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Old 10-02-2014, 04:46 AM   #1
Eagleback
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Adding a switch for bath fan

Hello, all

This is my first post and our first Montana. it is a 2014 331rlt this is our 3rd camper in 5 years, as they say you only go bigger when you buy the next, so we are in the majority on that, anyway the 331 is a fantastic unit as with fit and finish and so many great reviews but I have a very serious problem with it as there is no switch for the fan on the wall in the bath only a light switch. now being my wife is only 4ft 10in and she cant reach it so I need to know if anyone has done a switch install, it doesn't look to hard to do the only thing is the bend from the wall to the vent fan and being able to snake the wire and how does the switch cover come off. basically I'm looking for some general info from all the Montana experience out there. and thank you.

John
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Old 10-02-2014, 05:36 AM   #2
TAKPAK
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Welcome to the forum John. First question I have on the fan; is it just one of the simple small fans that is in the corner of the vent, or is it a "Fantastic Fan" in that the blade takes up the whole vent area? If it is the prior, then adding a switch could be problematic depending on whether or not you can get through the ceiling and down the wall with a wire. The dealer could probably do it, but it will be expensive. If it's a Fantastic Fan, then they make remote controls for those. If it's not a Fantastic Fan, I would highly recommend having one put in. They are not cheap, but have many great features, such as great ventilation capabilities, reversible operation, rain sensing (auto close the cover) and more. Plus, some of the models have remote control. On one of our prior fiver's, it had the cheap little fan in the vent, I had it changed out to the Fantastic Fan, and never looked back. Our new 3725 came with the Fantastic, so no problem there, and the control for it is on the wall. Your choice. Or, just "down and dirty"....if it's one of the cheap fans with the little white button on the unit, get a stick to push the button on and off with! That Idea probably won't go over very well, though.....
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Old 10-02-2014, 05:48 AM   #3
jcurtis934
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This is something that should be answered by another owner of a 331rlt. The switch covers should snap off, so I have been told...but have not tried to take one off in my rig as I don't have the need to do so. Also this is going to depend on what vent fan is in your unit. If it is one of the cheap, small fan blade, single speed fans...then controlling with a wall switch is possible IF you have room in the wall for the switch. At a minimum, the switch would have to be rated to handle more amps than what the fan uses for safety. Getting the wiring from fan to wall is the BIG issue as you are thinking. My guess is that you are going to have to take apart the joints at the top of the wall and the side of the ceiling in order to accomplish what you wish to do. OR replace the vent with one that has a remote control such as the MaxxFan M4000K/M4500K (Camping World # 55476/55477), Fan-Tastic Vent (camping World # 37333), or the MaxxFan Deluxe (Camping World # 48933/48934). Not much help I know but some input. John
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Old 10-02-2014, 06:47 AM   #4
Eagleback
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Thank you for the great answers, and yes it is the cheapo fan and I never thought of putting the fantastic fan in. I do have one in the kitchen and it is the first high powered fan I have owned in a unit but I haven't had a chance to use it much due to the Naples Florida heat and the air has been on overtime. so I will look in to it again thanks for the welcome and the advice. hope to find more great info and ideas on the site.
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Old 10-02-2014, 08:14 AM   #5
hunts800
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I am confused. I have the same trailer, and the switch for the fantastic fan is the same for the bathroom located to the right of the sink, as the one in the control panel for the fan in the living room ceiling. It is a multiple function switch which controls fan speed, off/on, etc., and both fans have rain shut-off protection. So, my fans were not an "option", so I would assume your rig is the same.
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Old 10-02-2014, 04:26 PM   #6
Mark N.
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I am of the mind that a Fantastic Fan in a bathroom (Toilet closet?) is serious overkill! On my 3400RL anyway, it is like 20 sq. ft. or something in there. The existing little fan vents it just fine, and plenty quickly enough for such a small space.
I have the Fantastic Fan in my kitchen, and I'm putting one in the vent near the shower to quickly vent the moisture the shower produces and to cool the bedroom on warm summer evenings. But no-way I'm spending that much money to vent a 20 sq. ft. toilet closet! That's like using a howitzer to kill mosquitoes.
I see no reason why the existing rocker type switch couldn't be replaced with a simple pull chain switch a short spouse could easily reach, and it would cost about 5 dollars, vs. the $250 (minimum) for a Fantastic Fan.
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Old 10-02-2014, 04:55 PM   #7
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Yeah ... what he said.
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Old 10-03-2014, 05:22 AM   #8
jcurtis934
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Yes, replacing the switch with one that would allow operation by a pull chain would work IF one found a switch that would fit in the fan assembly and was safely installed...and turning on/off the fan by using an appropriate length of dowel rod would as well. It all comes down to what the owner of the trailer wants to do and what their skills are capable of. My opinion has always been that those cheap $10 ventline fans really don't belong in a Montana...but just my opinion. John
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Old 10-03-2014, 06:10 AM   #9
patc73
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We are currently having our High Country 318RE serviced before we leave on our first snowbird adventure. My husband requested that the dealership add a switch inside the "toilet closet" for the light in there only. The switch installed in the factory is on the outside of the bathroom wall, and also turns on the light in the hallway next to the tub/shower, so that when someone gets up in the middle of the night and turns on the light switch, both lights go on and it wakes up the other person/people sleeping! It'll be an improvement, I think.
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Old 10-03-2014, 11:12 AM   #10
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I use this in last 3 campers

http://www.ebay.com/itm/Logisys-RM02.../231041308446?
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Old 10-03-2014, 01:59 PM   #11
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These are all great ideas. the pull chain idea is a good one. but what I am disappointed about is this is a premium unit and I have to deal with an entry level Rv thing like the switch on the fan itself when they could have just put one on the wall. still very happy with the rv but this brings down my overall satisfaction a bit. and doesn't the club give keystone layout ideas when they design a new unit?
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Old 10-03-2014, 02:05 PM   #12
Mark N.
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I just thought of something: In my 3400RL, the light switch in the toilet closet controls the l.e.d. light puck only, which is very low current draw. I'll bet the fan could be wired into the same circuit as the light, therefore coming on whenever the light is on, without coming close to overloading the circuit. I'm not 100% sure what else is on that fuse, but that little fan motor won't be adding much amperage to the draw.
Even when boondocking, having both the l.e.d. light and fan on together for a few minutes would be an insignificant current draw on the batteries.
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Old 10-03-2014, 02:46 PM   #13
jsmitfl
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I wired in a switch on our other Montana. Haven't had time to do this one. You do have to pull the panel above the door and drill a couple holes in the wooden frame to chase a wire from the wall where the switch goes and then pull the ceiling garnish off to get access to the wires. I just left the factory fan switch in the hole and wired it along with the wire going to the new toggle. It's not a quick easy fix but can be done. I was surprised when we bought the new unit it wasn't done already too. Good luck
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Old 10-06-2014, 01:31 AM   #14
Eagleback
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Hello, All

These are all great ideas and I like the wire in to the light and the 12 volt wireless relay and I do believe the fantastic fan is an over kill. We very happy to hear all the Montana experience out there. my wife and I are very happy with our choice and we understand that there is a give and take when it comes to rv's. we started with a tent that went to a 21mb amerilite to a skyline koala 24rbk to the Montana 331rlt and all had most of the things but not all the things we wanted including the things we had to deal with and you need to make sure that the must haves out do the deal with's and if that happens you will be happy with your choice being it be a 5th wheel to a motorhome to a popup. because when you get down to it the experience and the good times and the story's and memories are what you take away from living the life style that we have chosen and in the end we would not change it for anything. Again thank you for the reply's.

John and Lisa.
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