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Old 02-10-2018, 08:40 AM   #1
Steelhorzz
 
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Help.... No water ... Again

We're traveling in the Midwest going home. (Kansas to Calif).
Temps along the way have been getting considerably colder at night, along with the wind chill factor. From 20s to teens to single digits.
We're in a 2012 Georgetown 360. At first what I thought was a problem with my water pump was I believe just frozen pipes.

Here is what I've done along the way which has helped until last night.....

Installed a drop light in the water pump bay leaving the light on at night....

Wrapped the exposed pipes in the water pump bay with "foam pipe covers".... (purchased at Ace Hardware)

Installed a space heater in the water pump bay at night....
(Set ata1250 Watts ). Keeps it at about 80 or so, with the bay door partially open.. I keep it from swinging open with duct tape on the outside of the door and the body.

And finally opening the kitchen cabinet doors to allow the furnace heat to circulate in the cabinet area.. have not wrapped those pipes yet.

And AGAIN this morning, no hot or cold water in the kitchen, not hot water in the 1/2 bath or rear bathroom.

But I DO have cold water in both bathrooms. (Some success)!!

Any ideas???

Th thought of having to wait for the water to defrost and be able to use is not as worrisome as breaking a pipe!!

I am thinking the use of plastic pipes and crimp hose clamps allows some "pretection" against burst pipes but that's just a guess.
I've got 5 more days to go before we reach non freezing weather at night!

Appreciate any and all advice!!
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Old 02-10-2018, 08:46 AM   #2
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Steelhorzz View Post
We're traveling in the Midwest going home. (Kansas to Calif).
Temps along the way have been getting considerably colder at night, along with the wind chill factor. From 20s to teens to single digits.
We're in a 2012 Georgetown 360. At first what I thought was a problem with my water pump was I believe just frozen pipes.

Here is what I've done along the way which has helped until last night.....

Installed a drop light in the water pump bay leaving the light on at night....

Wrapped the exposed pipes in the water pump bay with "foam pipe covers".... (purchased at Ace Hardware)

Installed a space heater in the water pump bay at night....
(Set ata1250 Watts ). Keeps it at about 80 or so, with the bay door partially open.. I keep it from swinging open with duct tape on the outside of the door and the body.

And finally opening the kitchen cabinet doors to allow the furnace heat to circulate in the cabinet area.. have not wrapped those pipes yet.

And AGAIN this morning, no hot or cold water in the kitchen, not hot water in the 1/2 bath or rear bathroom.

But I DO have cold water in both bathrooms. (Some success)!!

Any ideas???

Th thought of having to wait for the water to defrost and be able to use is not as worrisome as breaking a pipe!!

I am thinking the use of plastic pipes and crimp hose clamps allows some "pretection" against burst pipes but that's just a guess.
I've got 5 more days to go before we reach non freezing weather at night!

Appreciate any and all advice!!
Seems like you are doing your best but unfortunately most campers are not going to do well with extreme cold. Might want to just get some gallon jugs if water a d use them. This is what we will do if it is really going to be cold. Better to run silent and deep then break a line. But people is usually pretty freeze resilient.. The couplings and other junk fittings not so much.
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Old 02-10-2018, 09:01 AM   #3
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Seems like you are doing your best but unfortunately most campers are not going to do well with extreme cold. Might want to just get some gallon jugs if water a d use them. This is what we will do if it is really going to be cold. Better to run silent and deep then break a line. But people is usually pretty freeze resilient.. The couplings and other junk fittings not so much.
Thanks! Doc!!

We do have bottled water on board and I fill a couple of pots to wash with, just in case.

I was thinking tonight to "clear the pipes".

But I've never done that before.
Is it is the process...?

Turn off the water pump
Twisting the valve by the water pump
Remove the plug on the end of that hose
Opening all the the faucets to the cold water side
Blow air thru that hose in the water pump bay with my air pump until no water comes thru
(I have an air fitting attachment).
Then repeat that process for the hot water side...

Thanks!!!
And of course drive to warmer weather ASAP ��
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Old 02-10-2018, 09:07 AM   #4
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Originally Posted by Steelhorzz View Post
Thanks! Doc!!

