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Cold weather dry camping. can it be outside for dry camping. Where I am going may get down to 12F and I will be runninh the heater


Imelda
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Imelda, could you let us know which model you have, and which year, please? Do you have the standard water heater, or the Truma?

Also, what will your daytime temps be?

This info will help others offer better info.

2008 Ram 1500 4 × 4

2008 Oliver Elite, Hull #12
 

 

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I have the smaller , older elite, without the ducting. 

We have camped with nights in the teens, without issue. 

But, I  would definitely use your furnace, so it dissipates some heat into the hull. 

I just read your other post. Are you already winterized?

2008 Ram 1500 4 × 4

2008 Oliver Elite, Hull #12
 

 

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Since I live in Texas all I have done for winterizing is drain all the water out of the RV and if it got cold I ran a space heater in it just to to be safe. It doesn't get that cold here. Now I am ready to hit the road and may get into some low to mid teen temperatures so I wanted to know if running the furnace would be ok for boondocking and prevent tanks and water lines freezing. 

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My opinion is that if all the water lines have water in them, something may freeze. If you can get to a Walmart or any RV store ASAP, buy a winterization hand pump and a couple of gallons of RV pink antifreeze. Pump six ounces of antifreeze through each of the FOUR outside ports. That should be enough to get you through a couple of cold nights. Keep the hot water heater going, or you must bypass and drain it completely.

If you can’t find the antifreeze and pump locally, and have access to an air compressor and adapter air fitting, you can screw that on and use 60 psi air to blow those lines out. It is not nearly as safe and reliable, but better than leaving them full. Worst case, if you are at a campground, beg a neighbor or the camp host to help you use his pump and antifreeze, and repay him for the AF, and thank him heartily.

You need to know how to do this stuff, if you don’t take these minimal steps it may result in broken parts and an expensive repair bill. Especially if you run out of propane or the furnace fails at midnight..... Ideally you should be plugged in and have an electric backup box heater handy,  just in case. Boondocking with no shore power is more risky, unless you also have a generator you can fire up to run that heater.... Opening up a few access panels will help with distributing heat underneath them, tho that won’t be needed if the furnace is going. Make sure at least one of your propane tanks is completely full, you will go through a lot more gas than you are used to using.

John Davies

Spokane WA

 

Edited by John E Davies

"Mouse":  2017 Legacy Elite II NARV (Not An RV) Two Beds, Hull Number 218, See my HOW TO threads: https://olivertraveltrailers.com/topic/john-e-davies-how-to-threads-and-tech-articles-links/

Tow Vehicle: 2013 Land Cruiser 200, 33" LT tires, airbags.

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In addition to what JD just said - I'd try to make sure that the exterior shower is drained as much as you can and even then if it is not winterized I'd leave them either at a slow drip or (if you have a way of being sure they don't "run" open both the hot and cold entirely i.e. leave the lever on the showerhead in the closed position).  If you are going to have a problem it will most likely be on the street side of the trailer given that there is much less heat ducting over there.

Bill

Edited by topgun2
spelling & grammar & clarity

2017 Ford F150 Lariat 3.5EB FX4 Max Towing 2016 Oliver Elite II - Hull #117 "Twist"

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2 hours ago, topgun2 said:

make sure that the exterior shower is drained ads much as you can and even then if it is not winterized I'd leave they either at a slow drip or (if you have a way of being sure they don't "run" open both the hot and cold entirely. 

I am not sure what your intent was with that last part...... but leaving both the hot and cold valves turned on, and the shower head valve closed, will cause the hot water circuit to bypass into the cold water one, if the water heater is running. That will make it impossible to get hot water out of any of the other faucets - just tepid warm water - but it will also keep the outside shower parts warm. Was that what you meant? Because it is actually quite ingenious, as long as you don’t want to take a hot shower in the bathroom. But taking off the outside shower extension hose and capping the connection there at the valves would be even better.... Has anybody seen a sturdy cap with rubber seal that matches those hose threads? That way you would have enough extra room inside that little compartment to shove a little zip bag full of insulation.

John Davies

Spokane WA

 

 

Edited by John E Davies

"Mouse":  2017 Legacy Elite II NARV (Not An RV) Two Beds, Hull Number 218, See my HOW TO threads: https://olivertraveltrailers.com/topic/john-e-davies-how-to-threads-and-tech-articles-links/

Tow Vehicle: 2013 Land Cruiser 200, 33" LT tires, airbags.

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Camping, at 12 at night, 35 day, I'd add a piece of foam to the shower door. 

Run the furnace.

