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Delivery Day Dilemma- Winterized or De-winterized?


dhaig
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My wife and I (RV newbies) are scheduled to take delivery of a 2022 LEII next Tuesday, January 18.  Oliver Service contacted me about 10 days ago to inquire whether we wanted the trailer winterized or de-winterized at the time of delivery.  I told them I preferred de-winterized, as we plan to use the trailer on our return trip to Dallas, TX.  Our other alternative is to have the trailer winterized at delivery and head directly home to Dallas, with one overnight stay in a hotel.

After 1 or 2 nights at Oliver to test systems, we plan travel, photography and sightseeing along the Natchez Trace Parkway, south to I-20, then west to Dallas.   I have been following the 10 day weather forecasts for Hohenwald, Tupelo and Jackson, MS and they currently show nighttime lows in the mid to upper 20s F, except low 20s F in Hohenwald on Jan. 20.  Temperatures shortly after sunrise will be above freezing.  We plan to stay 3-4 nights at state parks, with full hookups, along the Natchez Trace.  We would keep the heat on in the trailer and will have a small ceramic heater for supplemental heat.  Our trailer will have the Lithium Pro option, and the optional access hatch to the basement.  I also plan to install a Mopeka propane level sensing system and the antifreeze kit for the Truma water heater.

Based on my reading on the forum about winter towing and camping, it is my impression traveling de-winterized for our return trip is relatively low risk if we run the furnace and open the basement access hatch at night.  

As a precaution against lower temperatures, I plan to purchase 3-4 gallons of RV antifreeze while in Hohenwald.  I will have onboard a Viair compressor, a hand pump and basic tools, should I need to winterize enroute.

I would appreciate comments and guidance from those with winter camping/towing experience. 

Thanks, Don

North Texas | 2022 LEII, Hull #TBD, scheduled delivery 1/7/22 | 2014 BMW X5 35d

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Don, your plan sounds fine, but you omitted to mention if you have a generator. You need one anyway, for air conditioning in summer, but it also gives you a reliable 120 volt backup if the campground grid fails. So if you experience a double whammy, like a furnace failure and a grid failure, you still have a source of power, battery charging and at least a little heat.

If you didn’t already get the Mopeka tank rings (spacers), order a pair, they give more clearance under the bottles and also keep the steel of the bottles and of the mount itself from rusting. These are stout and well made.

B4225F4B-677F-4EAA-99CA-0CF34E598177.thumb.jpeg.adc53ac2a0ff8640f90ae7a47a46a3ed.jpeg

 

 

Mopeka Tank Halo

Just to be safe, do not count on buying RV antifreeze in Howenwald. The current weird COVID/ weather supply issues make it prudent to get some now.

John Davies

Spokane WA

 

"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, Safari snorkel.

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John,

I should have mentioned that I do have a generator, a Champion 2500 watt dual fuel, which I plan to run only on propane.  I particularly want to test the generator hookup.  I also have a pair of the Mopeka tank halos. @AndrewK kindly shared with me his list of items purchased for his LEII delivery,  The list has proven very useful.

I will need to take my chances on availability of RV antifreeze in Hohenwald or surrounding area (or perhaps from Oliver).  Our tow vehicle space will be maxed out with all the stuff for inside the trailer, generator, clothing, etc.  I had feared I would need to get a small U-Haul trailer, but I believe I can avoid that.  The trailer dropoff was going to be a real inconvenience. 

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North Texas | 2022 LEII, Hull #TBD, scheduled delivery 1/7/22 | 2014 BMW X5 35d

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Btw, you don't have to stay in a hotel, just because your camper is winterized, especially in milder winter temps. 

You can still use the toilet. Just flush with rv antifreeze. 

I feel bad for you, as new campers picking up in winter. But, you'll gain some new experience. 

I'd be on the fence, too. It would be nice to be able to test every system,  without winterizing. 

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2008 Ram 1500 4 × 4

2008 Oliver Elite, Hull #12

 

 

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We picked up in winter (Monday after Thanksgiving) and opted to do so dewinterized -- it was important for us to check all systems since we live so far from TN.  I was glad we did -- the only real issue we found on our first night was that the fresh water tank indicator wasn't working.  Oliver ended up replacing it on the spot.

