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Old 10-29-2007, 03:07 PM   #1
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The idea of trying something stupid...

In prep for the cold weather, I started this last week end by thoroughly emptying out the freshwater system: dumped and bypassed the water heater, opened the drain valves, opened all tabs, faucets and valves, and drove home on hilly windy roads for 100 miles.

We're taking this puppy out again around the holidays, and it sure would be nice to not have to mess with the whole antifreeze addition, and more importantly, the whole getting the darned stuff OUT of the system again routine.

So, I'll probably borrow a compressor, get a blowout fitting, and blow out the lines, on the assumption that I'll be safe without the pink goo until January.

But thinking as a REALLY lazy guy, it just seems like driving all that way, sloshing those Pex pipes up and down and sideways, would already have virtually done a blowout for me. Could there really be enough water left at this point to actually bust a pipe?

jon
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Old 10-29-2007, 03:17 PM   #2
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Good day! Driving around up Hill & Dale will not be enough. We too will be camping throughout the winter this year in New England and when we have full hookup we use our water systems since we have heated tanks. However, you MUST drain all the lines between uses. Water has a nasty way of always finding its way to all the low spots and freezing no matter what you do. Another very important thing to do is to get antifreeze in all your traps and toilet! So please do empty all lines and do not forget the spray lines for the toilet and galley sink.
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Old 10-29-2007, 03:26 PM   #3
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hi jon!

how ya been?

these newer units have 'low water valves' on the underside, something the older units usually don't have along with pex not copper...

and the a/s RECOMMENDED approach is basically doing EXACTLY as you have...

in fact they just suggest raising and lowering the tongue jack to clear the lines, so the driving (hill and dale) is certainly adequate.

did you run the water pump and check the screen/bulb for water?

IF you really wanna go the extra step a compressor ISN'T needed...

a simple bicycle hand pump attached to the water inlet adapter (schrader valve) will provide enough air and pressure....

FOR PROLONGED WINTERIZING...

i think liquid in the lines/traps/bowl is useful since it reduces the effects of drying at the joints, valves, pump and so on...

and a 1/2 gallon of vodka would do the trick with no after taste issue! hiccup!

cheers
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Old 10-29-2007, 03:33 PM   #4
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You also would need to make sure that the water pump has some RV antifreeze in it also. That's why we connect the input to the pump into a hose that is pushed into a bottle of RV anti-freeze. Once you push a little through there, you've protected the pump.

Unless you have a fairly good pressured air line, and run that air for a while, you will not completely blow out all of the water. As others have noted that water droplets will eventually run back to a low point and freeze. My dealer has pointed out that most folks using the standard 12 volt pump cannot generate enough pressure to truly dry out the lines. He blows the lines out when he winterizes, but he uses high pressure and lets the air run through the system long enough to dry out the lines.

I've been winterizing with antifreeze after blowing out the lines with my 12 volt compressor as long as I've owned a travel trailer. This may be a pain but it's the only way to be absolutely sure that you have removed and displaced any residual water.

Normally I'd be winterized by now but I'm heading to Fl. in a couple of weeks. Last night it approached freezing and I set the thermostat to 40 degrees. I also flipped on the electric element on for the water heater. That will minimize any freezing yet keep me from winterizing prior to my departure.
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Old 10-29-2007, 04:08 PM   #5
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In north AR, for the last ten years and 3 trailers, I have simply drained the fresh water tank (in my AS this means allowing the pump to pump out the tank) and the water heater. I let the pump run dry a moment, and then blow out the remaining water from the lines. I dump pink stuff in the traps, and call it good. This method will no doubt draw lots of fire, but has never let me down. Temps here routinely in the teens at night during Jan and Feb. I generally perfrom this at the campground, when leaving.
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Old 10-29-2007, 04:38 PM   #6
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Hey 2air

My friend tried using rum as antifreeze with really bad results. He said his tanks looked like a fuzzy science project after a short while. Maybe vodka would work though. Although I have to wonder what alcohol might do to pumps and seals etc.
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Old 10-29-2007, 04:56 PM   #7
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Thumbs up One thought..

