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Old 11-02-2013, 03:39 PM   #1
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Winterizing in Puget Sound

Hello!
This is our first winter with our new Airstream. We'd still like to take the trailer out this winter here in Puget Sound. But if we winterize it, does that mean we can't take it out unless we de-winterize it?

It gets cold here in Puget Sound, but it doesn't always freeze. So I'm wondering what folks here in the Puget Sound area do? Do you winterize? If so, have you already winterize this year?

Thanks in advance!
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Old 11-02-2013, 06:32 PM   #2
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Ditto the question. We just got our first AS19FC and am wondering what others in the Puget Sound do? Also is it best to run a little electic heater set on low?

I was planning on draining the water tank, the plumbing, and the hot water tank. I was also going to disconnect the batteries. But I can leave it plugged into a 15amp line and charge them periodically. What is best?

If it is like our boat, moisture won't become a problem until spring when we get more temp change then we need to use a dehumidifier, fan or???

Where do you take your AS in the winter around here?
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Old 11-02-2013, 06:52 PM   #3
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You Semi-Winterize It

We can still use our Airstreams in the winter.
But what is winter where you are? How cold does it get? Will you be using it continuously, or off and on.
If you are talking about occasional camping with with trailer in storage when you aren't using it, you take one approach (We'll call it Approach 1) if you intend to camp in continuously a different approach is required (Approach 2).

Approach 1:
Winterize
Empty fresh-water holding tank.
Empty the hot-water heater.
Blow out the water lines.
Carry your water as you would if you were tent camping.
Drink from 5 gal water jugs
Flush with a bucket by the toilet
Heat water on the propane stove for sponge baths.
Allow all waste water to drain through holding tanks into sewer.

Approach 2:
Keep 'er heated
Don't winterize
Find the great thread about living on the South Rim of the Grand Canyon all winter.

Your approach (Approach 3?) will be some enlightened combination of 1 and 2 with ingenious solutions and specialized equipment.
Be bold and creative!
Hope this helps.
P.S. I have spent the last two winters in our Airstream...(in Mesa, AZ)
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Old 11-02-2013, 07:03 PM   #4
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Winter Camping in the Grand Canyon

Here's that thread:
http://www.airforums.com/forums/f459...yon-98031.html

Enjoy
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Old 11-02-2013, 07:09 PM   #5
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Alumaholic.....
We might get a winter with freezing temps and then again, maybe not. Last year was mild with no snow and it only dipped below. 30 once or twice. But, I have seen winters with weeks of snow and a week at 15 degrees.

I do like your thought, snow birding in our AS to Arizona. Our neighbors go to Baja in their RV but I am not ready for that. I have a client in Tuscon. Maybe somewhere around there?

Approach 3.......go anywhere its not grey
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Old 11-02-2013, 07:09 PM   #6
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Every winter it gets below freezing at night in your area so you have to do something. Alumaholic sums up your options well. We camp all winter long so we do option 2. We run the propane furnace on a low heat to keep any water in the lines from freezing. We haven't had a problem yet. Kinda a pain to keep refilling the propane but we want our trailer ready to go. If you only plan to camp a couple of time then winterize and dewinterize, it's pretty easy. Or swing by Convington and have them winterize for 50 bucks.
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Old 11-03-2013, 12:20 AM   #7
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I had the same issues you did with the new FC. We have plans for a few winter trips that will take us to slightly warmer climates, but needing to travel through passes. Otherwise, she'll sit through the toughest of the winter months.

Here's how I am planning. I bought a reasonably portable air compressor to have handy, and rigged up a blowout hose. Drained the hot water tank, keeping the fresh water tank empty, blew out all the lines, and a bit of RV antifreeze in the traps, just in case. But didn't run antifreeze in the water lines.

For the few trips we will take during winter, we will travel dry and use city water when we reach warmer climes. Just before we leave our last camp spot coming home, will run a sewer flush, then drain the black and grey. Once home, will blow out lines again and follow the above regiment.

One thing I did last week was to spend a Saturday putting on paint sealant so I'd just have to hose her off after a trip and do a quick spray on wax.
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Old 11-03-2013, 01:24 AM   #8
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Thanks everyone! We'll probably winterize and de-winterize as needed.

I appreciate all your responses. As usual, you've been very helpful.
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Old 11-16-2013, 05:31 AM   #9
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I have a good 12v tire inflator that hooks directly to the battery, can this be used to blow the lines out ?

Thx

Dan
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Old 11-16-2013, 09:33 AM   #10
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what you need is a pretty good amount of air flow to blow out the lines , most inflators pump fairly slowly. look at the black friday ads at your local big box store and get a larger air compressor. you will be much happier with the results.
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Old 11-16-2013, 09:38 AM   #11
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Hard to say. You can try it, but my guess is that you may need the air tank capacity, say 4gallons or more. I don't think a standard air tire compressor can properly pressurize the lines.

I use a Makita MAC 2400, which does just great. It has a 4 gallon capacity. If you just plan to use a compressor for this task only, I would probably look into a cheaper Harbor Freight or porter cable unit.
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Old 11-16-2013, 10:08 AM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Dan S View Post
I have a good 12v tire inflator that hooks directly to the battery, can this be used to blow the lines out ?

Thx

Dan
You can use a 12 v tire inflation pump, but it is tedious, time consuming, and paradoxically a bit riskier. Best to have a compressor with a tank and a regulator to limit the amount of air pressure you apply to your water lines, joints, fittings, faucets, etc.
The problem with the 12 v pump is you must pressurize, open a faucet, repressurize, open another faucet, over and over... Each time you pressurize you run the risk of over-pressurizing. A moment of inattention compounded by frustration and impatience and you will have damaged a line in some inaccessible spot.
With an air compressor equipped with tank and regulator you can maintain air pressure consistent with water pressure design capacities of your Airstream.
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Old 11-16-2013, 11:11 AM   #13
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Winterize FC

Agree with Alumaholic's approach #1. We live just East of Albuquerque at 7,000ft and always do approach #1 to our 2013 25'FB FC. Previously, we had a 19' Bambi and had no problems winterizing, de-winterizing, and re-winterizing during our winter trips--mostly to South Texas and back.

It does get down to 15 degrees, and even lower sometimes here in the low mountains. I use a 8 gallon air compressor and blow out the lines using ~45 lbs pressure for each of the inside city water supplied faucets and toilet up to 3 times each. Also, I keep the belly drain valves open and all the faucets open when finished. (We do not use the hot water heater, nor the fresh water tank and its pump so they remain dry.) We pour RV antifreeze down the traps and toilet.
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Old 12-03-2013, 06:42 PM   #14
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Travel during the winter -- short trips out of Port Orchard, never winterize, never had a problem. Run this "Little Eva", drain the tanks and run the heat every week or so. Nice to be able to hop in and go without the winterizing fuss. Just hope we don't get a storm like December 31 1968, but not likely. The small dehumidifier fills about every 2 weeks this time of year and works like a charm ($40 Amazon) (20' FC). Jeff
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