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Old 11-06-2014, 01:44 PM   #1
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Clarify the winterization process

As in the AS handbook, winterization require the Air compressor and need an adaptor to blow all water out as below.
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And after blowing, we can use build-in water pump to pump Anti-freezing liquid in all tubes with this kit.
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Question: I saw some AS newbie book say winterization may not require an air compressor, and can directly use pumping way to push Anti-freezing liquid in to replacing the water. Now I don't know which saying is right. And if go with no air compressor way. Should I just use this kit?
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Thanks!
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Old 11-06-2014, 01:48 PM   #2
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I use air AND antifreeze. I use the suction kit in your middle picture.

So, I advise pic # 1 and #2. Living in WA (lower elevations???) you probably don't have to worry about the dilution of AF when mixed with water hanging around in low spots in the piping, etc. I do. It is regularly in the teens here and (lately) frequently in the single digits and below zero occasionally. Although the AF is good to -50* F, when diluted, it could be much much higher. I had a shower faucet break one time, because water was left behind.

BUT, if you see temps no lower than 20* or so, blowing out AND filling with AF is probably not necessary. Just do pic # 2 with AF.
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Old 11-06-2014, 02:15 PM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by shockfly View Post
Question: I saw some AS newbie book say winterization may not require an air compressor, and can directly use pumping way to push Anti-freezing liquid in to replacing the water. Now I don't know which saying is right. And if go with no air compressor way. Should I just use this kit?
There is one fallacy to using antifreeze to push the water out of your lines. Namely, antifreeze and water mix. Putting antifreeze in while there's still water in the lines doesn't push out the water, it just dilutes the antifreeze.

Say your freshwater lines (not the tanks) hold a gallon of water normally, just for illustration purposesó I don't know how much the lines actually hold. You've opened the low-point drains, and gotten out all but a quart of water. You close the low-point drains and add a gallon of antifreeze, meaning that a quart of something comes out the faucets. That quart that comes out is going to be about 80% antifreeze and 20% water because those are the proportions of water left in the system and antifreeze added. And that's the proportion of what's left in the lines, too. You add another gallon, and another gallon comes out the faucets. That gallon that came out is about 90% antifreeze and 10% water, and that's the same proportions as what's left in the lines. And so on. It takes a lot of antifreeze to get the dilution down to a desirable level.

If you want pure antifreeze in the lines, you're definitely better off starting with the least amount of water still in the lines that you can get, meaning that you should blow out the lines first.
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Old 11-06-2014, 02:24 PM   #4
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Keep in mind that if you use the hand pump (or even the compressed air) method you will need to get antifreeze into your water pump to prevent it from freezing. Neither of these methods that tie into the city water system will affect the pump. To get antifreeze into the pump you will need to use the second item in your post and run the pump for a brief period of time so that it can suck some antifreeze into it.

Also, if you have a back tank flush that you have used you will need to either use the pump to get antifreeze into it or the compressor to blow out any water.
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Old 11-06-2014, 03:59 PM   #5
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Here on the eastside we don't get real hard freezes. I've winterized by draining the tanks and the lines. I drain and bypass the water heater. I blow out the lines using my tire inflator. It takes a while since it isn't high pressure but I let it run until the air coming out of the taps is mostly dry. I pour some anti freeze in the tanks and traps. That's it.

It has worked well for me. If I still lived in Minnesota I'd do things differently.
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Old 11-06-2014, 04:30 PM   #6
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Here on the eastside we don't get real hard freezes. I've winterized by draining the tanks and the lines. I drain and bypass the water heater. I blow out the lines using my tire inflator. It takes a while since it isn't high pressure but I let it run until the air coming out of the taps is mostly dry. I pour some anti freeze in the tanks and traps. That's it.

It has worked well for me. If I still lived in Minnesota I'd do things differently.

Cool, so you are using this kind of gadget?

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Old 11-06-2014, 04:33 PM   #7
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Only if you don't have a way to use the airline connector you show in pic #1. With the one in post 6, you have to hold the air hose on. I used to use one of those....got tiresome. I made one like you have in post #1 before they were commercially available. The air hose clamps on and I can walk inside to open and close faucets and valves at my leisure.
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Old 11-06-2014, 05:32 PM   #8
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Cool, so you are using this kind of gadget?

