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Old 01-04-2016, 10:21 PM   #1
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Preparing to sleep in sub freezing nights

The weather has finally dropped in SC. I plan to use my RV in temps of 27 degrees.
Question is, should I just use blankets, reach over early and fire up the gas heater before getting up, without using the generator until later when I need the 12 Volts?
In other words, don't let the heat turn on at night while I sleep.

Have not electrical hook up where I will be, just my generator.

Thanks,

Glenn
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Old 01-04-2016, 10:23 PM   #2
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I would like to ask another weather related question.
While the RV is plugged in several things in the RV generate some heat. If I leave access panels and doors open, at what temperature should I leave an electrical heater on inside of the RV to prevent frozen water pipes?
Looks like 27 F tonight.
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Old 01-04-2016, 10:28 PM   #3
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Dude, it'll rapidly be 27 degrees in that rv, and I don't know how many blankets you have. I'd set the thermostat at 40 or so to start. You're gonna gobble up some propane, so start with full propane.
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Old 01-04-2016, 10:34 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by glennj3cub View Post
I would like to ask another weather related question.
While the RV is plugged in several things in the RV generate some heat. If I leave access panels and doors open, at what temperature should I leave an electrical heater on inside of the RV to prevent frozen water pipes?
Looks like 27 F tonight.
That depends on what type of rv you got. What's generating heat? The refer -- no. And what type of heater you got. Leave your water heater on because it's actually on the outside of the rig and exposed to that 27 degrees. I'd also open doors under the sinks but if you let the interior get and stay at 27 degrees, 5 degrees below freezing for too long, you got frozen pipes. If you can plug it in, then heat it up, problem solved. How many amps you plugging into?.
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Old 01-04-2016, 10:47 PM   #5
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The transformer generates heat (the 120/12Volt) not much unless it is warm outside, then you can feel that heat, it actually warms the closet and clothes drawers. So I have the door to the transformer open and the doors that access any water pipes open.
Other wise that is about it. We are hitting the 50's in the day and dropping sometime during the night to 27 F.
I just went out and turned on a small electric thermostatically controlled heater.


So my two new 12 volt batteries should do OK running the fan for the gas heat all night while on a low setting? Then hit the generator in the AM.
RV is class A, 32 foot, 1987 Holiday Rambler.
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Old 01-04-2016, 10:50 PM   #6
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I would not risk the $ of a frozen pipe. Start the generator.
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Old 01-04-2016, 11:01 PM   #7
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I have a 33’ Class A HR. My heater has been broken since I bought it. For the past 2.5 years I’ve used a $20 electric space heater in the winter. Typically when I’m faced with temperatures in the mid-20’s I fill up two water jugs for my morning coffee and other uses, disconnect the outside hose, stack the bed with blankets, and turn the heater off before I go to bed, turning it back on during my 3am nature call so it’ll be warm when I awaken later. I’ve done this same drill in temperatures down to the upper teens and never had a problem with frozen interior plumbing or tanks. Of course your results may vary.


Steve
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Old 01-04-2016, 11:07 PM   #8
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The RV is an '87 Holiday Rambler folks. Please advise based on that if you know anything that can help.
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Old 01-04-2016, 11:17 PM   #9
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Since you want experienced based advice here’s mine. What I’ve found is that a few hours in the upper 20’s is nothing. There have been a number of times when I’ve been traveling that I had no electricity at all (for the first 1.5 years my work-in-progress RV had a broken generator too) and I never suffered broken pipes. When I had AC power I only put on the space heater at 3am for later comfort when I got up.


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Old 01-04-2016, 11:17 PM   #10
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If you have nothing 12v that is critical to life or protection of property, run the furnace. If you can't turn lights on in the morning, you know your batteries can't handle it.

If your batteries can handle it, then you probably should be good to go.

This is an opinion based on knowing nothing about the '87 Rambler you are in.

Good luck!
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Old 01-05-2016, 02:28 AM   #11
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It would be very helpful to know the RV we are talking about.

How many batteries do you have,

I would think there is enough 12 volts in the batteries to run the furnace overnight with no problems.

When you get up in the morning start the generator to recharge the batteries.

Most RVs have house batteries and chassis batteries. If that is the way yours is set up, even if you discharge the house batteries, the generator generally starts on the chassis batteries.

The generator will then charge the house batteries.

Is that the setup you have????
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Old 01-05-2016, 05:59 AM   #12
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Quote:
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It would be very helpful to know the RV we are talking about.

How many batteries do you have,


the generator generally starts on the chassis batteries.


Is that the setup you have????
I guess you missed his 3rd post.

87 32 ft Holiday Rambler

2 new 12 volt batteries

Most Generators start on house batteries !!!!!! But you can boost them off the chassis.
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Old 01-05-2016, 06:25 AM   #13
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glennj3cub, I run a generator all (or as much of the night as I can, ie, until it runs out of gas) to run the electric heater. I have a 2011 kz sportsman classic with no furnace. It will get to 27 degrees in there without any heat.

My advice, from experience, is to run that generator. I had water freeze on the floor that I had tracked in as snow in 2014 while hunting. It is not cool to hit that with stocking feet in the early morning. The worst that can happen that way is that you have to go out and refill the generator. It will definitely wake you up. ;-)

If you don't feel comfortable doing that, then those new batteries will run all night with the heat on, just have it turned down to mid 50's. Brother in law does this with their camper. Sister in law doesn't like it too well, but does understand that they can't have the batteries run out of juice.
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Old 01-05-2016, 07:12 AM   #14
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A question no one has asked is the design of your rig. Is it a basement model, or equivalent, with enclosed water and waste tanks and water pipes?. Many older Motorhomes just hung these components underneath where they were exposed to the elements. If this is your situation, you need to winterize. If not, then be sure the plumbing bays stay sufficiently warm. Some people put incandescent light bulbs or other heaters in the bays and also use wireless thermometers to monitor the temperatures.

Quote:
Originally Posted by 1bigmess View Post
The RV is an '87 Holiday Rambler folks. Please advise based on that if you know anything that can help.
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