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Old 10-25-2003, 07:58 AM   #1
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Why compressed air?

I'd like to know what the difference is between using compressed air to blow out the plumbing lines for winterizing vs. not. Is there any danger to not using compressed air?

I have successfully used the following technique with no problems (should I be concerned?):

After I drain the water from the system, I use the pump to push the antifreeze through each line by opening facuets one by one. Of course, because I don't use compressed air, there is a little bit of water left in each facuet that gets pushed into the gray tank by the incoming antifreeze. Additionally, any water residue left in the lines will get pushed out by the antifreeze. Then, when I add antifreeze to the traps, the water will get pushed into the gray tank. Afterwards, I drain the gray tank one last time (it ends up being about 2 cups of water and some antifreeze). I realize this solution is a little bit wasteful of antifreeze but it works (i.e., no freezing problems last winter).
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Old 10-25-2003, 08:34 AM   #2
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If you happen to have an air compressor....you don't need the antifreeze in the lines. Some people don't like the idea of "contaminating" their plumbing lines w/ antifreeze...can make the water taste funny, hard to flush it out completely, etc. I don't see the problem if you don't drink out of the tap. I guess some people like to, though.

fwiw: the manual for my '73 says that all you need to do for winterizing is to drain the water in the lines by opening up the drain valves, then jack the trailer all the way up, let the water drain completely, then jack the trailer all the way down, more water will drain, then pour a little antifreeze down the drains to fill the traps. that's all I did last year.

I did pick up a blow-out plug for a couple of bucks from the trailer store in Danvers, and I have a compressor, so I may try that method this year, just for some added insurance. I don't have a by-pass valve on my water heater, so it would take a lot of antifreeze to fill the lines and heater.
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Old 10-25-2003, 08:42 AM   #3
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Compressed air is used to purge all water from the system so there is nothing to freeze. Using antifreeze replaces the water with antifreeze. Both ways have the same intent, no broken pipes.
Advantage of compressed air is no need to flush the system of antifreeze in the spring. However there is always the chance you may not get 100% of the water out.

I have used both ways and never had a problem but prefer compressed air for reason stated above.
However; I think using anti freeze is the safest method.

Garry
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Old 10-25-2003, 09:51 AM   #4
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When using compressed air use an oil less compressor. Oil based ones can get oil in your plumbing system which is not a good thing to drink from what I hear.

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Old 10-25-2003, 10:24 AM   #5
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Winterizing and anti-freeze brands.

Quote:
Originally posted by garry
However there is always the chance you may not get 100% of the water out.

Garry
That pretty much what our dealer told us. Unless you have substantial pressure (like he does), you can't be assured that the residule moisture left in the line won't accumulate at a low spot and then freeze. While I do blow the lines out with my 12 volt compressor, I follow up with pumping RV anti-freeze through the system.

I've been doing this for many years and each spring I'm thoroughly flush the water system with never any problems of the anti-freeze tainting the water quality. Its just a matter of spending enough time flush the system.

Now whether there is a difference in quality in brands of anti-freeze may be up for discussion. In one case I would take the stand that they should be all made of the same components but I can tell you for years I used stuff that had no brand names and eventually had to replace my flush valve bladder in my Aqua Majic toilet. It escentially looked like it had turned to soft mush or decomposed. I found this during the annual flushing of the anti-freeze when the toilet began leaking when I flushed it.

I pretty much blamed this on the anti-freeze and since then have stuck with the Prestone brand, figuring that if it caused any damage the company would stand behind me. I also found that the dyes used in the Prestone product tended to clean up easier and not permanently mar counter tops, fiberglass or curtains if splashes occur.

Jack
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Old 10-25-2003, 11:34 AM   #6
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First I drain everything, then I use a small, 2 gal. oil less compressor (Delta, about $99). I next run the 12 v pump until "dry", and then blow out each of the lines in turn. I follow up with antifreeze in the sinks and tub. About 15 min. alltogether. However, I now have PEX throughout the coach, and it has a very large expansion tolerance if frozen.

This is simple enough that we camp well into December, performing this little chore just before leaving the campground. So far so good.

Mark
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Old 10-25-2003, 07:15 PM   #7
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RV Antifreez

I hope everyone is talking about "RV" antifreeze. The "RV"pink stuff is the only type antifreeze you should use as auto antifreeze is posion and should never be used in portable water systems.

Garry
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Old 10-25-2003, 07:49 PM   #8
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Re: RV Antifreez

Quote:
Originally posted by garry
I hope everyone is talking about "RV" antifreeze.
Of course!
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