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Old 03-23-2003, 05:08 PM   #1
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Red face Am I a bad A/S Mommy?

We bought our '03 Bambi late last summer and really enjoyed our excursions. When fall came along, and we realized we couldn't keep our baby in the driveway much longer (zoning restrictions -- DRAT), a friend gave us permission to park her in their driveway that goes way behind their house, out of sight of would-be vandals. We are grateful Bambi was safe for the winter. We had her professonally winterized (we were too chicken to do it ourselves, because we aren't good at those things) but we didn't have her under roof. Almost all the input we received indicated it was not a good idea to put a cover on, so we didn't.

So, now that spring has FINALLY come, we're about ready to get her back out and enjoy! Should we take Bambi back to where we had her winterized (only a few miles from home) to get her UN-winterized, or is it really so simple we should be embarrassed not to do it ourselves?

Do you think we were bad "parents" not to have washed and polished the entire A/S before parking her up for the winter? I'm thinking these campers are pretty rugged, and I can just clean her up now and all will be fine. Also, we were not told to remove the battery unit for storage, either. It gets really cold here in the winter, so I'm hoping that didn't hurt anything, either. I guess we'll know soon enough.

Worry, worry, worry! Sheesh! Am I being anal, or WHAT?

Cherie (who is obviously still a rookie A/S'er)

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Old 03-23-2003, 06:44 PM   #2
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I think that washing and waxing will extend the life of the coating on the aluminum skin. I think this is one area that you should pay close attention to based on what I have read over the last year on the forum. I do not have any coating on my trailer and have not waxed it like I should. You can tell that the shine that was on it has faded. Not to worry, I am ordering a Cyclo polisher and polish next week and will plan on polishing to my heart's content during the month of May. I wish I lived a little farther in the country because I would have built some type of shelter to park the trailer in.


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Old 03-23-2003, 06:50 PM   #3
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I gotta tell you..Bring Bambi back from sleep will be a snap.
Before I can tell you how to do that, you need to know just what 'they' did..Was it air blow dry the water system? Or did they put gallons and gallons of RV anti freeze in her?
I'll assume one or the other.
If they blew your line with air, you're almost as good as back. Just check and, be sure all your fausts are closed before you hook up to the city water..Plse use your pressure regulator~or better yet, get a pair of walkie talkies and, communicate instructions to the one outside to turn on/off the water as you check each one. Easy...
Pretty much the same for cleaning out the anti freezes if that was used. Except, you want to run the tap water till the "pink" is gone~Then, you might want to go to Wal Mart and, pick up some water fresh chemicals to put in your fresh water tank. This can help get rid of the pink anti freeze taste. YUCK...
Btw, plain olde bleach can be used too...just go easy on it...use a teaspoon or so is all.
Check the shower and, flush as
The water heater should have a valve that either needs to be closed (or open to drain the pink anti freeze it was filled).
Perhaps you have a by-pass line for the water heater..? If that's the case, then switch it back on line, then fill with water.(after you've flushed the dreaded pink stuff). Want that heater to be full before you fire it up..
All in all, it's not too hard to bring it back..Next winter..You'll be ready to do it yourself.. Betcha`!!
As far as the outside goes, you can wash her down, dry it and give it a coat of wax..You do have the newer treated aluminum and, should be very easy to keep looking nice..No plastic coating on your unit to worry abt.~
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Old 03-23-2003, 06:55 PM   #4
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If you don't feel comfortable de-winterizing, don't worry about it, take it in, but when you take it in ask many questions so that you will be able to do it yourself. It's not very difficult.

As for washing and waxing, I agree with davidz71. Wash and use Walbernize regularly to maintain the finish. Being in the Chicago area, the winters can be more brutal than in the Kentucky area I believe.

At any rate for details on subject, click the search button and enter Walbernize there are tons of posts. I also sent you some email on how I washed and waxed based on what I found on this forum. I would then enter winterize and see what is in there too.

Either way, I think it's all a learning process. The best thing you can do is ask questions and learn so that you can be well versed in how to own and operate all aspects of your Bambi.

It's not hard, if I can do it anyone can, it just takes time and paitence and soon enough, you'll be posting how to stuff and neat tips and tricks like some of the big dogs here!


