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Old 10-27-2013, 06:12 PM   #11
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I installed the ultra heat heaters just up from the dump valves. Next I wrapped the pipes in rubberized self-adhesive pipe insulation. I then topped that off with silver tape used for ducting. Next I wrapped the grey and black tanks with self-adhesive insulation used for rigid ducting. I then sprayed rubberized undercoating over all of the insulation to keep it tidy and protected. I could not easily get to the fresh tank low point drain so I had the dealer install that. The last thing I need to do is insulate the driver's side rear storage bin because it is open to where the pump is and contains the plumbing control valves and low point drains. I will also insulate the fresh tank.

Not using the fresh water system during winter camping isn't an option for me because we have three kids.

This has been a frustrating experience because the implication by having the tank heaters is that you can use the RV in the winter as is. In fact, you cannot. It requires research, planning, expense and a lot of work to make the unit work in the winter.
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Old setup:
2004 Chevrolet Silverado 3500 LT with a 2004 Jayco JayFlight 29BHS
2014 Greyhawk 31FS with a 2007 Tahoe toad
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2014 Thor Palazzo 33.3 with a 2007 Tahoe toad
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Old 10-27-2013, 06:13 PM   #12
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Originally Posted by msturtz View Post
I installed the ultra heat heaters just up from the dump valves. Next I wrapped the pipes in rubberized self-adhesive pipe insulation. I then topped that off with silver tape used for ducting. Next I wrapped the grey and black tanks with self-adhesive insulation used for rigid ducting. I then sprayed rubberized undercoating over all of the insulation to keep it tidy and protected. I could not easily get to the fresh tank low point drain so I had the dealer install that. The last thing I need to do is insulate the driver's side rear storage bin because it is open to where the pump is and contains the plumbing control valves and low point drains. I will also insulate the fresh tank.

Not using the fresh water system during winter camping isn't an option for me because we have three kids.

This has been a frustrating experience because the implication by having the tank heaters is that you can use the RV in the winter as is. In fact, you cannot. It requires research, planning, expense and a lot of work to make the unit work in the winter.
All said and done I would do it again.
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Old setup:
2004 Chevrolet Silverado 3500 LT with a 2004 Jayco JayFlight 29BHS
2014 Greyhawk 31FS with a 2007 Tahoe toad
New setup:
2014 Thor Palazzo 33.3 with a 2007 Tahoe toad
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Old 10-27-2013, 07:41 PM   #13
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... good work, Michael. You're doing a good job of insulating your system so you should be good for winter camping. That's not our goal. We need to get through a cold spell once in a while is all, and I would drain the system if the forecast was for prolonged day / night freezing. I wrapped heat tape (120 Volt) around the tank discharge pipes and dump valves and insulated them by wrapping them with an old blanket. It's been in the mid 20's here the last 2 nights, but it's warming up during the day. ... haven't had any frozen pipes.

I think the way to go if your a consistent winter camper / traveler is with the enclosed under-belly. I think one manufacturer calls it their "Polar Package".
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Old 10-27-2013, 11:43 PM   #14
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... good work, Michael. You're doing a good job of insulating your system so you should be good for winter camping. That's not our goal. We need to get through a cold spell once in a while is all, and I would drain the system if the forecast was for prolonged day / night freezing. I wrapped heat tape (120 Volt) around the tank discharge pipes and dump valves and insulated them by wrapping them with an old blanket. It's been in the mid 20's here the last 2 nights, but it's warming up during the day. ... haven't had any frozen pipes.

I think the way to go if your a consistent winter camper / traveler is with the enclosed under-belly. I think one manufacturer calls it their "Polar Package".
I agree however I mistakenly thought that because my 2014 Greyhawk had heat pads it was ok for light winter use. After purchase when I crawled under it did I find out that it wasn't suitable without significant work. Jayco sells the Senaca with an enclosed belly that can be used in lower temperatures.
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Michael
Old setup:
2004 Chevrolet Silverado 3500 LT with a 2004 Jayco JayFlight 29BHS
2014 Greyhawk 31FS with a 2007 Tahoe toad
New setup:
2014 Thor Palazzo 33.3 with a 2007 Tahoe toad
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Old 10-28-2013, 05:29 AM   #15
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I agree however I mistakenly thought that because my 2014 Greyhawk had heat pads it was ok for light winter use. After purchase when I crawled under it did I find out that it wasn't suitable without significant work. Jayco sells the Senaca with an enclosed belly that can be used in lower temperatures.
That's one to see it - here's another: You now have the same capability (as far as cold weathers goes) as the Seneca, but you didn't spend $220K for your MH. You are fortunate to be able to accomplish those things without having to pay going rates.
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Old 10-28-2013, 04:36 PM   #16
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That's one to see it - here's another: You now have the same capability (as far as cold weathers goes) as the Seneca, but you didn't spend $220K for your MH. You are fortunate to be able to accomplish those things without having to pay going rates.
You are correct. I spent less than $500 including the heat pads, wiring and insulation. That included having the dealer install the heat pad on the freshwater tank low point drain.
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Old setup:
2004 Chevrolet Silverado 3500 LT with a 2004 Jayco JayFlight 29BHS
2014 Greyhawk 31FS with a 2007 Tahoe toad
New setup:
2014 Thor Palazzo 33.3 with a 2007 Tahoe toad
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Old 10-30-2013, 09:20 PM   #17
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RV antifreeze is not liike auto antifreeze

[QUOTE=VicS1950;159571]Not a silly question at all. Yes you can add antifreeze to the tanks. It doesn't need to be a true 50% mixture. Less mixture will keep it from freezing solid. Slushy is OK./QUOTE]

What I've read on the antifreeze manufacturers' websites is RV antifreeze is not intended to be diluted like automobile antifreeze, but intended to be used "as is" the way you buy it. It provides freeze protection by turning slushy, not by preventing freezing. A small amount of dilution dramatically raises the minimum protection temperature. So, 50% RV antifreeze in your holding tank will not provide nearly as much protection as auto antifreeze (ethylene glycol) would. Nonetheless, it's poor practice to use ethylene glycol in sewage systems, because of the risk of enviornmental damage and more.
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Old 10-30-2013, 09:57 PM   #18
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Not a silly question at all. Yes you can add antifreeze to the tanks. It doesn't need to be a true 50% mixture. Less mixture will keep it from freezing solid. Slushy is OK.
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What I've read on the antifreeze manufacturers' websites is RV antifreeze is not intended to be diluted like automobile antifreeze, but intended to be used "as is" the way you buy it. It provides freeze protection by turning slushy, not by preventing freezing. A small amount of dilution dramatically raises the minimum protection temperature. So, 50% RV antifreeze in your holding tank will not provide nearly as much protection as auto antifreeze (ethylene glycol) would. Nonetheless, it's poor practice to use ethylene glycol in sewage systems, because of the risk of enviornmental damage and more.
Sorry. I wasn't assuming a diluted premix. (Our propylene glycol came straight in 55 gallon drums. If you got it on your hands, it immediately tasted like onions in your mouth. I don't know why??? I do know that it is used in some ketchup formulas... um.. I mean, recipes though.)

x10 on the not using ethylene glycol. It's just too toxic of itself (not to mention the additives) and doesn't make sense economically for the small RV quantities necessary anyway.

Thanks for the correction. vic
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