Winterizing the LeSharo

This is the place to go to find the answers to the most common questions new Le'Sharo Owners have. This information comes from members who have considerable experience owning, maintaining and operating the Le'Sharo RV.

Winterizing the LeSharo

Unread postby Rick H » Wed Oct 29, 2008 7:14 pm

Hi all,

This is our first winter for the RV. We will be storing it in an unheated storage unit. The temps here can reach down to -17'C (0'F). Any ideas or hints to properly winterizing the RV.
Looking forward to hearing your stories.

Thanks,
Rick
User avatar
Rick H
Moderator
 
Posts: 967
Joined: Wed Sep 10, 2008 6:58 pm
Location: Sarnia, Ontario, Canada


Winterizing

Unread postby Larryp » Wed Oct 29, 2008 7:49 pm

Rick;

One of the better write-ups on winterizing is in the 1winne_h-body Yahoo group. If you are a member, or join the group, you will find in the FILES section a folder named COACH, in that folder is WINTERIZING folder that contains a winterizeing.doc file that James Martz wrote up some time ago. It covers the subject pretty well.

We have had our first freeze here already...I just finished winterizing my beast on Monday.

....and welcome to the forum!

Larryp :)
1985 LS 3.3 Chrysler S~Works
User avatar
Larryp
 
Posts: 35
Joined: Sun May 18, 2008 7:40 pm
Location: Hampshire, IL

Unread postby Phasar » Thu Oct 30, 2008 12:50 am

The only thing I do to winterize my Phasar is to drain all the water; hot water tank, black water tank, fresh water tank through their respective drain plugs. Then I run the pump opening and closing each faucet until empty. Then I use an air compressor to blow out all the lines, connecting it to the outside city water intake, making sure I always have at least one of the faucets open while doing this (so you don't blow out the lines from too much pressure) 4 faucets; hot/cold at the sink, hot/cold in the lavatory. Usually i'll do the hot water first. It takes some time, but in 3yrs of ownership I haven't had any problems. I don't see the need for RV antifreeze.

Other than the above, I turn off the refrigerator, wipe it out then leave the door ajar. If it will sit for a while i'll disconnect the main battery. I'm considering installing a cut off switch for the coach battery to disable that as well. Generally i'll start it up once or twice a month to keep the seals lubricated etc.. that's about it.

Important to note: I added a screen to my fresh air intake to not only block debris from making it into the cab area but it also helps to keep the critters (mice) out. Also take out any and all bedding, paper, tp, napkins, blankets, food, food in paper boxes etc.. anything a mouse can use to make a nest, believe me it happens. One year they turned the duct work in one of my cars into a condominium! Had an old blanket in my trunk.. they shredded and used a complete blanket, nothing was left lol, learned the hard way, cleanup for that isn't fun ;) Good luck

I'm sure there's more that could be done, but that covers it for me.
User avatar
Phasar
 
Posts: 280
Joined: Fri Jan 11, 2008 6:36 pm

Unread postby Rick H » Thu Oct 30, 2008 5:41 am

Thanks for all the advice, has anyone put anti-freeze in the water lines? I don't have access to a compressor easily and at this time my RV is in the driveway which has a bit of a slope to it. I just don't want to think I cleared the water and then when the RV is moved to the storage area, water somehow moves into a spot which could cause damage.
Some of my friends who have trailers told me they empty the water system and then fill the lines with anti-freeze.
I just don't want the trouble of plumbing repairs in the spring.
Again thanks for the help. :)
User avatar
Rick H
Moderator
 
Posts: 967
Joined: Wed Sep 10, 2008 6:58 pm
Location: Sarnia, Ontario, Canada

Unread postby populuxe » Sat Nov 01, 2008 9:53 am

I am in Wisconsin and anticipate -20f or -35f

I think the people that are able to blow out their lines may still have some water in their lines when they are finished and don't know it. However they benefit from the factory PEX lines installed. It is advertised as freeze resistant. The big problem with a freeze up would be all the other parts--hot water tank, commode valve, pump and other components.

Last year I spent about $15 (USD) on 8 gallons of RV antifreeze. Filled the fresh water tank and turned on the faucets one at a time. The only hang up was anticipating when the hot water tank would be filled. Finally it ran pink with the antifreeze. Go around and recheck your faucets for the bright pink. Done. Everything protected.

I saved about 4 gallons this spring from the hot tap and plan to reuse it if I can get a good hydrometer reading: safe to at least -30 f.
This year it should only cost about $8.
I had hoped to put a bypass on the hot water tank but the connection area is so tight; anyone else do this? Would save about 6 gallons.
It does take considerable fresh water in the spring to cleanse out the Antifreeze taste from the cold tap. Just refill the fresh tank about 3 times. Easy.

I haven't done this to my system yet this year. I have a hope that we can get away for just one more overnight-er with the kids and it is VERY handy having water and toilet. We may even try to do an overnight tailgate stay at a camper park (K-mart parking lot). Anyone going to GREEN BAY for a foot ball game yet this year? We do not have tickets, but are always intrigued by the camper village that sets up a day before the game so close to our house.


Chris & Ruth
88 Ls
Wisconsin
Chris Christensen Wisconsin, USA
88 LeSharo
01 Villager minivan
80 Vespa
User avatar
populuxe
 
Posts: 233
Joined: Wed Oct 31, 2007 9:13 am
Location: Green Bay, Wisconsin USA

Unread postby Alan Bergman » Sat Nov 01, 2008 12:17 pm

Unless you follow James Martz procedure using air you cannot get all the water out of the hot water tank. The tank drain is not located at the bottom of the tank and will leave approximately two gallons of water in the tank when you think it is empty. The air process James uses will remove all the water. So if you us the antifreeze method you better plan on using enough of it to fill the hot water tank.
Al
My "Cottage Car" is a 1985 Lesharo with a 3.8 Buick V6
User avatar
Alan Bergman
 
Posts: 391
Joined: Tue Oct 09, 2007 10:11 pm
Location: Rapid City, SD


Unread postby populuxe » Sat Nov 01, 2008 2:00 pm

I'm just back in from winterizing my system a half hour ago. Now that this is my second time it went very quickly knowing what to expect.

