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Old 10-25-2020, 05:40 PM   #1
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Park City , Utah
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Need help with emergency winterizing!

We just bought a used 2018 FC 23RB a few months ago. We've been in Moab all week, and planned to take the trailer to the storage facility on Tuesday where they will winterize it for us. But we just arrived back home in Park City and it's snowing and 20F, and will drop to 8F tonight.

I'm wondering what we should do for tonight and tomorrow night before we can take the trailer to storage? The freshwater tank is 30% full. We dumped the grey and black tanks in Moab before leaving this morning, but I put a gallon of water + tank treatment in after dumping.

Right now the trailer is in our driveway. I turned the furnace on auto and set the temp to 50F.

What else do I need to do? Thanks.
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Old 10-25-2020, 05:49 PM   #2
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Dump the fresh water. Open the low point drain lines.
As long as your furnace remains functional, Iyour internal plumbing should be ok.
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Old 10-25-2020, 05:59 PM   #3
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Dump the fresh water. Open the low point drain lines.
As long as your furnace remains functional, Iyour internal plumbing should be ok.
Thanks. I wonder if the water in the fresh water tank may have already frozen? It was at about 25-30% before we left Moab, but when I opened the valve nothing came out. The monitor in the bathroom is reading 0%, which is strange.

When I opened the low point lines, a tiny bit of water came out.

On the way home, we drove through a mountain pass where it was snowing and the temps were as low as 30F.

I plugged in to shore power and turned on the furnace as soon as we got home (about 45 min ago).
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Old 10-25-2020, 06:11 PM   #4
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Switters, not sure of your layout, but since you have water in your lines and in the WH i would turn it on. It puts a lot if warmth into the area. I also use a small 110vac space heater, set to med in our bathroom, as there is a panel i can remove to expose much critical plumbing. look at your manual, but try to expose the pump and any critical plumbing generally in the area where the FW & ext shower is. Put some rags in the ext shower compartment. Even a 100 watt light bulb like in a shop light can make a difference.


BTW, by furnace, i presume you mean the gas furnace. The HP will not produce heat at those temps.
Good luck.

Ps, only one space heater since you're likely on only 20 amp shore power and WH on gas, not ele.
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Old 10-25-2020, 06:18 PM   #5
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If you opened the lp's, open some faucets too, other wise it sill just drip out. Also, jack to a nose up attitude to at least get some gravity working for you.

Since you have the lp's open, turn off and drain the WH. I use a 15/16 12 pt on an extension. I think it is 3/4 for a 6 pt. Don't need to get it all out, by design some will remain and that's ok.
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Old 10-25-2020, 06:27 PM   #6
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We've never used the trailer during low temps like this, so I'm still learning. I wasn't aware that the only way to heat it at these temps is with the furnace and propane. I'm not sure how much LP I still have in the tanks; hopefully it's enough for the next couple of days!

I can't see an access panel to any plumbing in the bathroom. The cabinet under the sink of course shows the pipes under the sink but that's it. Under the kitchen sink if I remove the drawers there is an access panel. I removed that (see attached picture).

I'll have to go to Walmart to buy a small space heater; we don't have one here.

I didn't keep the LPs open. I just opened them, a bit of water came out, and I closed them. I was going to turn on the water heater as you suggested. Should I instead re-open the LPs and drain the water heater or is it better to keep the WH on to add some warmth?
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Old 10-25-2020, 06:52 PM   #7
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Also, how concerned should I be about the one gallon of water + tank treatment I put in both the black and grey tanks, respectively? Should I take the trailer right now to a local RV park with a dump station to dump them, assuming that liquid hasn't frozen?
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Old 10-25-2020, 07:07 PM   #8
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I would suggest that you also unscrew the plug on the hot water tank and drain it.
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Old 10-25-2020, 07:38 PM   #9
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since you don't know how much is remaining the lines, I agree with steamy1, drain the WH.

You can always drain the BW/GW into a 5 gal and take it inside the home to dump.

When you're at walmart grab 2 gallons of of RV antifreeze. Pour1 gal down the Kit/Lav/shower drains to the GW tank. The other gallon in down the toilet saving a cup full or so to top off the bowl.

Open the LP's and the faucets and what drains, drains.

