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Advice requested from a Legacy II owner that has actually camped in temperatures below 10 degrees!


Mattnan
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We are heading to Carlsbad, NM in the morning.  We are leaving Fort Worth area a day early, before the forecast of cold temperatures and ice arrive.  Everyone is taking about how bad it was here last year when ice hit.  Temperatures in Carlsbad are forecast to be 7 degrees at night and a high of 29 later in the week.  We are at a KOA with full hookups, electric, water, and sewer in Carlsbad.  Our 2019 Ollie has the Truma water heater. 

We have boondocked for a night with a temperature of 19 and wind.  We had no problems with any of our systems.  We keep the trailer around 64 at night using propane when temps are going to dip below 32 for extended periods of time.  Obviously the water hose will be disconnected.  We have about 80% in our fresh water tank for dishes and conventional toilet use.  

My concern is the lower temperatures and the pipes and anything else.  I am hoping I can avoid winterizing for what will be 36 to 72 hours.  I will winterize if needed.  We have not made any modifications to our trailer for airflow around our AGM batteries or street side bunk.  I an not in position to make those modifications before the cold hits.

I can open the interior door in our nightstand to the basement.  We have the twin bed model.  We also have a Vornado heater that we use when plugged in and temps stay above freezing.  We have the 30 lb propane tanks. 1 is 100% full and the other is approximately 50% full.  We will keep an eye on the propane!!!

So---- from someone who has done it!

Do I need to winterize? 

Are there good, safe alternatives to avoid winterizing?

What else should I be thinking about?

We will continuously run the Truma in econo mode per instructions in the manual if we don't winterize.  

Sound advice needed and appreciated.

Thanks 

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It has been three hours and nobody has spoken up. I have never camped in those temperatures.

I will say this: if your plumbing actually freezes hard, you are WAY past the point where you can do anything about it, except to hope for the best. You can’t drain your tanks and you can’t get anitifreeze to flow through jammed check valves and plugged lines. In your shoes, I would do a complete winterize now, and then don't stress. Otherwise you might be OK, or you might not be OK, but regardless, you are going to really worry about it.

Once your rig is safely winterized, if the weather turns extremely nasty, you can find a Motel 6 for a couple of days, and turn off all the systems in the Ollie. (be sure to bring in any freezable liquids.) There is the saying - there are bold pilots and old pilots, but there are no old bold pilots. 

Now is the time to do this, while you have full hookups. Later, en route in worsening weather, it will be much harder. Read this:

https://olivertraveltrailers.com/forums/topic/5185-extreme-weather/

Stay safe, stay warm.

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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Matt:

I found this post by using the search tool.

Let us know how you made out, as I am worried about the same issues when we go south next winter.

Good luck!

2018 Oliver Elite II, Twin Bed, Hull #354 

2018 RAM 1500 Rebel 4 x 4, 5.7 Hemi, 3.92 gear ratio

Maine

 

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10 hours ago, John E Davies said:

It has been three hours and nobody has spoken up. I have never camped in those temperatures.

I will say this: if your plumbing actually freezes hard, you are WAY past the point where you can do anything about it, except to hope for the best. You can’t drain your tanks and you can’t get anitifreeze to flow through jammed check valves and plugged lines. In your shoes, I would do a complete winterize now, and then don't stress. Otherwise you might be OK, or you might not be OK, but regardless, you are going to really worry about it.

Once your rig is safely winterized, if the weather turns extremely nasty, you can find a Motel 6 for a couple of days, and turn off all the systems in the Ollie. (be sure to bring in any freezable liquids.) There is the saying - there are bold pilots and old pilots, but there are no old bold pilots. 

Now is the time to do this, while you have full hookups. Later, en route in worsening weather, it will be much harder. Read this:

https://olivertraveltrailers.com/forums/topic/5185-extreme-weather/

Stay safe, stay warm.

