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Old 10-10-2018, 05:42 PM   #1
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What type of Anti-Freeze -50F or -100F

Hi,

I'm new to RV-ing and I'm looking at winterizing my FW with the recommended method air blower + AntiFreeze in the lines.

Looking to buy AF, I found out that there are multiple types. The commonly recommended is propylene glycol to avoid taste and smell in the lines (in opposition to ethanol based).

The next question is about the temperature capability: -50F or -100F.
To be noted that -50F AF notice indicates that it solidifies at ~12F.
Some users report expansion of the AF still damaging their lines or faucets.

What is this forum recommendation?
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Old 10-10-2018, 05:46 PM   #2
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I have not seen -100 F antifreeze solution for sale where I live in SW Michigan. I'll be curious where that's located short of purchasing it online. I'm going to follow the answers you are seeking here.
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Old 10-10-2018, 06:25 PM   #3
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I’ve never seen -100* RV AF before here in Wisconsin. I just buy the stuff at Walmart and only use it in the traps. I blow all the water out of the lines and have never had a problem with broken lines when spring comes.
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Old 10-10-2018, 06:47 PM   #4
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Air only?

I'm a year into my new 5th wheel out here in the Pacific NW and last winter I was presented with this task. Camping World offered to "winterize" my 5'r for $120. I believe that consisted of draining some water and pouring $15 worth of anti-freeze down the drains. I'd read somewhere that you could simply blow the lines out with an air hose adapter and air pump. This made sense to me - hook up air pump, add pressure to the line and open the faucets until all the water goes down the drain. Then drain the water from the pipe and all you have left is Pex and PVC with nothing but air in the lines. It dropped down to freezing a few times and I had no problems. I'm starting to wonder why make the effort to adding anti-freeze in the lines if there's nothing to freeze in the first place?

Side note: We've got a tank-less water heater (vs. tank), so nothing to worry about there. Our rig also has an enclosed underbelly and it's rated for "seasonal" weather.
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Old 10-10-2018, 07:10 PM   #5
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Originally Posted by Packerbacker_TX View Post
I'm a year into my new 5th wheel out here in the Pacific NW and last winter I was presented with this task. Camping World offered to "winterize" my 5'r for $120. I believe that consisted of draining some water and pouring $15 worth of anti-freeze down the drains. I'd read somewhere that you could simply blow the lines out with an air hose adapter and air pump. This made sense to me - hook up air pump, add pressure to the line and open the faucets until all the water goes down the drain. Then drain the water from the pipe and all you have left is Pex and PVC with nothing but air in the lines. It dropped down to freezing a few times and I had no problems. I'm starting to wonder why make the effort to adding anti-freeze in the lines if there's nothing to freeze in the first place?

Side note: We've got a tank-less water heater (vs. tank), so nothing to worry about there. Our rig also has an enclosed underbelly and it's rated for "seasonal" weather.
Because there is a little water left in nooks and crannies of valves. Its not so much that the temp drops to a little below freezing for a short time. Its more of an issue when it never gets above zero for three months. You can be sure the cold has reached every nook and cranny then.

We have already had several nights below freezing and have not winterized. Temps rebound to 50 during the day..
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Old 10-10-2018, 07:42 PM   #6
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-100 seems extreme.

Watch out for antifreeze that has alcohol in it as evaporation will reduce it's effectiveness. All glycol types will not evaporate so they continue to work.

What I do is:

Drain what will come out.

Blow out at 40 psi turning faucets inside and out, don't forget the shower and toilet!!!

Run some pink antifreeze through the system to catch all the water left over.

Blow it out again.

Add some pink to sink and shower drain traps and the toilet.

Wait for spring to come again.
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Old 10-10-2018, 09:16 PM   #7
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FYI-

A friend who works in the RV industry told me years ago that the -50 degree antifeeze can be mixed 50-50 with water and still be good down to -25 degrees.

Saves a few $$$!

Murff
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Old 10-10-2018, 09:41 PM   #8
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Originally Posted by Edena View Post
snip...
To be noted that -50F AF notice indicates that it solidifies at ~12F.
Some users report expansion of the AF still damaging their lines or faucets.

What is this forum recommendation?
This is the first I'VE heard about RV antifreeze expanding when freezing. People use RV antifreeze because it isn't supposed to expand when it freezes. I would think that if it's true, it would be all over the RV sites, including this one.
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Old 10-10-2018, 09:51 PM   #9
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RV antifreeze is propylene glycol, and will not freeze solid. It will freeze, but only to the consistency of a slushy. Generally RV Antifreeze is good to about -20 to -50 at full strength depending on the brand, but the more water that is mixed with it the higher the freeze temperature will be
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Old 10-10-2018, 11:11 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Edena View Post
Hi,

I'm new to RV-ing and I'm looking at winterizing my FW with the recommended method air blower + AntiFreeze in the lines.

Looking to buy AF, I found out that there are multiple types. The commonly recommended is propylene glycol to avoid taste and smell in the lines (in opposition to ethanol based).

The next question is about the temperature capability: -50F or -100F.
To be noted that -50F AF notice indicates that it solidifies at ~12F.
Some users report expansion of the AF still damaging their lines or faucets.

What is this forum recommendation?
Just got an rv this spring, so don't know much about rv antifreeze yet. After reading your post I did some research as I need to winterize soon.

I deal with glycol in hvac systems. We don't have to deal with expansion as the fluid is usually moving thru the system and has an expansion tank. So never thought of expansion causing issues in an rv, but appears it can.

Below is a chart from Dowfrost RV Antifreeze. Each manufacture should have their own charts for their product. It lists the freeze and burst protection by volume, which I believe is what you refer to as expansion damaging lines or faucets.

If I understand the chart correctly, the expansion or burst protection has to do with the mixture of water to antifreeze. May also pertain to the quality of the antifreeze product.

By the Dowfrost chart, if you had a mixture of 36% antifreeze to water the freeze protection would be to 0F and the the expansion/burst protection would be to -40F to -60F.

Dowfrost states freeze protection below -60F with a burst protection of -100F for their product. So a 60% mixture should be close to -100F of expansion/burst protection.
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