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Old 10-07-2019, 06:14 PM   #1
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Couple of nights below freezing in a 2016 CC 34RL

Hi All,

We are now in Northern Arizona traveling back to NC in our 2016 34RL. Even though it is 85 degrees right now, in a few days they are expecting a cold front where it will hit 25 degrees for a low and be about 60 degrees during the day for two days and should warm up after that.

We have never camped in our CC below freezing and were wondering if the rig will tolerate these temps over these couple of days. I know to disconnect the fresh water hose and turn on the tank heaters. Anything else I should be doing?

For those of you that have experienced this situation, what are your recommendations?

Thanks for your help,

Tom
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Old 10-07-2019, 06:45 PM   #2
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We've camped plenty of times in NC mountains when the temps fall into the mid 20s and never a problem especially when it heats up the next day. Few things you could do:
1) Keep the heat on the camper; this will help to keep the pipes in the walls/floor heated enough not to freeze
2) When it starts dipping into the low 30's, run the water every now and then. This will keep your outside line from getting slushy as the water coming in from the campground lines will be much warmer.
3) Buy some of the foam pipe wrap and stick it on your outside hose. Will help to insulate it and isn't that expensive

Don't see you having any issues.

Enjoy the journey back to NC!
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Old 10-08-2019, 07:07 AM   #3
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We've camped in freezing temps with our CC two different ways with regards to water...either use an electric water hose or fill the fresh tank, disconnect outside hose and use your onboard pump.
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Old 10-08-2019, 07:23 AM   #4
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We camp up until Christmas here in the mountains of the Great Southwest Virginia and we will have temps down into the teens at night. Before we go to bed, we will unhook the hose and roll it up into our storage bay, we have a nice electric heater that will supplement our furnace, but we do run our furnace so it will direct a bit of heat into our bays to keep the water systems running; we also will open the cabinets in the kitchen and in the bathroom to let some heated air in there.

The temps will usually warm up above freezing by 9-10 am and we will hook the water hose back up and run a gallon or two of water through the system to flush out any ice crystals that might possibly have formed.

We have never had a problem using these, but we do winterize before we head home from our Thanksgiving trip.
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Old 10-08-2019, 07:37 AM   #5
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Just remember, things don't start to freeze immediately once the temperature hits 32. It takes many hours for the mass of your rig (both in and out) to get to the point where it starts getting frozen. Don't believe me? Set out a bowl with water in it under your R/V those couple days and you'll see.

If it gets real cold for an entire night, as mentioned, unhook the outside hose and use water from the tank.

The only somewhat susceptible areas are the outside shower (if equipped) as that plastic door serves as no insulation and maybe the low point drains. But its going to need to get below freezing for more than a few hours overnight for either of those to be an issue.
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Old 10-08-2019, 07:47 AM   #6
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Since 5picker brought it up. I take a piece of 1" styrofoam and cut it to fit behind the outside shower door. That way you get a little insulation between the plumbing and outside. we've camped in 8F by doing that and keeping the heat on.
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Old 10-08-2019, 08:01 AM   #7
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Originally Posted by Bama Rambler View Post
Since 5picker brought it up. I take a piece of 1" styrofoam and cut it to fit behind the outside shower door. That way you get a little insulation between the plumbing and outside. we've camped in 8F by doing that and keeping the heat on.
X2
Same here.
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Old 10-08-2019, 08:30 AM   #8
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I've never disconnected my water hose or even wrapped it, running water doesn't freeze(at least not at those temps)... but this does require FHU, ... because I trickle flow the shower the whole time(hours or days) of the freezing temps and of course have to open the gray tank drain so it doesn't fill and overflow, ... the shower because, to use it, allows me to set the trickle(a little more than a drip) and leave it alone, ... and it also allows us to continue to use any other inside faucet without having to reset the trickle each time we used that faucet, because forgetting to do that is when the problem begins, ... this method has always worked for us, ...
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Old 10-08-2019, 08:33 AM   #9
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If your worried about the outside hose freezing, just put some water in your fresh tank, switch over to pump and disconnect the outside hose.


my only other advice is to open a roof vent 1/4 of the way to let some moisture out.



1 human produces 26 oz of water into vapor in 24 hour period. you need to vent this out of camper as temps drop to stop it from condensing on windows/wall/ceiling of camper.
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Old 10-08-2019, 01:20 PM   #10
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One question along the lines of this thread. How much water/liquid needs to be in the tanks to use the tank heaters? I will have water in our fresh tank and put some water down the black, but our gray will be empty when we first camp this weekend with cold temps.
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Old 10-08-2019, 01:52 PM   #11
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Originally Posted by jbmcbride View Post
One question along the lines of this thread. How much water/liquid needs to be in the tanks to use the tank heaters? I will have water in our fresh tank and put some water down the black, but our gray will be empty when we first camp this weekend with cold temps.
Just add water to the gray tank like you're doing in the black.

I'll dump a 5-gallon bucket in each so the tank heater doesn't overheat and damage the plastic tank. Both my Black and Gray tanks are 30 gallon so 5 gallons is not all that significant.
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Old 10-08-2019, 06:07 PM   #12
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If your 2016 CC 34RL has the "Arctic Package" then you have no problems. If it doesn't then the advice above should serve you well if the temps are not below freezing days on end.

I have the Arctic Package as we have spend the last 4 winters in Maryland, where we are now. When I know the temps will be below freezing, I fill my fresh water tank and disconnect the outside water source. My wife and I can go for a week on our 60 gallons fresh water tank. In addition to the fireplace heater, I have a portable electric heater I use in the living area, and a small electric heater I use in the basement (I make sure nothing is near this heater that can burn). I have 5 thermostats throughout the RV and basement so I can keep track of the temperature in any part of my rig, including the basement and outside shower.

Although I have been in temperatures of +2 degrees for a week, I had no problem with the outside shower. But the above suggestions of using styrofoam to insulate that door, makes a lot of sense to me.

Should you have any questions, feel free to ask.
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Old 10-08-2019, 06:10 PM   #13
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Just got back from a trip in the Eastern Sierra. 4 of the nights, got down into the teens. Lowest was 15 F. Put the heater in the trailer to 50F at night. Zero issues. We do not have heated tanks or a heated underbelly. Temps during the days were 40's and 50's.
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Old 10-08-2019, 06:31 PM   #14
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Thanks to all that have replied. There are some great ideas here, which is what I had hoped for. With some space heaters, the tank heaters, disconnecting the water hookup and some insulation on the low point drains and fresh tank drain, I think I should be OK for this relatively short cold spell.

I didn't think Cedar Creek had a seperate "Arctic Package" in 2016. I have the tank heaters and full underbelly covers I thought were standard but I did have to special order dual pane windows. My outside shower and other plumbing connections are behind the basement door which is about an inch and a half thick so that should be insulated well enough.

I'll do a follow up post this weekend to let you all know how it went.

Thanks again,

Tom
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Old 10-13-2019, 06:53 PM   #15
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Well, I went through all the preparations for a couple of nights below freezing that were discussed in the previous postings. It was supposed to get down to 25 degrees one night but my outdoor thermometer only got down to 37. The next night it was to get to 30 but the thermometer only got to 41. I have the outside thermometer sensor in the pin box so it has been accurate in the past.

The campground I was in must have been in some type of microclimate that didn't get as cold as the rest of the area. So, it looks like I didn't learn anything this time about how my CC might do in freezing weather but I am set for what to do the next time I'm faced with freezing cold.

Again, thanks for all the help from those folks on this forum that responded.

Tom
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