Cold weather camping... - Page 2 - Fiberglass RV


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Old 10-27-2015, 09:43 AM   #15
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Winter Camping in a Casita

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Originally Posted by WendyW View Post
Byron,

Are you saying you camped for several hours at 5F and still nothing froze? I'm asking because I'm in a Casita in Montana where tomorrow night it might go down to 25. I will unhook the outside water source and fill my fresh water tank. Is that how you managed at 5? Thank you so much!

WendyW
Hi, Wendy. In your Casita, the fresh and black tanks are inside; only the gray tank is exposed. You might want to add a bit of RV anti-freeze to your gray tank (via the drains). Also, check out this old article written by someone who camped in a Casita in Illinois, during winter. Winter Camping, by Charles Watts. I'm not sure why he didn't use the water heater in sub-freezing weather, but bypassing it obviously worked for them.
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Old 10-27-2015, 10:25 AM   #16
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If you are going to use a small electric heater to keep the chill off you may find that the thermostatic controls on small heaters can be unreliable. I keep a small fan heater in my rv to keep the temperature around 55. Sometimes I would go into it during the cold months and find the temperature rather high. So, I took a line voltage thermostat, wired it to an outlet, and plugged the heater into that. Now the temperature is very stable. You might also look at getting a dry pot to keep the humidity down. This helps maintain the moisture down to a comfortable level, and avoid mold and mildew. If you live in a dry climate area the dry pot would probably be unneccesary
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Old 10-27-2015, 10:40 AM   #17
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We camp year round in our Burro, and have never winterized it. When it's below freezing we simply empty tanks and lines and use bottled water. When parked at home the best help is our little electric heater with a thermostat. When temps will drop below freezing we set the heater thermostat to lowest temp (50) and we have one of those wireless weather/temp monitors set up. I can stand in the kitchen and see the temp inside the Burro parked in the driveway. Granted, we don't get deep freezes here in Seattle.
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Old 10-27-2015, 11:09 AM   #18
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ralphieboy View Post
Thanks...
Yep... gonna look for a small cube heater! Do you still use the RV antifreeze even tho you use it all winter? Is your camper heated during the below freezing times? I am trying to avoid using the RV antifreeze if I empty the lines or keep the fresh water tank full and a small heater keeping things above 40 degrees.
Are most folks using the RV Antifreeze in the tanks and lines if they intend to use it during the winter... and just carry water in and out of the camper for daily use etc.?
Yes I do use RV antifreeze even if I am still using it. You only put the antifreeze in the water lines not in the water tank. My water tank and water heater have a bypass so I can fill the lines without filling the tank or the water heater wit it.
You could always get a blow out plug for you water system from a RV dealer and blow all the water out of you lines instead of using the antifreeze.
I do not keep my camper heated when I am not using it.
I don't know about every one else but for me carrying water in ether 1 gallon jugs or a five gallon container Is a lot easier.
Some Times I am camping in temps as low as -10.
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Old 10-27-2015, 11:16 AM   #19
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Thanks, Mary F.!
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Old 10-27-2015, 01:07 PM   #20
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To winterize or not winterize has a lot to do with where you live & where you intend to pull the trailer in winter.

I would at the very least make sure I had either blown all the lines out or pump some anti freeze through the water pump and dump some down the sink drain as both can hold water. Know of way to many instances where someones first trip of the spring has been interrupt due to the need to go buy a new water pump as theirs was not winterized properly during the winter.

I live in an area that historically has very mild winters by many peoples standards. For example the City does not own a dedicated snow plow and flowers are blooming by February. :-) Last winter for example I could have very easily gotten away without winterizing the trailer BUT mother nature has been known to throw a curve ball or two. LOL We have winters where the temps have gone well below freezing into double digits and stayed that way for a week or more. Mother Nature also likes to throw a wind storm or two at us, knocking out power - which means that heater in the trailer is not going to be working - we can go without power for a number of days as a result. What happens in that situation if the temps also fall below freezing?

With the wind comes the added issue of windchill factor. In those situations a thin wall of fiberglass and thin layer of foil insulation is not going to stop items inside the trailer from freezing particularly if the trailer is not moving so the liquids are not moving. If your going to be towing through areas with freezing temps keep the wind chill factor in mind in those situations as well, as the heater in the trailer is not going to be on then either.