We do have bottled water on board and I fill a couple of pots to wash with, just in case.

I was thinking tonight to "clear the pipes".

But I've never done that before.
Is it is the process...?

Turn off the water pump
Twisting the valve by the water pump
Remove the plug on the end of that hose
Opening all the the faucets to the cold water side
Blow air thru that hose in the water pump bay with my air pump until no water comes thru
(I have an air fitting attachment).
Then repeat that process for the hot water side...

Thanks!!!
And of course drive to warmer weather ASAP ��
Yes that seems about right. Make sure you empty the strainr bowl on the pump if it have one, and drain a water filter housing or they might break.
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Old 02-10-2018, 01:43 PM   #5
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We drive a Georgetown 31L5 (35').

For Christmas, we were in Arkansas. The forecast changed and we were expecting near zero overnight temperatures and high winds. Our after-Christmas destination was 'home' in north Colorado.

Kansas was forecast to have 30+ mph winds and near zero temperatures on the days we planned to be traveling home.

We changed our plans completely. We left Arkansas five days early and headed south to warmer temperatures and lesser wind. We drove across Oklahoma and the Texan pan handle instead of crossing Kansas.

We made it home, but it cost us five days of family time and a day longer in travel time.

Recommendation: Head south. Get out of the freezing temperatures.

Check the night time temperatures in cities in a more southerly route and make your route decisions based upon temperature.
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Old 02-10-2018, 01:57 PM   #6
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Are you using the on board furnace? Do your heat ducts follow the water lines? You have a better model then my class C, but I have all that and have not had a problem. We camp all year. I do burn through some propane but all works as it should.
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Old 02-10-2018, 03:16 PM   #7
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I went through my procedures and edited my winterizing steps. Here is what I would do if I needed to clear the water lines in-transit:

a) Turn OFF the pump.
b) Drain the fresh-water system by opening the low point drain(s), kitchen and bathroom faucets, toilet-flush, indoor and outdoor showers (hold shower heads up high while HOT and COLD are ON), fresh-water-fill back flow preventer (remove screen and push the back-flow preventer allowing water to drain).
c) Remove and empty the whole-house water-filter housing, remove the filter and save.
d) Replace the whole-house water-filter housing.
e) Close everything underneath, outside, and inside.
f) Turn the water heater valves to “bypass.”
g) Dial down your air compressor to no more than 40 psi - don't want to blow anything out.
h) Hook up the compressor to the city water port and pressurize the system.
i) Starting with the tap nearest the pump, open the valves, one at a time, and let air flow until you're getting nothing more than mist out of it. Might spit a bit so have a towel handy.
j) If your air tank is small and you run out of air, close the tap and wait for it to refill.
k) Once 'nothing but air' is flowing, move to the next tap.
l) Don't forget the indoor and outdoor showers and the toilet.
m) Disconnect the compressor from the city water port.
n) Check the whole-house water filter housing and empty any accumulated water.
o) In the morning, remember to:
i) Reinstall the whole-house water filter
ii) Turn on the pump
iii) Turn water heater valves to ‘normal’ flow
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Old 02-10-2018, 03:35 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by McCormickJim View Post
I went through my procedures and edited my winterizing steps. Here is what I would do if I needed to clear the water lines in-transit:

