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Old 02-18-2016, 01:23 PM   #11
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With the weather what it will be you should be ok if you drain your water heater pull anode rod open low level lines drain all water lines. And leave them open while you drive on the last day and you should get most all the water out. If you don't think you got all the water out of your drains and black and gray tanks. Pour a gal on pink stuff in the different drains. And you should be ok. and if you use one remove the water filter.
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Old 02-18-2016, 01:24 PM   #12
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Blowing out the lines with air is good but not necessary when using antifreeze.

By pass the water heater and drain it. Open your faucets and open the low point drains. Close them. You can pull the antifreeze with the pump and flush the lines (run til they turn pink) / All faucets/and showers/ toliet...... Dump some down all drains. I use two gallons of antifreeze on our camper. Should take about 1/2 hour.

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Old 02-18-2016, 01:30 PM   #13
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Blowing out the lines with air is good but not necessary when using antifreeze.



By pass the water heater and drain it. Open your faucets and open the low point drains. Close them. You can pull the antifreeze with the pump and flush the lines (run til they turn pink) / All faucets/and showers/ toliet...... Dump some down all drains. I use two gallons of antifreeze on our camper. Should take about 1/2 hour.




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Old 02-18-2016, 01:50 PM   #14
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If it were me, I would stay in the trailer, hotels are a waste of money when you have your own bed with you, JMHO.
What setting up? Level side to side, stay hooked to the TV if possible, open any slides and you're done, no need for all the other nonsense, water? use your FW tank. Turn off water pump, drain faucets, leave open then Winterize when you get home, just make sure you close all faucets again before winterizing.
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Old 02-18-2016, 02:04 PM   #15
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No need to blow out the water lines, just open your low point drains and open the faucets and toilet valve and nearly all of the water will drain out. Then use the RV antifreeze to fill the lines back up, just make sure you close all the faucets before you start the antifreeze fill, and then open each one, one at a time. If there is any water in the fresh water tank you may want to open that drain when you leave Florida and let it drain as you travel. Don't forget to pull the screen from the city water fill inlet and push on the check valve with your finger to drain that also. Don't stand in front of the fill inlet when you do that or you may get a mini shower. Empty the black and grey water tanks on the last stop and put about a 1/2 gallon of antifreeze in each one of them. It's still winter and there will be freezing temps for at least another month, especially in Michigan. Almost forgot, drain the hot water tank by removing the anode rod. You will need a 1 1/16" socket for that. After you drain the tank you may want to just screw the anode rod back in just to keep little critters from getting in.
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Old 02-18-2016, 02:14 PM   #16
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Have you considered driving north and, if you do encounter SERIOUS cold temperatures, stop at an RV service center and simply pay them to do the job? Most shops would find this to be an incredibly simple job (likely less than one hour of labor). Because winterizing is something they'd do a lot, I expect any established shop should easily get it done right. If temperatures continue to rise, you could well make it all the way home and then, decide if a hard freeze is likely (at which time you do the job yourself with all the resources your home provides).
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Old 02-18-2016, 02:50 PM   #17
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Thanks everyone for the responses. I knew I could count on them! I agree that I would rather just stay in the trailer but still had doubts about any possible issues with winterizing that I hadn't yet heard of. You all make it sound easier than opening the slide outs so I am going to give it a go.


Maybe that stupid groundhog will actually be right this year and I won't have to do it till I get home.


Thanks again!!!
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Old 02-18-2016, 02:55 PM   #18
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Have you considered driving north and, if you do encounter SERIOUS cold temperatures, stop at an RV service center and simply pay them to do the job?
If they are predicting THAT kind of cold, we are staying put!!!
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Old 02-18-2016, 03:40 PM   #19
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Sadly, we are about to depart from our stay in Florida and head home to Michigan. Given the current temps on the way, I realize I need to winterize the trailer before getting there. However, after lengthy discussions with the "significant other" I must consider two options because she wants to maintain use of the trailer as long as possible on the way home (thinking northern Ky or southern Oh would require me to do this) and I would just rather button it up down here and stay in hotels on the way home.

You should also realize that this will be the first time I have done a winterization, period! I have watched a number of YouTube videos, read numerous posts on the process, and I feel I am prepared to do it. 3 way valve at the water pump? Check. Familiar with draining and flushing the water heater? Check. Location of the low point drains? Check. Black tank flush on trailer? Check. RV anti-freeze (4 gal)? Check. At least one checklist obtained online showing the steps? Check. The only thing I can do here vs. at a campground on the way home is blow out the lines because I won't have acess to a compressor on the way home. Stupid me, left it home! DOH! We are close to a relative down here that has one. But not expecting below zero temps at this time of year so not sure if blowing out the lines at this point is really necessary.

So, here is my pro/con list for each. Please feel free to add omissions on my part, or opinionate on whether you would do a winterization on the way home from a trip vs. before you left.

Winterize before we leave - More expensive with costs of hotels, food, and parking could be problematic with arriving late to a hotel (35' trailer and truck) but we could stay on the road longer and get home sooner (2-3 days vs 3-4 days weather/traffic permitting) because I don't have to worry about setting up at night and we can check in whenever we get to a hotel vs trying to enter a campground after dark. I also considered finding hotels next to truck stops with RV parking but she doesn't like that idea.

Winterize on the way home - Less expensive campgrounds, parking not an issue, we still have food in the rig and could make our own meals but trip would take longer because I would want to be off the road before dark each day to check in and setup. Additionally, our trailer is NOT functional other than bathroom/bedroom access without the slides open due to a kitchen island and not sure about running the furnace, hot water heater, etc. with the slides closed so in order to cook, and such, I would have to be somewhere where I can put the jacks down and open the slides.

That is all. Please feel free to take sides. I won't hold it against you!
You had better check on which campgrounds are open. I have found in the upper half of the USA many if not most campgrounds close in the fall and do not open till spring. Perhaps you will get only one or two nights camping in on the way from Florida to Michigan. If so this could have an influence on when you would winterize. Some years ago I left Mesa AZ in February heading for Ontario Canada. I winterized before I left and on the first night or two only slept in the trailer and ate out. We used camp ground toilet facilities.
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Old 02-18-2016, 04:13 PM   #20
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You could always boondock if campgrounds are not open. I did that both going down and coming back from Florida
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