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Old 12-16-2017, 01:39 PM   #1
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Tank Heaters

We have a 2016 Alante 26 AX. It has tank heaters which I have never needed. In the owners manual there is an indication that it may also or should have 12vdc water line heaters. By inspection I cannot see any indication of these water line heaters. Do any owners have experience with factory installed water line heaters and if so what should I look for to confirm they are there. We are traveling from Ontario to the RGV in January and normally travel dry until we hit warmer climes, but if there are heaters it would be much more comfortable.
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Old 12-16-2017, 02:54 PM   #2
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All the tank heaters on my 26AY were hanging off the tanks. They were improperly installed or the glue failed. I seen no sign of water line heaters, but mine is a 2016. During a stay where night time temps were in the low 20’s the temperature by the batteries stayed in the low 40s. (My solar charger has temp probe.) I think having the living area at 70 keeps the under carriage warm. There was no wind on the nights we boondocked so that helped.

The heaters will kill your batteries pretty quickly. I had an AGS that ran the generator a good bit at night to keep the battery charged.
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Old 12-16-2017, 04:07 PM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by klspahr View Post
All the tank heaters on my 26AY were hanging off the tanks. They were improperly installed or the glue failed. I seen no sign of water line heaters, but mine is a 2016. During a stay where night time temps were in the low 20’s the temperature by the batteries stayed in the low 40s. (My solar charger has temp probe.) I think having the living area at 70 keeps the under carriage warm. There was no wind on the nights we boondocked so that helped.

The heaters will kill your batteries pretty quickly. I had an AGS that ran the generator a good bit at night to keep the battery charged.
While installing a rear trac bar, I also noticed that one of my tank heaters had come unglued (literally). I called Jayco to get a recommendation on how to fix. They were aware of the glue limitations, and said that basically any new fix would be an improvement. After consulting a friend who knew commercial adhesives, I went with contact cement.
I cleaned the back side of the heat tape (which is attached to a piece of rubber about 1' x 2'), and the underside of the holding tank. Applied a coat of cement on each surface with a small brush. Once both surfaces where tacky, I then VERY CAREFULLY attached the heat tape to the holding tank. With contact cement, you have one shot at lining up the two surfaces. Once it's on, it ain't comin off.
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Old 12-16-2017, 05:59 PM   #4
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Alante's and Precepts do not have "water line heaters". If you want to keep your water lines from freezing you need to install Heat Trace Tape.
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Old 12-17-2017, 11:19 AM   #5
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The water lines that run outside the living space on mine are insulated at least. I read that PEX pipe is pretty resistant to freeze damage, the plastic fittings might be what cracks first.

Does anyone worry about the 3” pipes from the tanks to the dump valves?
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Old 12-17-2017, 11:37 AM   #6
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The water lines that run outside the living space on mine are insulated at least. I read that PEX pipe is pretty resistant to freeze damage, the plastic fittings might be what cracks first.

Does anyone worry about the 3 pipes from the tanks to the dump valves?

If I was in subfreezing weather for more than a day, I would.
If I'm in a permanent site, I'll generally leave the gray tank open, and the black tank shut. When I'm close to dumping the black, I'll close the gray to be sure I have enough gray water to wash out the black.
I'd worry about any valve that is closed in freezing conditions.
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Old 12-17-2017, 06:53 PM   #7
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I have the 26AY, tank heater pads all good, but I did spend a couple of hours under the coach installing 1/2" foam pipe insulation on every water line I could reach. I got the type that is pre-scored and cut and attached with 4" zip ties, didn't trust the adhesive type to stay stuck. One benefit is the hot water in the lines doesn't cool off so fast, like instantly it seems, now when I pause the hot water for a couple of minutes and turn it back on I don't waste water waiting for it to get hot again.
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