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Old 12-05-2013, 10:26 PM   #15
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In our previous travel supreme, we stayed nice and toasty to -20 in the Dakotas. Granted, we drank LP by the tankful.

We have not yet been that cold in our current Continental Coach--and quite honestly, I hope we never do!
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Old 12-06-2013, 10:22 AM   #16
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Originally Posted by Jack Mayer View Post
Frameless windows seal far better than the sliders, since the window goes down on a gasket, and sliders only have the "hair" to block wind and air infiltration.

Also, use of fiberglass batt insulation is really a bad strategy in an RV, IMO.
Just to expand on this a bit, I am rather skeptical about how well batt insulation works in an RV. If it's fiberglass, even a very small of moisture in a wall or ceiling cavity can significantly degrade the R value. In RVs, the impermeable layer of the wall assembly is on the exterior which is the opposite of in a house. A house has an impermeable vapor retarder (plastic sheet) on the interior of the wall. In an RV, moisture can migrate through the wall or ceiling cavity and cause moisture in the insulation. And if there is moisture condensing inside a wall or ceiling, that's not good for the structure either. I'm not sure how this compares to mineral wool, but I am guessing it's a similar issue. Basically, you would not be allowed to build a house this way. I highly suspect that one reason trailers can rot away is because of moisture condensing in the walls and I suspect it would be worse with fiberglass and aluminum exteriors together.

The effectiveness of fiberglass insulation is only as good as it is installed. Quite often, the batts are not properly trimmed around wiring, electrical devices, etc. and there are voids. And often, the batts end up getting compressed because they shove them up against wires and other things in the way. These both can significantly reduce the R-value. Installing fiberglass insulation takes skill and patience and we all know how common that is in the RV industry. Mineral wool batts are much easier to handle and work with because they are much denser and relatively rigid. I've seen how bad they can install fiberglass in an RV and it can be awful. Add this to some moisture in the wall or ceiling cavities and you may have a very low R value overall.

Personally, given a choice, I would definitely go with block/rigid foam insulation for the above reasons. Another big advantage of rigid foam(or sprayed) is that it is impermeable and won't let moisture into the cavities (if it's closed-cell). A big problem I see with insulation is you can't see how they've installed it. Perhaps a trip to a plant would be an education.

Some manufacturers can provide a reflective R layer on the underside of the roof to reflect heat back to the interior to effectively raise the R value. I did some reading up on this recently for houses and the jury is out as to whether or not it actually does much and is worth doing.

On the windows, if you look at the old tried and true sliders, they have small drain holes/slots in the bottom channel to let accumulated moisture out. Adding up all the windows you have, that can be a lot of cold air getting in right there. I'd be looking at double pane windows.

The last thing I have to wonder about for an RV in cold weather is ventilation. There's going to be a lot of moisture released into the air from cooking, showering and just from human bodies. That needs to be removed from the interior air. Either you need a dehumidifier or you have to crack open some vents and/or windows. All the best insulation in the world isn't going to help as much as you'd think because of the air you need to move into and out of the interior. If you don't ventilate, you can end up with moisture in the walls and ceiling, condensation on door frames and windows and even nasty mold. If you're just week-ending, you may be okay, but for full-timers, you've got a lot more to think about.
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Old 12-06-2013, 01:07 PM   #17
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IMHO either the DRV or Excel is an excellent choice. Look at the floor plans they offer. Also, I don't know about DRV, but Peterson Industries, the Excel manufacturer, will do some customizations for you.

We have our full-time rig picked out - just waiting to retire next year.

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Old 12-06-2013, 05:57 PM   #18
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Again - I do not expect to be in the cold by design. Only if I calculate wrong and end up where I think I can spend winter but it turns out be real cold. Example - I hear Austin Texas is a nice place. I am an eastern boy wanting to spend time out west. The west is 2,500 miles away. Once I get there I want to spend a few years. Out west really does not have a place like Florida where cold weather is very rare.

Even south Texas is cold now. My current rig gets cold at 30 degrees. I do not want to take this rig west due to lack of insulation.

Colorado, Arizona, Utah can get cold in a hurry in the upper elevations in Sept. Or even an odd cold spell in June or August.

Heck - I am thinking of getting a smaller Excel thinking smaller is easier to heat.

