Autotrail Winterisation

Discussion in 'Motorhome Chat' started by MuddyPuddle, Nov 26, 2013.

  1. MuddyPuddle

    MuddyPuddle Funster

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    Being hardy ex-caravanners we not used to this 'end of season' talk and intend to continue to use our new Tracker FB regularly through the Winter months and are used to draining everything down when we put the MH into storage.
    Have any of you experienced funsters got any tips please to share on what can be done to protect against the possibility of pipes and/or tanks freezing up whilst the MH is in use?
    I'm not too sure on how much the waste/fresh water tanks and pipework are protected against the elements on the MH so would really appreciate any hints and tips you can pass on.:Confused:
    Thanks, Dave
     
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  2. jenny and mitch

    jenny and mitch Funster

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    We haven't done it to ours, but what about retrofit tank heaters ?? Mitch.
     
  3. JeanLuc

    JeanLuc Funster

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    I would be very surprised if there is significant insulation of the tanks and pipes on a British van - an unfortunate fact that they don't seem to address. If you search for a relevant post by 'Haganap' (Paul) he carried out a major winterisation programme on a Bessacar so that it is suitable for skiing. There will be loads of good advice there which I would have thought was transferable to an Auto-Trial.
     
  4. Vlad The Impaler

    Vlad The Impaler Funster

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    If you leave your waste tank open and keep a fullish fresh tank you're ok,in my experience,to about -2 overnight without modifications.Your pipes are lagged and a large volume of water needs prolonged low temp to freeze.
    If we use in very cold snaps we drain down and carry water on board for toilet flushing washing etc.When the heating is on you'd never know its cold outside!
    As said look at Haganap's blog on winterisation if your going sub zero!




    Vlad
     
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  5. camocam1

    camocam1 Read Only Funster

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    Not familur with your van but I use my van most weekends over the winter but I do drain down the system during the week
    Internal fresh water tank so keep heating on 27/7 on low and let waste water drain into a bucket, put fridge vent covers on and that's about it
     
  6. tonka

    tonka Funster Life Member

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    Both tanks on Autotrails are underslung and not classed as winterised..
    The only time I run with fresh water in the tank at winter is when on route to warmer climate. If we rally in Uk and it down to freezing I run empty and carry water in containers..

    Be aware that tank heaters do take a large current, can be 5amps !! so watch batteries...

    If you can have a lie down and look under the van, you will soon see how exposed they are.. On my 700 the fresh does have some insulation around it and the waste tank is located under it, so it has some protection and some pipes are lagged BUT only needs 1 exposed bit to freeze up and cause problems.
     
  7. MuddyPuddle

    MuddyPuddle Funster

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    Have tried to find the post from Haganap referred to but have drawn a blank unless it's the one about his diesel spaceheater?
    Haganap (Paul) if you're out there can you signpost me to it please? :Confused:
     
  8. TheBig1

    TheBig1 Funster Life Member

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  9. Stewart J

    Stewart J Funster

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    We used our previous AT Tracker all winter in the UK including the severe one of 3 years ago, the FW drain pipe is the weakest link for freezing and if it does tends to "pop out" of the tank coupling. Wrap it well and full length including drain valve with plenty of 22 mm pipe insulation sleeving (B & Q, Homebase etc)

    Keep tank level half or more the larger the mass of water the more it takes to freeze. If your not staying weeks on end in sub zero temps in one location then all should be well, once on the road the water movement stops any freezing.

    As others have said grey water tank is a pain, leave drain open into a dish, waste hog or whatever.

    If you already havent invest in external silver screens they are a must in frosty conditions, providing some insulation in cab area but more importantly killing condensation almost totally. (Also pull blinds closed)

    Go for it there are som many benefits in the UK especially, nigh on empty campsites for starters.:thumb::thumb::thumb:
     
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  10. Stewart J

    Stewart J Funster

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    We al;so insulated the side windows in our Tracker using camping sleeping mats the ones with silver foil on one side, that really made a difference in keeping van warm and cosy just cut them to suit for all windows, you'll be suprised at how effective it is. (dont forget the large skylight) :thumb:
     
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  11. MuddyPuddle

    MuddyPuddle Funster

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  12. MuddyPuddle

    MuddyPuddle Funster

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    Thanks We have got the external silver screen covers for windscreen and side windows - do you use these 'mats' in addition to the external cover? :Doh:
     
  13. Stewart J

    Stewart J Funster

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    Cut to shape for each window and fitted between interior pleated blind and window. Ours was an EKS so the side bench seats made up the double bed and on colder frosty nights condensation and heat loss was a problem cured by the mats.
     
  14. Ed Excel

    Ed Excel Funster

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