Hi, I'm an overwhelmed new owner of a 1985 Bigfoot 17' trailer - Fiberglass RV
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Old 03-11-2021, 02:27 PM   #1
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Name: Nora
Trailer: Bigfoot 1985 B17
OR
Posts: 1
Red face Hi, I'm an overwhelmed new owner of a 1985 Bigfoot 17' trailer

Hello! I recently bought a 1985 Bigfoot trailer - 17ft. I jumped on a convenient purchase and love trailers, but I promised my husband I'd be in charge of this one (he doesn't have time) and after a morning of reading all the manuals it came with and trying things out, I'm feeling a bit overwhelmed! I have a number of questions to start out.
-I don't seem to have a complete users manual. I have the brochure, but nothing that goes step by step and explains all the parts of the trailer and how things work. Does this exist? Following a different comment on this forum, I went over to the Bigfoot Owners International and looked at the manuals they have online. I found a brochure similar to the one I already have for the Bigfoot B17, but a more useful looking manual for 2500 series trailers. Is the 2500 series a totally different trailer? Similar?
-My trailer has been winterized and I know I need to flush out the system to get rid of the antifreeze. I found the very useful post about winterizing, but is there any good step by step instructions, preferably with pictures, of un-winterizing?
-I got the fridge and stove working off the propane (the easy things), but have not been able to get the furnace going. I have the fan running, I'm following all the steps to light the pilot, but all I get is cold air. I can't see if there is anyway to tell when the pilot is lit - there is no visible flame as far as I can see. Any suggestions or useful threads on troubleshooting the furnace?
Many thanks for any advice!
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Old 03-11-2021, 02:44 PM   #2
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Name: Gordon
Trailer: 2015 Scamp (16 Std Layout 4) with '15 Toyota Sienna LE Tug
North Carolina
Posts: 4,599
Start here:
https://www.fiberglassrv.com/forums/...p?do=cat&id=22
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Old 03-11-2021, 04:03 PM   #3
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Name: kenny
Trailer: 93 "Lil" Bigfoot 13.5'
Utah
Posts: 445
Nora Go to "Search" on the info bar above; type "Bigfoot trailer information ", many links will come up.
starting from square 1. furnace fan will run; pilot light will not work. Gas valve will not open if battery is discharged too much.
A duh question, is there fuel in tank, is the valve open, First insure gas in line by lighting stove top.
Some have suggested a few taps on the control valve. very small hammer or screwdriver handle. ( take cover off the front of Furnace ) follow gas line to a valve with wires attached.
Do you need to light the pilot light by hand ?
My 93 Bigfoot auto lights by itself.
I have had to turn the thermostat temperature setting lever on, off, on, off, on before I hear the gas solenoid valve click on. ( temp to lower setting to higher back and forth) Can you hear a click when you move the thermostat lever back and forth?
I bought a new thermostat and I still have to go thru this scenario.

Later Kenny
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Old 03-11-2021, 09:37 PM   #4
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Name: Tyler
Trailer: In the market
Alberta
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Best way to dewinterize a trailer is go to a campground with full hook ups, plug the water in and turn everything on one at a time. Run it until it runs clear. If it's your first time then you may want to run some bleach(full tank of water and capful at most of bleach) through the system.
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Old 03-11-2021, 10:14 PM   #5
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Name: bill
Trailer: 2013 Escape 19; 1977 Trillium 1300
The Mountains of North Carolina
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I find appliance manuals for individual appliances much more useful than trailer owner manuals. Many of the appliance manuals are in the document center of this site. I even found the manual to my 44 year old refrigerator there.