Attachment 225897
Yes,
I have a cheap plastic one. As dznfog says I clamp the inflator on and walk away.
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Old 11-06-2014, 05:47 PM   #9
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Also if have plug with valve stem to blow out lines you can use truck tire inflator as it stays on valve stem so you do not have to hold it on, when finished simply pull off of stem.
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Old 11-12-2014, 05:14 PM   #10
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I'm trying to winterize my new 2014 27FB Classic (since it seems that winter is coming to Mississippi a tad *early* this year). I read this and other threads and decided the blow-out with air compressor and injecting A/F via the pump bypass sounded like a great plan. So, today I went out and did a recon on the pump location. There is a lift-out trap door in the bottom of the closet, but it doesn't give very good access or enough room to get in there and work on installing the pump bypass valve/siphon. There were 3 horizontal screws on each side of the floor, and three vertical across the front of the closet floor. After removing all of these, it seems like the floor is still connected in the back - I can't get it to lift. Are there "secret squirrel" screws holding in the rear of the floor; and, if so, how the heck do I get them so I can lift the floor?
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Old 11-12-2014, 05:19 PM   #11
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Originally Posted by Adiredneck View Post
I'm trying to winterize my new 2014 27FB Classic (since it seems that winter is coming to Mississippi a tad *early* this year). I read this and other threads and decided the blow-out with air compressor and injecting A/F via the pump bypass sounded like a great plan. So, today I went out and did a recon on the pump location. There is a lift-out trap door in the bottom of the closet, but it doesn't give very good access or enough room to get in there and work on installing the pump bypass valve/siphon. There were 3 horizontal screws on each side of the floor, and three vertical across the front of the closet floor. After removing all of these, it seems like the floor is still connected in the back - I can't get it to lift. Are there "secret squirrel" screws holding in the rear of the floor; and, if so, how the heck do I get them so I can lift the floor?
In our 23FB, access to the water pump is similar, through a 'trap door' in the closet. When I installed the AF pump bypass, I didn't remove any screws at all, I just removed the pump fitting on the 'away from freshwater tank' side, screwed in the bypass, and done. No need to unscrew or lift the pump itself.

Space is a little tight, but it only took five minutes to install.
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Old 11-12-2014, 06:49 PM   #12
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I looked at adding one of those antifreeze inlet things. My gosh, in the closet my wife packs, under the floor, in a narrow hallway? I figured I was bound to spill it. After I blow out the lines I just dump 2 gallons of antifreeze into the fresh water tank after I drain it and I run the pump. works fine. I also pump just a little in the water hose inlet to be sure all is behind the check valve gets antifreeze. If you do not have the water heater bypass it takes 6 gallons more and a whole lot longer so that is a good thing to add if you do not have it. I use one of the blowout attachments with a quick disconnect just like for all my other air tools. Do turn the pressure down to 45 or 50 psi before hooking up to the trailer. One problem is that there are at least 3 types of QD's so the attachment might not match what you have.
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Old 11-13-2014, 10:42 AM   #13
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My problem is that the trap door is at the right-rear of the closet floor, and the pump is left-front, with the hose hookups on the left (far) side of the pump. With all of the piping for the fresh water tank fill and vent, plus the pipes to the shower, outside shower, and furnace duct tubes sharing that space there is not enough room to get to and work on the supply-side pipe on the pump.

When I saw the six screws holding the floor down, I figured that was the answer - lift out the whole floor - but there seems to be additional screws in the rear, securing it from the inside. If so, that's a game-stopper, as I can't get to them. I'm hoping someone with a similar 27FB had encountered and figured this out. Anyone?
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Old 11-13-2014, 12:19 PM   #14
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This is why I use air only. Probably not the "best" method but it has worked well for me these last 5 years. The local Airstream dealer uses this method when customers come in for winterization. Done properly there shouldn't be a problem.

All that said, IF I could easily access the pump to install a bypass I probably would do that. Blowing the lines and then filling them with the pink stuff is the preferred way to go but blowing them alone still works. At least for me....
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