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Old 02-14-2021, 10:08 AM   #1
jdarwin
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Frozen pipes behind convenience panel

What do others do to keep pipes behind the convenience panel from freezing? We’re outside Ft Worth where it’s been sub freezing for 3 days. We’re using a heated water hose. Yesterday it got up to 33 and I found water running out from beneath the basement. I opened the basement and found it flooded. I pulled the panel behind the convenience panel off and found the water pump had frozen and cracked. Luckily there was a CW about 10 miles away with a replacement pump. This morning (17 degrees) I went to replace it and found all the pipes behind the panel frozen. I’ve got a small room heater in there now thawing it out. Keystone advertises 4 season protection. False advertising?
 
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Old 02-14-2021, 10:20 AM   #2
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Are you running your furnace or depending upon electric heater supplements inside the coach. These Montana's rated to zero degrees, depend on the furnace running. There are some air ducts actually run in the underbelly area to keep things from freezing. But, if the furnace does not run, there's no heat going down there.

We have used our Montana successfully to 10 degrees now and everything was fine. But, we were also running through a 30 pound propane tank about every day too. It seems about 40-45 percent of the heat from your furnace is designed to blow under the floor. Thus the 4-season, good to Zero Degree promotion on these Montana's.
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Old 02-14-2021, 10:33 AM   #3
Ram Montana High Country
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I've heard some folks get foam board and install behind basement doors.

Also might consider using foam board to block off convenience center. Is hole blocked where hose goes out?
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Old 02-14-2021, 10:37 AM   #4
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We use a car washing sponge to block the hole the water hose enters with and foam board behind the basement doors. We also don't use electic heaters enough to stop the furnace from running a lot.
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Old 02-14-2021, 10:39 AM   #5
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Would it help to put furnace fan in the on position vs auto position?
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Old 02-14-2021, 10:42 AM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ram Montana High Country View Post
Would it help to put furnace fan in the on position vs auto position?
NO! If you do that all that will happen is that your AC fan will now run, nothing will change with the furnace.
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Old 02-14-2021, 10:47 AM   #7
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If using campsite power that small electric room heater in the basement should do the trick if not running the furnace. Perhaps while you're in there run the furnace and see if some of that warm air is going into the basement.
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Old 02-14-2021, 10:56 AM   #8
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I have a small ceramic heater in the basement, I also run the furnace. As said the hole in the convince center where the hose comes through needs to be stuffed with rags or something else to close it up. Running the ceramic heater on low helps supplement the furnace like the electric fireplace. With this comb I run I can keep the 5th between 69&71 in this 12 degree weather and lower and not have any issues.

I go through 1 30lb bottle in 2-1/2 days.right now, Monday maybe a different story as will be in the single digits durning the day and -digits at night.

Works for us
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Old 02-14-2021, 11:39 AM   #9
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Thanks for the feedback. We do use room heaters and try to preserve our propane. While in the basement with the doors shut there is a large amount of cold air blowing on the pipes from an opening below the sub structure (where the holding tanks are). Iím going to have to stuff that full of insulation and insulate behind the panel.
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Old 02-14-2021, 11:43 AM   #10
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Run the furnace.
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Old 02-14-2021, 12:22 PM   #11
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This is a list of all the "air gaps" i have found (so far). You will need to close these up as much as possible.

Air gaps:
Look under your frame. There are lots of holes and gaps. This allows cold (or hot, summer time) air into your underbelly and can freeze your pipes.
Use gorilla tape to close off any small openings (hydraulic lines, slide cylinder).
Use aluminum sheeting and cut to fit around the hydraulic jacks. Leave the opening around the propane tanks. They must have ventilation.
Take down your basement walls, crawl in and close the doors. You will see daylight coming in through all the gaps along the frame.
I have a 3130re. There is a panel under the bottom shelf in the pantry. Behind the panel is the water heater. Again you can see daylight coming in around the edges. This requires fire retardant insulation around the water heater to block out the air gaps.
Under your kitchen island there is a panel covering your plumbing. Take it out and there is a big Triangle gap in the corner. Cut and fit styrofoam to fill the gap tight. Use gorilla tape to seal it in place.
Remove the drawers closest to the fridge. At the back where the propane and electric wiring come through to the oven, there is a gap in the wall by the fridge. Remember the back of the fridge is vented to the outside. Cold air comes in through this gap. Mine is an RV fridge so I have to be careful because on the other side of that wall is the chimney for the fridge heater. I have to use flame retardant insulation here.
Make sure your inside and outside slide seals are good.
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Old 02-14-2021, 06:10 PM   #12
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Get a couple of cheap (less than $6 at WM) drop lights put in some 60 watt old style bulbs, that get warm, and put them where ever the freezing is occurring.
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Old 02-17-2021, 07:02 PM   #13
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Originally Posted by Cat320 View Post
Get a couple of cheap (less than $6 at WM) drop lights put in some 60 watt old style bulbs, that get warm, and put them where ever the freezing is occurring.
This is what I do as well and kept things flowing through last winter in South Dakota. Yes, we used a lot of propane but we stayed warm. Rather than the Walmart style clamp on lights with the thin metal shroud I found some at Menards that have heavier/thicker shrouds and I used a 100W bulb. I also bought a remote thermometer at Walmart (less than $20) and put the transmitter unit inside the compartment near the water lines and the receiving unit inside the 5er. With the light and the furnace running it never got below 45 degrees in there the whole winter.
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Old 02-17-2021, 08:19 PM   #14
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I put battery heaters standing vertically in both the battery compartment and the basement.
Pictures show the difference in heat going below running the furnace and using electric heaters only. The basement is usually 5įF warmer than the battery compartment. The underbelly sensor is in the void space under the island. Remove the panel under the sink covering the plumbing and you will find a BIG gap going all the way down to the underbelly.
We recently purchased a small 350W ceramic heater. Works great in our S&B bedroom. Planning on using it in our Montana bedroom. It would be perfect for the basement OR underneath if you have a skirted RV.
https://www.amazon.com/dp/B07DCKFJLM/ref=cm_sw_r_cp_apa_fabc_PGR04Q29Y95QFXQ7YDQ7?_enco ding=UTF8&psc=1
Ensure it has good clearance at the back for unrestricted airflow.
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Old 02-18-2021, 11:22 AM   #15
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Angry Texas power

