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Everything posted by GAP

  1. Hey All, I was doing some work under the bathroom sink. Pulled the insert out of the vanity and left the switch for the water pump hooked up. Someone trying to help me out unhooked that connection and did not map out how things were originally attached. No good deed goes unpunished. There are 6 potential points of attachment and only three wires to hook into those points and I have not yet been able to figure out the configuration? I'll run at with a multi meter but am not a master of that device. Can anyone help me out with this?
  2. Lots of great stuff there Gj. I am especially interested in the insulated flexible vent duct options. I'd like to replace sections of duct close to the furnace as that is an area least in need of heating that runs super warm because of heat loss through the duct itself. I've replaced the duct line that feeds the cabin mid way under the curbside bed. Ran the new duct to a spot opposite the existing vent under the galley so now there is one close to the battery compartment. I used semi rigid duct which gets hot so it has heated the compartment surrounding the exterior shower and opened a vent through to the garage to share heat with pex lines run through there. insulated (with reflectix) areas close to electronics to protect that stuff. Will add some of your suggested insulated duct from the furnace till the duct comes out under the streetside bed as to minimize heating areas where not needed. The ideas about running a fan and portable AC powered heater sound like smart thinking but I have yet to winter camp somewhere with access to shore power so may be a project for next summer. Thanks much for sharing. Very helpful stuff.
  3. Geronimo John and Seadawg are on to something. I vote that, as a forum, we pitch in for a dedicated proofreader. Bet if we spend a few more $, we can even get someone to compose our posts for us.
  4. That is great. It's is a vast improvement over what my 2021 would have done before I tweaked the heat system. Would be interesting to test readings in the rearmost area of the garage as the pex lines there are likely the most susceptible. I'm earnestly glad for you folks that have the new upgraded system and commiserate with the rest of us of us that have to do some pretty serious surgery to have trailers that work well (= having access to water) in actual 4 season conditions.
  5. Hey All. My bad. Seadawg pointed out I was confusing pounds and gallons. I need a personal proofreader. Mabey a new year's resolution in the making?
  6. Sounds like a great experience. Glad to hear it but your post does bring up a couple of follow up questions: - You state that you used about 1.5 gallons per night and have two 5 gallon tanks. My experience with the Dometic furnace in similar situations (but likely colder daytime temps) was burning around 15 gallons/day off a 30 gallon tank. I'm surer the Truma is more efficient but would be surprised if the difference was that much. The two stock options for tank sizes on the Olivers is either a 20 gallon tank ( similar to what you would find on a gas cooking grill) or a 30 gallon tank. A 5 gallon tank is about the size of big guy's head. Is that what you actually have? - You shared the belly temp of 38 degrees on a night where it was single digits. That's great and, I agree, is likely an improvement due to the new return placements. Out of curiosity, where did you take this reading? The area of most concern for me, which is likely the most vulnerable, is behind the garge at the very rear of the trailer as that is where the lines to the exterior shower run. I would bet your "sweating walls" was condensation settling on the walls as they and the windows are so much colder than the rest of the csbin. Thanks much for the informative post
  7. Can anyone who has done the Houghton install themselves go into a little gory detail of what it took? I would love to give it a go. Am happy to end up using a remote to control the unit as long as the heat could still run off the existing thermostat.
  8. Soooo, I spoke with the head honcho at the link. Background is that my light bar works perfect till my headlights are on. Then the turn signals get crazy glitchy. Turns out that it's a common Ford problem but can happen with any vehicle that has "modern conveniences" such as blind spot monitoring (which is deactivated when trailer is attached) and the only fix is to hard wire. There is a bar light that is made by one company that will work in plug-and-play mode but it is (drum roll) $300. Does have a 3 year warrantee which, from my research, is three times the average working light of even good bars. Crazy! Seems like the solution is following John's excellent set up or spending a pile of $ and tossing my current bar on the trash heap. John's fix and instructions are, as usual, fantastic but I am intimidated by drilling a through hole and doing the electric work. Etrailer carries a set of running/turn lights that terminate in a standard 4 pin connector which the claim will play nice with the Ford. Not as good a solution as a 60" bar but I may give it a go.