John Davies

Spokane WA

I agree with John. Winterize and don’t fret about the temps

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2021 Elite II, Hull# 898

2018 Toyota Tundra, 2003 Dodge Ram 3500 5.9l SRW

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If it’s going to be single digits at night and not above freezing during the day then I would winterize or go somewhere else.  Last year when we had the big freeze in Texas (single digits for several days) and I couldn’t find antifreeze I brought my trailer home, turned on the furnace and electric heater, opened all the hatches, put a drop light in the basement near the outdoor shower, aimed the electric heater at the vent under the curbside bed, turned on the hot water tank and did some close monitoring.  No freeze damage.  Also, no way to camp!  It shouldn’t take long to winterize.  The KOA should have shower and bath facilities.  Mike

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I also live in Texas where we went through the deep freeze of Feb. 2021 as did Mike and Carol did. I will also add here we lost of electricity for 39 hours with the temps being around 0 degrees. All we did was drain the hot water tank and turn on the propane heater and set it at around 50 degrees, all survived the freeze, but our outside shower handle froze as there was some water in it and I probably should have unscrewed the head and let the hose drain. We don't use the outside shower so I just replaced the shower head for $10 on Amazon and all is done. We are fixing to have our temputures drop to around 15 degrees for the next two days with daytime temps around 28 degrees, I taking the same precautions as before. For us we would probably not be camping at below freezing temputures as it just doesn't fit our camping desires and if the temputures were to be below zero we would move on the warner temputures

trainman. 

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Elite II, Twin Bed, Hull #489, 2019 RAM 1500, 5.7 Hemi, 4X4, Crew Cab, 5'7" bed, Towing Package, 3.92 Gears.

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From another post, I picked up hand warmers from Northern Tool and will stick a couple in with the batteries and the outside shower for our two day deep freeze event here…and have the furnace at 40F. 

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2020 Legacy Elite II Hull 625 - 2013 Lexus LX 570

San Antonio/Boerne - Texas Hill Country

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Thanks everyone.  We arrived in Carlsbad this afternoon after leaving Fort Worth this morning at 4:30.  We left our campground early as we didn't want to be in the Dallas area during the storm.  The weather here was going to be comparable to Dallas and we do have reservations here and going forward.  Going back south wasn't in the cards. Oddly enough our next, longer stop, in Benson, AZ wasn't going to be much warmer.  We knew when we planned this trip we would face some cold temps and some below freezing.  We don't mind that.  We knew there was a chance we might face single digits this far south but were hoping to avoid it.  20s and high teens at night yes.   We drove 475 miles today to get here.  Our temps tonight are above freezing and during the day tomorrow will allow us to winterize if we can find antifreeze, the local Wal-Mart doesn't have any. I hopfully we will be able to keep the trailer and our selves warm.  We bought our Ollie to travel like this and see parts of the country we had not seen yet. This is part of the challenge and learning we are experiencing.  Because we are traveling in the off season we are able to get into lots of sites with fewer crowds.  The Stampede in Fort Worth was cool and even the gunfight was fun.  We are seeing different scenery.  The Silos in Waco and Austin nightlife. The drive across west Texas was cool.  Oil and gas fields, wind farms in Sweetwater, solar fields and some incredible wide open sky scenery.  Once the snow and ends we are going to Carlsbad Caverns and up to Roswell.  We will hopefully stop st White Sands on the way to Deming and Benson.  Our pup Baxter goes with is most everywhere.

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20 minutes ago, Mattnan said:

our next, longer stop, in Benson, AZ wasn't going to be much warmer. 

You'll be in our neck of the woods, Cochise County. If you haven't already been there, Bisbee is about 1/2 hour south and well worth a visit. Tombstone is about 1/2 the way to Bisbee.

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Onward through the Fog!


EarthPicks of Cochise County


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Carlsbad Caverns is fun.  We stayed at the KOA there for a couple nights several years ago.  If you have time, there are some good sites to see at Guadalupe Mountains National Park not far away.  If you are staying overnight in Roswell, we like the Red Barn RV Park.  Small, owner is very friendly (Leigh).  Just outside of White Sands Missile Range is Aguirre Spring BLM campground.  You drive up from about 2,000 feet to 5,000 feet in just a mile or two.  The views are tremendous, you can see White Sands National Park from there.  We were just camping in Benson a couple weeks ago, at Kartchner Caverns State park.  If you don’t have a place yet it’s worth a look.  If you like wineries, there are several good ones in Sonoita, AZ about 35 or 40 minutes from Benson.  Callaghan Winery is our favorite.  Mike

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Texas Hill Country | Elite II #135 | Ram 2500 6.7L

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I thought I had posted my most recent post last night.  Evidently l neglected to hit "submit reply" button. 

My wife since found posts on the Oliver Facebook site from a camper that was in the teens for 5 days and another that was in single digits.  (I don't do Facebook)  I know from past experience we would be fine in the high teens.  We have done this.