If in storage, I'd do a full winterization . 

 

 

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2008 Ram 1500 4 × 4

2008 Oliver Elite, Hull #12
 

 

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JD - 

Yes - you got it.  I believed that the intent of the original question was to seek advice as to how to prevent freezing or pipes and things without completing a winterization service.

Bill

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2017 Ford F150 Lariat 3.5EB FX4 Max Towing 2016 Oliver Elite II - Hull #117 "Twist"

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12 minutes ago, topgun2 said:

Yes - you got it.  I believed that the intent of the original question was to seek advice as to how to prevent freezing or pipes and things without completing a winterization service.

I knew the effect of leaving both valves open in summer, but I never considered how that “operator error” could be intentionally used to warm that area during a sudden cold snap, if the hot water system was still active...

We really need a central resource or perhaps FAQ threads pinned in place at the top of each section of the forum, with a continually growing list of Ollie-specific tips, tricks and best practices, like this one. I think it is a gem.  Thank you!

John Davies

Spokane WA

 

Edited by John E Davies
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"Mouse":  2017 Legacy Elite II NARV (Not An RV) Two Beds, Hull Number 218, See my HOW TO threads: https://olivertraveltrailers.com/topic/john-e-davies-how-to-threads-and-tech-articles-links/

Tow Vehicle: 2013 Land Cruiser 200, 33" LT tires, airbags.

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This is a timely topic and tip for me as I am headed to Big Bend SP on Thursday through Monday. On Sunday and Monday the temperatures are going to be too cold to use the Oliver's water system (or for mountain biking) as they are expected to drop to 12F and stay below freezing for over 24 hours.  The trip back from Terlingua to Austin will be chilly one too.

 

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14 hours ago, SeaDawg said:

Camping, at 12 at night, 35 day, I'd add a piece of foam to the shower door. 

Run the furnace.

If in storage, I'd do a full winterization . 

 

 

If it was me  - 

1. Disconnect the water line/hose if connected. (Boondocking -I get it - just want  to cover the subject) If you have insulation, tape, HD towels - wrap the hose connections.

2. Insulate as SeaDawg has suggested. If in a pinch - use some thick  towels or similar - tucked into the area. A water heater blanket from HD will work - cut to fit.

3. Open up any of the access ports on the inside of the trailer - the aim is to give  heated air a path to the areas below and in-between the hull.

4. Make sure you have enough Propane for the timeframe - run the furnace as needed to maintain appropriate temp inside the unit.

5. Optional: If you have  a multi sensor temperature station - put  one in the rear access hull area - and one in the front - under the front dinette seat area - would be interesting to see what the temps get to in the areas.  IE:    Amazon.com: Newentor Weather Station Wireless Indoor Outdoor Multiple Sensors, Digital Atomic Clock Weather Thermometer, Temperature Humidity Monitor Forecast Weather Stations with Backlight: Industrial & Scientific

and then thumb your nose at mother Nature - not to much though - you don't  want to really make her angry.....

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Cindy,  Russell and  "Harley dog" . Home is our little farm near Winchester TN

2018 Oliver Legacy Elite II - 2018 GMC 2500 Duramax 

"Die young - As late as possible"
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1 hour ago, John E Davies said:

I knew the effect of leaving both valves open in summer, but I never considered how that “operator error” could be intentionally used to warm that area during a sudden cold snap, if the hot water system was still active...

The Venturi Effect can be your friend - sometimes.

Bill

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2017 Ford F150 Lariat 3.5EB FX4 Max Towing 2016 Oliver Elite II - Hull #117 "Twist"

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This topic does come up, every winter, at least. 

I think it's really helpful if those of you who have camped in cold weather in an Elite II add your comments, add in at what temperatures your tips have been successful.  

Sherry 

 

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2008 Ram 1500 4 × 4

2008 Oliver Elite, Hull #12
 

 

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2 minutes ago, mjrendon said:

Could you provide more details on the foam for the shower door?  I can't picture how this works.

I'm sorry. I meant the outside shower compartment door. I should have been more clear.

Back of Beyond pretty much explained that-- foam, towels, something to insulate the inside of the compartment door, then close it up.

2008 Ram 1500 4 × 4

2008 Oliver Elite, Hull #12
 

 

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17 hours ago, John E Davies said:

I am not sure what your intent was with that last part...... but leaving both the hot and cold valves turned on, and the shower head valve closed, will cause the hot water circuit to bypass into the cold water one, if the water heater is running. That will make it impossible to get hot water out of any of the other faucets - just tepid warm water - but it will also keep the outside shower parts warm. Was that what you meant? Because it is actually quite ingenious, as long as you don’t want to take a hot shower in the bathroom. But taking off the outside shower extension hose and capping the connection there at the valves would be even better.... Has anybody seen a sturdy cap with rubber seal that matches those hose threads? That way you would have enough extra room inside that little compartment to shove a little zip bag full of insulation.

