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Old 09-16-2019, 07:20 AM   #1
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Winter Living Prep: SLC Full Time: Tips?

Hi,
I have a 2007 Newmar Mountaine Aire. 4528. My rig is in SLC for winter and to shred!

Hereís my preliminary checklist, let me know if Iím missing stuff!

1. Gen: Oil and fuel filter backups. Oil and drain container with pump if needed. Use pressurized air to clean gen, compartment and surroundings.

2. Windows: Not sure what insulation and tape to use to prevent pulling decals or damaging gelcoat. Please advise!

3. Aqua Hot: Serviced 8/15, cleaned intake manifold 9/13. Extra boiler antifreeze and pre-mixed. Transfer pump for aqua hot fluids.

4. Water: heated water hose, extra filters for water unit, drinking unit and exterior filter system.

5. Grey water and black water tank treatments

6. Two space heaters (electric)


Questions:
1. When snow comes, should I retract or just get up and knock it off the slide outs each time? Does the ambient temp of the coach melt the snow on the roof?


2. Block heater: can I live this plugged in but turned off on in the cab? How long does it need to heat to make a start at freezing or subfreezing. (Aqua hot recommends and hour prior to starting to transfer fluid to heater if using non blink heater)


3. Snow: I have a dog and also go to and from, whatís the best way to handle direct in the entrance etc with extra clothes? Thinking I might need to build a temp exterior entrance (room)


4. Tires (anything needed?)

5. Window weatherstripping? Do I need to treat this?


Thanks!
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Old 09-17-2019, 07:19 PM   #2
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Hey Jenkins. We almost have a lot in common!

I have an RV in SLC as well. But it is winterized in a storage facility.
I have a home in Draper. If you are staying at the mountain view rv park, then you are not too far away.
I also shred. I have the Icon pass and will spend a lot of time at Solitude this year.

I have been in my RV during cold weather (18 Degrees), but have not lived in my RV for long periods. So, I really cannot answer your questions.

But, for the block heater, just plug it in (back by the engine). Then you can flip the switch to turn on and off. I always run the block heater over night before starting the engine on cold mornings.

When I see RVs lived in during the winter, they always use Styrofoam sheets to contain the space under the coach. Heat loss from the floor seems to be the biggest issue.

The only other suggestion would be to treat the diesel fuel with the white bottle of diesel kleen and to add a biocide. I am expecting that you will need to run the aquahot and that will bring moisture into the fuel tank as the tank fills air.
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Old 09-17-2019, 07:46 PM   #3
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Welcome to the forum.
You will find what you need in this sticky for winter set up and if you go camping that to. Follow all links to ever more info that you need.
All jacks up and slides closed, use block heater over night or day before leaving and have at least 110 plugged in to keep your batteries fully charger by your BIRD system. Check batteries for water level over their plates.
All links in my signature will have more info.
Have a safe winter.
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Old 09-18-2019, 10:50 AM   #4
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I need to replace the Thermostat sensors, there are 3. Any idea who sells them?
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Old 09-18-2019, 12:54 PM   #5
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We have spent three winters at 7000' in Flagstaff in our 2004 MADP 4016. Very similar conditions, maybe a little more sun but still over 100" of snow. Your list is pretty good. We keep levelers down, slides out. I am very proactive at clearing snow off the roof and slide tops as soon as the snow storm is over. Freeze/thaw cycles are strong enough to erode mountain ranges, don't give the snow an opportunity to melt, get into little cracks and freeze again. Ice is very bad for your RV!

Also, just one foot of wet snow on a 40' coach weighs about 8000lb or 4 tons. Think about that fact for a while.

We have found parking with the passenger side facing south is best to maximize solar gain, otherwise, point the windshield south. At night, close down the windows with reflectex, remove it during the day to let in light and sunshine. You don't want to feel like you are living in a dark cave. Use as much passive solar as you can.

A heated water hose works great, note, they recommend laying it flat on the ground, not coiled. We leave it connected all winter, same with the sewer hose. Never any problems with either. Make sure the water spigot has heat tape/cable installed.

Monitor inside and outside humidity and temperature. Where we are, the ambient humidity is pretty low so we use a small counter top dehumidifier. The only condensation we get is on the inside of the windshield. I put rolled up towels on the dash to catch any water drips and wipe it dry every morning.

We have a propane furnace in our coach and have a big 100 gallon propane tank outside and they check and top it off every couple weeks. We use a heated mattress pad and sleep well. We also have an electric heater with a fan to use as needed. I keep another heater (with mechanical controls!) in the basement and plug it into a Thermocube in case there is a problem with the basement heat.