  9. I'm sure I 'm not alone in trying to find a workaround for bikes mounted on the rear bumper blocking the rear lights. Particularly bad in my case as I wrap the bikes in a protective travel bag. https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B07RNPS8CM/ref=ppx_yo_dt_b_search_asin_title?ie=UTF8&th=1. The bag is fantastic for keeping the bikes dry and clean and has translucent panels on both sides to facilitate rear lights shining through but cuts the light too much to be of use on a sunny day so my turn signals are useless. I purchased a 60" LED lightbar that terminates in a standard flat, 4 pin, connector. https://www.amazon.com/OPT7-Redline-Triple-Tailgate-Sequential/dp/B0771WDRHH/ref=rvi_sccl_4/144-1395279-4476013?pd_rd_w=VSM8e&content-id=amzn1.sym.f5690a4d-f2bb-45d9-9d1b-736fee412437&pf_rd_p=f5690a4d-f2bb-45d9-9d1b-736fee412437&pf_rd_r=76TJTKPWAPHZRG5MA7A3&pd_rd_wg=hgQej&pd_rd_r=d840fc24-bf18- . Fit perfectly on lower rear bumper and was clearly visible under the tires of the bikes. "Dry tested" it and it worked great. Ran wiring under the trailer, mounted the bar and all seemed great. Found that the turn signals on the bar got super twitchy when my headlights were on. Turns out, all these bars get twitchy when using 4 pin plug-and-play with modern vehicles that have BLISS (back up assist), blind spot monitoring or OEM reverse cameras. Top fix, you need to hard wire to rear lights. Crazy stuff. I can't tap into my truck's lights as that could potentially void the warrantee. I have no idea how to get to rear light harness on the Oliver. Hate to do electric as I really don't speak that language but need to do what I got to do. Any ideas?
  10. Sounds like some good ideas there. Have a couple of thoughts. If the fan is itself under the dinette, where would you be drawing warm air from tho heat between the hulls? On the newest trailers (and mine after tweaking last season) there is a vent cut from bathroom to under the dinette. Using the fan would work well in that circumstance but, if you have a composting toilet, could reverse the flow of the air through the solids box = sad faced smell. Another option would be to cut a small louvered vent under the forward dinette seat so the warm air could be drawn from the cabin. You are spot on about opening the internal dead ends. There are walls between basement and garage under streetside bed and another behind the furnace which prevent warm air from getting to the rearmost water lines. It's a shame otherwise to heat the garage but those lines (that feed the external shower) are the most vulnerable in the trailer.
  11. GJ, you've offered up some great suggestions on this topic on both this chain and the 3.75 Season Trailer forum. That said, this one really hits home. Even though we travel with 3 30lb tanks, for both cost and convenience, I was dreading heating the belly at temps north of mid 20s where it is not necessary. I'll switch out the 8x10 existing return air vent for one with a louvre and plan to do the same for a couple of the others vents I've cut between dead ends in the garage and basement so I can tune the system 1) to the need to share heat between the hulls and 2) adjust flow to send the most air where it is most needed. Very helpful. Thanks on that. Question: My trailer has the "rumpled" accordion, lightweight 4" foil ducts. I notice this is super delicate and have already needed to repair with foil tape in a few spots. You mention "smooth bore" duct. Can you be more specific as to the type of product and why it is more efficient? Unlike the "semi rigid" duct I've added to the streetside, I have not noticed the rumpled duct exterior heating up.
  12. GAP


    I've experimented with this quite a bit. Non scientific but I can absolutely feel a difference between my tires with different air pressure. As I use the Anderson weight distribution hitch, I run the same pressure in all tires. Name plate on the door suggests 35lbs. Max pressure, as printed on sidewall, is 55. I have tried towing with everything in between and found that 45-50 is the sweet spot. At 35, feels to mushy and looses responsiveness. At 55 feels a bit sharp and gives a chattery ride.
  13. In had never heard of an isotherm fridge. I am starting to have concerns with my Norcold 3 way absorption fridge as it seems to struggle a bit in hot weather and the whole leveling thing has caused us a couple of shut downs on surprisingly level surfaces when we forgot to shut down such as being in town in a parking lot with seemingly normal run-off grade. Can anyone speak to differences between 3 way absorption, vs 2 way compressor or 2 way isotherm style? My simplistic understanding is that the absorption has trouble in hot weather, is super inneficient in 12v mode and hates being off angle but, has more usable storage space for the same size. Compressor and isotherm have no problem being off angle and both are super efficient in DC and Ac modes. Also supposedly both keep constant internal temps no matter what exterior conditions are. Gerry
  14. Hey John, In addition to the 4" round vent cut from bathroom to the dinette area I also put one under the streetside bed to wall the garage and yet another one through rear wall under curbside bed, right next to the furnace. That wall is fitted super loosely so allows a lot of air to flow past anyhow. The plan is to partially cover some of the pre existing 8x10 return vent. My goal is to increase warm air flow past exterior shower and the shower's feed lines which inexplicably are buried all the way in the rear of the garage.