At a minimum I would recommend taking possession dewinterized to check all systems.  Then if you think extreme cold will be an issue, you can always winterize again before you leave Hohenwald.  Bonus -- since you're new, if something is unclear in the winterizing process, you'll be at the right place to get clarification!

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MaryBeth
Boulder, CO

2022 Elite II #953
TV: 2021 Ford Expedition Max Platinum, Max Tow Package

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Don’t winterize.  Pick up your trailer and camp in it as planned.  You’ll be fine.  We’ve been out a couple of weeks, it’s been below freezing almost every night.  We just make sure our water hose is not attached when we go to bed.  We’ll be in Zion National Park tomorrow for a week or so, night time temps will below freezing the whole time, 40s and low 50s daytime.  Mike

(Our first night in Catalina State Park, AZ the forecast said a low of 34.  I left our water connected.  Woke up to 29.  Our hose was frozen solid!  I didn’t move it and it thawed out by noon.  Thankfully, no damage.  Left the hose off the rest of the week and used the water tank.  We did that last week at Dead Horse Ranch State Park, too)

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Please keep a very close eye on that weather.  

There is forecast to be "heavy" (3 to 12 inches) of snow in the western North Carolina area on this Sunday.  I believe that this storm will be moving to the south and east of Hohenwald BUT  it is better to be sure.

Also, in coming to Hohenwald from the west (Dallas area), this storm will be diving from the north through the Midwest on Saturday.  Certainly interstates should be OK by the time you get there.  But, again, keep that eye on conditions.

Bill

p.s.  I agree with Mike above - test your systems at the factory camp ground and then winterize if you must.

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

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Thanks to all for the helpful recommendations and quick responses.  They are very consistent and in line with the conclusions I had drawn from other postings on the forum.

I had been thinking of the general weather movement as predominant west to east, so a special thanks to @topgun2 for the heads up on the expected movement of the storm forecast for western NC.  I had noticed the forecast for Hohenwald included high probability of snow over this coming weekend. Seeing the forecast for highs in the upper 40s temps next Tuesday and Wednesday should eliminate most of the snow from the weekend.  In any case,   I will pay close attention to that storm.

Don

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North Texas | 2022 LEII, Hull #TBD, scheduled delivery 1/7/22 | 2014 BMW X5 35d

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Hi Don,

We asked OTT to de-winterize ours prior to delivery but it was not done.  Our walk through person told us that even if you request de-winterization  it will not be done at this time of the year.  Our guide repositioned the valves for us and we did it after arriving at our overnight spot at OTT.  We filled the fresh water tank, checked the water level indicator for operation, turned the water pump on, and flushed out all the lines including the outdoor shower.  The anti-freeze just goes to the gray water tank and we''ll dump tomorrow before we leave, and make sure the gray and black tank blade valves work ok (we don't need that unexpected surprise later down the road 🙂 ).  Good luck!

John

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One last comment, make sure you have fresh All Season tires on your X5, preferably ones that are decent in winter conditions. All Summer and most A/S tires perform very poorly below about 40 degrees F, so towing in frigid weather becomes more hazardous! If your tires are older than three years, be very cautious, because they do age harden and become skittish. 
 

John Davies

Spokane WA

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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, Safari snorkel.

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4 hours ago, johnwen said:

Hi Don,

We asked OTT to de-winterize ours prior to delivery but it was not done.  Our walk through person told us that even if you request de-winterization  it will not be done at this time of the year.  Our guide repositioned the valves for us and we did it after arriving at our overnight spot at OTT.  We filled the fresh water tank, checked the water level indicator for operation, turned the water pump on, and flushed out all the lines including the outdoor shower.  The anti-freeze just goes to the gray water tank and we''ll dump tomorrow before we leave, and make sure the gray and black tank blade valves work ok (we don't need that unexpected surprise later down the road 🙂 ).  Good luck!

John

John,

Thanks for the warning about OTT not having de-winterized your trailer.  When I received a pre-delivery prep call I was told all trailers being completed at this time of year are winterized, but they can be de-winterized for delivery or at the time of delivery.  I will call OTT to verify.