You will get a lot of well meaning advice from people who have not spent a winter in the mountains and are just telling what they heard or read on the internet. Devalue their advice and pay more attention to those who have actually done it because you will get a lot of information of questionable quality. It is easy to spend a winter in a RV located in the mountains and be very comfortable.
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Old 09-18-2019, 01:29 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Utah_Jenkins View Post
Hi,
I have a 2007 Newmar Mountaine Aire. 4528. My rig is in SLC for winter and to shred!

Hereís my preliminary checklist, let me know if Iím missing stuff!

1. Gen: Oil and fuel filter backups. Oil and drain container with pump if needed. Use pressurized air to clean gen, compartment and surroundings.

2. Windows: Not sure what insulation and tape to use to prevent pulling decals or damaging gelcoat. Please advise!

3. Aqua Hot: Serviced 8/15, cleaned intake manifold 9/13. Extra boiler antifreeze and pre-mixed. Transfer pump for aqua hot fluids.

4. Water: heated water hose, extra filters for water unit, drinking unit and exterior filter system.

5. Grey water and black water tank treatments

6. Two space heaters (electric)


Questions:
1. When snow comes, should I retract or just get up and knock it off the slide outs each time? Does the ambient temp of the coach melt the snow on the roof?


2. Block heater: can I live this plugged in but turned off on in the cab? How long does it need to heat to make a start at freezing or subfreezing. (Aqua hot recommends and hour prior to starting to transfer fluid to heater if using non blink heater)


3. Snow: I have a dog and also go to and from, whatís the best way to handle direct in the entrance etc with extra clothes? Thinking I might need to build a temp exterior entrance (room)


4. Tires (anything needed?)

5. Window weatherstripping? Do I need to treat this?


Thanks!
Lot of GOOD ADVICE HERE; I highlighted a few in Blue that are IMHO Critical

Quote:
Originally Posted by FatChance View Post
We have spent three winters at 7000' in Flagstaff. Very similar conditions, maybe a little more sun but still over 100" of snow. Your list is pretty good. We keep levelers down, slides out. I am very proactive at clearing snow off the roof and slide tops as soon as the snow storm is over. Freeze/thaw cycles are strong enough to erode mountain ranges, don't give the snow an opportunity to melt, get into little cracks and freeze again. Ice is very bad for your RV!

Also, just one foot of wet snow on a 40' coach weighs about 8000lb or 4 tons. Think about that fact for a while.

We have found parking with the passenger side facing south is best to maximize solar gain, otherwise, point the windshield south. At night, close down the windows with reflectex, remove it during the day to let in light and sunshine. You don't want to feel like you are living in a dark cave. Use as much passive solar as you can.

A heated water hose works great, note, they recommend laying it flat on the ground, not coiled. We leave it connected all winter, same with the sewer hose. Never any problems with either. Make sure the water spigot has heat tape/cable installed.

Monitor inside and outside humidity and temperature. Where we are, the ambient humidity is pretty low so we use a small counter top dehumidifier. The only condensation we get is on the inside of the windshield. I put rolled up towels on the dash to catch any water drips and wipe it dry every night.

We have a propane furnace in our coach and have a big 100 gallon propane tank outside and they check and top it off every couple weeks. We use a heated mattress pad and sleep well. We also have an electric heater with a fan to use as needed. I keep another heater (with mechanical controls!) in the basement and plug it into a Thermocube in case there is a problem with the basement heat.

You will get a lot of well meaning advice from people who have not spent a winter in the mountains and are just telling what they heard or read on the internet. Devalue their advice and pay more attention to those who have actually done it because you will get a lot of information of questionable quality. Is is easy to spend a winter in a RV located in the mountains and be very comfortable.
Personal notes that I'd add

I always felt the front window was the Biggest issue for Heat Loss - So it was always headed to the SOUTH to get heat GAIN - and it was always Insulated with https://www.homedepot.com/p/Reflecti...8025/100052556 the 48 " almost does the entire window cut some for the Bottom before the towes and it shoud hold things to the top - in case you need to mend - https://www.homedepot.com/p/Nashua-T...7792/100030120

We never used Reflectix on the other windows as it was just a pain - we survived - 17 for 10 nights straight in Golden, CO - Tune up the Hydro Hot now not when it fails - you do not want to loose it in a storm - Fill the Diesel Tank to the top - Keep a light in the wet bay just in case - a few backup heaters are a good thing - Really good days you might hold the Grey water and the Black - frozen is more than a pain - it is the end of the hose - couple of other notes here - keeping the basement warm helps with the floor in the coach - But the Rear of the Coach has no Basement - so it is Cooler

I'm sure more will come to mind but just keep up with it every day - never let the snow get ahead of you - -

Best of Luck - You can Do it


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Old 09-18-2019, 02:52 PM   #7
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Let me expand on using a back up electric heater(s) in the basement. Most important, get a heater with mechanical controls. If you get one with digital controls, it will not turn back on if you lose power or use a Thermocube. Try this: turn on your electric heater, then unplug it, then plug it back in. Did it come back on? If not, do not use it as a backup. I also prefer a heater with a fan to better circulate heat, especially for a back up heater in the basement.