Thanks for all the info...it does make me wonder how batt isulation stays in place. I watched video where the workers are cutting and installing it way to fast and not being careful...IMHO.
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Old 12-06-2013, 08:39 PM   #19
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We have been in alot of cold weather recently in our Carrilite. From a low of 4* in South Dakota a few weeks ago, to our current mid Texas 28* and blowing 15-20mph for 2 days now. Since we are on full 50amp hookups, we have our fireplace on, a small portable heater in the bathroom, and thats it. I did put my plexiglass panelos in the screen door, and then used the window shrink film on the outside of the screen door as well so we can have some natural light in. So far we are maintaining 69-70 degrees with no problem. Before I go to bed tonight I'll turn the furnace up to 76 or so for 15-20 minutes or so. All this does is put a little heat on my tanks and helps keep the underbelly warm.
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Old 12-09-2013, 10:02 PM   #20
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I read the comments about frameless windows and how they seal down. What are the thoughts on windows with double pane glass?
I have heard comments that it is not that good and not worth the cost and weight.
Is that really true?
Curious from those that have them and can give feedback.
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Old 12-10-2013, 12:56 AM   #21
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Quote:
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I read the comments about frameless windows and how they seal down. What are the thoughts on windows with double pane glass?
I have heard comments that it is not that good and not worth the cost and weight.
Is that really true?
Curious from those that have them and can give feedback.
Having had standard framed, dual pane framed and dual pane frameless windows over the last 17 years, I can vouch for the dual pane all day long (whether framed or frameless)! They make a big difference in both hot and cold temps and are, IMHO, worth every penny.

The main difference between framed and frameless windows is aesthetics. The frameless look more streamlined, but some may like the framed better as a personal preference of appearance. I do agree that the seals are tighter on the frameless also.

We chose frameless dual pane windows in our new fiver based upon the appearance (somewhat) and the general tighter seal on all four sides. We never considered single panes--vividly remembering a few winters spend behind single panes...
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Old 12-10-2013, 06:25 AM   #22
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Is there a 3M Window Insulator Kit for RV's?

For those of us without dual pane windows, what are our options.

A. Buy a new RV with dual pane windows? Too costly right now.

B. Can current RV be re-fitted with dual pane windows? Perhaps a major
builder like Peterson might take it on. Cost, My guess between 3-5k
Which is better option than having to buy new rig.

C. When I worked at Home Depot in hardware, we sold a lot of the 3M
Window Insulator Kits. Customers I recall gave them good reviews
And if push came to shove, and I was hit with really cold temps in the
RV, this might be a viable option as it is not that expensive.
But I have yet to ever hear of anyone doing this in a RV.
Anyone...........?
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Old 12-10-2013, 09:56 AM   #23
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Is there a 3M Window Insulator Kit for RV's?

We just returned home after a 2 week cold test outing (central Iowa) in our new 5th wheel. I noticed a Mobile Suites that had the 3M insulator kit over most of it's windows, doing it on the outside surface of the trailer. They also put a length of foam pipe insulation between the glass and the film to maintain an air space between the glass and the film. My guess is that the non-insulated windows were emergemny escape windows.

During our 2 week outing the temps got as low as -5* F (-15* wind chill) and not many daytime temps above freezing. Our Excel totally impressed me with its cold weather capabilities. There was also no sign of any condensation. The floors were warm (slide-outs included) and it was noticably draft free. This was "as is" from the factory with no extra prep by me for the cold. We do have the dual-pane windows and they do make a big difference. You don't feel the cold radiating from them as with the single-pane windows.
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Old 12-10-2013, 12:37 PM   #24
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We used to have a 40 ft Executive diesel pusher (1985 model) that had single panes. We used the 3M window kits on the inside--made a big difference.
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Old 12-10-2013, 07:12 PM   #25
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That is good to know!! Thanks for the product review. I will plan to do my windows next fall when we are in Texas. Now watch. We will get 60 and 70 degree temps and won't need them. Ha...

Well better safe than sorry. Then in the meantime, I can call around and see who or if my windows can be changed out for dual pane. I am thinking windows are pre-fab and shipped to manufacturers.
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Old 12-10-2013, 11:38 PM   #26
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You may wish to contact Hehr or Kinro directly. They manufacture most of the RV windows.
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Old 12-11-2013, 11:09 AM   #27
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Oh Boy!!! I am in a snowbird RV Park and there is a small RV show right outside the gate. There will be a new Presidential 5th wheel there this afternoon. This will be the 1st time I have seen the new one. I will ask a lot of questions about the insulation, frame, axles, and tires.
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