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Old 03-23-2003, 07:08 PM   #5
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When you put the trailer away was the battery disconnected electrically? If not, then it will have been drawn down by the little things (stereo clock, refrigerator electronics...). A dead battery is prone to freezing, which can crack it. I suggest that you check the battery for damage, if okay then try to charge it up, and have it tested. Worst case is you will buy a new one for around $70-$100. For future winters you should remove the battery, store it indoors, check it's water level, and charge it up monthly.

Putting your trailer back into service mostly involves flushing the water system, reinstalling the charged battery, giving everything a once-over, and cleaning up. It's easy to do, and getting to know your trailer better could be helpfull on the road. Start with your owners manual!
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Old 03-24-2003, 08:10 AM   #6
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To get rid of the pink stuff out of the lines:

Relieve any pressure in the system by opening a cold and hot water faucet. Then go around and open all the faucets as if they were flowing both cold and warm simultaneously.

Go outside and find the "low point" drains (metal T knobs) for the hot and cold lines and open them to drain the pipes. Make sure you go inside and step on the toilet valve, and hold the sprayer up and press it while your foot is on the pedal, so it can drain back. Do the same in the shower while the valve is open and in the kitchen with the spray nozzle.

Then, with the faucets in the trailer all closed but the low point drains still open, put a fresh water hose on the city water inlet and run some water through there for a minute.

To make sure to get any antifreeze out of the hot water heater tank if they put any in there, I'd pull the drain plug and see what comes out. If it isn't pink, just put the plug back in.

Wherever the hot water heater is inside the trailer, "unbypass" it. There are three valves in the bypass, one in the cold water line going to the HWH and one in the hot water line coming from the HWH. Open them counterclockwise fully. The last valve will be in a line connecting the hot and cold lines, and you want to close it fully clockwise.

If there was pink in the HWH tank, run some more city water with the drain plug out to get it out. This is easier than trying to get it out through the water lines.

Once that's done, close the low point drains and sanitize the fresh tank. This thread has a post on how I do it. Even though most of each fill of the fresh tank will be drained on to the ground from the tank drain valve, you will be running a lot of water into the grey tank while flushing the faucets and shower, so I personally open the grey water gate valve and let it run onto the ground.

Check the tire pressures and inspect them for any cracks. Check the torque on the wheel's lug nuts.

You've probably killed the battery or at least reduced its capacity as mentioned in the previous post. If the battery has cracked, I'd remove the box from the tongue and take it away from the trailer to clean the acid out of it with baking soda. If the box leaked acid on the tongue, I'd cover the front of the trailer with plastic to protect it, clean up the mess with baking soda, and let it dry. Wire brush any eroded metal off, paint it with some Rustoleum primer for rusty metal, and then put a coat of dark grey or black matching paint over that.

Definitely wash and wax the trailer now. It should've been done in the fall and should be done in the spring as well. Find any cracks in caulking and repair them with Sikaflex.

Hope this helps.
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Old 03-24-2003, 01:56 PM   #7
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Smile Thanks, everybody!

After reading all of this, I'm doubting now whether the battery was actually not removed for the winter. Why would they not have done that if it's so basic? I'll have to ask my hubby about that. We haven't seen Bambi in months, so that's why I wasn't sure.

I think we can handle the rest of it, thanks to all this great advice, which I'm printing right now.

Thanks again!

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Old 03-24-2003, 02:11 PM   #8
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Old 03-24-2003, 05:03 PM   #9
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RoadKingMoe wrote:

Go outside and find the "low point" drains (metal T knobs) for the hot and cold lines and open them to drain the pipes.
If anyone knows where these exist on the new Bambi, please post. I have not found anything like this, and always have to empty fresh water tank by running faucets so it goes into grey water and can be dumped.

Also, RoadKingMoe, there is no sprayer for the toilet in the new Bambi.

The HWH bypass valves are under the bed, accessible either by removing the mattress, or, if you're real slender, by crawling in the rear storage area.
Rick Klein
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Old 03-24-2003, 06:35 PM   #10
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Rick, on the '03 Bambi, there are 3 low point knobs. One is next to the fresh water tank drain and the other two are located just south of the water heater, on the floor, under rear bed, near the passenger wall.

Of the two in the back, one is cold and the other is hot.

Funny, I just tore through the manual last night asking myself the same question....perfect timing on you part!

Hope this helps.


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