I am just amazed you have power to run the furnace in Ft. Worth. Our power at the S&B has been on and off. We did 17 hours with no heat at 5 degrees Monday night. And we are better off than many people who have had no heat for 4 or 5 days. I am sure glad the Monty is winterized and in a covered storage facility.
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Old 02-21-2021, 01:18 PM   #16
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All seasons in Florida

My answer to the question on ďall seasonsĒ would be yes... in Florida.

We have survived winters in Indiana , but only after sealing up the coach. There are more places for cold air to get in than believable. I opened panel behind convenience center, installed a small ceramic heater, and added batt insulation behind door . Sealed up holes mice can crawl thru, and the list goes on. All Season..... lol. Yes but not out of the factory. With skirting we stay comfortable at 65 degrees, tub area is always above 50 and burn thru (1) tank of fuel a week at temperatures between 20-30 outside. Possible
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Old 02-21-2021, 01:38 PM   #17
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I am also in the FT worth area. I use electric oil heaters as a supplement to the gas heater. I set the gas furnace at about 70. This gave me the right balance gas/electric heat to keep all running, until the power went out. I then had to get the genny out. I had to lower the heat down to 62 on the gas heater because the genny would only run half the rig. Was running 2 oil heaters at medium setting and fireplace at low at 73. I would have been fine but forgot to switch the heated water hose over to the genny, DOH. I only lost the water hose throughout the cold weather but it did not break. This weather would be a regular Minnesota storm, so I was prepared, just need to remember to move all electric over to the genny next time. The tanks valves did freeze so i will have to look at what happened there. Before the storm I got weather striping around a small water hose from the filter to the unit, insulation on my outside dual filter and inside a Styrofoam cooler. In the convenience center I also used insulation in the round hole in the bottom and in where I took out the keytv to hookup my satellite. The convenience center stayed warm throughout.


Note they do have aftermarket electric to add on to your gas heater. I am looking into getting one because I will most likely always be plugged in.
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Old 02-21-2021, 03:20 PM   #18
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Originally Posted by jdarwin View Post
What do others do to keep pipes behind the convenience panel from freezing? Weíre outside Ft Worth where itís been sub freezing for 3 days. Weíre using a heated water hose. Yesterday it got up to 33 and I found water running out from beneath the basement. I opened the basement and found it flooded. I pulled the panel behind the convenience panel off and found the water pump had frozen and cracked. Luckily there was a CW about 10 miles away with a replacement pump. This morning (17 degrees) I went to replace it and found all the pipes behind the panel frozen. Iíve got a small room heater in there now thawing it out. Keystone advertises 4 season protection. False advertising?
I use a thermostatically controlled ceramic 750W/1500W heater in basement. I use heat tape from the end of the heated hose up all the connectors I have to the wall of the panel. I cut holes in the panel so hot air gets in there. Block the bottom hole. All that is powered off my solar/lithium system so even in a power outage we can last a few hours before I have to hook up a couple of 2000W Hondas. for a few hours to fill the 400AH of battery.
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Old 02-21-2021, 06:06 PM   #19
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We have a 3820FK and I put a cheap 300w ceramic heater in the basement, the heat moves between there and the area with water pump, keeps everything from freezing. that also is directly below the kitchen floor so that stays warmer too. they are cheap to run and safe with a safety off switch.
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Old 02-23-2021, 08:23 PM   #20
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jdarwin View Post
Thanks for the feedback. We do use room heaters and try to preserve our propane. While in the basement with the doors shut there is a large amount of cold air blowing on the pipes from an opening below the sub structure (where the holding tanks are). Iím going to have to stuff that full of insulation and insulate behind the panel.
This is exactly what we had and pipes froze the first cold night with our 3731FL
As I removed the panel to access behind the convenience panel I noticed light coming in below. There was gaps in the j-wrap right below the plumbing and I could feel a nasty draft of cold air rushing in. I stuffed a chunk of foam between the frame and j-wrap, blanket insulation will get wet and fail. I had bought a block of 4 inch thick foam at Hobby Lobby that's used to make pillows and cut out a plug for the hole where the hose comes in. I used the left over for this fix. Since that time I have had no more problem with it. I kept a remote thermometer in that area for the rest of that winter and the temp never went below 60 after that. On ours the furnace is right in that area, it just couldn't keep up with that cold air blasting on the pipes until I plugged the hole. I have not had any problem since and have not used any kind of additional heat in the basement. We are now in our fourth winter.
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