Too late to winterize - Fiberglass RV

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Old 11-02-2006, 04:15 PM   #1
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Trailer: 17 ft Boler
Posts: 1
Hi. It's been a while since I've posted. We're building a new house by ourselves, and frankly (I'm embarassed to admit) had forgotten about our Boler until now. We've now had a couple of weeks of weather below the freezing mark and I never winterized our trailer. As a matter of fact, I didn't even drain the HWT. I'm in Edmonton, AB. Is the damage most likely already done? Is there anything I can do at this point, or do I leave it and assess the damage in the spring? I would love to bring it inside somewhere to slowly warm it up and then pull the HWT plug and blow things out and run the antifreeze into the lines, BUT I have nowhere to do that.

Thoughts? Suggestions? Experiences with this?

Thanks in advance.

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Old 11-02-2006, 04:44 PM   #2
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Trailer: 2000 Casita 17 ft Spirit Deluxe ('Millenium Eggloo')
Posts: 203
I would go and pull the drain plug from the water heater right away. I am sure that there will be a few warmer days before it gets a lot colder. Also open all of the taps and freshwater tank drains.

Park the trailer in the sun and when you get a warmer sunny day, blow out the lines and try adding antifreeze. I might even be tempted to put a couple of gallons of antifreeze in the freshwater tank if it has little or no water in it, then on a warmer day you might be able to pump the antifreeze through the lines. Put a light bulb or small electric heater near the water pump and you may be able to get things moving even without a warm day, or just try heating up the interior of the trailer with the cabinet doors open where the water lines run through.

Good Luck!!!!!!!!!!

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Old 11-02-2006, 05:58 PM   #3
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Name: Brian
Trailer: Boler (B1700RGH) 1979
Posts: 5,000
Been there, done that, no major damage.
Fortunately, the plumbing is generally somewhat flexible plastic.

Perhaps starting the [b]water heater, and just leaving it on pilot for a while, would be a good idea make draining it a less futile experience.

Light bulbs as heaters are great for milder climates. At todays high of -6 deg C, I think that only light bulb which will help the components under the trailer would be a [b]heat lamp, but that might be a good idea.

I definitely think that opening cabinet doors as Charlie suggested is a good idea, necessary if you expect to [b]thaw by heating the interior. I don't know if this is the Rear Gaucho (RGH) or Side Gaucho (RGH) plan, but in the B1700RGH the water lines run between the curbside kitchen and streetside bath/service areas on top of the (uninsulated) floor, through the "hamper" and under-gaucho cabinets. With the doors closed, they're probably closer to the outside temperature than the inside temperature! Air will not circulate down in the hamper cabinets well, because they are only open on top. The pump and drain valves are on the floor under the gaucho - an electric space heater in there might be a good plan.

To get [b]antifreeze into the system with everything under the floor already frosty, the intake hose could be pulled off of the pump and a temporary hose stuck in the antifreeze jug.

Finally, for those of us who don't own a garage which will fit a trailer over 7 feet tall, there is an option for doing this inside:
Desro Automotive
Address : 6025 104 Street NW, Edmonton, AB T6H 2K6
Telephone : 780-437-7386
These guys rent space by the hour or by the day. You could haul the trailer in there, leave it to thaw, winterize it in there, then take it home. It sounds expensive, but use of the shop complete with tools is only a few dollars an hour; longer term use is cheap enough that people put vehicles in there for weeks for complete bodywork projects.

If you need to dump tanks afterward, you could go straight to a free public dump location such as the Flying J truck stop on the north side of Sherwood Park:
Flying J Travel Plaza
10-50 Pembina Road
Sherwood Park, AB T8H 2G9, Canada
(780) 416-2035
And welcome to FiberglassRV!
1979 Boler B1700RGH, pulled by 2004 Toyota Sienna LE 2WD
Information is good. Lack of information is not so good, but misinformation is much worse. Check facts, and apply common sense liberally.
STATUS: No longer active in forum.
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Old 11-02-2006, 11:46 PM   #4
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Trailer: 2000 19 ft (formerly 17 ft) Casita Freedom Deluxe ('Nuestra Casita') / 2000 4WD V8 Tundra
Posts: 760
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It might just be a good excuse for one last camping warmer climes so everything would drain of it's own accord. One of those "kill two birds with one stone" situations.
Just my observation, er story...and I'm sticking to it.
Kurt & Ann K.
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