications
- Safety shut-off valve to help prevent accidental non-ignition fuel discharge
- Can be wall-mounted or used as a portable
- Adjustable from 4200 – 8000 BTU per hour
- Piezo starter will last for 20,000 starts
- Ideal primary or secondary heating source
When it is really cold, we turn on our furnace to quickly warm up the camper. Then we switch to the Wave 8. On cold nights (below freezing) the Wave 8 keeps us warm and toasty.
The Wave 8 can be used as a portable heater using the optional leg stands, can be mounted directly to a wall, or can be recessed into a wall or cabinet using the Recess Kit from Olympian.
Hose Connections for Heater
Because the heater is portable, we connect the gas hose to a “T” at the outside quick-connect fitting (also runs the Baby Q Grill and outdoor stove).
Cautions and Warnings
Because catalytic heaters consume oxygen, you must vent your trailer!! This means it consumes are and you must provide an adequate flow of fresh air into your trailer. For a trailer, this means you must provide 24 square inches of ventilation. We open our 14” X 14” roof vent about 3/8” and our door window about 1.” This is more than adequate. To be honest, there is enough air leakage from the tenting that this venting may not be necessary, but it is not worth risking our lives.
Required Minimum Clearances from Combustible Materials
- 4 inches from each side
- 4 inches from the floor
- 18 inches from the top
- 30 inches from the front
- Zero inches from the back
Since a tent trailer is not insulated, in winter when temperatures drop below freezing we insert Reflectix panels in our windows. This helps quite a bit and takes very little time to do. When the Reflectix is not in use, the panels are stored under our bunk mattresses.