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Old 09-20-2022, 06:37 PM   #1
Columbo
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Tank heaters? Or more insulation?

Iím preparing my rig for winter (3625RE) and debating about adding tank heaters (this model did not come with tank heaters from the factory). Pulling the coroplast down to do this doesnít sound like fun. Alternatively, I considered adding a layer of 1Ē foam insulation over the coroplast on the entire underside. I will be fully skirted as well. Any thoughts as to which would be best bang for my buck? I feel that the insulation would be beneficial in keeping the floor and the tanks warm where the tank heaters only benefit the tanks.
 
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Old 09-20-2022, 09:48 PM   #2
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If you are skirted and have a good draft proof skirt, I would just put a small ceramic heater underneath set to low and the power cord where you can plug it in when needed along with some remote temperature sensors.

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Old 09-21-2022, 06:55 AM   #3
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Thanks for the reply! Have you used a setup like you described and if so how low of temps did you see? The area Iím in for the winter can see sub-zero (Fahrenheit) temps often. I donít want to be unprepared and then trying to fix a problem later.
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Old 09-21-2022, 07:17 AM   #4
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How cold does it get in Vermont? Here in southwest Va skirting is all you would need.
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Old 09-21-2022, 08:18 AM   #5
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From a logistical standpoint, I think the skirting would be easier. In order to install new tank heaters where none currently exist, you'll have to run power to them. Tank heaters run off your camper battery (DC). So, somehow, you'll need to run wiring for power. I think that would be a bigger challenge than putting up skirting.

If you are located in Vermont, then there isn't enough you can do to brace yourself for winter. If at all possible, do both .... the skirt and the heaters (and the extra insulation).
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Old 09-21-2022, 08:32 AM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mlh View Post
How cold does it get in Vermont? ...
A quick Google search and the record low temperature for Vermont was in 1933 and it was 50 degrees below zero (Fahrenheit)

The average lows in January are (Fahrenheit):

Southern Vermont:
Bennington 13
Cavendish 8
Rutland 8
Woodstock 7

Central Vermont:
Barre 7
Montpelier 7
Rochester 9
South Lincoln 6

Northern Vermont:
Burlington 13
Essex Junction 10
Island Pond 3
Jay Peak 4
Mount Mansfield 6
Newport 4
South Hero 11
St Albans 8
St Johnsbury 9
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Old 09-21-2022, 10:14 AM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Columbo View Post
Thanks for the reply! Have you used a setup like you described and if so how low of temps did you see? The area I’m in for the winter can see sub-zero (Fahrenheit) temps often. I don’t want to be unprepared and then trying to fix a problem later.
No, we don't stay in one place long enough to warrant installing skirting.
Look in the Forums section for "Burrr it's cold outside, Winter RVing".
Lots of good info there.

Pictures below show the difference in temperature between the interior, battery compartment and underbelly (inside the coroplast) when running electric heat versus running your furnace.
Note: I have battery heaters installed in the battery compartment and the basement.
Your furnace helps put heat into the underbelly.
The 3rd picture is all heat turned off during that record breaking cold spell in Feb 2021.
If you remove the panel covering the kitchen drain in your island, the drain pipe goes all the way to the underbelly. I lowered one of the remote temperature sensors down there on a string, the sealed up that gap (drafts).
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Old 09-21-2022, 02:41 PM   #8
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Thanks for all the replies! @Daryles those temps were no skirting, just the RV as it comes from the factory? Any issues with plumbing freezing up?
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Old 09-21-2022, 07:02 PM   #9
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Originally Posted by Columbo View Post
Thanks for all the replies! @Daryles those temps were no skirting, just the RV as it comes from the factory? Any issues with plumbing freezing up?
No skirting.
However, I have installed two 1" layers of insulation in the floor and left/right side walls of the battery compartment (lithium batteries don't like being charged in freezing temperatures). I also put a 12vdc 75W battery warmer standing up on edge against the front wall on the floor of the battery compartment and one in the basement.
When we do travel/camp in freezing weather we are usually winterized. We use Bottled Water.
We have occasionally traveled in freezing conditions and had no issues with freezing plumbing.
Don't forget to DOUBLE insulate the freshwater drain hose sticking down. Although, if you are skirted and have a heater underneath, you shouldn't need to worry about that. Only if you are driving in freezing temps. That freshwater drain hose sticking down in the air stream going down the highway will freeze first.

Have a look at post #34 in this thread.
https://www.montanaowners.com/forums...kirting&page=2
I would go with 2" styrofoam then cover it with vinyl bead channel skirting to keep everything dry.
Have a look at the picture in that thread.
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