John Davies

Spokane WA

 

 

I like the idea of removing the shower, capping off the supply line, and not worrying about it.  I'm curious to know what type of fitting the shower connection is.  Surely it is a standard thread and there is some sort of cap to fit.  Perhaps a drip irrigation fitting.   What is the vulnerable component of the exterior shower, aside from the faucet and shower head?

I wish there was an option for no exterior shower. 

 

Ray and Susan Huff

Elite II Twin "Pearl" - Hull#699; delivered December 7, 2020

2013 F350 6.7l diesel Super Duty 4x4 long bed crew cab

1UP-USA Heavy-duty bike rack

2017 Leisure Travel Van Unity Twin Bed (sold)

AZARCAIDNVNMOKORTNTXUTWAsm.jpg

 

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26 minutes ago, SeaDawg said:

I'm sorry. I meant the outside shower compartment door. I should have been more clear.

Back of Beyond pretty much explained that-- foam, towels, something to insulate the inside of the compartment door, then close it up.

Suggestions??  I am thinking rigid foam insulation, cut to fit.  Not sure how to accomplish this.  In our 2021 Elite II, the shower compartment does not have a separate door; it is accessed through the basement access door, which is already lined, though I'm not sure how insulated it is.

I have a piece of memory foam we used to protect an external sewer macerator on our motorhome.  It is easily squished to fit around most anything.  Perhaps this would work around the shower faucet.

Ray and Susan Huff

Elite II Twin "Pearl" - Hull#699; delivered December 7, 2020

2013 F350 6.7l diesel Super Duty 4x4 long bed crew cab

1UP-USA Heavy-duty bike rack

2017 Leisure Travel Van Unity Twin Bed (sold)

AZARCAIDNVNMOKORTNTXUTWAsm.jpg

 

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43 minutes ago, Ray and Susan Huff said:

I like the idea of removing the shower, capping off the supply line, and not worrying about it.  I'm curious to know what type of fitting the shower connection is.  Surely it is a standard thread and there is some sort of cap to fit.  Perhaps a drip irrigation fitting.   What is the vulnerable component of the exterior shower, aside from the faucet and shower head?

Your idea is a bit problematic in that the exterior is much like a regular two supply faucet assembly - it has a line for hot and a separate line for cold.  It certainly would be simple enough to cut those lines and insert a plug with either a simple "adjustable" type hose clamp or a regular pex band to secure the plug.  Or, since you would have the supply lines cut - simply install a shutoff valve in the supply lines and reattach then to the rear of the faucet.  That way, you could still use the exterior shower if you wanted but you could also shut the water off to the outside.

The vulnerable part of this faucet is that - 1.  its made of plastic which will crack more easily than metal, and 2.  it is fairly exposed to the outside where there is little to no heat.  While the shower head is slightly at risk, it really is the hot and cold supply knobs/valves that you have to worry about.

Bill

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2017 Ford F150 Lariat 3.5EB FX4 Max Towing 2016 Oliver Elite II - Hull #117 "Twist"

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I am pretty, maybe, sort of sure the hose threads are like in your kitchen or shower hose at home, 1/2” pipe thread, but with a fat rubber washer to ensure no leaks and no need for pipe thread sealer. I think this would work to cap off the shower hose connection, inside the trailer. But no guarantees, you would have to test the fit.

https://www.amazon.com/Joywayus-Brass-Female-Rubber-Gasket/dp/B08G8KJ641

A typical 1/2” FPT cap, for residential plumbing, is a lot longer with no gasket. It could work, or it might bottom out before the threads got tight. You would need some rubber gaskets, and might have to stack several inside the end.

https://www.homedepot.com/p/Everbilt-1-2-in-FIP-Brass-Cap-Fitting-802159/300095968

You can do some testing and report back to us. 😁 You could mask up and wander down to Ace Hardware with your shower head, and see if they can tell you what works.

Removing the shower hose and head entirely will give more space for some insulation inside that little cavity, to pack around the knobs....

John Davies

Spokane WA

 

Edited by John E Davies
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"Mouse":  2017 Legacy Elite II NARV (Not An RV) Two Beds, Hull Number 218, See my HOW TO threads: https://olivertraveltrailers.com/topic/john-e-davies-how-to-threads-and-tech-articles-links/

Tow Vehicle: 2013 Land Cruiser 200, 33" LT tires, airbags.