a) Turn OFF the pump.
b) Drain the fresh-water system by opening the low point drain(s), kitchen and bathroom faucets, toilet-flush, indoor and outdoor showers (hold shower heads up high while HOT and COLD are ON), fresh-water-fill back flow preventer (remove screen and push the back-flow preventer allowing water to drain).
c) Remove and empty the whole-house water-filter housing, remove the filter and save.
d) Replace the whole-house water-filter housing.
e) Close everything underneath, outside, and inside.
f) Turn the water heater valves to “bypass.”
g) Dial down your air compressor to no more than 40 psi - don't want to blow anything out.
h) Hook up the compressor to the city water port and pressurize the system.
i) Starting with the tap nearest the pump, open the valves, one at a time, and let air flow until you're getting nothing more than mist out of it. Might spit a bit so have a towel handy.
j) If your air tank is small and you run out of air, close the tap and wait for it to refill.
k) Once 'nothing but air' is flowing, move to the next tap.
l) Don't forget the indoor and outdoor showers and the toilet.
m) Disconnect the compressor from the city water port.
n) Check the whole-house water filter housing and empty any accumulated water.
o) In the morning, remember to:
i) Reinstall the whole-house water filter
ii) Turn on the pump
iii) Turn water heater valves to ‘normal’ flow
That is a pretty good list. I would also add, that if you have connections for Washer and Dryer in the closet, to not forget those pipes.
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Old 02-10-2018, 03:43 PM   #9
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X2, what McCormickJim said. The outside shower and the toilet flush valve will freeze easily. It takes about 1/2 teaspoon of water to crack the toilet flush valve. The PEX lines can withstand freezing, it's the elbows, faucets, fittings, T's and valves that crack when water freezes.
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Old 02-10-2018, 04:55 PM   #10
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Very detailed.

Quote:
Originally Posted by McCormickJim View Post
I went through my procedures and edited my winterizing steps. Here is what I would do if I needed to clear the water lines in-transit:

a) Turn OFF the pump.
b) Drain the fresh-water system by opening the low point drain(s), kitchen and bathroom faucets, toilet-flush, indoor and outdoor showers (hold shower heads up high while HOT and COLD are ON), fresh-water-fill back flow preventer (remove screen and push the back-flow preventer allowing water to drain).
c) Remove and empty the whole-house water-filter housing, remove the filter and save.
d) Replace the whole-house water-filter housing.
e) Close everything underneath, outside, and inside.
f) Turn the water heater valves to “bypass.”
g) Dial down your air compressor to no more than 40 psi - don't want to blow anything out.
h) Hook up the compressor to the city water port and pressurize the system.
i) Starting with the tap nearest the pump, open the valves, one at a time, and let air flow until you're getting nothing more than mist out of it. Might spit a bit so have a towel handy.
j) If your air tank is small and you run out of air, close the tap and wait for it to refill.
k) Once 'nothing but air' is flowing, move to the next tap.
l) Don't forget the indoor and outdoor showers and the toilet.
m) Disconnect the compressor from the city water port.
n) Check the whole-house water filter housing and empty any accumulated water.
o) In the morning, remember to:
i) Reinstall the whole-house water filter
ii) Turn on the pump
iii) Turn water heater valves to ‘normal’ flow

Thanks Jim!!!

Wanted to say thanks for all the info AND instructions. There are a few points I had not thought of yet.
Stopped today in Dalhart , TX and temp was 19 but after setting up the space heater and opening inside cabinet doors Everything finally defrosted. (Hot and Cold)
I'm going to save some water in pots and pans and drain the system this afternoon before it gets colder. Expect 12 degrees. tonight.

Spent some time in the cabinets and found additional red and blue water lines. (And it's COLD in behind those cabinets)!!
I'll be insulating those in the future too when I get home.
Wel'll see how it goes.
But I'm not planning on traveling in weather like this just to test my theory.....

Right now heading south as quick as I can is my best bet I think!
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Old 02-10-2018, 05:12 PM   #11
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Originally Posted by A32Deuce View Post
Are you using the on board furnace? Do your heat ducts follow the water lines? You have a better model then my class C, but I have all that and have not had a problem. We camp all year. I do burn through some propane but all works as it should.
I've got a space heater in the coach, one in the water pump bay, and run the furnace all night long, and during the day when we're stopped. Heck it's only 24 degrees outside right now! Brrrrrrrr!!

The Vornado space heater keeps the coach at about 61 degrees and the furnace tops it off at about 70. So propane consumption isn't that bad.

Unfortunately the pipes I've found this far travel along the walls and not along the furnace ducts. (Poor planning at the factory for protecting the pipes , My opinion. (At the least they should have insulated them). Again..... my opinion.
For a $100k coach I'd rather pay for pipe insulation or sub floor heating instead of the 3rdr tv it same with. Which I removed anyway....




Soooo...... just trying to cover my bases and apply "bandaids" where I can while on the road.