Do you have an air compressor? if so grab one of these.

https://www.campingworld.com/blow-ou...6&gclsrc=3p.ds

I have even used a 12VDC inflator and also 110VAC tire inflator. Better than nothing, just takes longer. I have attached my check list for winterization...concept the same, but varies by model. IMO it's a little ob]ver the top but gets me thru and not leave any moisture.

Once you get thru this, in light of your home's location , I would have the dealer plumb in a diverter valve so you can pump the pink antifreeze directly into the. system. Not bad insurance to have.

You may want to post your OP to the 23 thread

https://www.airforums.com/forums/f14...66085-201.html

re where the panel is to expose the water pump and if possible the incoming plumbing.
Attached Files
File Type: docx 0 Winterization 10-3-2020.docx (26.1 KB, 5 views)
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Old 10-25-2020, 07:47 PM   #10
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Here is your manual.


https://www.airstream.com/wp-content...manual-150.pdf


pg --8-11 (79 of 110) location of pump

pg 8-15 (83 of 110) winterization




I'd look in the back of the wardrobe and under the BR lav for access panels. I have an alu panel by the toilet that unscrews. That is where I place y space heater
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Old 10-25-2020, 07:59 PM   #11
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Thanks CruizinDux and everyone else!

Here's what I've done so far:
- Turned on furnace and have a space heater in the trailer
- Drained the water heater
- Drained the LP valves (what little water was in there)
- Opened the fresh water valve (nothing came out)

I will go to Wal-Mart and get some RV antifreeze and put it in the shower and toilet.

I don't have an air compressor. I do have a Ryobi 18v Power Inflator, but I suspect that won't be helpful.

At this point, I guess I'm wondering what is urgent (i.e. I need to do it tonight) vs. what steps I need to take tomorrow and/or what could wait for when I take the trailer to the storage facility, where they were going to do the full winterization?

Temp supposed to drop to 7F tonight, then high of 32F tomorrow and 15F tomorrow overnight, then "warming" up to 43F on Tuesday.
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Old 10-25-2020, 08:34 PM   #12
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1. Warm up the trailer to make sure the pipes don’t freeze. Set furnace at 72 (obviously you need to get LP). Portable heaters DO NOT WORK as well as the furnace running. the heat doesn’t get underneath to prevent freezing of the water tank.

2, Definitely empty water heater.

(I highly recommend that you get LP tank gauge of some type. I have one that is electronic that goes on the bottom of the LP tanks, and then tells me the % full on my cell phone for each tank. I always try to make sure I have one full tank before I fill the next. And if I’m going to a place where there is the high probability of cold weather I carry an extra tank. You will find that Airstreams suck up LP with the furnace (unless you have an alde system).)

3. Also you can get a hand pump to pump in AF through the system through the public water inlet. I’d be more concerned about the water in the lines than the Fresh water tank. The water in the tank will expand, but won’t burst a pipe. Just need one person inside turning on and off the valves. DON’T FORGET THE OUTSIDE SHOWER AND TAKE OFF ALL FIXTURES (SHOWER, OUTSIDE SHOWER, AND KITCHEN SINK).

4. Pour AF down in the Grey and Black water tanks as well. I do this simply because the AF helps keep seals moist. Make sure AF is in the toilet to keep the seal moist. Also pour AF down the drains.

Another suggestion for the future is get a portable pump. Plus get a RV blow plug that you can attach the compressor to while it is going through the system. I attach mine to the blow plug and then go into the trailer and turn on and off the valves. AND if you use an air pump MAKE SURE that at least one faucet is open before using it. Otherwise you could blow a line with the pressure.

I hope things work out for you.
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Old 10-25-2020, 08:47 PM   #13
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Don't sell the ryobi short. Not sure how long battery life is, but worth a try. I have winterized OTR a few times with a small 12 v. Better than nothing. You'll need a schrader blow plug from wallies.

As for the space heater, understand it is not in lieu of the propane furnace, but as a focused heat source, in my case in the bathroom, with an access panel removed to circulate warm air to where the FW, shower, Bw connections are...often behind a bathroom cabinet panel, now accessible.
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Old 10-25-2020, 08:48 PM   #14
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Originally Posted by Daquenzer View Post
1. Warm up the trailer to make sure the pipes donít freeze. Set furnace at 72 (obviously you need to get LP). Portable heaters DO NOT WORK as well as the furnace running. the heat doesnít get underneath to prevent freezing of the water tank.

2, Definitely empty water heater.

