Not draining water tank in winter

Discussion in 'Motorhome Chat' started by normanandsue, Sep 8, 2013.

  1. normanandsue

    normanandsue Funster

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    I am intending using my motorhome this winter; as I own a N+B Arto 60 that is "winterised" all tanks are inboard. As a result I don't want to drain down my water system, so if I were to place an electric heater on a low heat would this prevent the mh freezing up?
    But would placing a heater inside the mh encourage damp inside as the warmer atmosphere comes in contact with the colder walls of the mh.

    Any comments appreciated

    Norman
     
  2. Snowbird

    Snowbird Funster Life Member

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    I never drained down my FFB or my RMB. They are properly winterised. I put a fan heater inside the van set on the frost setting which only comes on when the temp drops below freezing. All tanks are inboard and well insulated.
     
  3. GJH

    GJH Funster Life Member

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    When we first had the Autoquest we used to leave a small oil-filled radiator on overnight to keep the temperature above freezing (our van is parked on the drive so we have an accessible hook-up socket). We then wondered whether it was really necessary so decided that we would use no heat the next winter. That turned out to be the winter of 2010/11 when we had the worst winter for years at home, with more snow than normal and for longer than normal. We experienced no problems so haven't used winter heat, when the vehicle is just parked up, since then.

    We use our van during the winter but normally drain the water system between trips. We tend to return home with little water anyway so there wouldn't be much difference between topping up and refilling for the next trip.

    Leaving aside the fact that we always drained the tanks, the Autoquest didn't have an auto dump valve on the hot water tank but I expect it would have operated anyway as the heater didn't keep the temperature as high as 8 deg C.
     
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  4. treetops1

    treetops1 Funster

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    Hi I would have thought an A class van should be well insulated.We put an oil heater on low for the worst part of last winter with no problems :thumb:
     
  5. philk

    philk

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    Winterising

    Getting ready for winter with set up is like mine, with onboard tanks, so easy that i would never consider not doing it. Especially as recommissioning is also easy. Pull the plugs on the tanks and isolate the 12v to the pump. Open the taps on a hot/cold mix setting and water flows out of the pipes to the fresh tank and out. Set the heater to 3 degrees, if its that twmperature in the van its very cold outside.

    Phil
     
  6. hilldweller

    hilldweller Funster Life Member

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    No.

    Problem is pipes at the back of cupboards. The electric heat will not reach and given time they will freeze. I found this the hard way in a winterised Burstner.
     
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  7. Phill D

    Phill D

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    also most of the newer style taps have ceramic inserts inside and they shatter inside the tap. i know to my cost last winter ( my Adria is winterised ) winterised to me means can be used effectively in winter i.e. mine uses heaters to the waste tank etc but the van needs to be in day to day use. i drained down my system last winter for the few weeks it was parked up but closed the main sink tap after draining down :Doh: there was a small amount of water trapped in the ceramic part of the tap :Doh: froze :Eeek: new tap insert £25 and 2 hours to sus it out and change the part.
     
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  8. bungy

    bungy Funster

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    I leave our blown air heating on the lowest temp and Wattage settings for the very reason brian mentioned

    keeps the water pipes nice and snug
     
  9. pappajohn

    pappajohn Funster Life Member

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    i think many people misunderstand the term 'winterised'

    what it really means is its thermally insulated to a point where it can be used without excessive and prolonged heating in sub zero temperatures and tanks are inboard to protect them from the elements
    it doesnt mean when its not in use in sub zero weather it wont freeze...cos it will.
     
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  10. hilldweller

    hilldweller Funster Life Member

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    Now that is something that amazed me with the Burstner, I was peering at some wiring and pipes and saw one I could not identify, it was a perforated air pipe strapped to the water pipes. Brilliant design.

    And I defeated it by using an electric heater to save wearing out the heater when parked over the winter.

    The time a pipe froze I was in Scotland and using a fan heater to save topping up the gas.

    The shower tap failed for the same reason. Electric heater and I did not blow down the pipe so the water lodged in the tap froze and cracked it.
     
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  11. jonandshell

    jonandshell Funster

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    Ditto for our Chausson too, Brian.

    EVERY water pipe is followed by hot air ducting. It works brilliantly!:thumb:
     
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  12. pappajohn

    pappajohn Funster Life Member

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    and that is winterising......
    but if the van isnt in use and not heated the pipes will still freeze
     
  13. normanandsue

    normanandsue Funster

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    Brian this was the thought at the back of my mind and what prompted the thread in the first place.
     
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  14. injebreck99

    injebreck99 Funster

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    I always drain my Bolero down fully , I have a small compressor at home which I use to (very gently) blow through the system to clear it.I have a small heater set to frost setting, and leave all the cupboard doors open, and the bathroom as well
    I also leave one of the side windows slightly open as well, to let air circulate better, no problems so far.
    The best idea is to be away in the van in winter, preferably somewhere warm and sunny.!!
     
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  15. bernardfeay

    bernardfeay Read Only Funster

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    I agree - it is the taps you have to worry about. As already mentioned they should be left open and the power shut off so they don't drain the battery. We tend to drain all the water out on the last few miles of the drive home. That way any odd drops get shaken down.

    Insulation only slows down the freezing process, it does not prevent it. I can't see any advantage in keeping water on board over winter on days when the MH is parked up.
     
  16. jonandshell

    jonandshell Funster

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    Lightweight!
    COLD and sunny, with snow is much more fun!:BigGrin:
     
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  17. lorger

    lorger Funster

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    We also use our van all winter and always drain down tanks and leave taps open, as the van is parked on the drive we could leave it on frost setting but we tend just to put the heating on the day before we are going away.
     
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  18. jonandshell

    jonandshell Funster

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    We drain down rather than leaving the heating on. It doesn't take long once you are well practiced.
    We did try the heating on the frost setting but the cost in diesel and the fouling of the burner caused by cool running of the heater made it impractical.
    Our Webasto is diesel-only.
     
  19. g8ysn

    g8ysn Funster

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    g8ysn

    do what is say,s on the tin [ handbook]:thumb:
     
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