  15. Question from an admitted techno boob: Is it not possible that this problem is caused on the return air vent placement? As has been suggested in. previous post, could it be that warm cabin air drawn into furnace through return vent could be causing the unit to overheat and cycle through periods of shut-down to cool-down? As a qualifier, I don't have this problem. Mine is a 2021 twin bed with Dometic furnace and thermostat. What set ups do you folks have that are suffering with short cycling?
  16. Ken, Fantastically useful info. Thanks on that. My responses and thoughts in bold in body of your post above.
  17. Hey John, Thanks for the clarifications. Yes, we do travel with a 3rd 30lb propane tank. We found last winter that once temps got below 10f, we went through a 30lb tank every other day. Will probably go through it faster this year because we've made tweaks to run warm air through the closet, basement and garage so will be heating more areas. Also, if it seems safe, will be turning on the water system this season so the water heater will eat up some BTUs. I am intrigued by your suggestion to blow out lines in addition to using antifreeze. As I've never blown out before, I'll look for youTube procedure to do so. I have a regulator which supposedly with limit pressure to 45lbs. I do remember hearing that the danger was not to expose pressurized air to one of the systems - water heater or pump mabey - can't remember which. Does this ring a bell and how do you workaround when you do so?
  18. PS. I think your suggestions on insulating windows and beds is spot on. I also had already but a layer of the double bubble which lives under the beds. Used the same material to insulate doors to garage and battery compartment. We also unscrewed and pulled the exterior shower head into the basement and removed the hot/cold knobs so there was room to insulate the interior of that box.
  19. The thicker reflectix stuff is called "double bubble". Available on Amazon. We used it to make inserts for all the windows, except the one in the basthroom, with two layers of the reflectix sandwiched together and taped at the edges. These are held in place by the window shades. Built an open cell insert encased in reflectix to cover window in door (held in by screen door) and one to cover the Maxair vent when not open to vent out moisture. As to winterizing, we chose an Oliver primarily based on it's claimed capacity as a 4 season trailer. After a lot of testing we found that with water system on, the trailer is fine to mid 20s. After a ton of tweaks, we are confident we should be good down to tens or a bit lower. I am confidant that by carefully monitoring vulnerable water line reas, and comparing to outside temps, I should be able to quantify the line where I'll need to winterize vs when it is safe to run with water system on, even if I need to do so while while while camped.
  20. Good points Geronimo John. I have always winterized with -20 AF but will be traveling with 3 gallons of the -50 stuff on this trip expecting to see temps south of zero. We have a few bluetooth thermometers that stay in compartments that carry water lines and are the most vulnerable. I keep a good eye on those and, after making some fairly big-boy tweaks to the heating system, am confident that we are good camping down to 0F. If we get a chance to drive in those sort of conditions and/or expect night time dips well below that, I will probably preemptively dump my water and winterize. I am a bit concerned that, given the frustratingly slow rate that water drains from the trailer, that the drainage nozzle may freeze but can use our Big Buddy back up heater or the shop light heat lamp we carry to help get over that hurdle.
