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No drop holes & large vent in the door

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I have a 2009 Freedom caravan.

 

In the door, at the bottom is a large type vent (Approx. 35 x 15 cm.) which was originally fitted with a sliding section to close it to restrict air flow. The slider part has been removed because European legislation dictates it, so I am told. This means that if the awing is not erected and the wind is blowing on the door its rather draughty to say the least.

 

There are no gas drop holes in the van which is odd. If you suggest drilling some bear in mind the whole floor is GRP, if that has bearing on the subject.

 

Ideally, I would like to block the vent entirely but common sense says I shouldn't but why not? I don't see many UK caravans with vents in the door - or do I? Its something most of us don't go and take notice of. Well, I don't - till now.

 

What are your thoughts please?

 

 

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My caravan is the same.  I have sourced spares on the web and they are also missing the sliding part.  It seems to be a non-standard size.  there is a second,top vent in one of the overhead lockers that has its slide but this is smaller and a different shape.

 

image.png.39a2b18385de5d063f592493441ff20a.png

 

https://www.niewiadow.com.pl/pl/c/elementy-plastikowe-do-przyczep/15

Edited by kelper
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From observation only it seems the amount of vents in vans has reduced, in that our 1991 and 2002 vans had generous provision, but the current 2008, a bigger van physically has much less? 

 

None have had door vents, but the older ones had two or three quite large floor vents, the current one has just two about 40 mm diameter bore plastic strainer like cones.

The earliest of the vans had two wall vents in the bathroom and all have had a small amount of ventilation integrated into the roof hatches. The most recent with several voids moulded into the "glass" skylight where it abuts the seal, to form vents.

Certainly the most recent van has been remarkably free of draughts, which was not the case with the earlier designs.

 

I have never considered the design intent of the floor vents were specifically "gas drop outs". But simply vents, that given that hot air rises, so exiting the roof vents, the floor ones would function primarily as air inlets.

 

 

Edited by JTQ
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The area of the vents is specified and is for the gas cooker (The fridge and Truma each has its own air vent).

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Our fridge is in a sealed box so not connected with the van's interior, and the current Alde is provided with a balanced flue, as were the various Truma heaters and boilers we have had. Except, I believe the "S" series Truma had a fresh air bleed.

 

Therefore, I see the vents provided for these playing no part in the living space other than the Truma's fresh air bleed?

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A gas oven and or hob require a minimum level of fixed ventilation.

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9 minutes ago, kelper said:

The area of the vents is specified and is for the gas cooker (The fridge and Truma each has its own air vent).

 

Okay thanks. I have no cooker in mine, just a hob but same thing I suspect why the vent is there. Surely there must be an alternative vent arrangement that doesn't let in a hurricane. Any ideas?

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An induction hob?

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Just now, kelper said:

An induction hob?

 

Now we are cooking on gas  :D

 

HA! So if I block the door vent where else can I put one?

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If you don't cook with gas you could block the vent completely.  But if you have the awning rigged, wouldn't you cook with the door open anyway?  

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50 minutes ago, kelper said:

 there is a second,top vent in one of the overhead lockers that has its slide but this is smaller and a different shape.

 

 

 

Fat lot of good they are being in a locker

6 minutes ago, kelper said:

If you have the awning rigged, wouldn't you cook with the door open anyway?  

 

 

Not if it is cold outside.

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The regulations have changed over time, the requirements for different kit varies and the solutions vary (most modern rooflights are vented even when fastened down) , so there are plenty of variations out there.

However the need for ventilation remains the same, it's just how much and how it is achieved that varies.

Most modern vans have floor vents, gas drop holes, vented rooflights with totally separate fridge vents, some older vans had door and wall vents.

I see no reason why an older van with a door vent should not be upgraded to a more modern system, but I do not have details of how many or how big the vents should be.

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Just now, Stevan said:

 .......................................  but I do not have details of how many or how big the vents should be.

 

Thanks Stevan. Good point. That's the next stop research wise.

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1 hour ago, JTQ said:

The most recent with several voids moulded into the "glass" skylight where it abuts the seal, to form vents.

 

 

 

Not on my Freedom. Good point though. I wonder if I changed the roof vent to a more modern type with vents if that would meet current regulations.

Edited by BOAC
Insert MY

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My roof vent is drafty by design - it has no rubber seal and never did.

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4 minutes ago, kelper said:

My roof vent is drafty by design - it has no rubber seal and never did.

 

 

Bout time I changed mine. Do you have gas drop holes in your van?