The Thermocube will switch on power to the heater if the temperature gets below about 35* and shuts off at again at about 45*. Since it switches off power, a heater with mechanical controls is crucial.

If you have a MSW inverter, they do not work well with resistant electrical heaters (floor heaters, heated mattress pads, etc) with digital controls, so if you use these devices, make sure they have mechanical controls also! They also last a lot longer before burning out than digital controlled units when on MSW inverted power.
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Old 09-18-2019, 03:09 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by FatChance View Post
Let me expand on using a back up electric heater(s) in the basement. Most important, get a heater with mechanical controls. If you get one with digital controls, it will not turn back on if you lose power or use a Thermocube. Try this: turn on your electric heater, then unplug it, then plug it back in. Did it come back on? If not, do not use it as a backup. I also prefer a heater with a fan to better circulate heat, especially for a back up heater in the basement.

The Thermocube will switch on power to the heater if the temperature gets below about 35* and shuts off at again at about 45*. Since it switches off power, a heater with mechanical controls is crucial.

If you have a MSW inverter, they do not work well with resistant electrical heaters (floor heaters, heated mattress pads, etc) with digital controls, so if you use these devices, make sure they have mechanical controls also! They also last a lot longer before burning out than digital controlled units when on MSW inverted power.
Good info;


https://www.amazon.com/Farm-Innovato...8836736&sr=8-1

More options - BUT - KISS works here - https://www.amazon.com/s?k=thermocube&ref=nb_sb_noss_2

Being that you are in Utah - "Greatest Snow on Earth" - also usually lightest - an Electric blower might help when climbing up on the Roof to clear it - Craigslist is the best source here - or if you have one of those new Big Battery blowers - https://www.homedepot.com/p/EGO-168-...5800/303703959

Enjoy the Snow - We did it for 10 years in Utah, while the Kids where in High school - ended with College Sports conflicts - One son lives in Colorado so still has the snow.

Make sure you report back,
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Old 09-18-2019, 04:50 PM   #9
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FatChance: "We have found parking with the passenger side facing south is best to maximize solar gain, otherwise, point the windshield south. At night, close down the windows with reflectex, remove it during the day to let in light and sunshine. You don't want to feel like you are living in a dark cave. Use as much passive solar as you can".

Good advice. Passive solar warmth does wonders.... and light. Your dog will surely follow the sun around for his naps.
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Old 09-18-2019, 07:03 PM   #10
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Another advantage of facing the passenger side to the south is that you get the morning sun straight into the east facing windshield when and where you most need it at that time of day.

Our coach has a passenger side dining area so the most windows are on the south side. One other advantage is that the entrance door is facing the south, maximizing snow melt and minimizing ice build up around the door and on your steps.

Oh, the dogs do follow the sun around the interior of the coach.
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Old 09-18-2019, 08:34 PM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by azSkier View Post
When I see RVs lived in during the winter, they always use Styrofoam sheets to contain the space under the coach. Heat loss from the floor seems to be the biggest issue.
Years ago, when we had a converted bus, we used straw bales arranged around the perimeter to "contain the space under the coach." They worked well during a couple of winters in Northwest Washington state. And, they were relatively inexpensive.

Keeping the wind from blowing under the coach will go a long way toward keep it warm inside.

TJ
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Old 09-18-2019, 08:49 PM   #12
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One of our neighbors has cinder blocks stacked around the perimeter under their 5th wheel. We get enough snow that it builds up around the perimeter of our coach to block much of the wind. Hay bales can attract rodents looking for a winter shelter to escape the cold winter temperatures.
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Old 09-18-2019, 08:56 PM   #13
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One of our neighbors has cinder blocks stacked around the perimeter under their 5th wheel. We get enough snow that it builds up around the perimeter of our coach to block much of the wind. Hay bales can attract rodents looking for a winter shelter to escape the cold winter temperatures.
We did wrap each bale in heavy plastic sheeting and taped the seams closed with duct tape. Never had a rodent issue. YMMV

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Old 09-19-2019, 11:30 AM   #14
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Very good thread more up to date, will add to the winter camping section of winterizing, thanks to everyone.
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