  21. Hey John, I agree wholeheartedly with your concerns and warnings but, winter travel is the primary reason we bought the trailer. It's undeniably less safe to drive in areas that get frequent snow and squirrely weather in the mountains makes for a concerning situation but such is our chosen lot in life. We love winter adventures. Having flexible plans, contingency plans, keeping an eye and ear on weather... is the best we can do. We;\'ve used our 2021 E 2 down to zero and last season spent about 20 days entirely below freezing but have no idea what the bottom is. Are working our tweaks to the heating system (of which there are many needed) and will be continuously monitoring temps in areas that carry water and are most vulnerable. Will be traveling with -50 AF, hand pump and our Viair 400 compressor. If nightime temps seem to reduce interior compartment to a point where it is close to freezing, I'll dump my water and winterize. Have a composting toilet so can get by for days with no water in the system. I've winterized the trailer multiple times but have never blown it out with air. I do have the nozzle attachment and hose fitting to do so as well as a pressure control valve but we've read and have been told by the OTT shop to not do so. To fill in some blanks can you share how you've safely blown out lines on your Oliver and why you suggest the redundancy of blowing out and winterizing with antifreeze twice? Thanks much for your input Gerry
  22. Great stuff SeaDawg. Our plan once leaving Colorado is to figure a semi prudent route to Minnesota and will be working our way from bottom to top as my camping trip is in the Boundary Waters. Yes, will certainly be looking to fat bike and x country ski along the way. Open to suggestions o0n the particulars of the route. Will check out the 511 app as we've never heard of it. Will also look into the areas you outlined as well. A couple of you folks have asked about the winter camping aspect of this trip. Will be a shortish one, about 5-7 days, two of us, each pulling sleds (known as pulks) probably on snowshoes as the portages between lakes are too steep for skiing with a pulk. It'll be in late january and we can expect temps down to -30f at night. Will be staying in tents and likely not making fires as they are a smelly distraction that messes up high tech clothing like Goretex. We'll move camp 2-3 times and lay over at nice spots. Sounds crazy but I've beern doing it for 30 years so must be a sucker for punishment. Will be leaving the state by early January so hopefully will avoid hideous ice storms you speak of. When temps hover around freezing with precipitation it is much harder to deal with than solidly frigid.
  23. We are planning a mid winter ski safari this year. Loose itinerary is starting in Connecticut, visit family in Virginia and northern Florida, 7-10 days skiing in Colorado, winter backcounty ski trip in Boundary Water Minnesota, Ski our way home through Montreal and Vermont. We have quite a lot of winter camping experience in New England but are concerned about driving conditions in the Colorado to Minnesota to Montreal sections so are looking for experienced input. Skiing in Colorado will all be NW of Denver and we are planning to drop down from northern Minnesota to cross over between Lake Superior and Lake Michigan to avoid the desolate stretch above Superior. There seems to be plenty of year round camping available around Colorado ski resorts but very little in Nebraska, South Dakota and southern Minnesota. Road conditions are updated frequently in Colorado but have found no resources from there through Minnesota. Will have snow rated AT tires, a set of tire cables for two tires on the Oliver and chains for the F150. Any suggestions as to safety, sanity and sites worth seeing would be appreciated. Gerry
  24. I agree on all counts. As a Dometic heat source owner, I'm certainly suffer Truma envy. Given the hand dealt me, I am super curious as to the alterations made to improve 4 season capacity in the new models. I had heard of the ducting through the bathroom (which I had already done to my unit) but this is the first mention of added insulation. Would love to hear some gory details if you are willing to share. May make for a good template for my additional tweaks. Can you relay placement of additional vents, type of insulation and placement? Much appreciated. Gerry
  25. These heat system problems and winter worthiness of the Olivers is frustrating on a number of levels. First and foremost, OTT should certainly not allow for multiple folks with similar heat system problems on trailers still under warrantee, fight it out with manufacturers and service centers, especially with the upcoming winter. I feel it's their lot in life to cover the cost of repair themselves and fight it out with Dometic. On another level, I have found through both first hand experience and related stories here on multiple forum entries, that Olivers are lacking in capacity to handle even modest winter temps that stay below low 20s for multiple days. I obviously can't speak for everyone's experience but have found myself and yet to hear of someone who 1) had their water system on, 2) was camping for multiple days where temps did not get above low 20s and 3) did not skirt the bottom of their trailer, who did not find temperatures in the most exposed water lines to be perilously close or below freezing-primarily the exterior shower, under forward dinette and rear most part of garage. Please share any positive experience in similar conditions. In communicating directly with Oliver, the response was that there is no problem. They suggested problems could be attributed to running propane tanks too low, running "summer mix" fuel, operating in high altitude and wind conditions. All are valid potential sources of issues but I've camped in ideal conditions free of any and still had freezing in those vulnerable spots. My thought is that even if out of warrantee, those of us that have had these problems should open a ticket and share with OTT. They are a great company that I would bet would respond in a way that, at least benefits future owners. In a perfect world, they would also offer us current owners to make air flow (= cutting vents) improvements free of charge at the factory. It's important to remember that, being in the south, they are in a part of the world that has a warmish winter. That said, I'll give a big thumbs up to earlier post that suggested it is past-time for OTT to have a HVAC specialist come in and go through the system. I won't pretend to be an expert but with my mad scientist experiments, seems that most if not all Oliver cold weather issues can be fixed with better vent placement and some tactical insulation improvements which would make for a cheap and seemingly easy process.
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