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Old 09-22-2014, 11:19 AM   #1
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Do I Need to Winterize in Savannah for Nov & Dec?

I'd like to not have to winterize our new Flying Cloud 27 this winter before using it in Florida. My plan is to drive it to Savannah, GA next month to store it. At the end of December, the wife and I will come back to finish moving it down to Florida, where we will travel around till sometime in March. I'd love not to have to go through the effort and work of winterizing if I don't need to. The storage facility in Savannah is not too far from the coast as opposed to further inland which might mean for milder temps. Anyone with knowledge of the area or similar experience have any thoughts or advice?

Rick
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Old 09-22-2014, 11:28 AM   #2
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I do not know the temps in that area over winter...but if your research finds the possibility of freezing temps, then just winterize it for peace of mind and the off chance you do have freezing conditions.

W bought our 2014 bunkhouse nearly 1 year ago and I had not planned on winterizing living down here in Alabama...freezing temps were uncommon enough I figured I would just run the furnace during the rare temp drops...

Well, we kept having multiple cold snaps and finally I got fed up and also was worried about damaging something.

I put in a winterizing T-valve thing near the water-pump and pumped through the pink RV anti-freeze...10 dollars in cost and it took all of 10 min to do...and for me, that was extremely comforting.

No taste did we notice after much flushing...it fizzes it seems for quite a while as you run water...if you plan on boondocking soon after using this stuff, make plenty of time to flush out the lines BEFORE going off the grid.

Others blow their lines out with air...but an incomplete job of that task could spell damages still....

If you do the pink stuff, do not forget...do not put any into the fresh water tank...drain it only.....and bypass the hot water heater....I also made sure pink stuff came out of all low point drains and exterior showers.

Overkill perhaps, but it just gave me amazing peace of mind during the winter when we had a number of dips down into the teens here in alabama....

On the other hand, if there is essentially no chance of sub freezing temps in that area, then no biggie...I suspect savannah can and will on occassion see freezing temps.

On the other other hand, my friend that lives near me has an SOB trailer and he all last winter only winterized by draining all tanks and low point draines....no air...no antifreeze...and as far as he can tell no damages....

Im far too paranoid after reading about many upsets on this subject.
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Old 09-22-2014, 11:53 AM   #3
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Not likely. Rarely freezes there. I would drain the water heater and not worry too much
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Old 09-22-2014, 12:01 PM   #4
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I agree with AlanSd. We live in Coastal NC, a good 350 miles North of Savannah and it never gets below freezing long enough to freeze anything before January.

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Old 09-22-2014, 12:12 PM   #5
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We live in Santa Rosa Beach, Florida, which is in the western Florida Panhandle. The climate here would be similar to Savannah. Over the past nine years, we have parked our Airstreams at our house, but have used them quite a bit during the winter months.

We have never winterized either of the Airstreams that we have had.

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Old 09-22-2014, 12:31 PM   #6
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Thanks all for responding. Your comments and advice are much appreciated by this newbie couple.
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Old 09-22-2014, 12:44 PM   #7
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Loking at the average temperature by month on the online Weather Channel webpage for Savannah, GA (Average Weather for Savannah, GA - Temperature and Precipitation), the average and record low temperatures for the months in question are:
October = average low 58°F, record low 28°F;
November = average low 48°F, record low 15°F
December = average low 41°F, record low 9°F

Based on those statistics, I'm going to play Devil's advocate and recommend winterizing. If you winterize, you know your Airstream will be safe no matter what the temperature, and winterizing isn't exactly an onerous undertaking. If you don't winterize, you're gambling that temperatures will be average or above the entire three months, and I don't feel comfortable recommending that you take that 50-50 chance.
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Old 09-22-2014, 02:50 PM   #8
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As you consider whether or not to winterize, keep in mind that if the nighttime temperature drops to barely below freezing for a couple of hours or less, the residual heat in your AS will likely protect you from freezing. Please pay attention to my comments as to "will likely protect," "couple of hours or less" and "barely below freezing."

If it were me, and I wasn't around to kick on the furnace (which should take care of things in that part of the country) I'd spend the less than $50 in materials and hour of my time and winterize.

Sleep well, my friend!

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Old 09-22-2014, 03:17 PM   #9
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Rick 75, it's SO simple to blow your water system out with air.

And, if you've got a small air compressor, your cost to winterize is next to nothing.

