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Old 03-07-2022, 08:29 PM   #1
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First time cold weather camping; Anxiety.

How's it going everyone? I would appreciate any and all suggestions and input you all may have on this topic. Me and my wife are second year campers with a 26DBHBL, and we are going to be starting our season out with our heaters on full blast! We didn't exactly plan it this way, but its happening regardless.

My daughter has a cheerleading event in Branson, MO this Saturday, march 11th. We chose to bring the camper over a hotel because it works better for us. (2 large dogs). The Forecast looks like a low of 17 on the arrival night with a chance for light snow, with a high of 41 the next day- sunny. We will be overnight on Saturday as well with a low of 30. All temps are not final of course but i still need to prepare for thereabout.

My Camper is currently winterized, I winterized myself, and will De-winterize myself as well. Should I do that process on site after I get to destination and before I leave?

Another concern is my pipes and such freezing (of course). We have a built in electric fireplace heater and our propane furnace, both of which im expecting to be running alot of the time spent at the site. While maintaining an ambient living temperature inside, do I still run the risk of freeze? I am so paranoid. I know the water pump is under the bed, but the water heater is exposed sort of. Will the water heater heat itself?

Am I concerned about the correct things? Am any major points? Thank you in advance, I appreciate first hand knowledge and experience.

*** EDIT: We are staying at the KOA in Branson on a premium site.
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Old 03-07-2022, 08:36 PM   #2
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I'd leave it winterized and use water jugs and shower at the shower house. 17 is cold.
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Old 03-07-2022, 08:42 PM   #3
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So using the bathroom in the camper to pee would be out? Maybe using jug water to flush? Sorry to sound gross, just trying to get answers to things my wife will ask me.
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Old 03-07-2022, 08:55 PM   #4
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no water in the fresh tank. No water in the lines with a hose. Dump antifreeze down the holding tanks and flush away with jugs/ brush your teeth with jugs. depending on how long temps are that low you are flirting with freezing if you put water in your rig. In my opinion with lots of experience camping in michigan in late fall

as long as you dump anti freeze down the tanks you can dump on the way home and your rig is still winterized.
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Old 03-07-2022, 08:56 PM   #5
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Yes to the jug of water to flush. We've done it and it's not that bad. Just put in water and flush.
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Old 03-08-2022, 08:17 AM   #6
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Cold Weather Travel/camping

We travelled from Ottawa, Ontario, Canada, in February to Florida using our Class C, 23 foot Sunseeker.
My wife requires frequent access to the toilet, so had enough Pink in the potable water reservoir to flush the toilet going to Florida and returning.
We used bottled water to drink or make tea or coffee on the way.
We had temperatures well below freezing at times and the toilet worked/flushed OK
Black water tank flushed fine when I emptied it.
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Old 03-08-2022, 08:33 AM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Kimber45 View Post
no water in the fresh tank. No water in the lines with a hose. Dump antifreeze down the holding tanks and flush away with jugs/ brush your teeth with jugs. depending on how long temps are that low you are flirting with freezing if you put water in your rig. In my opinion with lots of experience camping in michigan in late fall

as long as you dump anti freeze down the tanks you can dump on the way home and your rig is still winterized.


Absolutely do it this way^^^^
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Old 03-08-2022, 11:40 AM   #8
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Kimber45 has described the conservative route. If you have anxiety. Take this advice.

If you are going to have hookups, you can run the furnace and maintain some temp in your rig. You can use a small electric heater. The main issue is the exposed water lines and drain lines outside the rig. Heat tape works pretty well.

Gain some experience and confidence with the cold and then you can try running all the plumbing systems normally.

Keep in mind that lots of people live in RVs full time in the Rockies all winter, but they quickly get a lot of experience in how to operate in the cold.
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Old 03-08-2022, 01:37 PM   #9
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Put a large plastic bowl in the sinks and use bottled water for rinsing dishes( paper & plastic is best), or brushing teeth; use this gray water to flush toilet. Make sure you have a gallon of rv antifreeze in the toilet. Make sure all windows, vents, skylights have insulation in them( reflectix, vent pillows, foam core boards cut to size.) I have a 12v electric blanket that plugs in next to my bed that I enjoy. I carry a small Mr. Buddy propane heater w/some extra small propane bottles just in case of emergency. They are safe for use inside.
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Old 03-08-2022, 04:11 PM   #10
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I'm on the other side of the fence. I fulltime in South Carolina - I never drain my pipes as long as my heat is on. I keep all my cabinets wide open and I remove all the removable access panels on the cabinets (to get heat everywhere possible). I also have an uninsulated underbelly so my pipes are completely exposed, so I added foam pipe insulation. Several consecutive nights below freezing with highs in the 30s-40s during the day. Prior to having a heated hose, I filled up my fresh water tank and removed (and DRAINED) the water hose (if you don't drain the hose the water in it will freeze and you'll have to thaw it out before using it again). I have a heated hose now, so I'm not worried about that. 40 gal of fresh water is not going to freeze overnight.

