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Old 10-30-2013, 02:26 PM   #1
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2014 25' FB Eddie Bauer
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Tank heaters-forced air?

I thought my 25EB had tank heaters, but I see it is "forced air". I guess that means I have to have the furnace on to heat the tanks? Trying to decide whether to winterize or keep unit heated this winter. Stored in carport attached to brick house, thinking of skirt with heat lamp underneath, maybe running furnace with cabinet doors open..... It can get cold in E TN. Any suggestions?
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Old 10-30-2013, 02:41 PM   #2
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Definitely winterize it. Too many ways the heat could fail or not be enough and you would have severe and costly damage to your plumbing system throughout the trailer.

Winterizing is easy, a good method is in the owners manual.
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Old 10-30-2013, 02:41 PM   #3
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I performed a mod whereby I can run my furnace blower at a variable speed independent of furnace operation. That way I can put in an electric heater and keep warm air flowing to the tank areas whenever I want, without burning propane.

As an alternative, since you are further south, when the forecast is mid 20's or below for more than overnight, set your furnace to 40 or 50* and open the cabinet doors.
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Old 10-30-2013, 02:43 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jfed View Post
I thought my 25EB had tank heaters, but I see it is "forced air". I guess that means I have to have the furnace on to heat the tanks? Trying to decide whether to winterize or keep unit heated this winter. Stored in carport attached to brick house, thinking of skirt with heat lamp underneath, maybe running furnace with cabinet doors open..... It can get cold in E TN. Any suggestions?
Winterized it. I store my 27FB in east TN at my Dad's house (he has covered storage). One year I winterized but forgot about the water filter under the kitchen sink and the thing exploded after a freeze.

It's quick and easy to winterize. Running the furnace, even at a low temp setting will be expensive due to propane use. Skirting and heating might work, but I'd be wary. Another thing you must consider is loss of electricity and you not around to address the issue.

My recommendation is to winterize.
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Old 10-30-2013, 02:44 PM   #5
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Most of your freeze protection efforts should be focused on water lines and p-traps. You can blow the lines clear with compressed air or fill them with RV antifreeze. A shot of antifreeze in the p-traps usually does the trick there.

If you are storing for the Winter then the tanks (fresh, gray, black, and water heater) are typically stored dry, though some do fill the water heater with RV antifreeze. Even if a small amount of residual water remains in the tanks after your emptying effort there is usually room for freeze related expansion.
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Old 10-30-2013, 05:26 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jfed View Post
I thought my 25EB had tank heaters, but I see it is "forced air". I guess that means I have to have the furnace on to heat the tanks? Trying to decide whether to winterize or keep unit heated this winter. Stored in carport attached to brick house, thinking of skirt with heat lamp underneath, maybe running furnace with cabinet doors open..... It can get cold in E TN. Any suggestions?
Winterize. It won't take that long. I blow out my lines and then pump in RV anti-freeze via the water pump. As others have noted don't forget to winterize the spray hoses (sink and toilet) and pour some anti-freeze directly into the drains to winterize the traps. If you have an outside water faucet don't forget to blow it out and pump some anti-freeze through it. The low water drains, hot and cold need to be blown out. Since they are low those are the last two valves I open up when pumping anti-freeze.

I leave the water heater drain plug out. What ever water is left in the tank will cause no concern. Same goes with the fresh water tank. While opening up the drain valve may leave a small amount of water in the tank, what is left will cause no damage.

Blowing out with air will remove most of the water. For most of us the anti-freeze is a safety in case some droplets of water were left behind in the blow out process. Leave some anti-freeze in the toilet bowl itself. That will keep the seal lubricated and moist. Any pink color on the bowl left from the standing anti-freeze can be removed in the spring.

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Old 10-30-2013, 05:49 PM   #7
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In addition to what Jack Canavera says above, don't forget to use compressed air to blow out the black water tank wash system. There is a check valve in it, and there is no way to drain the line without blowing compressed air through it. This applies to all of the newer Airstreams with black water tank flush factory installations.
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Old 10-30-2013, 07:42 PM   #8
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Originally Posted by idroba View Post
In addition to what Jack Canavera says above, don't forget to use compressed air to blow out the black water tank wash system. There is a check valve in it, and there is no way to drain the line without blowing compressed air through it. This applies to all of the newer Airstreams with black water tank flush factory installations.
Well you just turned a new page with me. I've never investigated this component. I guess I thought it was a direct connect with the inlet sitting directly against the tank with the sprayer on the other side. I've never blown this out in 10 years of use. Do some models have a significant piece of pipe connecting the inlet to the spray assembly in the tank?

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Old 10-30-2013, 08:55 PM   #9
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Jack,

I think on your unit you'll find, under the bath sink, the flush line runs up the wall about 18" and then back down to the black tank. There is a check valve at the hose connection, so water sits in the line from the hose connection up to the top of the rise. (about 3' of line)
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Old 10-30-2013, 09:12 PM   #10
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Originally Posted by dznf0g View Post
Jack, I think on your unit you'll find, under the bath sink, the flush line runs up the wall about 18" and then back down to the black tank. There is a check valve at the hose connection, so water sits in the line from the hose connection up to the top of the rise. (about 3' of line)
Quite frankly I'm surprised that in my trailer's first 3 years of life, when I stored it outdoors that I didn't crack a pipe. I used it a couple of weeks back on my last outing of the year. The last 6 years Ive stored it in a garage and although the garage isn't heated, it is well insulated and based on the thermometer in the trailer, it hasn't gotten below freezing for quite a few years. Before winter sets in I think I'll drive out and take my compressor and blow it out. I'll look for that pipe in the bathroom sink cabinet. Thanks for the heads up. I'll let you know what I find.

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Old 10-30-2013, 09:29 PM   #11
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Jack: Some of the people with the Interstate have had that line freeze, or the check valve to it, and apparently it is virtually impossible to get at in those units. What happened to them is when they went to use the black tank flush, they had a serious water leak.

On my 2014 FC 20' the same black flush line is located behind the shower and there is no way to get at it short of total shower removal (or so I think). So that is why I added that to your list of things to do when winterizing the newer Airstreams which have this feature.

Best to be safe at any rate.
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Old 11-16-2013, 05:34 PM   #12
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I have an older Airstream (67 Tradewind) with no diverter valve on the (original) hot water heater.

Does anyone know any tricks for getting antifreeze into the hot water supply lines without having to fill up the 10 gallon hot water tank? Or do I just bite the bullet and spend $50 on antifreeze, and try to reuse it for a few years.
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Old 11-16-2013, 05:39 PM   #13
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Blow the pipes out with air.

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Originally Posted by retrocar66 View Post
I have an older Airstream (67 Tradewind) with no diverter valve on the (original) hot water heater.

Does anyone know any tricks for getting antifreeze into the hot water supply lines without having to fill up the 10 gallon hot water tank? Or do I just bite the bullet and spend $50 on antifreeze, and try to reuse it for a few years.
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Old 11-30-2013, 12:12 AM   #14
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Unless you have a need to use the water system in the winter ... it is much cheaper to winterize than to repair (or pay to) damage from freezing. What causes the most problems are temps in the 28-32 degree range around here. Use air / drain / the hot water heater by-pass to not fill the HWH with anti-freeze.
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