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Old 12-01-2013, 03:53 PM   #1
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Winter in Upstate NY

Hi everyone! Bought our interstate in September and we're loving it. We intend to use it as a daily driver all winter long....as long as the roads are clear and nothing big is predicted. We've winterized the water system but I'm wondering what else I should be thinking about
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Old 12-01-2013, 04:43 PM   #2
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Welcome to the exalted ranks of Interstate owners!

As for what else besides winterizing the freshwater and wastewater systems that you need to be concerned about…

Run the generator every couple of weeks, for at least half an hour at a time. While running the generator, also run some 120vAC appliance or tools. Generators run best when loaded between 50% and 75% of their rated load; you don't want to just run the generator at idle. One thing I did was bought a 120vAC air compressor, and I plug it into the exterior GFCI outlet while I'm running the generator, and use it to keep the tires aired up; they don't have a leak, but they seem to lose about 5 psi per month— all seven of them. So, generator powers the compressor, compressor acts a a load bank to push up the engine RPMs on the generator, and I keep the tires at 61 psi where they belong. Win/win.

Running the generator does two other things: (1) it ensures that your house batteries have enough of a charge to start the generator; and (2) it recharges the house batteries fairly quickly. If for some reason your batteries get too depleted to start the generator, you can plug into shore power to charge the batteries, then start the generator; as soon as the generator starts, the Automatic Transfer Switch (ATS) will switch all loads to the generator, giving it priority over shore power.

Aside from the water system and the generator, you can pretty much take care of your Interstate the same way you take care of any of your other vehicles in winter.
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Old 12-03-2013, 07:36 PM   #3
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If it's outside, you might consider putting tire covers on and removing the wiper blades. UV from the sun wreaks havoc on rubber. I also use some Stabil Diesel fuel stabilizer.
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Old 12-03-2013, 08:41 PM   #4
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Originally Posted by 73shark View Post
If it's outside, you might consider putting tire covers on and removing the wiper blades. UV from the sun wreaks havoc on rubber. I also use some Stabil Diesel fuel stabilizer.
None of which is particularly helpful for a vehicle that's being used as a daily driver...
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Old 12-03-2013, 08:49 PM   #5
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None of which is particularly helpful for a vehicle that's being used as a daily driver...
You got me there.
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Old 12-04-2013, 06:32 AM   #6
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If it's outside, you might consider putting tire covers on and removing the wiper blades. UV from the sun wreaks havoc on rubber. I also use some Stabil Diesel fuel stabilizer.
I don't remove the wiper blades. When I'm camping, and put on the canvas outside windshield cover (which is held down at the bottom by the wipers) I slip sections of foam pipe insulation over the wiper blades to protect the blades. Rest of the time, the wipers are left alone. BUT I did buy a spare pair of wiper blades, that I keep handy in case one decides to split, delaminate, or whatever. Fun facts, the wiper blades are different lengths; the one on the passenger side is about 2 inches shorter than the one on the driver's side. And they're "beam blade" style which provides better rubber-to-glass contact. Info that you'll want to know when it comes time to order your own spare blades (unless you get them from a Mercedes dealer for twice the price as anywhere else).

The fuel stabilizer may not be necessary, either. If you're driving it every day, the fuel stays thoroughly mixed. Plus, in New York, I'm pretty sure that fuel suppliers switch to #1 diesel for the winter months. #1 diesel (winter blend) is a formulation that has a lower amount of paraffin and gels at lower temperatures than the summer-blend #2 diesel.
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Old 12-04-2013, 09:06 AM   #7
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The Sprinter wiper blades have a unique attachment method and the only manufacturer I have found is Valeo. First encountered these on my 2007 Tahoe but then on my 2010 Tahoe, they went back to a shepherds crook style. Amazon recently ran a special on Valeo blades for about $11 (normally about $20-$25). The Sprinter blades are 23" (psgr) & 26" (driver).

Cleaning the bug guts off the blades at each fuel stop helps prevent streaking and extend blade life.
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