I also called Oliver's service department and explained our situation and that temps would be in the low single digits.  The response from Oliver was if we are heating with the propane furnace, we are keeping the trailer above 60, and running the Truma on econo mode, and on tank water we should be fine without doing any thing.

From Facebook I learned from someone that had camped below 0 and in single digits the water intake fittings and outside shower might, and would likely freeze.  Theirs did and their outside shower head cracked as it had water in it.  The recommendation was to pump just a little pink antifreeze into the fittings.  I checked this with Oliver and they indicated this is fine.  Just 1/4 pump.  Oliver also reminded me when I flush the system to make sure I bypass the water heater as the pink stuff can ruin the water heater. So I guess we are doing a partial weatherization!

So this is what we are doing. It was in the 40s today. Tonight down to 17. Tomorrow high 26 or 27.  The next 2 nights 7 and 8 degrees.

I disconnected the city water.  We ran our sinks to empty out any remaining city water. I unscrewed the outside shower head and drained the hose and emptied the head.  I left the head disconnected and stored it.  I pushed the hose inside after tying  a string so I can retrieve it later.  I pumped a 1/4 pump of the pink antifreeze into each of the fittings.  I started with the black tank flush first figuring if l made a mistake l pumped too much this wouldn't be a big deal.  I secured some r19 insulation batting and folded on top of its self.  I placed it in a plastic garbage bag and placed it inside the opening to the basement outside door.  I used my storage crate to hold it in place from the inside.

I purchased a thermometer that I can use to check temps under the bunks and basement.

We will heat with the propane furnace and it will be set at 63 - 65 at night.  We will open the door in our nightstand and place the Vornado electric heater to blow into the basement.  We are at about 75% of our propane capacity in the 30lbs tank.  The park sells propane and has plenty so a source is near by.

I also picked up 18 feet of electric pipe heat wrap, that if necessary, I can install on the pipes. We brought a number of throw rugs that we used early in the trip and stored when it got warm.  They are now back on the floor to help.  

We will use tank water for our toilet and dishes.  We normally use RV park showers provided they are clean and this park is exceptionally clean.  There are others here in SOB trailers that seem to be taking less precaution.  This includes some of the park employees.  Winds could go as high as 50 mph tonight.  At just before 4pm mountain time,  temperatures are dropping, it is 35 and winds have picked up into the mid 20s.

This is all part of the adventure, and we are having an adventure!!!!   

We will let you know how it goes!  Thanks for all of your feedback and suggestions.   Stay warm!!!

 

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56 minutes ago, Mike and Carol said:

Carlsbad Caverns is fun.  We stayed at the KOA there for a couple nights several years ago.  If you have time, there are some good sites to see at Guadalupe Mountains National Park not far away.  If you are staying overnight in Roswell, we like the Red Barn RV Park.  Small, owner is very friendly (Leigh).  Just outside of White Sands Missile Range is Aguirre Spring BLM campground.  You drive up from about 2,000 feet to 5,000 feet in just a mile or two.  The views are tremendous, you can see White Sands National Park from there.  We were just camping in Benson a couple weeks ago, at Kartchner Caverns State park.  If you don’t have a place yet it’s worth a look.  If you like wineries, there are several good ones in Sonoita, AZ about 35 or 40 minutes from Benson.  Callaghan Winery is our favorite.  Mike

Thanks Mike. We are at the KOA north of Carlsbad and staying at Karchner Caverns after a Harvest Host stop at a winery in Deming on the way to Kartchner.  The folks at this KOA are terrific and the park is well maintained and clean.  Too bad they are remodeling their kitchen as we have heard the bbq smoked on site is terrific.  We were planning on some. Thanks for the info, we are hoping to stop at White Sands Park on our way to Deming.  We may check out that middle range!!!  We were told about Karchner by a camp host at a State Park in Destin FL.  Thanks again!

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When you are at Kartchner Caverns if you don’t have time to do a caverns tour (reservations only, ranger guided) go to the visitor center and watch the video.  It’s very interesting.  Mike

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I am not a good cave traveler (I get spooked out by caves. Also really long tunnels. )

But, I did actually enjoy (most) of our time in Carlsbad, many years ago. That long descent. The darkness. The beauty. I don't know if it's open, but you are so close, if it is. When the weather clears.

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2008 Oliver Elite, Hull #12

 

 

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1 minute ago, SeaDawg said:

I am not a good cave traveler (I get spooked out by caves. Also really long tunnels. )

But, I did actually enjoy (most) of our time in Carlsbad, many years ago. That long descent. The darkness. The beauty. I don't know if it's open, but you are so close, if it is. When the weather clears.