For example, one year coming from the South in December (I know going totally the wrong way at that time of year - was not my plan) the temp reading inside the trailer when I pulled into Champoeg State Park near Portland Oregon for example read 10 degrees below freezing & the park itself had a nice thick layer of frost across the grassy areas.
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Old 10-27-2015, 02:12 PM   #21
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A lovely way to keep warm (since things can get drafty and uneven with a small heater) is an electric blanket or mattress pad. I found a low voltage mattress pad by Soft-Heat PerfectFit with dual controls that worked well in a test run last night. Order directly from the company's website and shipping is free. It gets 4.5 stars out of 5 on Amazon. Order from Electric Blankets and Heated Mattress Pads from Above & Beyond
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Old 10-27-2015, 02:48 PM   #22
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Here is a link to the thermostat John mentioned. One word of caution- READ AND UNDERSTAND THE INSTRUCTIONS that come with it. I suspect the low review ratings come from folks that didn't.
Amazon.com - Indoor Temperature Controller for portable heaters/air conditioners - Space Heaters
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Old 10-27-2015, 05:33 PM   #23
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Has anyone used radiant floor heat? https://www.thermosoft.com/warm-carpet-tile-floor
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Old 10-27-2015, 06:04 PM   #24
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Has anyone used radiant floor heat? https://www.thermosoft.com/warm-carpet-tile-floor
Dave & Paula
Are now only camping in RV resorts with electricity? Those thing are 120 or 240 and power hungry. According to their web site is 12 watts per square foot. If run off batter power that 1 amp per square foot. That get pretty hungry in a hurry.
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Old 10-27-2015, 06:54 PM   #25
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Hi Dave,

I gave the heated floor some serious consideration and came to the same conclusion as Byron. Even with my over the top solar I would need more batteries to power enough floor heaters to make a difference. i love the concept though.
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Old 11-06-2015, 01:19 PM   #26
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Heating with radiant floor heat

Never one to give up on a good idea or admit I might be wrong, I went looking again and came up with this - https://www.thermosoft.com/radiant-f...ermofloor-120v

I don't know how much would be needed to warm up a fiberglass trailer but 12 square feet is enough cover most of the floor and according to the literature is less than 100 watts of power at less than 1 amp of current. If it keeps my feet warm it goes a long way to making me feel warm.

I'm not giving up on the idea!

Edit - And I forgot under $100.
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Old 11-06-2015, 01:31 PM   #27
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Larry,C View Post
Never one to give up on a good idea or admit I might be wrong, I went looking again and came up with this - https://www.thermosoft.com/radiant-f...ermofloor-120v

I don't know how much would be needed to warm up a fiberglass trailer but 12 square feet is enough cover most of the floor and according to the literature is less than 100 watts of power at less than 1 amp of current. If it keeps my feet warm it goes a long way to making me feel warm.

I'm not giving up on the idea!

Edit - And I forgot under $100.
If you run it off 12 Volts the current is 10 times the 120 Volt current plus the losses in the inverter.

I just reread the specifications.. According to the manufacturer's chart the largest area for single thermostat is 36 square feet. The current required for 1/2 of a Scamp (a 13' Scamp without cabinets is 8x10 making 80 square feet) is 2.70 amps at 120 volt that would be 27.0 amps through an inverter.

I'm not saying it couldn't be done but it not very practical.
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Old 11-06-2015, 01:47 PM   #28
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When I installed the Attwood 2 propane heater in my 13 Scamp the mechanical thermostat was horrible with a very big temperature swing and unreliable temperature control. The change to a digital thermostat cut the swing to half of what it was and gave me the actual temperature readout the thermostat is reading. So if I set it at 70 then it will start at 70. the mechanical slide switch of the old mechanical thermostat left allot to be desired. If you want to lessen the temperature swing further then you will have to run a small fan to circulate the air about the trailer while the furnace is not churning out heat. Its hard to control heat when you have to crack a window or vent so you can sustain life and evacuate excess moisture.
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