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Old 10-16-2011, 05:00 PM   #1
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Winterizing guru wanted

pre- looking at the winterization of my 2010 smb. Went out today and opened on drivers side the grey water drain, also a red/blue drain, and another blue drain all on drivers side. Did not open the shower red/blue in rear passenger side which is located inside the shower connection box. Pumped out all water through faucet and these open valves.

What else needs to be done?

Want to make sure I am set for winter as this will be stored outside.

Any tips are appreciated.

carl
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Old 10-16-2011, 05:50 PM   #2
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Winterizing guru wanted

I put an electric heater in mine for the winter. It is connected to a 120v thermostat set to 40 degrees. I also have all of the cabinet doors open.

The other item in the van is a product called Drizair. It came highly recommended to me by a friend who has had travel trailers and campers for many years. Drizair pulls moisture out of the air. It is basically a chemical dehumidifier. This is a must living in the PNW.


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Old 10-16-2011, 09:34 PM   #3
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Re: Winterizing guru wanted

I drain though all the drains, open all the taps and pull the heater annode rod. Once that is done draining I shopvac out the water heater, turn on the bypass line*, shut everything again** and blow it out with compressed air, opening each drain and valve as I go to blow out that part of the line. I then add potato vodka and run it into the pump.

Currently rebuilding my whole PEX system and low and behold I found two additional drains under the hot water heater- even if I could have seen them, I couldn't have turned them.

*The bypass line is to keep RV antifreeze (pink stuff for water lines) out of the water heater. I've read it's not bad, just nearly impossible to flush out, ergo the bypass line. Since I don't use RV antifreeze I eliminated the bypass line during my rebuild.

**Now is a good time to replace your annode rod, but I generally can't remember to get one so generally I do it in the spring.
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Old 10-16-2011, 09:43 PM   #4
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Re: Winterizing guru wanted

Hi;

Will wheat based vodka have the same happy effect on the water lines as your potato vodka?

Regards,

Gavin
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Old 10-17-2011, 06:08 AM   #5
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Re: Winterizing guru wanted

I have flat plate heater as well which I forgot to mention. I drained everything yesterday. What must be done with heater? Also, how is best method to blow out lines? Also how is it best to get an anti-freeze into the system which appears stock smb with 2 - 16 gal tanks under rear seat.

I assume you leave all outside drains in the open position?

What are thoughts on covering the vehicle, which has solar panel, during winter if not being used? I thought I would try to keep snow off of it, and drive it every week. I hear that some like to cover like a boat, others don't.

thanks

carl
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Old 10-17-2011, 12:41 PM   #6
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Re: Winterizing guru wanted

Carl,
I like to use RV antifreeze myself. Only because I don't want to heat the van in my carport and I don't want to disassemble the pump to drain the pump cavities per manufacturer's manual. Plus, I don't want to invest in blow-down gear like Jage uses.
First I gravity drain all water out of systems. I park on a steep incline to do this, since the fresh water and gray water tanks won't empty completely unless you do this. There are tank drains, city water entry line drain, and sink faucet drain that must be open while pumping.
I don't have a hot water heater, so no concern over by-passing this. Once the water is drained, I close all the system drain valves and put a one gallon contain of RV anitifreeze (~$3 at Fred Meyers) into the fresh water tank via the interior tank fill line. Then run the pump long enough to get a few cups into the gray water tank.
That's it. Good to go until spring when I have to drain the RV antifreeze liquid out flush with fresh water until there's no pink color left in the water coming out any of the drains.

I don't do anything else to winterize. I don't have solar panels and don't know what the concern would be with these getting through a winter uncovered. I can see why you would want to keep snow build-up off the van - that can get too heavy.
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Old 10-17-2011, 10:16 PM   #7
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Re: Winterizing guru wanted

Where is the hot water heater bypass?

Do you leave the anode rod out all winter? What if you get <rodent/insect/slime/moss/rust> in there?
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Old 10-18-2011, 06:41 AM   #8
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Re: Winterizing guru wanted

The idea of blowing out lines seems to make sense. How is best to do this?

Also, how are you feeding anti freeze into the interior connection, is there some trick to do this?

My thought was to drain as best I can, blow things out if easy, then add a gallon of anti-freeze pumped thru system.

What are you doing to winterize the porta-potti?



thanks for input!
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Old 10-18-2011, 09:30 AM   #9
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Re: Winterizing guru wanted

The porta-pottie is easy to empty and all compartments opened to allow evaporation.

An option would be to store it in the basement, but even then it should be completely emptied and left open.

Mike
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Old 10-18-2011, 12:58 PM   #10
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Re: Winterizing guru wanted

Quote:
Originally Posted by Carl
... how are you feeding anti freeze into the interior connection, is there some trick to do this?
Assuming you have an interior feed line connected to your freshwater tank, just open it and connect a short fresh water clean hose to it. Then put a funnel at the other end of the hose and drain your gallon of RV anitifreeze into the tank. That's it, you're ready to turn the pump on and run some water down your sink (a couple cups should do).
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