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Old 11-12-2014, 08:57 AM   #1
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Need advice - 1st trip out this weekend in cold

I just got my 2015 Thor Freedom Elite last week. I am new to the Class C world and have a few questions for this weekend's trip. I will be camping (have 110 power only) where the highs will be in the mid/upper-30s and lows in low-20s. I also do NOT have enclosed tanks. So my questions:

While there is water available at the site, should I just fill my fresh water before I go?

With it getting this cold (yes, I am from the south so this is cold) and I don't have enclosed tanks, should I put antifreeze in the grey/black tanks so any water I do use won't freeze?

I saw on camping world that you can buy tank blankets which have a plug. Since I am planning on using it some in the winter, do these work and are worth the money? Or should I just use facility shower and bathroom?

While I will not be in the camper much during the day, should I run the furnace or the space heater to keep the chill out?

Should I keep the bathroom door open and cabinets open when I am not in the camper?

Should I find a place to dump close by before I head home (3 hr drive) or can I wait to dump when I get home?

Sorry for the newbie questions, I just don't want to break anything on my 1st trip.
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Old 11-12-2014, 10:50 AM   #2
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Do not put any water in exposed tanks or plumbing. I would also suggest that you do not use any on board water systems UNTIL you get to know the unit and what exactly is exposed and what is not exposed, NOT WORTH THE RISK. Winterize the unit and carry drinking water in jugs, use the camp washrooms.

Low 20s is bad news and will lead to trouble in the long run for the beginner.
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Old 11-12-2014, 11:08 AM   #3
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Congratulations on the new coach. You will enjoy it.

When you say 110 power I expect you mean 30 amp. That will be sufficient to run everything in your coach. If you mean you will have a 15 or 20 amp power source you should ensure you have the correct connection to hook your power cord to the receptacle.

If you do not have an enclosed or heated tanks do not put water in them. As suggested take water in a jug (or fill the jug at your destination) and use the outside facilities. Those temperatures will likely freeze any liquids in your tanks. Not a good thing if you have to start replacing lines, fittings or tanks.

While you are gone it is up to you if you run the furnace or heater while gone. Do you want to return to a nice warm unit? If I were hooked to power and the furnace is propane I would leave the electric on and turn the propane furnace off. It will not take long to heat the place when you return. An additional space heater would be in order if power is included. Unfortunately with the heat turned down or off the cold will get into everything. Be prepared to climb into a chilly bed. Flannelette sheets are recommended. This is all conditional with no water on board - other than the jug.

Not sure how the heater blankets work. Have always had heated tanks. In theory looks OK.

I would be ultra conservative on the first outing. Leave the heat off one day and on the next and see how the difference works for you. RV is a learning experience. Experiment and see how the results work for you.

Enjoy the experience.
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Old 11-12-2014, 11:20 AM   #4
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Congratulations on the new coach. You will enjoy it.

When you say 110 power I expect you mean 30 amp. That will be sufficient to run everything in your coach. If you mean you will have a 15 or 20 amp power source you should ensure you have the correct connection to hook your power cord to the receptacle.

Not sure how the heater blankets work. Have always had heated tanks. In theory looks OK.

I would be ultra conservative on the first outing. Leave the heat off one day and on the next and see how the difference works for you. RV is a learning experience. Experiment and see how the results work for you.

Enjoy the experience.
There is only 20amp electric available. I already have the converter. As far as using the space heater, it's getting colder already before I leave so I guess I can "camp" in it one night with the space heater on and see how warm it will keep it. It's the 23H model so open floorplan.

Will go ahead and winterize it. If weather coorperates next month, 1 place I will be going only has bathrooms (no showers) so will need to use the rv. The 2nd place I am going has inside bathroom and showers.
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Old 11-12-2014, 11:32 AM   #5
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I saw your coach brochure it says the 28H has heated tank pads.

I know this sounds dumb but is there any way you could by a heating blanket for your tanks?

