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Old 09-30-2014, 09:54 AM   #1
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New member with questions

Howdy, from new member my husband and I are looking to purchase for the first time. We sent our baby off to college and welcomed a new
grandbaby into the world, very thankful. We live in Houston, grandbaby in Arvada, CO. Looking for an RV to keep mostly in CO at this time, to feel like we
live next door to our kids as much as possible. Being from the south, huge learning curve...learned we need a heated basement/artic package...looking at
Outback, (Sydney) may be a part of the name also. I do not see it talked about in Forums etc. Wondering if it is a good choice. It is a pull and 31', 2010. Previously had looked at the Mountaineer 5th wheel, which could still be an option, we have a truck that could pull it, but seems like a big job moving it. Thank you for your time reading this long post, any advice would be appreciated.
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Old 09-30-2014, 10:24 AM   #2
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Good luck with a suitable solution.
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Old 09-30-2014, 04:48 PM   #3
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Either will probably be a good choice but be aware that the polar package is limited. How cold and for how long will you be camping in the cold weather. The propane heat needs to be on and if it is too cold for a period of time, things could freeze. It extends the season but generally does not make something year round in well below freezing temps. Good luck and enjoy.
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Old 10-01-2014, 02:52 PM   #4
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Wish i could help. However there are a lot of smart people here and your problem will be solved shortly i am sure.
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Old 10-02-2014, 04:29 PM   #5
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Having lived in Arvada at one time I am quite familiar with the winter there and if you are thinking of an RV that you can live comfortably in at any time of winter, there are very few that will work and they will all require a great deal of propane to keep the furnace going. Do you plan to keep it ready to use all winter, or perhaps put it into storage in winter and only occupy it in summer? If the latter is the case then the Outback may work well, but if Jan. & Feb. you will need something like an RV from DRV and expect to buy a lot of propane to keep it from freezing the water lines. In addition, you will need to have it skirted and the water and sewer hoses insulated and heated.
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Old 10-02-2014, 06:52 PM   #6
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Given the situation, I would not be looking for an RV.
Sorry to say it, but that would be a nightmare in terms of maintenance, storage and cost.
You can probably rent a cabin or furnished apartment for a lot less money and hassle and more comfort.
Manny & Larissa
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Old 10-04-2014, 08:29 PM   #7
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Hi, HollyAnn. I lived in the Denver area for 20 years, both my kids graduated from the University of Colorado at Boulder, and my grandson was a professor at the Colorado School of Mines for a while. Son and grandson still live there, but we moved back to west Texas when I retired over 20 years ago.

Most of the time we lived in Colorado, we had a fold-down tent camper that we used several months of the year. We didn't get into fifth wheels and TTs until after I retired.

If you plan to live in an RV all 4 seasons in the Denver area, then you'll have to have what they call a 4-seasons camper. Those are few and far between, but some are available. The most popular is probably the Artic Fox. Nice, but not a luxury unit with a price to shrink your teeth.

We've had a 25' fifth wheel for 14 years, and love it for two old folks. It has a rear kitchen and floorplan very similar to the Artic Fox 25P travel trailer.
Northwood Manufacturing: Arctic Fox Floorplan

As to heating expense, if your RV doesn't come with them then plan to change out the AC unit(s) for heat pumps. That's the kind of AC that are both heaters and AC units. Your electric bill will go up, but the propane bill in January will be reasonable. Right now propane costs more than electricity.

If I were going to do what you plan, then I'd not plan on living in the RV in the wintertime. The Denver area has much milder winters that outsiders think, but we still had a few days each winter of extreme cold and wind and snow banks. That's the season to visit your home in Houston. My brother has lived in Houston for over 40 years, but I won't go see him in the summertime. Too hot and humid. But Christmastime in Houston usually has ideal cool but not too-cold weather. Just ask any snowbird that lives in the RV parks around Houston in the wintertime.
Grumpy ole man with over 60 years towing experience. Now my heaviest trailer is a 7'x16' 5,000-pound flatbed utility trailer, my tow vehicle is a 2019 F-150 Lariat 3.5L EcoBoost SuperCab with Max Tow (1,904 pounds payload capacity).
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Old 10-04-2014, 08:40 PM   #8
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I Excel is the only full-time living rig with. A minus 10 degree no freeze guarantee but may be more tig then you need. There is a huge difference between what is called a four-season rig and a full-time rig typically four-season rigs simply have some barely adequate freeze proofing for the tanks. The tanks may not freeze but you may because four-season has nothing to do with overall insulation performance during hot or cold weather.
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Old 10-05-2014, 08:30 AM   #9
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Originally Posted by chief02 View Post
I Excel is the only full-time living rig with. A minus 10 degree no freeze guarantee but may be more tig then you need.
Excel RV trailers are very nice, very luxurious, and very expensive. A new one will cost $100,000 or more. Here's the smallest new unit with a few options:

31IKE Base Price $105,400
29" LED TV in Bedroom
Winegard "SK-SWM3" Sat Sys w/o Rec-DirecTV (USA Only)
Heat Pump-x-Air Conditioner
Ducted 2nd Air Cond- 15M Coleman Mach 8
5500W LP Onan Generator (Incl Ready & Energy Comm.)
Electrical Management System-Surge Protector
17.5 Ld "H" Tires-x-16" Ld "G"
Options Total $12,048
Grand Total* $117,448

Excel Limited 31IKE - Excel RVs

Here's a used one 4 years old for sale right there in Houston for only $36,950. Bargain if it's still "like new"!
2010 Excel 35RSO for Sale - F271 - PPL Motor Homes

And here's one only 17 years old you can buy for $14,000.
EXCEL For Sale - Camping World
I would have to do a lot of checking it out before I bought a 17-year-old fifth wheel.

I think you'll find that the Artic Fox is about half or less MSRP than the Excel, and it has enough insulation and design to be livable in the Denver area in January..

Another luxury brand 4-seasons RV someone mentioned is DRV. They make Mobile Suites and DRV Suites. And new ones cost in the same neighborhood as the Excel.
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