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1 hour ago, Ray and Susan Huff said:

Suggestions??  I am thinking rigid foam insulation, cut to fit.  Not sure how to accomplish this.  In our 2021 Elite II, the shower compartment does not have a separate door; it is accessed through the basement access door, which is already lined, though I'm not sure how insulated it is.

I have a piece of memory foam we used to protect an external sewer macerator on our motorhome.  It is easily squished to fit around most anything.  Perhaps this would work around the shower faucet.

I used Reflextix type insulation on the exterior basement door in addition to what was already there.  Added to this I used window foam tape insulation similar to THIS around that same opening plus around the exterior shower and dump valves.  After adding this insulation you will, most likely, need to adjust the latch on the basement door, but, this is fairly simple to do.  On the interior I continued with the Reflextix type material and 1/2 inch pipe insulation on anything that I could reach.  This included the back side of that exterior shower faucet assembly.  Note: I have insulated any and all pipes that I could in any way reach in any and all parts of the Oliver.  I'm not too sure that this really does anything worth noting but it made me feel better 😃.

Sorry no pics - my Oliver is in a storage facility.

Bill

Edited by topgun2
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2017 Ford F150 Lariat 3.5EB FX4 Max Towing 2016 Oliver Elite II - Hull #117 "Twist"

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15 minutes ago, John E Davies said:

I am pretty, maybe, sort of sure the hose threads are like in your kitchen or shower hose at home, 1/2” pipe thread, but with a fat rubber washer to ensure no leaks and no need for pipe thread sealer. I think this would work to cap off the shower hose connection, inside the trailer. But no guarantees, you would have to test the fit.

https://www.amazon.com/Joywayus-Brass-Female-Rubber-Gasket/dp/B08G8KJ641

A typical 1/2” FPT cap, for residential plumbing, is a lot longer with no gasket. It could work, or it might bottom out before the threads got tight. You would need some rubber gaskets, and might have to stack several inside the end.

https://www.homedepot.com/p/Everbilt-1-2-in-FIP-Brass-Cap-Fitting-802159/300095968

You can do some testing and report back to us. 😁 You could mask up and wander down to Ace Hardware with your shower head, and see if they can tell you what works.

Removing the shower hose and head entirely will give more space for some insulation inside that little cavity, to pack around the knobs....

John Davies

Spokane WA

 

We are on a first name basis at Ace Hardware 😄

 

Ray and Susan Huff

Elite II Twin "Pearl" - Hull#699; delivered December 7, 2020

2013 F350 6.7l diesel Super Duty 4x4 long bed crew cab

1UP-USA Heavy-duty bike rack

2017 Leisure Travel Van Unity Twin Bed (sold)

AZARCAIDNVNMOKORTNTXUTWAsm.jpg

 

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8 minutes ago, Ray and Susan Huff said:

We are on a first name basis at Ace Hardware 😄

Funny. I just got back from a trip to Ace. I love my local Ace, too. Saves so many trips to bigger box stores! (And the staff in the store actually know where everything is, and often even how to use it.)

I think your soft squishy foam would work. I  keep some cutoffs from a memory foam mattress pad, and some pipe insulation, around.

I  really like topgun's insulation ideas. 

 

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2008 Ram 1500 4 × 4

2008 Oliver Elite, Hull #12
 

 

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Keep in mind that open cell foam (like a sponge), or a towel, or anythjng that breathes, will provide very little insulation. The foam used around water pipes is fine.....The idea is to block the airflow and associated heat transfer, so a closed cell foam (semi rigid) will always have a much better R value. The metallic bubble insulation that Oliver uses is R1.

I haven’t finished this yet, but I am making door insulation panels from 1” R5 rigid foam board. The battery compartment door had zero insulation and eight 1” vent holes, so it will really make that compartment less drafty, for my new lithium batteries. I am not sure how it will turn out, I may scrap the idea - here is an early pic.

3C97617A-6471-4B96-8DE1-289CEE523364.thumb.jpeg.4d8b072d135e22461614f57de7f85450.jpeg

John Davies

Spokane WA

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Edited by John E Davies

"Mouse":  2017 Legacy Elite II NARV (Not An RV) Two Beds, Hull Number 218, See my HOW TO threads: https://olivertraveltrailers.com/topic/john-e-davies-how-to-threads-and-tech-articles-links/

Tow Vehicle: 2013 Land Cruiser 200, 33" LT tires, airbags.

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