Winter use.

Discussion in 'The Beginner' started by pigginchilli, Sep 21, 2015.

  1. pigginchilli

    pigginchilli Read Only Funster

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    Hi, we intend to use our motorhome throughout winter for weekends away at the seaside with our dogs, we know we have to drain the water tank for frost, we will not be needing showers etc so is it ok to leave the system empty of water over winter? we bought 2 gas bottles for cooker, heater, so any other problems? all the best steve and nade.:D
     
  2. pigginchilli

    pigginchilli Read Only Funster

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    Also been told the best thing to keep the motorhome in good order is not to store over winter? some opinions would be very helpful.(y)
     
  3. hilldweller

    hilldweller Funster Life Member

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    Much more than that. Make sure all drain valves are open, open all taps and blow down them somehow otherwise you'll end up with a cracked tap or even boiler.
     
  4. Mel

    Mel Funster

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    To drain the the water pipes I use a balloon.
    Inflate it put on tap open tap air blows water back out.
     
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  5. pigginchilli

    pigginchilli Read Only Funster

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    Hi, does that mean the fresh water and waste water taps? We only picked up our home 2 days ago and are very confused about all the switches etc, taking photos tomorrow for advice. I can take a 1200 bandit apart and rebuld in a couple of days so not thick just a bit intimidated. steve.
     
  6. Brian_K

    Brian_K Read Only Funster

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    This will be my first winter with the van, Elddis Accordo, has the winter pack - anyone have any advise with this setup? - do I still need to empty all tanks, fit vent covers?

    Brian
     
  7. hilldweller

    hilldweller Funster Life Member

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    Any water anywhere, if it freezes you could have a burst just in a normal home. I had a shower tap cracked open, I missed blowing that one, good old super glue fixed it but what a job getting at the valve.

    We have two dump valves near the boiler, one dumps the boiler the other the cold water, plus a standard plug in the bottom of the main water tank.
     
  8. hilldweller

    hilldweller Funster Life Member

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    Yes you do. Insulation only delays freezing, it cannot stop it.
     
  9. NickNic

    NickNic Funster Life Member

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    We do the exact opposite. We use the van all the way through the winter, it lives in storage when we aren't using it.

    I have never, ever drained the water tank. It's never been completely empty since we bought the van. And we drink from it. The dump valve on the boiler has gone a few times but that's it. I really don't understand why people waste water by draining their system every time they get back from a trip.
     
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  10. DanielFord

    DanielFord Funster

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    We used our van all the way through last winter, granted it wasn't that cold. When it was in use, the water was filled, and when we returned it to storage, the tank was drained. Not exactly economical I know, but it worked for us.
    We had a really cold night down in Devon, snow coming in all around, and didn't have any issues. Toasty warm inside, and lot's of hot water for the morning shower. We did go through quite a lot of gas that weekend though!
     
  11. TheBig1

    TheBig1 Funster Life Member

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    one trick many people miss about getting a van ready and using in winter. Fill the fuel tank and top up when you use it. less airspace in the tank inhibits the growth of algae

    if your new van hasn't been winterised, get underneath and wrap a couple of layers of foil bubble wrap round the tanks and pipes and seal joints with aluminium tape. should the be good for pretty low temperatures. If you use water over winter in your van make sure you keep heating on constantly. taps and connectors are generally only plastic and split quickly when frozen
     
  12. Bobby22

    Bobby22 Funster

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    If camping and it is forecast to freeze, leave your waste water valve open if its not insulated or heated.

    If you have onboard water tanks they should be alright surmising you will have the hab heating on.
    If you park it up during the week, keep an eye on the forecast and if there is a possibility of minus-temperatures then i would drain down leave the taps in an open position and empty hot water tank and leave the valve open.
    Freezing temps are only forecast for a few weeks in the deep of winter......even here in Scotland.............thats when we go to the Caribean....lol
     
  13. jonandshell

    jonandshell Funster

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  14. jonandshell

    jonandshell Funster

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    Of course, you should acknowledge the good advice above.
    Much of how you use your van in winter depends on its construction. A winterised van will not need draining down as long as your heating is on.
    Any van with external water system parts will suffer from frost whether you have the heating on or not.
    Beware the British motorhome manufacturers definition of 'winterised'. Most of them will not survive persistent winter conditions without some modifications.
     
  15. Brian_K

    Brian_K Read Only Funster

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    I can't find anything in the Elddis manual, other than general winterising tips. I have the winter pack fitted:

    "Winter pack - tank heaters for fresh and waste water plus fridge vent covers"

    Am I right in assuming you set the space heater to the frost sign and that the tank heaters will only work on EHU.

    I have 120w solar panels fitted, but I don't see that being enough - is that correct?

    Brian
     
  16. HymerB544

    HymerB544 Funster

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    I'm inclined to agree with Nick. We never drain our tank, though it is a double floor, fully winterised van. The only precaution I take is always, from this time of year through to May, open the taps before I leave the van unused for any length of time. Not that it is often out of use. I appreciate that not all vans are insulated and winterised to the same degree, but this works for us.
     
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  17. Dafydd_Cymru

    Dafydd_Cymru

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    van.jpg Hi. Pick up our first MH in two weeks. We are planning xmas up Scotland to play with her for a while. I am told she has an on-board water tank so I assume that helps with freezing. With heating and using the taps etc would Iget loads of problems or can I reduce the risks in some way of freezing and damage? I have no idea what temperature I can go down to before I need to drain?
     
  18. sdc77

    sdc77 Funster

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    We use our Chausson throughout winter and do not drain. When parked at home it's always plugged in and we have an oil radiator ticking over so it never gets cold.
    In extremely cold weather on the drive we might switch the electric heating on low.
    Reminder to some Truma heating owners that some have an auto dump valve that will dump your water if it gets too cold.
     
  19. Dafydd_Cymru

    Dafydd_Cymru

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    Thanks must look for that as it has Truma I think. Hate to ruin it first trip.
     
  20. sdc77

    sdc77 Funster

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    There are two types of valve manual and auto.. They will be bright yellow and on the floor somewhere near the boiler
     
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