I'll be making some more insulation improvements after I get home. Though the way the pipes are routed I'll never be able to get to them all.
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Old 02-10-2018, 05:23 PM   #12
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Forrest River isn't famous for cold weather campers!
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Old 02-10-2018, 05:25 PM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by McCormickJim View Post
We drive a Georgetown 31L5 (35').

For Christmas, we were in Arkansas. The forecast changed and we were expecting near zero overnight temperatures and high winds. Our after-Christmas destination was 'home' in north Colorado.

Kansas was forecast to have 30+ mph winds and near zero temperatures on the days we planned to be traveling home.

We changed our plans completely. We left Arkansas five days early and headed south to warmer temperatures and lesser wind. We drove across Oklahoma and the Texan pan handle instead of crossing Kansas.

We made it home, but it cost us five days of family time and a day longer in travel time.

Recommendation: Head south. Get out of the freezing temperatures.

Check the night time temperatures in cities in a more southerly route and make your route decisions based upon temperature.

Good advice! That's basically what we have done. I had 4 routes planned depending on temps. But it got colder at night than was anticipated. I get up during the night just to check weather....
2 days ago in Chapman, KS it was 42 degrees at 3 in the morning!! By 5 a front came thru and we were down to 12.

We've been running south ever since.
Last night Dodge City today 16 / 9 and Snow!!
Tonight Dalhart Tx 25 /13
Tomorrow Santa Rosa NM 44 / 18
Monday Grants NM. 57/ 24
Getting better, just not fast enuf for me!!

Have to say this trip WAS our choice. We picked up 2 Pug Puppies from. Breeder in NE Kansas. (3miles from the Nebraska border.

If I'd known or had experience, I would have spent the time at home before we left insulating.

Well as they say thinks could have been worse. So far NO major issues. Just inconvienced in the morning.
Now I have the experience, and a lot of helpful people on this forum have provided me knowledge I'm able to out to use!
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Old 02-10-2018, 05:27 PM   #14
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Forrest River isn't famous for cold weather campers!
I can believe that!! -LOL

Not usually the time of year I travel to places like this.
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Old 02-10-2018, 06:07 PM   #15
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Best of luck to you getting home without any freeze damage.

Pictures of the new family members?
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Old 02-10-2018, 07:20 PM   #16
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Best of luck to you getting home without any freeze damage.

Pictures of the new family members?
Pics? We are getting hundreds!! -LOL

So darn adorable!

At 9 weeks old they have 2 speeds...

Supersonic and Off!
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Old 02-10-2018, 07:31 PM   #17
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Sweet babies!

Plus stories to tell about getting them home.
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Old 02-11-2018, 01:33 AM   #18
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If you are on full hookups you can open your gray tanks and turn on a steady stream of water from each faucet your shower head and you should be fine. Although I'm not familiar with a coach, this works fine in my TT.
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Old 02-11-2018, 01:33 AM   #19
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Pics? We are getting hundreds!! -LOL

So darn adorable!

At 9 weeks old they have 2 speeds...

Supersonic and Off!
Wow, super! My Chihuahua (6 lbs) loves Pugs. She was injured and abandoned then was cared for by a foster family who had a Pug. So anytime she sees one she wants to run over to it, just in case. In person, on T.V., etc.

Anyway, she loves the pictures of your pups. I should take pictures of my tablet to show the slobbers for the doubters.
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Old 02-11-2018, 08:44 AM   #20
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I am a Master Plumber and have been in the trade since 1982. I own a plumbing company.

Wrapping pipes with insulation really does nothing to protect them from freezing — it just makes it harder to nail down the location of a leak once the pipe has burst. If you want pipe insulation to be effective, you need a heat source inside of it so it acts as a blanket, encapsulating the pipe and keeping the heat inside. Adding pipe insulation, as an afterthought to the original installation of the pipe is a futile endeavor. If RV manufacturers incorporated heat tape with pipe insulation, with a reasonable R-Factor to pipes that are susceptible to freezing conditions, pipe insulation would make sense. Otherwise, it is a waste of time and money to just wrap the pipes with insulation after the fact. The best way to combat freezing pipes is to work out a way to get heat to them while, at the same time, keeping the cold away.

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