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milagrobay
10-19-2010, 08:03 PM
:D I just purchased this beauty and I am trying to get information about using this during the winter months. I hope that there are other owners that use theirs during the winter months. I do not have an owners manual for this coach and therefore I am trying to learn as much as possible about preventing water system problems during winter travel.
??
1. Does the furnace heat the main water tank through the lower storage bay?
2. Does the furnace also heat the grey and black water tanks?
3. When driving in below freezing temps any tricks I need to know about keep the water lines from freezing?

03heritagerider
10-20-2010, 04:39 PM
As far as I know (and I could be wrong), the tanks themselves are not heated. The basement compartment is heated and is supposed to keep everything from freezing. However, I'm not convinced that it would work in extreme cold conditions like -0?.

I would be most concerned about the area where the water pump is located. On my Friendship, it is mounted close to the compartment door. I would assume the air toward the center of the basement would be warmer than 2" from the door and outside air.

One thing you must be careful with, if you have one, is the ice maker. The water line and pump for it is in the cover behind the fridge and not in a basement compartment. This area is not heated. I had the ice maker water pump freeze, causing it to split.

Also, driving in cold temps, as opposed to being stationary, would have no effect. Wind chill is only a "feels like" scale applicable to human, and some animal skin. Air temp is the thing you have to watch. Having an outside thermometer that can be read from the cockpit can be very helpful, including knowing when the road surface may be freezing. If it is 33? and the wind chill is 25?, water will not freeze. Regardless of what it "feels like", 33? is still above freezing.

My best advice...If you live where it gets cold in the winter...drive to someplace warm :lol:

Chuck v
10-21-2010, 12:44 AM
Don't know specifics about the Friendship, but our 2007 TourMaster has small heat ducts from the two furnaces leading into the basement areas. These are two inch silver flex hoses, so they don't provide a great deal of heating, but will keep the basement area (including the tanks) above freezing IF you are running the propane fired furnaces in the coach itself.

If you are hooked up to shore power and are using the heat pumps on the ceiling air units, and/or are using electric space heaters instead of the gas furnaces, you do not get much heating down below.

I found that the small ceramic heaters with integral fans can be used in the basement handily. These heaters are very safe as they are not capable of getting overly hot, and on the low settings a pair of them kept the basement above 50 degrees when the outside temp was below freezing for days at a time last winter.

Your location in the Columbia Gorge is certainly a challenge during the ice storms and long cold spells that happen there most winters. :!:

If by winter use/travel you also intend to be DRIVING your coach in the cold/snow/ice you are more adventurous than most. I am not signing up to put chains on a dual axle 22.5 inch tire on a vehicle weighing 15 tons and then driving it in traffic composed of seasonal skiers and other drivers unused in winter conditions -- maybe you are a retired long haul trucker with skills suitable for any road and weather conditions, and if so you have my admiration and respect.

Chuck

Arthur Hayes
10-21-2010, 11:21 AM
Something I did a few years ago and it has given me peace of mine. I have one of those indoor/outdoor thermometers and I have the outdoor sensor mounted in the bay near the freshwater tank. That way I know the temperature in the basement. Even when we are near zero degrees outside, the bay temperature has stayed well above freezing.

Chuck v
10-21-2010, 11:31 AM
Art,

Great reminder -- I also use a remote reading (outdoor sensor) thermometer to monitor my basement temperature. The unit I have records minimum and maximum excursions per the last 24 hours, so it really is useful in determining how cold it gets in there at any part of the day or night.

I believe that one of the keys to prevent freezing is the proper circulation of air in the basement compartments -- that is why the little 'cube' ceramic heaters with the built-in fans are my choice when connected to shore power...

Chuck

gojrracing
10-30-2010, 07:11 AM
Hi Arthur Hayes. Oh that's nice. I am now become your fan because of what you did. Awesome. :D

RayChez1
10-30-2010, 02:30 PM
I have the 2002 Scenic Cruiser and it has four inch ducts leading to where the black, grey and water lines are to keep them from freezing. Heat comes off the furnace to keep them from freezing.
I just got back from a hunting trip in eastern Utah where the temperture at night was 28 degrees and I didn't even use the furnace. All I had was a Pelonis small electric heater that I bought at home depot and it kept the coach nice and warm all night. I opened the bottom drawer on the kitchen cabinets to allow heat to escape to where the tanks are, and that alone kept everything from freezing where the water lines are located. Now if it gets any lower like in the zero or below weather, THEN! that is a different thing. For sure you have to use the furnace then and hope that your coach is equipped with the ducts to the holding tanks.

bob3nliz
11-05-2010, 01:50 PM
I am thinking going up north for a week or two. Information will help, especially the remote sensor in basement. Thanks bobnliz :)

RayChez1
11-05-2010, 06:17 PM
Yes Bob that is a good idea about installing a remote sensor. I have one of those atomic clocks and I placed the remote sensor on the compartment that has the outside faucets, sewer hookup area, right on the side wall.
All you have to do is look at the time inside your coach and you will also get the inside temperature and the compartment temperature.
They work pretty good. I believe we bought it at Good Sam's while visiting Santa Fe, New Mexico.