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Old 10-13-2021, 10:55 AM   #1
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Winter camping wanting tips and tricks...

one trick might be don't camp in winter-- well here we are first time out in my 21C on an upward learning curve with 4 inches of new snow in bryce national park and temps got down to 15 degrees-- yes no water but not damage so far-- just waiting for things to heat up--- but issues of condensation with windows-- anything in regards to solutions... i have the foam underbelly which noticed does help .... watching the water situation and tanks other than that icicles are nicely forming outside and things are toasty inside-- keeping the furnace at minimum during the night-- all suggestions and comments are welcomed--
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Old 10-13-2021, 11:16 AM   #2
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A little vaseline on the door foam weatherstrip will help with freezing and any ice damage to the strip....
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Old 10-13-2021, 02:09 PM   #3
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Congrats on your first time out in your 21C! Bryce National Park with snow must be at sight to behold!

Here's our 2cents for condensation management. We use a thermometer with a hygrometer that shows the inside and outside temp and humidity like this https://www.amazon.com/ThermoPro-TP-...148107&sr=8-24. This helps us to know when to plug in (when we have shore power) our dehumidifier like this https://www.amazon.com/COSVII-Dehumi...garden&sr=1-30. We got a smaller one at first but it didn't do so well so we went with the next bigger size. Amazed at how quiet it is and the water it generates! If you don't have hook ups, then setting out some DampRid can help. https://www.amazon.com/DAMPRID-Moist...n&sr=1-85&th=1

We also crack one or 2 small windows at night for ventilation and put reflectix in front of our windows at night. Sometimes we also open all the cabinet doors at night to equalize temp and humidity throughout.

For future consideration we recommend Hypervent from Mattress Insiders https://www.mattressinsider.com/matt...revention.html to minimize condensation around the walls by the bed area. Ikea has other options for under mattress solutions, as well.

We tend to gravitate to hook ups in the cold shoulder seasons for this very reason, condensation management. Hope this helps and save travels in the snow! -Bea. PS Jim, thanks for the Vasaline tip!
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Old 10-13-2021, 04:38 PM   #4
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Good tips so far. Cracking open a couple of windows is counter intuitive but it does have to be done.

Our winter use is usually without power. I'd have to say that I think that it's almost impossible not to have some condensation. If it's running down the walls it's excessive, beads of condensation on the window frame is pretty normal for us.

We have a 21C with the front window. It's single glazed and right above our warm moisture laden breath. I made an inside storm window out of lexan and it has less condensation than the double glazed side window. (And, no, I don't want to put the rock guard down as a helper because I got a front window so that I could look out of it, including at night.)


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Old 10-13-2021, 05:40 PM   #5
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Good tips so far. Cracking open a couple of windows is counter intuitive but it does have to be done.

Our winter use is usually without power. I'd have to say that I think that it's almost impossible not to have some condensation. If it's running down the walls it's excessive, beads of condensation on the window frame is pretty normal for us.

We have a 21C with the front window. It's single glazed and right above our warm moisture laden breath. I made an inside storm window out of lexan and it has less condensation than the double glazed side window. (And, no, I don't want to put the rock guard down as a helper because I got a front window so that I could look out of it, including at night.)


Ron
Hi Ron! I love your Lexan storm windows! Your previous posts on this was very inspiring - Thank you for sharing! This very mod is on our 'Mods for the future' list now! But for now I forgot to mention that, I also added some extra insulation to our front window, too by using this window insulator kit ( https://www.amazon.com/3M-Indoor-Pat...NsaWNrPXRydWU= ). Very easy to install with a hair dryer and surprisingly effective. It is invisible - can't see the plastic film at all! In addition, if it's going to be really cold, we don't mind putting down the rock guard at night (that I also padded with reflectix underneath) - can't see out at night like Ron can, but works for now! Cheers, -Bea
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Old 10-13-2021, 06:11 PM   #6
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We are just going to look at a Bigfoot
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Old 10-13-2021, 06:48 PM   #7
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We are just going to look at a Bigfoot
For winter weather camping in Ohio, can't blame you one bit! Bigfoots are awesome 4 season trailers. But for us (and perhaps the OP) who live in CA, Escapes are the perfect 4 season trailer IMHO. Since we live so close to the coast - no need to winterize (for us, that is). Temps always above freezing during the daytime so we love to camp year around now. Very thankful for our 21! -Bea
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Old 10-13-2021, 07:04 PM   #8
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Hi Ron! I love your Lexan storm windows! Your previous posts on this was very inspiring - Thank you for sharing! This very mod is on our 'Mods for the future' list now! But for now I forgot to mention that, I also added some extra insulation to our front window, too by using this window insulator kit ( https://www.amazon.com/3M-Indoor-Pat...NsaWNrPXRydWU= ). Very easy to install with a hair dryer and surprisingly effective. It is invisible - can't see the plastic film at all! In addition, if it's going to be really cold, we don't mind putting down the rock guard at night (that I also padded with reflectix underneath) - can't see out at night like Ron can, but works for now! Cheers, -Bea
Thanks for your kind words.