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The drop holes aren’t for ventilation, they are to allow gas to escape if you have a leak. Gas ( propane or butane) are heavier than air. The ventilation grills are to ensure no build up of co2 or in worst case co. May be worth contacting Freedom caravans and see what they say.

Edited by Bobsandy
More info
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What do drop holes look like?

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5 minutes ago, kelper said:

What do drop holes look like?

 

Here are the two under my fridge

 

1006397108_Dropholes.jpg.714889705d4f16fe5c7080b02fbc49e2.jpg

 

They are just cut into the floor and covered with plastic mesh

Edited by Jaydug
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Hello Kelper and others,

 

Wading through HERE I have worked out that all we need is a 10 cm x 10 cm vent in the Freedom to satisfy gas regulations for safety and air circulation although that is for natural gas and not and since LPG is an (Quote) "energy-rich fuel source with a higher calorific value per unit than other commonly used fuels, including coal, natural gas, diesel, petrol, fuel oils and biomass-derived alcohols" which means that the vent area might have to be larger than 10 x 10 cm. 

 

For a roof vent something like this would be ideal

 

 If someone reading this has the specs on a roof vent that has surrounding vents when the lid is closed please let me know the square mm of the vents. I can't find specs on the internet. Thanks

 

 

 

4 hours ago, kelper said:

What do drop holes look like?

 

Something like THESE but there should be metal ones somewhere to stop mice from chewing them

 

 

Edited by BOAC
Gas info

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4 hours ago, Bobsandy said:

The drop holes aren’t for ventilation, they are to allow gas to escape if you have a leak. Gas ( propane or butane) are heavier than air. The ventilation grills are to ensure no build up of co2 or in worst case co. May be worth contacting Freedom caravans and see what they say.

 

Thanks for the suggestion but no go on that front.

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This is taken from the boat safety scheme but I think would be a good guide.

 

image.png.9f78829c200c3b05255ca735e7127701.png

 

If a ventilator includes a flyscreen the percentage opening would have to be factored in.  The total area of ventilation should be divided as evenly as practicable between high and low openings.  The area can include any gaps that cannot be closed off without tools.

 

My caravan sleeps two plus dog.  The oven and hob are Thetford 700 series rated at 3.1kW input.  My two-burner hob is a Dometic 2.6kW input.

 

my required ventilation area is 14,000 mm2.  The floor level vents should total 7,000mm2.  This is about 84mm x 84mm if unobstructed. 

Edited by kelper

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These Polish caravans are not designed with the same ventilation system as British caravans. You cant start messing with a ventilation system for which you have no knowledge, and if you do you risk additional condensation, and breathing your own fumes. With a dog and two people in the caravan, Gordon Bennet! If you feel the air flow (by the way airflow is not your enemy - it is your friend) is excessive you can easily reduce it by using tin foil or even cling film as a temporary measure, but don't block it off permanently (the reason why the makers removed the adjustable vent cover was obviously to stop you doing that). Gas drop holes will be located in the floor beneath gas equipment and gas connections, and these are nothing to do with ventilation. 

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7 hours ago, Ern said:

These Polish caravans are not designed with the same ventilation system as British caravans. You cant start messing with a ventilation system for which you have no knowledge, and if you do you risk additional condensation, and breathing your own fumes. With a dog and two people in the caravan, Gordon Bennet! If you feel the air flow (by the way airflow is not your enemy - it is your friend) is excessive you can easily reduce it by using tin foil or even cling film as a temporary measure, but don't block it off permanently (the reason why the makers removed the adjustable vent cover was obviously to stop you doing that). Gas drop holes will be located in the floor beneath gas equipment and gas connections, and these are nothing to do with ventilation. 

 

 

Cheers Ern. Thanks for your advice. I can assure you that there are no gas drop holes in mine. I feel that a new roof vent would not go amiss though. What I now going to do is wait until the NEC in February and see if I can emulate the ventilation system of the newest models. That's the only way to be safe I guess.

 

Kelper, the new models of Freedom vans have not got a sliding vent in the door.

Edited by BOAC
Add info

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This 15 year old topic indicates the required ventilation area https://www.practicalcaravan.com/forum/general/1203-floor-vents

 

BS/EN721/1999 as ammended 2004,(Leisure Accommodation Vehicles Safety Ventilation Requirements), states; minimum low level ventilation for vans in this case with 5 to 10 square metres of floor space is 1500sq mm or in real terms an opening of 100x15mm which is but a fraction of the standard door vents capacity. High level ventilation requires more and in this case it is 10,000sq mm which should be taken care of by the permanent ventilation of one closed rooflight which is of the order of 12000mm square even with the blind shut.

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