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Old 11-18-2014, 09:08 PM   #1
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Traveling in Potential Winter Weather - Need Advice..

In early December my wife and I will be driving our new-to-us Cobra Monterey 24' motorhome cross country from northern California to our new home in Western North Carolina. We plan to take the southern route of I-40 to minimize our exposure to winter weather. However with the way the weather is shaping up already, chances are we will encounter some snow and ice during our journey.

I have a few questions I am hoping you kind folks can help me with.
- What should I carry in terms of snow chains / cables / snow socks in case we get caught in snow and ice? Is there a particular brand you can recommend for a 24' motorhome that is effective and most 'easy' to install?
- How many tires out of the six on the MH should I plan to chain / cable / sock?
- Do I need to heat the water tank or pipes to prevent pipes from bursting, and if so, what products should I use?

Thanks very much in advance for your help.
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Old 11-18-2014, 09:15 PM   #2
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If you are not on a tight schedule, just stop whenever the weather gets bad and hang out until it's over. If the snow is so bad that driving on an Interstate is tricky, you really want to stop regardless of schedule.


You do have the choice of winterizing the RV with Anti-Freeze, and just using bathroom services at rest stops, restaurants, or campgrounds as necessary. It will have to be done at the end of your trip anyway, unless you will be storing in a heated inside area.
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Old 11-18-2014, 09:22 PM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Newrider View Post
In early December my wife and I will be driving our new-to-us Cobra Monterey 24' motorhome cross country from northern California to our new home in Western North Carolina. We plan to take the southern route of I-40 to minimize our exposure to winter weather. However with the way the weather is shaping up already, chances are we will encounter some snow and ice during our journey.

I have a few questions I am hoping you kind folks can help me with.
- What should I carry in terms of snow chains / cables / snow socks in case we get caught in snow and ice? Is there a particular brand you can recommend for a 24' motorhome that is effective and most 'easy' to install?
- How many tires out of the six on the MH should I plan to chain / cable / sock?
- Do I need to heat the water tank or pipes to prevent pipes from bursting, and if so, what products should I use?

Thanks very much in advance for your help.
Personally I would use I 10 if weather forecast is snow, at least until I was East of Dallas. I 40 can get pretty wicked coming through New Mexico and NW Texas. Of course your timing is critical, monitor the weather for your proposed travel dates and the route you have planned.
I would not intentionally drive in slick weather, period. If you are set on driving on slick roads chains or cable meet DOT requirements. Using chains means your top speed will be about 30 MPH because if one breaks it can quickly destroy the wheel-well and nearby wiring,water pipes,etc.

I assume you will have your fresh water system operating. During below freezing weather keep the water heater operating and your LP furnace operating to provide heat for the cabin and to your holding tanks (assuming your MH has that option)
Driving I 10 might add 300+ miles to your journey but might actually save you time if I 40 in NM gets closed from snow and wind.
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Old 11-18-2014, 09:31 PM   #4
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It is much better to stop and wait out the storm. You will notice that many big trucks get off the road. Are your tanks area heated? Also, never let your fuel tank get below half. Ensure that your furnace is working and that you have plenty of propane. Make sure you have enough water and food incase you have to park for a while.
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Old 11-18-2014, 09:31 PM   #5
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Thanks for the input gentlemen. Using I-10 sounds like a good plan, and yes we were thinking that we would use the LP furnace and water heater, which the Monterey does have. By the way is it considered safe to have the propane features like furnace and refrigerator in use while driving?
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Old 11-18-2014, 09:34 PM   #6
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By the way I wasn't planning to drive through a fierce snowstorm, but I was just fearing that the aftermath of a winter storm could create a several-day delay in our journey. Not a problem for my wife and me and our dog, but perhaps more challenging for our two cats!
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Old 11-18-2014, 09:39 PM   #7
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It is true that you must carry chains on board to be able to drive through some states.

It is also true that if the road conditions require the use of chains, it is long past time to be off the road.

I do carry chains. I plan to never use them.

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Old 11-19-2014, 12:44 AM   #8
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We travel with the furnance and the refrigerator on propane all the time. Most times the dash heat does not warm the rv enough. Just remember to turn them off when you fuel and then back on after you are done.
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Old 11-19-2014, 08:16 AM   #9
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This sticky above will have that information.
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Old 11-19-2014, 08:31 AM   #10
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Hi,

If you have to use chains which I don't recommend you only need them on the outer dual rear wheel. I do recommend what others have said and if weather is bad stop and stay someplace whether a campground or even a wal mart until snow stops.

I am curious where in Western North Carolina are you moving to as I am in Western North Carolina.

Have a safe and enjoyable trip.

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Old 11-19-2014, 07:29 PM   #11
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Agree that I 40 is not a good road in the winter. I 10 south/east to I 20 in West Texas is much safer from bad weather...or I 10 all the way but it makes for a much longer trip.
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Old 11-19-2014, 08:57 PM   #12
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I am from Denver, CO and have done a lot of winter rving. The safest way to do it is to completely winterize your MH and just use your toilet with water carried in gal jugs. Carry plenty of propane for the heater and food in the frig and I personally would never put snow chains on a MH. Now let's talk about those slideout covers. Beware of snow and ice storms heading your way. Don't put your slides out because you won't get them back in without a lot of trouble. By keeping your slides in when possible you also have less area to heat and a better seal to keep the heat in. Last but not least always retract your steps at night because they will become very icy left out and nobody wants to slip and fall.
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Old 11-19-2014, 09:59 PM   #13
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I agree with other comments that if you need to put on chains you should not be on the road. If you hate sliding in a 4500lb car, then you can imagine what a 45,000lb MH sliding is like.

As a side note for those with tag axles. If you get caught on slippery surface and have trouble getting traction to get tolling. Unweight tha TAG. you will put more weight on the drive axle and you'll have a better chance of getting it rolling.
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