This is the way I live - if someone disagrees with it, that's fine. This is what works for me.
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Old 03-08-2022, 06:18 PM   #11
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Were in Branson right know and it's supposed to get down to16-17 Friday night. I have been filling the fresh tank and using that every night and will continue to do so. We have been running the furnace and the fireplace to keep the propane usage down. The only thing I'll do different is turn on the tank heaters if it gets below 30 degrees. If your stay is only two days you might be better of not hooking up the water and using thee campground facilities. The lowest temps we've had sow far has been 30 deg.
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Old 03-08-2022, 07:25 PM   #12
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There is always the option to get a portable toylet, at walyworld, and use that, and dump as needed in a normal toylet. No need to worry about the black tank and such, more work, but less to worry about.
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Old 03-08-2022, 07:51 PM   #13
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Premium KOA site = I'd transport it dry/winterized, bring 3-5 gal of fresh for necessities, then dewinterize and rinse/fill with KOA water at their Facility on Saturday AM after the low of 16 Fri PM, and enjoy your camper to its fullest.

You can always use site facilities (which are usually pretty good) for potty and shower Fri PM-Sat AM.

Welcome to Missouri (We LOVE company).
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Old 03-08-2022, 07:57 PM   #14
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During the disaster in Houston, we got buy easily.

The area shut off the water. Power failed.

I had 4 gallons of antifreeze.

We set the thermostat at 60 and the fireplace at 72 degrees

Ran the tank heaters.

Filled the water tank in the rv.

Removed and blew out the water hose.

To leave we dumped the tanks. Did not winterize before the trip to Ohio. Played all by ear. Traveling during the day was ok as the temps were over 30 degrees. Went to an open rv park in ky. Winterized there. Easy.

Sub zero is a different thing.

Winterization with air or antifreeze is easy.
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Old 03-08-2022, 10:23 PM   #15
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Camping in the COLD

Branson should be fun anytime of the year.
We spent 3 weeks in Northern and the hill country of Texas in January.
Many nights it did get down to the high teens and low 20s.
Our tanks are not heated in any fashion.
Agree with the suggestions above -
Take a few gallon jugs of fresh water with you
You can use the kitchen sink and bathroom sink as well as the toilet.
as mentioned

-put in a little RV antifreeze each time you "un-heat" your trailer
When your trailer is heated the traps will be fine
However, add a little RV antifreeze in the grey and black tank each day

Just be cautious when traveling in those temperatures.
Also, as mentioned, we used the camp shower rooms which were heated
- great shower time in pretty cold temps
In fact, while we were in the hill country about 45 minutes NE of Austin
- they had an ice storm
- we received about 5/8" of ice and just enough snow to make it white
The folks in Austin were advised to stock up and not go out Thursday and Friday after the storm
We followed the same advice - it was just too slick to be safe walking
We travel with a cat so we did not need to go outside
A few others did have dogs and "carefully" walked their dogs each day
Being careful and cautious you should have a great time
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Old 03-08-2022, 11:04 PM   #16
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Each trl is different I never winterized my first TT ever. It got really cold a few winters no problem. I used air to winterize my last 5th wheel and camped several time below freezing once my hot water to kitchen froze but no damage. Live is for living no fearing excellent advice both taking the jugs only and the other of just using freshwater tank .
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Old 03-09-2022, 06:41 PM   #17
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I'm with BrandonSmith...post #10. Your weather forecast is for one night of really cold (17) and one night of barely cold (30) with above freezing daytime temps. I'd make sure my fresh water tank (40 gal for me) was nearly full and that my city water supply hose was disconnected by late afternoon and the hose drained for the night.
It would take a few days of temps not getting above freezing to freeze up your fresh water tank, and you're not expecting continuous cold to happen. We camp all winter and everything still works after 6+ years in a rig with no tank heaters.
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