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Old 08-18-2015, 12:54 PM   #1
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How cold can I go?

Hi everyone,

I ordered the "Spray Foam Insulation for Under Trailer" and also the "Thermal Windows & Extra Insulation."

How low do you think the temps can be before water in the tanks would freeze?

I know freezing points of water but just wondering if I have the furnace running if I'm safe below 32 F . . . maybe for a few hours? couple of days?

Thanks!!!
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Old 08-18-2015, 01:02 PM   #2
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Quote:
Originally Posted by EDarby View Post
Hi everyone,

I ordered the "Spray Foam Insulation for Under Trailer" and also the "Thermal Windows & Extra Insulation."

How low do you think the temps can be before water in the tanks would freeze?

I know freezing points of water but just wondering if I have the furnace running if I'm safe below 32 F . . . maybe for a few hours? couple of days?

Thanks!!!
We like camping in the fall, and heading to the southwest in the winter. We have been out several weeks with lows in the low 20s, and not had a problem. you might have a problem if you left the trailer for several hours without the furnace going (like when you are moving camp) and the temperature was very cold, but other than that, I wouldn't worry.

Sometimes we will spend a night in a motel just as we leave St. Paul. But that is only because we haven't filled the tanks yet, and finding an open campground in Iowa during February is not always easy.
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Old 08-18-2015, 01:21 PM   #3
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Thanks, Leon! Good information.
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Old 08-18-2015, 03:33 PM   #4
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Went camping on Superbowl weekend, 2014 down in West Virginia, snowed, we were the only camper in cg. The cg is a Quality Inn Resort with a 75 site cg attached. We had full access to the resort's facilities, including pool, weight room, restaurant and bar and breakfast was included in the $40/nite site fee.
It dropped down to -0- both nights and in the 20's during the day. I had a heated water hose and when I left on Sunday, I ran hot water into both tanks. I was able to dump without any issues. I used my electric heater and occasionally the propane furnace kicked on at night. Highly recommend the heated water hose, otherwise you can use the e-z winterizing set up and flush with antifreeze if no water is available. I do not have tank heaters but do have thermal and foam packages. The dogs slept on the floor so it was not too cold there either.
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Old 08-18-2015, 07:44 PM   #5
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We have used the fresh water systems to mid 20's without incident so long as you keep the trailer itself heated. The weak link in the system is dumping in temps below about 25 degrees. Although the heated and insulated black and grey water tank will stay liquid in those temps, The 3' long 3" pipe that runs from the black water tank to the dump valve is not heated and will eventually reach ambient temp even though it is insulated. Even if you flush with pink stuff, it turns into a thick slurry at those temps and will not flow along that pipe so you may not be able to dump as that slurry blocks the warmer black water from flowing to the dump valve. Poor design I fear. If you don't use the water systems, we have had our 17B in -23F and were comfortable. Lots of frost build up on the metal window frames at that temp however.
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Old 08-18-2015, 08:01 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by EDarby View Post
Hi everyone,

I ordered the "Spray Foam Insulation for Under Trailer" and also the "Thermal Windows & Extra Insulation."

How low do you think the temps can be before water in the tanks would freeze?

I know freezing points of water but just wondering if I have the furnace running if I'm safe below 32 F . . . maybe for a few hours? couple of days?

Thanks!!!
Tanks are partially heated by the interior warmth of the trailer but exposed pipes are another matter. As Yardsale pointed out, the black tank has an exposed 3' section. On my '21 there are also about 4' of exposed pex water pipes that could freeze since they are below the floor.

My solution was to purchase about 6' of 12 volt heat tape and mailed it to ETI prior to the build. They installed it along the water pipes and added a nice switch. It draws 1.5 amps which does add up but is not an unreasonable amount.

Now, if I had only thought about that 3' black tank pipe!!! Live and learn...

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Old 08-19-2015, 11:05 AM   #7
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Jim, where would I get a heated water hose. Is this an option from ETI? Thanks!
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Highly recommend the heated water hose, otherwise you can use the e-z winterizing set up and flush with antifreeze if no water is available.
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Old 08-19-2015, 11:07 AM   #8
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More good info, thanks yardsale! I didn't mention it but I have solar and will not be hooking up to electric. When you were in -23F, was it just using the propane furnace or did you have electric hookup as well for electric heaters? Thanks!!!!

Quote:
Originally Posted by yardsale View Post
We have used the fresh water systems to mid 20's without incident so long as you keep the trailer itself heated. The weak link in the system is dumping in temps below about 25 degrees. Although the heated and insulated black and grey water tank will stay liquid in those temps, The 3' long 3" pipe that runs from the black water tank to the dump valve is not heated and will eventually reach ambient temp even though it is insulated. Even if you flush with pink stuff, it turns into a thick slurry at those temps and will not flow along that pipe so you may not be able to dump as that slurry blocks the warmer black water from flowing to the dump valve. Poor design I fear. If you don't use the water systems, we have had our 17B in -23F and were comfortable. Lots of frost build up on the metal window frames at that temp however.
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Old 08-19-2015, 11:09 AM   #9
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Thanks, Alan! Would I just find that at a Home Depot type store? I turned in my Build Sheet. Wonder if ETI would still install without the added charge.

Quote:
Originally Posted by alanmalk View Post
My solution was to purchase about 6' of 12 volt heat tape and mailed it to ETI prior to the build. They installed it along the water pipes and added a nice switch. It draws 1.5 amps which does add up but is not an unreasonable amount.
Alan
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Old 08-19-2015, 12:58 PM   #10
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I'd suggest getting an extra 120v outlet on the street side, amidships for a plug in heater/tape you can wrap. The foam option will cover everything but the last 12-18", if you feel you have to, you can plug in a hair dryer or a piece of heat tape and lay on that section of pipe. The heated water hose is found on agriculture/farm supplies as well as Amazon.
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