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North Texas | 2022 LEII, Hull #TBD, scheduled delivery 1/7/22 | 2014 BMW X5 35d

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4 hours ago, John E Davies said:

One last comment, make sure you have fresh All Season tires on your X5, preferably ones that are decent in winter conditions. All Summer and most A/S tires perform very poorly below about 40 degrees F, so towing in frigid weather becomes more hazardous! If your tires are older than three years, be very cautious, because they do age harden and become skittish. 
 

John Davies

Spokane WA

John,

A new set of all season Michelins was mounted to our X5 about a year ago.  We have used these tires previously and found they do well in winter conditions, not that we encounter them often.  The full-time all wheel drive also makes a big difference.  Thanks

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North Texas | 2022 LEII, Hull #TBD, scheduled delivery 1/7/22 | 2014 BMW X5 35d

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Weather update as of 6pm January 14, 2022:

The forecast for Hohenwald for late Saturday night into Sunday afternoon is for rain changing to snow and then snow tapering off.  Total snow accumulation is forecast to only be an inch or so.

Unfortunately, this same forecast for Western North Carolina is not so "promising".  Brevard, NC is forecast to receive upwards of 18 to 24 inches of snow.  That's a bunch for virtually anywhere.  But, for southern places that on average get only 6" of snow for the entire winter, its a major event.  Break out the sleds because certainly there will not be much else going on around here for a few days!

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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10 hours ago, johnwen said:

Hi Don,

We asked OTT to de-winterize ours prior to delivery but it was not done.  Our walk through person told us that even if you request de-winterization  it will not be done at this time of the year.  Our guide repositioned the valves for us and we did it after arriving at our overnight spot at OTT.  We filled the fresh water tank, checked the water level indicator for operation, turned the water pump on, and flushed out all the lines including the outdoor shower.  The anti-freeze just goes to the gray water tank and we''ll dump tomorrow before we leave, and make sure the gray and black tank blade valves work ok (we don't need that unexpected surprise later down the road 🙂 ).  Good luck!

John

We'll be picking up our Oliver on February 15. After reviewing this thread and others, we've decided that we want to de-winterize even if OTT winterizes our trailer so we can check all systems. Was just wondering if the water is turned on at the OTT campground or did you need to fill your tank somewhere else.

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Be safe:

0A00F2D8-CBBE-48DF-8DC3-43DB9C06345D.jpeg.09e0bfa31abac6b7e0aabb0639a575db.jpeg

When towing, when in doubt, stay an extra day or even three. Don’t push your luck. Post pictures please!

John Davies

Spokane WA

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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, Safari snorkel.

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On 1/13/2022 at 9:59 AM, John E Davies said:

If you didn’t already get the Mopeka tank rings (spacers), order a pair, they give more clearance under the bottles and also keep the steel of the bottles and of the mount itself from rusting. These are stout and well made.

JD:  I am assuming that these tank rings are non-conductive.  Would electrically isolating the tanks from the frame be a good or bad move?

Tug:  2019 F-150 SuperCrew Lariat, 3.5L EcoBoost, Max Trailer Tow, FX-4, 4X4, Rear Locker

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dhaig,

Best of luck and congratulations on your new Ollie.

RV Antifreeze:  Cheapest place I know of is Super Walmart Centers.  Get three gallons as you may make a mistake or two and having the spare gallon is really nice.  It's only a few bucks a gallon.  It is nowhere as expensive as car/truck radiator antifreeze.

Travel safe,

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Tug:  2019 F-150 SuperCrew Lariat, 3.5L EcoBoost, Max Trailer Tow, FX-4, 4X4, Rear Locker

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5 hours ago, Geronimo John said:

Would electrically isolating the tanks from the frame be a good or bad move?

Yes. 😬

In other words, I don’t know. I suspect that it doesn’t matter, and I wouldn’t be too concerned about it. I bet the manufacturer isn’t either, and they surely have engineers who know.

John Davies

Spokane WA

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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, Safari snorkel.

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10 hours ago, Geronimo John said:

Would electrically isolating the tanks from the frame be a good or bad move?

I don’t think it matters either, but I assume the tanks are still grounded to the frame through the hold down clamp. 

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“Ramble” - 2021 Legacy Elite II #797;  2020 Ford F-250 6.2L V8

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