On un-winterizing, it really depends on how the trailer was winterized. Some methods use a lot of anti-freeze, which takes a lot longer to flush out. Other methods use very little anti-freeze. Basically the more you put in, the more you have to flush out. For people into visual learning, I find YouTube a great tool. Don't look for a video on your particular trailer, instead look at general videos on the topic.
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Old 03-12-2021, 08:39 AM   #6
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Name: Gordon
Trailer: 2015 Scamp (16 Std Layout 4) with '15 Toyota Sienna LE Tug
North Carolina
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TylerC View Post
Best way to dewinterize a trailer is go to a campground with full hook ups, plug the water in and turn everything on one at a time. Run it until it runs clear. If it's your first time then you may want to run some bleach(full tank of water and capful at most of bleach) through the system.
RV antifreeze is perfectly safe to dilute and discharge at home so no need to go to a full service campground. Just run water through the system until its clear.

Connecting the campground water to the "city water" connection on a trailer will almost always bypass the fresh water holding tank, which in many or most cases has antifreeze in it from winterization.. so in those cases you need to fill the fresh water tank and run the water out - 2 or 3 times perhaps.

Yes, you should absolutely sanitize the water system at least once a year - in spring usually. But you don't just dump some bleach (unscented bleach - sodium hydroxide) in the tank and run it out.. it needs to be pumped through the plumbing and then left to sit so that the diluted bleach has time to do it's job. You should dilute the bleach some before adding it to the tank, then add water to fill the tank at a concentration of about 400 parts per million (sodium hydroxide to water). For lower concentrations, increase the exposure time. For stronger mixes the time can be shorter. Here is a guide:

New Page 1
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Old 03-12-2021, 07:50 PM   #7
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Name: Derek
Trailer: Bigfoot
British Columbia
Posts: 74
welcome

Hi Nora. Welcome to our happy little family of 'clamshell style' RVs. I have a similar Biggie and the people here are very knowledgeable and eager to help. Like every family you'll find we're an eclectic bunch but all big hearted. Don't be shy about asking any questions.
Derek
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Old 03-17-2021, 12:44 PM   #8
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Name: ginette & ron
Trailer: 2008 25RB 21 Bigfoot
Ontario
Posts: 87
For general camping and trailer info Iíve always found rvnetwork.com to contain all sorts of valuable stuff.
Good luck with your new trailer. Donít hesitate to call Bigfoot directly if you need specific information. Unfortunately trailer manuals are quite hopeless.
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GiRo proud new owner 2008 bigfoot 21'with cargo pod and Ram 1500 Ecodiesel. Attached with a Pro Pride Hitch(Hensley design)
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Old 03-17-2021, 06:58 PM   #9
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Name: Malcolm
Trailer: Bigfoot
British Columbia
Posts: 3
Furnace answer

Turn the heat up full. Turn the gas valve to pilot. Press the gas valve knob in and hold it while clicking the igniter. If you see the pilot light hold the know in for 30 seconds. If the pilot goes out, go outside behind the furnace and make sure you removed the vent cover. It is about 4" x 6". If this is not removed the furnace gets no air and everything goes out. That was my mistake and I wrote a reminder with a sharpie by the igniter. My newer 5th wheel never had the cover on the outside vent.
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Old 03-20-2021, 09:04 AM   #10
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Name: Bob Ruggles
Trailer: 2015 Escape
Michigan
Posts: 1,512
Quote:
Originally Posted by gordon2 View Post
RV antifreeze is perfectly safe to dilute and discharge at home so no need to go to a full service campground. Just run water through the system until its clear.



Connecting the campground water to the "city water" connection on a trailer will almost always bypass the fresh water holding tank, which in many or most cases has antifreeze in it from winterization.. so in those cases you need to fill the fresh water tank and run the water out - 2 or 3 times perhaps.



Yes, you should absolutely sanitize the water system at least once a year - in spring usually. But you don't just dump some bleach (unscented bleach - sodium hydroxide) in the tank and run it out.. it needs to be pumped through the plumbing and then left to sit so that the diluted bleach has time to do it's job. You should dilute the bleach some before adding it to the tank, then add water to fill the tank at a concentration of about 400 parts per million (sodium hydroxide to water). For lower concentrations, increase the exposure time. For stronger mixes the time can be shorter. Here is a guide:



New Page 1


You do NOT want sodium hydroxide. That is not bleach. Bleach is sodium hypochlorite. Donít confuse the two.
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