(I highly recommend that you get LP tank gauge of some type. I have one that is electronic that goes on the bottom of the LP tanks, and then tells me the % full on my cell phone for each tank. I always try to make sure I have one full tank before I fill the next. And if Iím going to a place where there is the high probability of cold weather I carry an extra tank. You will find that Airstreams suck up LP with the furnace (unless you have an alde system).)

3. Also you can get a hand pump to pump in AF through the system through the public water inlet. Iíd be more concerned about the water in the lines than the Fresh water tank. The water in the tank will expand, but wonít burst a pipe. Just need one person inside turning on and off the valves. DONíT FORGET THE OUTSIDE SHOWER AND TAKE OFF ALL FIXTURES (SHOWER, OUTSIDE SHOWER, AND KITCHEN SINK).

4. Pour AF down in the Grey and Black water tanks as well. I do this simply because the AF helps keep seals moist. Make sure AF is in the toilet to keep the seal moist. Also pour AF down the drains.

Another suggestion for the future is get a portable pump. Plus get a RV blow plug that you can attach the compressor to while it is going through the system. I attach mine to the blow plug and then go into the trailer and turn on and off the valves. AND if you use an air pump MAKE SURE that at least one faucet is open before using it. Otherwise you could blow a line with the pressure.

I hope things work out for you.
Thank you!

If I keep the trailer at 72 with the furnace, do I need to do the other steps as well if I'm planning to have the storage facility winterize the trailer?

In other words, will keeping the trailer at 72 get me through until Wednesday when the temps will be warmer and I will be taking it to storage and they will winterize it?

Thanks for the tip on the propane scales. I'll get a couple for sure.
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Old 10-25-2020, 08:49 PM   #15
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If nothing comes out of your freshwater drain, try running the water pump to see if you can get water out of the faucet. If so, I would try to get as much water out via filling buckets as possible. Then look at purging the water lines. Also remove all sprayer/shower heads and store them indoors.
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Old 10-25-2020, 09:22 PM   #16
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If nothing comes out of your freshwater drain, try running the water pump to see if you can get water out of the faucet. If so, I would try to get as much water out via filling buckets as possible. Then look at purging the water lines. Also remove all sprayer/shower heads and store them indoors.
I put a bucket under the kitchen sink faucet and turned it on. Water comes out, but in spurts. Does this mean the tank is almost empty, or something else? (See video of water coming out of faucet https://www.dropbox.com/s/8pmpq2foxh..._5114.mov?dl=0

How do I purge the water lines?
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Old 10-25-2020, 09:27 PM   #17
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If you keep the temp at 72 I think you will be fine if you can get it to the winterizing place within a brief period of time. And if it warms up during the day your fresh water tank may also thaw.

I would highly recommend learning how to winterize. It’s really not that difficult. I suggest watching how they do it. It takes me about 30 minutes to winterize the Airstream, and I go a bit overboard living in WI. I not only blow out the lines, I also put in AF.

And knowing how to do it will keep you from getting into a bad situation.
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Old 10-25-2020, 09:28 PM   #18
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I agree on learning to winterize. I would rather do it myself than to rely on someone else to do it correctly .
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Old 10-25-2020, 09:33 PM   #19
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Daquenzer View Post
If you keep the temp at 72 I think you will be fine if you can get it to the winterizing place within a brief period of time. And if it warms up during the day your fresh water tank may also thaw.

I would highly recommend learning how to winterize. Itís really not that difficult. I suggest watching how they do it. It takes me about 30 minutes to winterize the Airstream, and I go a bit overboard living in WI. I not only blow out the lines, I also put in AF.

And knowing how to do it will keep you from getting into a bad situation.
I definitely plan to winterize myself starting next year. I am going to have the storage place (which also does RV service) install the winterization kit that makes it easy to pull antifreeze directly into the pipes from the jug to make it a little easier. I bought a book on Airstream maintenance on Amazon and it explains the full winterization procedure in a lot of detail. Seems pretty straightforward, just have a super busy week and don't have time to do it, and the weather won't wait!

Main thing now is hoping that I have enough LP to keep the furnace going through the night. I'll go first thing in the AM to fill one of the tanks.
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Old 10-25-2020, 10:13 PM   #20
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- Opened the fresh water valve (nothing came out)
When I tried to drain my fresh water tank the first time, I assumed the valve opened with a quarter turn so that the handle was inline with the tubing. It only created a couple of drips. It actually requires a half (180 degree) turn to get it draining.
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