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Old 01-18-2014, 05:48 PM   #1
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How cold is too cold--second thread

I did not want to take from original thread "how cold is to cold".

Before i leave for trip to Phoenix in late Feb I would like to carry motorhome to Freightliner/Cummins Service Center for yearly maintenance and I like to leave it for several days to give plenty of time for the usual list of things I want done and work drop-off/pickup into my schedule. I can watch weather forecast for extreme freezing temperatures, however in a 7-10 day period in NETX temperatures this time of year will usually drop below freezing at some point....say a couple of nights at 27-29 then up in forties or fifties during day. Service Center does not have room to put all vehicles inside of course and does not have shore power for all those left.

What do you consider safe temperature outside to guarantee no harm behind compartment doors? I am thinking even 27 for a few hours in the morning would not translate to damage to pipes behind a compartment door....comments/opinions appreciated.
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Old 01-18-2014, 06:09 PM   #2
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27*F for a few hours is fine; the trailers in our lot have been fine. But that last really cold air was too much.
You might want to winterize just in case.
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Old 01-18-2014, 06:37 PM   #3
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You could drain all tanks and blow out the plumbing lines with air pressure, don't forget to drain the water heater. You probably would be O.K. if it drops to the upper 20šs for a few hours, especially if you get sun during the day, but draining all liquids would give peace of mind.
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Old 01-18-2014, 08:00 PM   #4
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We took a trip last February where when we were south of Tuscan, AZ, we had snow on the orange tree in front of our RV. As we were running the furnace, we had no problems. We never put any water into the water tank and just hooked up and disconnected the water hose each night (and left the water heater on). Our forced air furnace pumps air into the black water and water pump bay. There are many threads on this forum about winter camping. I say be careful and have a great time!
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Old 01-18-2014, 08:56 PM   #5
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Yes, I know I could drain tanks and/or winterize but I am wanting to avoid such since I am soon to take a trip and when at home I am plugged into shore and usually run AquaHot. Just searching for opinions as to what temps behind compartment doors might get to if after midnight temperature outside was around 28, but warmed up in daytime. For next week, there is one night that forecast has temperature down below 32. Daytimes temps upper forties and fifties. bill
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Old 01-18-2014, 09:01 PM   #6
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Not sure on cargo bay temps. Do you have solar panel? Are your batteries in good shape?
If yes to either, top off your LP before dropping it off, turn on the t-stat for furnace (if you have one) to a low temp. Maybe 45*F. And tell them to LEAVE IT ON.
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Old 01-18-2014, 10:20 PM   #7
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I think I will leave instructions to crank generator on the forecast low temp nights. I have HydroHot so can set furnace low and let generator take care of it.
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Old 01-19-2014, 08:58 AM   #8
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When I leave the coach where I can't plug it in, I set the temps at 50* and set the gen for auto start. The solar panels take care of the batteries during the day and the gen at night. When they take your coach into the shop in the day, it won't n need heat, but when outside over night the gen takes over. Another option would be to just drain the water lines and the water pump and turn on all the faucets. That is good down to the mid 20s. Any water in low spots has room to expand if it should drop to 20* and freeze. No need to drain the water tanks, as their big volume will not freeze in those temps for such a short time.
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Old 01-19-2014, 03:35 PM   #9
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Quote:
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When I leave the coach where I can't plug it in, I set the temps at 50* and set the gen for auto start. The solar panels take care of the batteries during the day and the gen at night. When they take your coach into the shop in the day, it won't n need heat, but when outside overnight the gen takes over. Another option would be to just drain the water lines and the water pump and turn on all the faucets. That is good down to the mid 20s. Any water in low spots has room to expand if it should drop to 20* and freeze. No need to drain the water tanks, as their big volume will not freeze in those temps for such a short time.
Good idea....I had forgot that I do not have to drain tanks. I believe that is what I will do....open faucets, turn on water pump, and be done with it for possible drop below 32, probably 27 at most and to 40-50 during days (more when in shop).

I do not have solar but knowing it will be in shop part of time assures me to good warm-up, and days are not predicted to be below freezing.

Thanks all.

Bill
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Old 01-19-2014, 04:24 PM   #10
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Bill,
You of course realize that if you turn on your faucets and pump, the only thing you'll accomplish is pumping water from your fresh water tank to the gray water tank. The previous poster said to drain the pump, he didn't say to run it.
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Old 01-19-2014, 05:49 PM   #11
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Bill,
You of course realize that if you turn on your faucets and pump, the only thing you'll accomplish is pumping water from your fresh water tank to the gray water tank. The previous poster said to drain the pump, he didn't say to run it.
Yes...just discovered that. Although I opened low points( excluding fresh water) and sent air through lines, I still had water in pump. The best I can tell the ONLY way to drain water pump is to either drain all water from fresh water tank and turn on water pump for a few seconds or disconnect water pump which I believe not the way I want to go. Guess best thing to do is drain fresh water and open ALL low points and faucets...and maybe add a blow of air. I feel I am getting paranoid about a possibly non-issue. A night or two of 27-29 is important, but behind compartment doors is probably no critical issue. MH will be about 90 miles away and I just do not want to worry. Funny thing is that I have been running HydroHot for several months to save all this and probably burned quarter tank of diesel, now I decide to do something much less expensive. At 68, I still learn.

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Old 01-19-2014, 06:43 PM   #12
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Here in AL we often have days like you described with high in 40 or 50 and lows in upper 20's. For 4 years all I have done is to put a thick beach towel in the wet bay. The inside stays well above freezing due to sun and above freezing temps during the day. I have a temp monitor so I can keep watch from the house. Never any issue doing that. Only if the temp goes in low 20's do I add a trouble light in the wet bay and a small heater inside. Teen's I turn on coach heat to 45.
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Old 01-19-2014, 07:30 PM   #13
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Here in AL we often have days like you described with high in 40 or 50 and lows in upper 20's. For 4 years all I have done is to put a thick beach towel in the wet bay. The inside stays well above freezing due to sun and above freezing temps during the day. I have a temp monitor so I can keep watch from the house. Never any issue doing that. Only if the temp goes in low 20's do I add a trouble light in the wet bay and a small heater inside. Teen's I turn on coach heat to 45.
I think I am overthinking the whole situation. When on shore at home, I do add towels to water compartment however I do have concern to the "water manifold" compartment where there are lots of pipes. there the thin compartment door and a plastic cover is all that protects pipes and water pump. I do think it would actually take a very low temperature or several days of just below freezing to cause much damage. Unfortunately there is not room between door and plastic to be able to add much insulation.

I do not how easy a water pump is to freeze, but not something I want to find out. Good news in all this search today I found that the WP was easy to get to if every needed.

bill
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Old 01-22-2014, 09:43 AM   #14
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Don't forget draining water filter and ice maker lines

I normally do not winterize my RV as I use it a lot during winter. While in Mississippi the temp does drop into 20's but will warm up well above freezing in the day normally. I keep furnace set at 45 deg. and will put light in water compartment when temps go lower or will stay below freezing for several days. I have only had one problem and it was when I cut off Norcold refrigerator to defrost during cold weather. When I next used the RV, the water valve to icemaker had frozen and ruptured. No problem normally in 20-30 deg temps if refrigerator is left on due to heat from refrig and appeared to have some heat trace. Also had friend who had water filter rupture as he did not remove and drain when draining lines and tank.
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