Yes that product works well. We just used it on two large bedroom windows that despite being double glazed and thermally broken still have condensation.

On the trailer I also used lexan to make a storm window for the door window as it's single glazed.

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Old 10-14-2021, 03:07 PM   #9
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A little vaseline on the door foam weatherstrip will help with freezing and any ice damage to the strip....
Great if it works, but I wouldn't want petroleum jelly on a weatherstrip. An alternative is a silicone spray lubricant; that's what I use on our van's sliding door, which can have issues with the weatherstrip icing up.
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Old 10-14-2021, 03:16 PM   #10
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keeping the furnace at minimum during the night-- all suggestions and comments are welcomed--
Don't be stingy with the heater. The furnace produces dry heat, using it liberally will reduce condensation.


Keeping the air moving inside the trailer also helps reduce condensation. The MaxxAir fan can be used in 'ceiling fan mode' to assist with that. The 'ceiling fan mode' as described in the manual is leaving the MaxxAir fan closed and turning it on. The lowest setting is usually enough.
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Old 10-14-2021, 03:18 PM   #11
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For winter weather camping in Ohio, can't blame you one bit! Bigfoots are awesome 4 season trailers. But for us (and perhaps the OP) who live in CA, Escapes are the perfect 4 season trailer IMHO. Since we live so close to the coast - no need to winterize (for us, that is). Temps always above freezing during the daytime so we love to camp year around now. Very thankful for our 21! -Bea
So, if we don't get and stay above freezing for an extended period of time here in AZ, we don't need to winterize our trailer? We're new at this and plan to take out our trailer at least once a month in the winter and we're not sure if we have to winterize between trips. We keep it on the side of the house behind the RV gate with a fabric cover on it.
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Old 10-14-2021, 04:15 PM   #12
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So, if we don't get and stay above freezing for an extended period of time here in AZ, we don't need to winterize our trailer?
Any amount of time in below freezing temperatures runs the risk of damage. One very vulnerable item is the toilet valve.

Ask yourself this: if I put a glass of water on the counter would it freeze? If the answer is yes then you definitely have to at least blow the water lines out.

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Old 10-14-2021, 04:18 PM   #13
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Ok so blow the water lines out but no anti-freeze? I'm pretty sure it never gets cold enough here at our house for a glass of water to freeze on the counter of the trailer. When I lived outside of the city we did have one night when we had a hard freeze and it broke one of our PVC water pipes. But that was out in the desert on a couple of acres.
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Old 10-14-2021, 04:28 PM   #14
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I'm not sure why a glass of water wouldn't freeze during an extended amount of below freezing weather if there isn't any heat in the trailer. But if your feeling is that you're not really getting more than borderline freezing then maybe it wouldn't.

I know the conventional wisdom is to blow out the water lines and add anti-freeze to the traps. We do get extended periods of below freezing weather here in BC and I do blow out the lines thoroughly. Actually twice.

But I've never ever added any anti-freeze to traps and never had any problems. Perhaps because the water has room to expand when it freezes it doesn't do any damage.

Do what you're comfortable with.

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Old 10-14-2021, 04:54 PM   #15
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Yes Ron we are talking apples and oranges. We don't receive extended below freezing weather here in Mesa, AZ. It might get to freezing for a couple of hours overnight on occasion, but it warms up during the day. The best barometer for me is if there is frost damage on my cactus, then it got freezing. We will make sure to blow out the water. :-)
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Old 10-14-2021, 08:12 PM   #16
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Hi Kathy! Sounds like your weather is similar to ours - minus the cactus... Out here I'm more worried about the frost damaging our Bougainvilleas so I watch the temps closely and make sure to cover them with a sheet on crazy cold nights.

Like you, we store our trailer in our side yard behind a gate with a cover over it, connected to shore power. So if we have a 'cold snap' (temps that barely dip below freezing at night) we have our little space heater set to 62 inside and we switch our tank heaters on (making sure each tank has water in it). We also have the foam underneath so I know the tank heaters are a bit overkill but why not? May as well use them!

Again, like you we plan to take our 21 out once a month during the winter so we like to stay nearby, usually along the coast somewhere, so for us, we have no worries about getting stuck in blizzard conditions for days on end.

Thus, we personally don't feel the need to 'winterize' our plumbing but if you are concerned in the least, playing it safe and blowing out your lines sounds like very good idea. -Bea
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Old 10-14-2021, 08:14 PM   #17
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Sounds like your approach would work well for us! Thanks for sharing. :-)
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Old 10-14-2021, 08:32 PM   #18
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Better to winterize than agonize.
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Old 10-14-2021, 08:53 PM   #19
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Better to winterize than agonize.
A couple of other vulnerable items: Black and grey dump valves, outside of the foam layer, and the water pump assemble, check valve, filter. They are all rigid plastic that won't flex if frozen.
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Old Yesterday, 06:18 AM   #20
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Don't forget the outside shower, if you have it.
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