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Old 10-07-2012, 09:00 PM   #1
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Winterizing 2012 Grey Wolf

Today we got back from our last camping trip of the season, so I went to winterize the camper and ran into a little issue. On our other TT's I just unscrewed the water line that came up from the tank to the pump and screwed on another short hose that I stuck into the RV antifreeze. But when I took off the panel to the water pump I saw that this has a different fitting on the water pump. This week I am going to try and stop at Home Depot and pick up the things I would need to put in another line so I can run RV anti-freeze thought without doing anything besides taking off the access panel and turning a knob.

So I was thinking that I will just blow the system out with air for this year, but I have never done it before so I have a couple questions. Other than the normal things like draining the hot water tank and blowing out the lines until no water comes out, and then dumping anti-freeze down the drains, what else do I need to do? How do I get the water out of the water pump?
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Old 10-07-2012, 09:19 PM   #2
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I bought this kit for winterizing:
Pump Converter Winterizer Kit - Camco RV 36543 - Winterizing - Camping World

Otherwise you are back to your original question- how do you get all the water out of the lines? What if there is a low spot you haven't accounted for?
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Old 10-07-2012, 10:11 PM   #3
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I quit running the RV antifreeze through the entire system years ago. Big waste of money in my opinion. I pull the drain plug on the hot water heater and blow the entire water system out with compressed air. Be sure to drain the water out of the shower head and add some antifreeze to each trap on the sinks and tub as well as a little in the toilet. I have yet to have an issue. How do people winterize their yard sprinkler systems? They blow them out with air.
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Old 10-07-2012, 10:38 PM   #4
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Thanks guys! I got the basics of blowing out the system with air and dumping anti-freeze down the drains. But my big question is what about the water pump? Isn't there water still in the pump that has to come out so it doesn't freeze and break the pump?
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Old 10-07-2012, 10:52 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by PHS79 View Post
Thanks guys! I got the basics of blowing out the system with air and dumping anti-freeze down the drains. But my big question is what about the water pump? Isn't there water still in the pump that has to come out so it doesn't freeze and break the pump?
I have never had a problem there after blowing the system out. If you are concerned about it you could easily disconect the lines at the pump to make sure you have it drained. Mine has a low point bleed for the hot and cold water lines under the trailer. As long as you open them you shouldn't have a problem.
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Old 10-07-2012, 11:54 PM   #6
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Quote:
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But my big question is what about the water pump? Isn't there water still in the pump that has to come out so it doesn't freeze and break the pump?
The by-pass I showed you goes in place before the pump. So the first thing to have antifreeze in it is the pump. The pump then pushes the antifreeze down the system.

As for it being a "big waste of money"- After buying the kit for $20 it now costs me about $8 per year to winterize with antifreeze. (I buy the antifreeze when it is on sale.) It really comes down to the antifreeze being foolproof; whereas the blowout system has more room for error. And as was mentioned, you still need antifreeze for the traps.

The other good thing with the bypass is you now have a secondary method of getting water. This weekend I went camping and the fill station just before my campground was closed for the season. I was running late and went to my campground; knowing if it came down to it I could use the winterizing line to pump water out of my drinking water jug. As it turned out the campground wasn't busy, so I had time to drive to the next campground to get water. However it was good to know I still had an option.

The other consideration is where you live. Being in Canada where we will get swings where the temp will stay below -20 C (below 0 F) for a week or two on end- you want to use antifreeze. That length of time in that cold; everything will freeze. When the temps swing above -10 (20 F) with the sun you will have the trailer not fully frozen.
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Old 10-09-2012, 01:02 PM   #7
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I am about to pick up my first travel trailer. My wife and I are planning to take one trip before putting the camper in storage for the winter. So obviously, I've never had to winterize one before. Can any of you tell me where I can find good step by step instructions on what needs to be done and how to do it?

Thank you,
Bryan
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Old 10-11-2012, 02:42 PM   #8
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  1. Drain the fresh water holding tank.
  2. Drain and flush the gray and black holding tanks. Lubricate the termination valves with WD 40.
  3. Drain the water heater. Remove the drain plug and open the pressure relief valve. CAUTION (never drain the water heater when it is hot or under pressure)
  4. Open all hot and cold faucets.
  5. Locate and open the low point drain lines. There will be one for the hot and cold water lines. Using the water pump will help force water out, but turn it off as soon as the system is drained.
  6. Recap all drains and close all faucets.
  7. By-pass the water heater.
  8. Connect a piece of clear tubing to the inlet side of the pump conversion, close the valve, put the other end into a one gallon container of non-toxic RV antifreeze.
  9. Turn the water pump on and pressurize the system. Starting with the closest faucet, slowly open the hot and then cold valves until antifreeze appears. Replenish the antifreeze container as required.
  10. Repeat this process on all faucets from the closest to the farthest away.
  11. Flush the toilet until antifreeze appears.
  12. Turn the water pump off and open a faucet to release the pressure. Go outside to the city water inlet. Remove the small screen over the inlet and push in on the valve with a small screwdriver until you see antifreeze. Replace the screen.
  13. Pour a cupful of antifreeze down each drain. Pour a couple of cups in the toilet and flush into the holding tank.
  14. Make sure all the faucets are closed.
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Old 10-13-2012, 05:02 PM   #9
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I ended up buying the bypass kit from the local RV dealer. It was kinda a PITA to install, just because of the lack of room. So for me it was easier just to take the pump loose from the floor so I could move it around and get everything screwed on. It worked like a charm. Thanks for the input guys!!
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Old 10-14-2012, 07:49 PM   #10
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if it gets real cold where u are it might be a good idea to pull the battery and keep it someplace warm.Nothing worse than finding a puffed up battery in the spring because it froze up on ya.
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