Gas Heater For Caravans – We Installed A Truma Gas Heater

If you want to camp in cold conditions then a gas heater for caravans is a great way to keep warm. We installed a Truma gas heater in our Jayco All-Terrain caravan and we couldn’t be happier with the result.

About The Truma VarioHeat Gas Heater For Caravan

The Truma VarioHeat eco is a latest generation compact and lightweight gas heater. It’s compact size means it can be installed in a lot of caravans where space is at a premium. It is a very powerful gas heater for caravans and heats your vehicle to the required temperature very quickly. Better yet with the control panel you can choose the temperature you want and the Truma VarioHeat gas heater will maintain that set temperature for you. Just like a ducted system at home would do. The control panel has many functions that allow you to set the heater to your precise requirements.

Truma Varioheat Installed Under Bed In A Jayco All Terrain

Truma Varioheat Installed Under Bed In A Jayco All Terrain

It has a boost function to heat up your caravan or motorhome quickly. Select night mode on the Truma VarioHeat eco to operate the heater at the lowest level in its 1300 Watt mode so you can sleep. We have used the night mode setting and it is very quiet in operation. No louder than a 12v fan. The night mode is also easy on your caravans 12v power source when camping off grid.

  • Ideal for motorhomes, caravans and vans
  • Powerful gas caravan heater with two output levels
  • Automatic regulation of the heating output depending on the set temperature
  • Lightweight and requires little space
  • Heat distribution in the caravan or motorhome via air outlets
  • Can easily set the exact required room temperature
  • High air throughput for very quick heating in boost mode
  • Quiet and battery friendly operation when in night mode

Cost To Install Truma VarioHeat Caravan Gas Heater In Our Jayco All Terrain

We were offered the option of installing the Truma VarioHeat caravan gas heater when we ordered or Jayco All-Terrain from Jayco Albury. At time of build it would have cost us an additional $2600 to have it installed. I asked Amanda quite a few times if she wanted a heater installed and she said “no – we aren’t softcocks”. Apparently we are because after a few trips in very cold conditions suddenly she wanted a heater!

We had ours installed by Jayco Albury while the Jayco All-Terrain was in having it’s 12 month service done. They have done a very good job on the installation. It is very neat and tidy and everything is well secured. The only thing they didn’t do was seal where the gas pipe enters from underneath the van however a couple of minutes and a bit of silicone and I had that sorted. All up the cost of installation was $3600. Could have saved a load by doing it myself and getting our plumber to sign off but I’m getting lazy! Below is the breakdown of costs for the Truma VarioHeat to be supplied and fitted by Jayco Albury.

Supply Truma VarioHeat Gas Heater Kit  $2539.05
Install Truma VarioHeat Gas Heater Kit  $694.95
Gasfitter Test & Approve  $375.00
Total Price  $3609.90

Are We Happy With The Truma VarioHeat Gas Heater Installed In Our Jayco?

Yes and yes! We have found it to be really good. Pretty quiet inside the van when running and almost silent when running on night mode. No sound at all outside. Warmed the van up quite quickly. It only runs every now and then as it maintains the set temperature. Amanda is happy so that’s a good thing. Overall I’m very impressed and highly recommend the Truma VarioHeat gas heater for caravans. We are also very impressed with the installation performed by Jayco Albury.

New Gas Compliance Plate After Installing Truma VarioHeat Gas Heater

New Gas Compliance Plate After Installing Truma VarioHeat Gas Heater

Caravan Diesel Heaters Vs Caravan Gas Heaters

Just because it’s cold outside doesn’t mean you can’t go camping in cold weather. Where we live the nights get down to around zero or below most nights between May and the end of September. If you have a caravan heater then there is no reason to not camp in the cold. When you are looking to buy a caravan heater the number one question to answer is diesel or gas? Fortunately there is no right or wrong answer. As with most caravan appliances the answer relies on a few factors. Your set-up, how you prefer to travel and how cold it gets down to where you usually go.

Pros For Diesel Heaters

  • The fuel source is readily available. You will be able to take advantage of this benefit if you already own a diesel vehicle
  • The caravan diesel heater is highly efficient and consumes very little fuel
  • It is flexible in terms of installation. As opposed to gas heaters, diesel units have an exhaust pipe that runs through the floor of the vehicle, instead of a flue that runs through the wall. In this way, you have more flexibility for installation
    DIY is easier without the need for a qualified tradesperson
  • You can pre-warm the interior of an RV while you’re driving with a diesel heater. Especially useful when you arrive in the high country and the temperature has already dropped!
  • Clean dry heat. Caravan diesel heaters produce a clean dry heat

Truma Varioheat Installed In A Jayco This Is The control Panel

Truma Varioheat Installed In A Jayco This Is The control Panel

Cons For Diesel Heaters

  • Require a separate fuel tank. For caravans this is a definite drawback of diesel heaters meaning an extra cost. However for diesel engine motorhomes the fuel supply is already in place
  • Much louder than gas heaters. Noise can be minimised by buying a quality unit and ensuring they are installed properly

Pros For Gas Heaters

  • Fuel source is already in place. Your caravan will already have a gas cooker, water heater and maybe a three-way fridge. The gas is already installed and ready to go. If you install a diesel heater you need a separate fuel tank
  • Runs independently from the vehicle. The heater runs straight from a gas bottle. Provides an economical heat source
  • Very quiet to run. Only the fan creates any noise. For example, the Truma Vario Eco Gas Heater boasts near silent operation for the perfect night’s sleep

Truma Varioheat In Single Bed Jayco All Terrain Inlet And Outlet Positions

Truma Varioheat In Single Bed Jayco All Terrain Inlet And Outlet Positions

Cons for Gas Heaters

  • Regulatory requirements. A big additional installation cost for gas heaters is regulation compliance. They must be installed by a licensed gas fitter to meet gas regulations. For example a gas heater flue can’t be installed too close to a window, door, other gas appliance inlet or outlet etc. Depending upon your caravans layout this may rule out installation of a gas heater. It’s worth remembering that Truma offers extremely compact gas heaters. They can be installed in a range of places such as under a bed or inside a cupboard.
  • Increased gas usage. Gas heaters for caravans are becoming more efficient. An increased demand on your gas supply could become an issue if you are away from towns with gas refilling options. Having said that gas refills or swap and go locations are available in many places across the country

Truma Varioheat Gas Heater For Caravans Gas Exhaust Flue Vent

Truma Varioheat Gas Heater For Caravans Gas Exhaust Flue Vent


We often camp in the NSW Riverina where we live and sometimes in the Snowy Mountains and it gets bitterly cold during winter. We love a campfire on a cold night but aren’t so impressed with freezing our tits off when it’s time to go to bed. A camping favourite of ours is Bethungra Dam and when the wind whips through there we are glad to have installed a gas heater in our caravan. Just get one!