I can't imagine they build them with the tanks being exposed like that.....but sure hope you find a solution.

Sorry I don't have any other ideas....
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Old 11-12-2014, 05:17 PM   #6
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I saw your coach brochure it says the 28H has heated tank pads.

I know this sounds dumb but is there any way you could by a heating blanket for your tanks?

I can't imagine they build them with the tanks being exposed like that.....but sure hope you find a solution.

Sorry I don't have any other ideas....
I have the 23H model.
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Old 11-12-2014, 05:30 PM   #7
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Congrats. I have a similar model to yours. I go out every month of the year to camp. And it gets cold in VA-WV-MD. I basically do what a previous poster said. I winterize my rig, take Nalgene bottles full of water which I keep in an insulated cooler and use the bathhouse along with a P bottle. I also have a small ceramic space heater which I run a separate AC line to the 20A outlet at a campground. I also hook up the standard 30A cord. That way, I don't run my space heater through my inverter. I have not done this personally but have heard from more than one person that ran their space heater through their inverter that it burned up the inverter. Happy camping this winter!
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Old 11-12-2014, 07:01 PM   #8
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Should I find a place to dump close by before I head home (3 hr drive) or can I wait to dump when I get home?.
My philosophy is to never drive with anything in the waste tanks so I always dump them as soon as possible when heading out.

A friend once had a near-full black tank break loose and drag on the highway before learning of it. He pulled over and decided to lift it back up with a 2x4 over a rock.

It was a bad idea as the tank split wide open, drenching him in the waste!

This is how I developed my philosophy.
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Old 11-12-2014, 09:11 PM   #9
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We have C with exposed tanks. My solution is to loosely hang a tarp under the unit from behind the rear axle, under the tanks back up behind the sewer pipe. I hang a trouble light from the frame and plug into our exterior outlet. Secure the tarp with twine to close area as best possible from wind. Use light when temps start dropping into low 30's. This has worked for us last November in Dayton, Ohio and January in Maryland. I have a movers pad I am going to include this year when we go to Tn.
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Old 11-13-2014, 12:55 PM   #10
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I also used pipe/AC insulation on the fresh water hose and filter. Wrapped the connections & valves in rags to protect them. I plan to purchase a pipe heat tape for this years trip.
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Old 11-14-2014, 10:38 AM   #11
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Need advice - 1st trip out this weekend in cold

First make sure your propane tank is full and that the onboard furnace is working properly. You will want to use it. Take an electric heater for just in case. 2. Never hook up to city water when temps are below freezing. Instead fill the fresh water tank with plenty of fresh water and ample RV antifreeze. This way you don't have to worry about freezing your plumbing. Do not drink the water. Buy bottled water instead. The antifreeze will go into your holding tanks as you flush the toilet and such protecting them to.

3. Pick up the appropriate 30 or 50 amp adaptor at your local store that will allow you to use regular 15 amp household power in your rv. I have 2 and I use them quite regularly.


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Old 11-14-2014, 12:00 PM   #12
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Has anyone aftermarket spray foam insulated their tanks ?

I saw a video about the Leisure Travel Unity where they say they spray foam the exposed tanks...standard.

I have to find a DIY'er product that will do the trick.
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Old 11-14-2014, 12:27 PM   #13
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Has anyone aftermarket spray foam insulated their tanks ?

I saw a video about the Leisure Travel Unity where they say they spray foam the exposed tanks...standard.

I have to find a DIY'er product that will do the trick.
I had the tanks and undercarriage on a 5er had had in the 70's sprayed with foam. I wrapped the tanks with heat tapes (2) and would plug one in when in cold weather. Worked fine.
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Old 11-15-2014, 08:27 AM   #14
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I had the tanks and undercarriage on a 5er had had in the 70's sprayed with foam. I wrapped the tanks with heat tapes (2) and would plug one in when in cold weather. Worked fine.
Gordon, sounds like you had a company do it.....what did they use ?
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