Thanks our plan is to definitely get to the caves.  I am good in tunnels, not sure about caves. I guess we will find out.  My wife is not as good in tunnels and she is a little nervous about caves.  We are going to Kartchner Caves in AZ next.  I really struggle with heights so high bridges and high overpasses are very difficult for me especially if they are narrow.  

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About 8-9 years ago my wife and I were hiking/photographing for several days in Guadalupe NP.  Cold and wet weather was forecast, so we planned a day at Carlsbad Caverns.  The weather outside was miserable, but inside the caverns you would never know.  We had a fabulous day taking photos in the caverns when there were hardly any other people there.  Highly recommended.

The walkways in the caverns are well developed and tight spaces can generally be avoided.  I occasionally an claustrophobic, but I had no problems.

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North Texas | 2022 LEII, Hull #990, delivered 2/17/22 | 2014 BMW X5 35d

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I feel all of your pain, and your wife's. Even our Sunshine skyway bridge  is always a "suck it up, buttercup" moment for me, as I approach the crest. Can't see anything, til you're at the top, like you're going to launch. 

I will say, once you get into the big (great) room in Carlsbad, it's anything but claustrophobic,  unlike a lot of caves (and tunnels.) It's magnificent.  I'm truly glad I swallowed my temerity, and went.

I dislike narrow, high roads.  Ledges make me dizzy-- even balconies in some theaters. Hate tunnels. 

Side story: first time in Norway,  my father's cousin and his son picked us up at the train station. Took us through the then longest road tunnel in the world (Aurland tunnel), then over the top of the old Aurland snow road.  Lots of scary ledges. I made it. We've done it many times since. I've lived. And, it's amazingly beautiful.  Stegestein overlook is a modern wonder. Best views from any bathroom, in the world! (Newer. Wasnt there first few trips.)

If I  can do it, you can do it, too.

When I'm driving, I just follow the pavement and traffic . Paul can look down and around. I can't.  Is what it is. I seldom look around unless we're stopped. I'm ok if I just follow the road.

 

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Wow. Amazing.  We have not been to Norway or any of the Scandinavian countries.  We need to do that as soon as this covid thing dies down so we can travel internationally easily again.  

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5 minutes ago, Mattnan said:

Wow. Amazing.  We have not been to Norway or any of the Scandinavian countries.  We need to do that as soon as this covid thing dies down so we can travel internationally easily again.  

I know, right? 

We've had to cancel several plans to Alaska, Europe and Australia last few years. Camping in the US  has been our sanity. Thank goodness for that.

But, I'm looking forward to getting out there again, soon .  Hopefully,  later this year. Hope to be able to keep reservations we made almost 18 months ago.

If not, there's always plan b. Trailers have wheels. Just, adjust course.  We have found and met fun and  wonderful people,  everywhere we've camped. Here, and several continents.

We'll keep camping, til we can't.  

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Well temps on Southeast New Mexico have moderated.  Mid 50s today.   Thank you all for help.  I finished flushing our systems and fresh water tank today. 

I thought I would share how we made out.  Evening temps over the last few days were 18, 9, 5, and 21 last night.  Corresponding day time highs 42, 29, 27, 51.  I don't know if the precautions I described earlier in this thread were necessary but we had no issues!  The furnace ran a lot.  I do believe placing the installation inside the outside basement door helped keep some cold drafts out.  The basement was a comfortable temperature with the nightstand door open and a small 3 inch fan set just inside the door on low speed.  Oliver service department said we would be fine just running the propane furnace.  We definitely faired better than our neighbors at the campground.  Most had some frozen pipes.  No one seamed to have broken pipes.  Again thanks to the forum members for all of your help and ideas.  The next few days look like day time highs on the 50s and low 60s with nights mid 20s to low 30s.  We will just disconnect water at night!  I hope this might help others and build confidence in the Ollie's capabilities.  Off to a Harvest Host winery in Deming tomorrow. We want to leave early to see White Sands.  Then to AZ and Kartchner Caverns and Tombstone.  Travel safely!

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We camped in Kartchner Caverns a couple of weeks ago.  Enjoy Cochise County (Tombstone, Bisbee, Sierra Vista).  We lived there for many years.

Our site last month at Kartchner Caverns…

 

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