I have one thing to add,
For those of you that have water filters..Remove em till next Spring..

Rickandsandi,
You mention the water wands..Plzs, don't forget the shower wand as well.
I have mention this on another thread but, it's worth mentioning again..Prop ur toilet flipper open with a plastic bottle..Water sits in this area around the neck opening and, could crack the toilet..
I always use an oil-less air compressor that run on 120VAC..
ciao
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Old 10-29-2007, 07:02 PM   #8
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My manual says to disconnect the lines at the pump and run the pump a bit until it displaces all the water. No pink stuff in waterlines for me- it takes forever to get rid of the taste and odor.
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Old 10-29-2007, 07:10 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jcanavera
You also would need to make sure that the water pump has some RV antifreeze in it also. That's why we connect the input to the pump into a hose that is pushed into a bottle of RV anti-freeze. Once you push a little through there, you've protected the pump.

Unless you have a fairly good pressured air line, and run that air for a while, you will not completely blow out all of the water. As others have noted that water droplets will eventually run back to a low point and freeze. My dealer has pointed out that most folks using the standard 12 volt pump cannot generate enough pressure to truly dry out the lines. He blows the lines out when he winterizes, but he uses high pressure and lets the air run through the system long enough to dry out the lines.

I've been winterizing with antifreeze after blowing out the lines with my 12 volt compressor as long as I've owned a travel trailer. This may be a pain but it's the only way to be absolutely sure that you have removed and displaced any residual water.

Normally I'd be winterized by now but I'm heading to Fl. in a couple of weeks. Last night it approached freezing and I set the thermostat to 40 degrees. I also flipped on the electric element on for the water heater. That will minimize any freezing yet keep me from winterizing prior to my departure.
Jack we haven't winterized yet and have run the furnace to keep the tanks from freezing. Should we also be turning on the hot water heater? Would you travel with the hotwater heater on in winter as well? We do run the furnace for long trips in winter on the road.
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Old 10-29-2007, 07:39 PM   #10
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I know, I know...we're in Southern Arizona...and we are really wusses and whine a lot when it comes to cold weather (speaking strictly for myself, you understand). But it's cold if it's below 60..and 50 is like...unbearable!

That having been said, although it's not common, it can freeze here hard enough to break pipes... (The plumbers love it the day after those rare hard freezes because no one's prepared for it.) We don't winterize our AS because we camp in the winter months, but here's what we do if there's a freeze warning on... We set the furnace for about 40 degrees so that it keeps the interior above freezing and supposedly keeps the tanks warm...we open all the cabinets and drawers so the warm air can get into those areas...and we heat the hot water heater up...and the last thing I do before I go to bed is run hot water through the pipes....then I turn off the pump and open the faucets just so there's some expansion room in them just in case...

It beats waking up in the middle of the night and worrying about it for the rest of the night.

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Old 10-29-2007, 08:41 PM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 2airishuman
............ a 1/2 gallon of vodka would do the trick with no after taste issue! hiccup!
This is an intriguing idea! How will my coffee taste in the morning?
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Old 10-29-2007, 08:45 PM   #12
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This is an intriguing idea! How will my coffee taste in the morning?
after the 2nd or 3rd cup...

who cares!

cheers
2air'

hey mandolindave...

the rum may have too high a sugar content OR the alcohol may have dissolved stable floating algae/molds already IN the tank...

i wonder about seals too...
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Old 10-29-2007, 10:55 PM   #13
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Hi, all of this information is just baffleing to me; I drain the fresh tank, back my trailer into it's cozy little parking space, and put the battery charger on once a month. Done deal!
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Old 10-29-2007, 11:36 PM   #14
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Carol,
The water in the heater tank can freeze as well. I spent some of my last trip with both of the running down the road.
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