There are many threads on this subject which will take you step by step, through the process.

Once you've done it a couple of times, it becomes second nature (particularly if you've got a check list).

I did the air only winterization last winter, and IMO that was proof positive, to me, that blowing the lines and draining the water heater is about all you need to do. The antifreeze is just an added step and a bit of unnecessary expense.

Of course for those who live in the far north reaches of the country, maybe…
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Old 09-22-2014, 03:17 PM   #10
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I am 100 miles south of Savannah, and would not risk going into Nov/Dec without winterizing. There is a likelihood of a repeat of the dreaded polar vortex this winter and many of those record lows that Protag posted have occurred in the last few years. My trailer is now nice and snug in central California, but I will be winterizing my RT Van in a month or so.
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Old 09-22-2014, 03:44 PM   #11
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Protaganist's comments kinda touch on my thinking on this subject...I actually same as him looked up record lowest temps.

I also looked up December daily lows for the past 3 years and found only two days at 32 degrees being the lowest...could not find a link to the date of the record well below freezing lows...but we know they happened in "recent" time.

A couple more thoughts:

If you live pretty close by enough to make a trip and winterize or something on the fly if/when very severe cold weather is forecasted, then just forget about this and wait out the ?10 year cold snap? that would damage something?

If you will not (you live in NY, probably not) then IF there is a major freeze temp condition to do the trick, you will just pray, cross fingers, and hope it was not cold enough for long enough time somehow to do damage.

I think we imagine the statiscial risk of freeze damage in the southeast as very low...and I think if you look at perhaps a risk of that damage over a 1 year period, it would be expressed as a low percieved number.

If however, you express it as say a 10 year risk...I imagine it would be much more impressive? We do this in medicine for some cardiovascular conditions and often it impresses people much more than expressing it as a short term risk....which in a sense is meaningless?

The fact that some people have lived at X place and had no damage I found informative as I researched this subject and spoke to many people....but then I had people that pretty much lived in the same X place and did talk about damage...why then did in the same place some froze and some did not? Sounds like some horrific physics question or something that would involve wind speeds, temperature gradients, insulative coefficients (I just made that up), etc....

Good Luck

I would at least drain all the lines as best you can...put RV antifreeze in P traps, a bit in the black tank and grey tank.
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Old 09-22-2014, 03:50 PM   #12
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I opted out of the blowing out of the lines for a couple reasons...

First because I had no air compressor.

Secondly, while I read that it has work tried and true for many people, there were a number of people that had damage with this method employed...clearly it could be user error, not enough pressure or total volume of air to do the job...

I left my airstream out in sub freezing temps while STUCK in tuscaloosa for 3 days during the now infamous "snowmageddon" of last winter....ok, just dont even start all the joking on us southerners yall...dont get me started please - but despite a couple nights in the teens (as low as 15) - I had no freeze damage with no furnace running, heater, water in all lines...nothing happened.

I could interpret from that, that this is evidence that I really should not worry, but I do not...for many good reasons I think. Ill be ready for snowmageddon next time...well at least my RV will be ready...cannot say the same for the state of the unsalted, unsanded Alabama roadways
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Old 09-22-2014, 03:54 PM   #13
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Last year I did the lazy man's winterization in mid November. Our last camping trip was in mid November, and we were staying at Traveler's Rest. Performed the whole thing right there in a matter of minutes. Drained the hot water heater, did the hot water heater bypass, blew out the lines with 80 lbs pressure, and put antifreeze in the traps and tanks. Makes for an easy dewinterization. We had a few serious hard freezes in January, and had no problems.

I had bought one of those kits to attach to the pump and pull antifreeze through the lines, but I could not make it fit in our 23 ft Safari. Gave up on the idea and have not looked back since.
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Old 09-22-2014, 04:10 PM   #14
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Again, thank you all for the additional comments and advice. I live in NY, not Savannah so it would not be possible to make a trip on the fly to winterize at the last minute. I do have a smallish air compressor I could throw in the back of the TV to use to blow the lines once we get to the storage facility in Savannah. It would be no problem carrying it back to NY when finished. That and the addition of draining the water heater and holding tanks, and dump some antifreeze in the P traps make a good compromise to fully winterizing. I just don't want the pink stuff in the city water lines when we get back to the TT at the end of December and have to spend time our first night in the campground getting rid of the stuff.
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