That is a very good point on the RV water heaters. Wish I had room to install a bypass, but it is just too tight a fit (I think--anyone else install one?).

I had to replace the drain tap on the hot water tank last year but I did not try draining it with this. The taps used by the factory are very small and clog easily. Unfortunately I couldn't find anything bigger so I didn't mess with it. My other drain taps require several attempts to get sealed so I did not disturb these either.

I had been stocking up on the pink antifreeze when it was on sale and I had just enough. As Alan pointed out, the hot water tank takes more than a few gallons. There is plenty of info out there on this process. I just wanted to relate my experience with out having access to an air compressor.

This whole thing took me about 20 minutes and cost about $6-10.
Chris Christensen Wisconsin, USA
88 LeSharo
01 Villager minivan
80 Vespa
User avatar
populuxe
 
Posts: 233
Joined: Wed Oct 31, 2007 9:13 am
Location: Green Bay, Wisconsin USA

Unread postby Rick H » Sat Nov 01, 2008 3:03 pm

Well, I just finished winterizing the RV for about the third or fourth time. Took me longer then 20 minutes :lol:, but less then an hour.

We have to remember that the goal is to either get all the water out of the system or replace that water with anti-freeze. I tried to do a bit of both and this is my somewhat lengthy story. Hope you enjoy.

Materials I needed before starting;
2 US gal. of RV anti-freeze
a short hose to attach to the city water and to fill into the fresh water tank
couple of rags and screwdrivers
one small TyRap, ziptie
NOTE: I had my RV on my sloped driveway with the back end higher then the front.

Before I started I had already dumped both the black and grey water tanks.
First thing was to empty the fresh water tank by turning on the pump and alternatingly opening the sink taps and bathroom taps and toilet and just let it run until it was empty. When most of the water is gone, shut off the pump.
Next I open the two drains under the fridge and all the taps. While the water was draining I disconnected the shower hose from the taps and let it drain completely and left it disconnected. I will re-connect it in the spring.
All this time I also had the holding tanks valves open to let out the extra water. No surprises for me. :roll:
The drain valve on the hot water tank was opened, be careful as it maybe tight and might be seized.
I started the pump again and more water came out. Closed all the taps, more water, then closed the two drains under the fridge. It took a little while before the hot water tank started to drain, I suppose it was a little plugged.
I let the pump act as an air compressor by alternating different drain openings.
While I finally got to the point only air was coming out I shut off the water pump.
I poured some anti-freeze into the city water connection, using the TyRap to hold the check valve open, and made sure it came out a drain. This told me I could button up the city water connection without worry. Don't forget to pull out the TyRap before moving on.
Into the fresh water tank I put half of the balance of the first gallon of anti-freeze, turned on the pump, then opened the hot water tank drain. Got some pink foam. Closed the drain and repeated the steps for the other two drains. Also push the toilet water valve and verify anti-freeze is present, this part only has to be done once.
This tells me I have anti-freeze in all the low spots that are left including the water pump.
Dumped in the rest of the first bottle of anti-freeze into the fresh tank and repeated the above steps.
The anti-freeze is good to -50F. The coldest it gets around here is maybe -10F.
Next I closed the hot water tank drain, opened the two under the fridge and opened all the taps.
I put anti-freeze in the bathroom sink and dumped it into the drain. Verify it comes out the black water tank valve. (The sink must have a trap I would think)
Put anti-freeze in all the other drains and toilet.
Closed the valves on the holding tanks.
Closed the valves under the fridge.
I left all the taps open.
Had a little bit of anti-freeze left when I was done.

Glad it was a nice sunny day for this activity. Each year it gets easier.
Thanks for all the suggestions and help.
Updated Oct/10
Last edited by Rick H on Thu Oct 28, 2010 6:13 am, edited 2 times in total.
User avatar
Rick H
Moderator
 
Posts: 967
Joined: Wed Sep 10, 2008 6:58 pm
Location: Sarnia, Ontario, Canada

Unread postby populuxe » Sat Nov 01, 2008 3:56 pm

I looked but didn't see any mention of the commode supply... there is a special valve in there. Did you get that purged? Either air or antifreeze has to get the water out. There is a procedure in the owners manual that describes how to keep this valve open during winter. I don't do it because I've replaced water with the R.V. antifreeze. My neighbor told me about his unpleasant experience replacing a commode valve because of cold.
Good Luck,
Chris Christensen Wisconsin, USA
88 LeSharo
01 Villager minivan
80 Vespa
User avatar
populuxe
 
Posts: 233
Joined: Wed Oct 31, 2007 9:13 am
Location: Green Bay, Wisconsin USA

Unread postby Rick H » Sat Nov 01, 2008 4:10 pm

I opened the commode valve with the taps and it appears to be empty of water. I left all the other taps open. Maybe I should find a way to open that valve as well by propping something on the foot control.
Better to be safe then sorry. :)
Rick and Cathy from Sarnia, Ontario, Canada
88 LeSharo 2.2L gas auto

We drive in 'NANAZBUS'.
Our grandchildren love it.
User avatar
Rick H
Moderator
 
Posts: 967
Joined: Wed Sep 10, 2008 6:58 pm
Location: Sarnia, Ontario, Canada


Next

  • Similar Topics
    Replies
    Views
    Last post

Return to Le'Sharo FAQ's

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 0 guests