Winterizing?

Discussion in 'Going to the DARK SIDE' started by NorcrossFlyer, Sep 13, 2017.

  1. NorcrossFlyer

    NorcrossFlyer Member

    228
    9
    Oct 26, 2015
    North Georgia
    I always kept my pup in the garage and in North Georgia this was always good enough to avoid the cold since it never got colder than 55 in there even if the outside temps were in the 20s.

    But with my TT I am now 100% outdoors so this is suddenly a concern.

    I'm inclined to think I don't have to worry about this. The underside of the TT is coated in spray foam insulation then covered with a plastic-like cover. I'm thinking all I need to do is make sure the lines are drained. I really don't want to winterize because we camp quite often even over the winter months.

    Thoughts?
     
  2. smit1088

    smit1088 Well-Known Member

    1,493
    29
    Mar 15, 2011
    Stillwater, MN
    Since I live in MN life is a bit harder. I tried to just blow out the water system on my pup and made it one year fine. The next, I cracked the handpump. After that I started to use RV antifreeze. In your TT you might have a water heater. If you do a bypass is useful if not installed already and

    I finally installed a winterizing kit. Makes it easy to turn a valve and have the pump suck antifreeze and your done. Best $12 I've spent. After fixing my last mistake I will always use antifreeze. It is only $3 a gallon and you will flush your system in the spring with or without antifreeze in it usually.
    [​IMG]
     
  3. kitphantom

    kitphantom Well-Known Member

    10,111
    143
    Dec 26, 2009
    Albuquerque, NM
    Our TT lives outside, and our lows can be down into the teens or lower. We do a combination of blowing out the system and antifreeze. To blow it out, we have the connector that attaches to the city water input, and a compressor - they do make them for bike pumps too.
    We by-pass and drain the hot water tank, blow out all the water lines, then use the siphon on the water pump to pull pink into the lines. It takes less than a gallon to get it into the sink faucet, shower faucet, and toilet. I also add a seal conditioner to the toilet. I add more antifreeze to the toilet at some point during the winter, since evaporation makes a gel. (The conditioner makes an interesting color mixed with the antifreeze; I checked to make sure it was OK to use both.)
    It seemed intimidating the first time we winterized, but we went to the seminar our dealer offers every year. They have examples of what happens to a hot water tank and lines when water is left in them.
    We have taken the TT out while winterized. Depending on our destination, we may use the system or not. If we use it, we re-winterize or at least blow it out once home, depending on timing (my first trip this year was southern AZ in Feb, we just blew it out when I got home). If we don't use it, we revert to water jugs and a gray water pail, and gel bags in the toilet.
     
  4. jmkay1

    jmkay1 2004 Fleetwood/Coleman Utah

    2,311
    131
    Oct 10, 2013
    Northern Virginia
    When I was looking for my new to me camper I came across so many that have plumbing damage because the lack of winterizing. Now with that said I do not live in the south where tempratures are a bit warmer more often then here. So I think you may be able to get away with draining everything as long as day time tempratures are still above freezing. However if you have any extended freezing temperatures I would at the very least blow out the lines. Just because you winterize the unit doesn't mean you can't go camping. I just bring water in an aquatainer for the trip and use that. Don't know about your graywater tanks and how safe it is, if it was to freeze while camping.
     
  5. tfischer

    tfischer Well-Known Member

    I installed the same winterizing kit mentioned above. I'm also in MN and temps can and do get down to 20 below zero so there's no "not winterizing" option here. But I just have a single sink so it's not difficult.
     
  6. kitphantom

    kitphantom Well-Known Member

    10,111
    143
    Dec 26, 2009
    Albuquerque, NM
    @jmkay1 We did end up using our gray water tank on the TT on one trip in early spring. We had planned on using the whole water system, but the lows were predicted to be in the 20s; they ended up about 30, but we were glad we'd played it safe.
    Looking at how our plumbing is designed, we decided the gray tank would be OK. If nothing else it has plenty of space for expansion, though the freezing temps would not have been long enough to endanger the tank or drain piping. Our fresh water supply lines run under the camper, and the low points are basically out in mid-air. Those were small enough and well exposed so we didn't use the fresh water system.
     
  7. NorcrossFlyer

    NorcrossFlyer Member

    228
    9
    Oct 26, 2015
    North Georgia
    Ha!

    We might have 5 or so nights over the course of the winter that dip in to the mid to low 20s. Days where the day temps don't climb above 32 usually number less than 5 and don't happen every year.

    January averages:
    High: 52
    Low: 34
     
  8. tfischer

    tfischer Well-Known Member

    I personally wouldn't take a chance if the weather ever dipped into the 20s even occasionally. Winterizing just isn't that much work, but repairing cracked plumbing is.
     
    xxxapache and JPBar like this.
  9. NorcrossFlyer

    NorcrossFlyer Member

    228
    9
    Oct 26, 2015
    North Georgia
    Got a lot of opinions on this subject. Came to the conclusion that since I'm pretty far South and I plan on using my TT over the winter I'm just going to blow the lines out and drop a little anti-freeze in the p-traps, black and gray tanks.
     
  10. 3gnaddict

    3gnaddict New Member

    15
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    Sep 14, 2017
    SW Montana
    It always seems to be that 1 time... :D A few years ago when I did my 5th, I forgot to drain the tanks after. One of my grey tanks has a long line to the valve (no idea why they did that). Anyway, that water froze (it got to -40 for a while, normal here), and busted that line as it had filled up while I was running the system. I now make sure that after I winterize, that I go dump those tank lines. Moral of the story, plenty of expansion room in the tank, however your lines will fill up first, maybe...
     
  11. NorcrossFlyer

    NorcrossFlyer Member

    228
    9
    Oct 26, 2015
    North Georgia
    Ouch. I have to say that if I lived in Montana I wouldn't have started this thread because I would be 100% certain that I would be pumping anti-freeze through my lines!

    But last winter we had a stretch of weeks where the highs were in the 60s and 70s. I don't think I used my ice scraper for ice (Usually it is just to push the frost out of the way) over the course of the entire winter.
     

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