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Author Topic: Winterizing with air pressure  (Read 652 times)

Richard R

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Winterizing with air pressure
« on: October 29, 2019, 07:07:03 AM »
I've always pumped antifreeze through my system and added it to the drains, but this year I've thought of blowing out the waterlines.  How much pressure should I set my compressor to?  I don't want to blow out the water lines with too much pressure.

Rene T

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Re: Winterizing with air pressure
« Reply #1 on: October 29, 2019, 07:09:45 AM »
Around 40 PSI
Rene, Lucille & co-pilot Buddy
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scottydl

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Re: Winterizing with air pressure
« Reply #2 on: October 29, 2019, 07:32:01 AM »
^^ Yep, what he said. Just did mine the other day, as it's supposed to drop down to 29 overnight later this week. Took me all of 20 minutes or so, and that was going through every faucet and both low point drains at least 3 times. After you're done, pour some antifreeze down the drains (to seal the traps) and in the toilet (do not flush - to protect the valve seal). I used about a half-gallon total of antifreeze between 4 drains and 1 toilet, and that was probably overkill.
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8Muddypaws

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Re: Winterizing with air pressure
« Reply #3 on: October 29, 2019, 08:56:18 AM »
Nobody has mentioned opening your low point drains and water heater.  Drain all the water out, then use air.
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Gary RV_Wizard

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Re: Winterizing with air pressure
« Reply #4 on: October 29, 2019, 09:51:51 AM »
Pressure in not important for blowing out the lines, but air volume is.  You need lots of air flowing to consistently push the water through.   Most compressors produce their best volume at lower pressures, so somewhere in the 20-30 psi range is probably best. no more than 40, even though the water system is rated for around 85 psi.
Small, portable tire inflator type air compressors seldom produce much volume and are unsuitable for this task. If the volume is too low, you run the risk of incomplete blow-out.
Gary
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Summers: Black Mountain, NC
Home: Ocala National Forest, FL

1blue78

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Re: Winterizing with air pressure
« Reply #5 on: October 29, 2019, 09:57:28 AM »
It may be over kill but I do both - blow out with air followed by pumping AF through the lines. This way you do not dilute your AF with water and you get some AF in the P traps of your sinks.  Cheap insurance against a cracked line, taps or drain.
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massspike

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Re: Winterizing with air pressure
« Reply #6 on: October 29, 2019, 02:01:33 PM »
I use a 5 CFM compressor at 25psi and blow out one faucet at a time (after draining the system and hot water heater first).

Don't forget the black water flush...I start with it.

Rene T

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Re: Winterizing with air pressure
« Reply #7 on: October 29, 2019, 02:47:48 PM »
One other thing I use to do is the last day of camping when heading home, I would open all the faucets and both low point drains and I'd remove the drain plug from the water heater. Then traveling home and the water sloshing around in the pipes, eventually it would either reach the water heater and drain out or it would reach the low point drains and  drain out.
Rene, Lucille & co-pilot Buddy
AKA  Pep N Mem
2011 Chevy Duramax 2500 HD 4X4
2011 Montana High Country 343RL
From the Granite State of NH
& Florida Snowbird in Lakeland FL

John From Detroit

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Re: Winterizing with air pressure
« Reply #8 on: October 29, 2019, 03:58:14 PM »
What pressure... I've done it unregulated and 50 PSI.

How I do it (at 50 psi)  First drain fresh tank via tank drains.  Also drain water heater and bypass.
Set regulator or put inline gauge and ride the pass valve (both work)
Open everything, blow till I run out of air (6 gallon pancake) while it recharges drain back the Ice Maker (Either unhook the lines (best) or force cycle or better yet. Remove it and gain more freezer space and put in a counter top unit (How I wound up doing it years later).   Blow again.. now place a towel below the water pump inlet straner and open it. (Water drops to towel) run pump for about 1 minute giver or take 30 seconds and shut off, Reassemble and send towel to wash.

Blow again
And again
And again
ANd again
Finally when I'm happy no water is left
Stow compressor and close valves.

As someone said Pink the drains and toilets job done

Come spring.. using pink method.. Flush all that cramp out of fresh lines, sanatize and rinse

Come spring air method  Sanatize and rinse (note the flush all that crap is missing)
Flushign the toilet and drains... Well yes you will do that but don't worry if flush failes to get rid of all the crap. next flush will.
Nothing adds excitement like something that is none of your business
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jymbee

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Re: Winterizing with air pressure
« Reply #9 on: October 29, 2019, 08:26:20 PM »
Pressure in not important for blowing out the lines, but air volume is.  You need lots of air flowing to consistently push the water through.   Most compressors produce their best volume at lower pressures, so somewhere in the 20-30 psi range is probably best. no more than 40, even though the water system is rated for around 85 psi.
Small, portable tire inflator type air compressors seldom produce much volume and are unsuitable for this task. If the volume is too low, you run the risk of incomplete blow-out.

Gary-- another pressure question for 'ya...
Although I haven't used it yet I bought a "winterizing kit" for our VIAIR 400P portable pump some time ago. All the of the reviews & related videos I've read/seen seemed quite positive so I had planned on using when returning to cold climate from the south this coming Spring.

Give the VIAIR has virtually no "volume" to speak of, I'm wondering whether this will actually work as advertised?
Wandering in our 2012 Fleetwood Bounder 33C Class A

lynnmor

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Re: Winterizing with air pressure
« Reply #10 on: October 30, 2019, 08:27:16 AM »

Give the VIAIR has virtually no "volume" to speak of, I'm wondering whether this will actually work as advertised?

That produces a very small volume of air, if you want to use it, perhaps you could charge a 10 gallon portable tank and repeatedly blast it with that.

Gary RV_Wizard

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Re: Winterizing with air pressure
« Reply #11 on: October 30, 2019, 10:12:16 AM »
The Viar 400P is actually decent on air volume (cfm).   At 30 psi it claims to deliver 1.86 cfm.  See the performance specs at:

https://www.viaircorp.com/portables/400p
Gary
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Summers: Black Mountain, NC
Home: Ocala National Forest, FL

jymbee

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Re: Winterizing with air pressure
« Reply #12 on: October 30, 2019, 11:33:09 AM »
The Viar 400P is actually decent on air volume (cfm).   At 30 psi it claims to deliver 1.86 cfm.  See the performance specs at:

https://www.viaircorp.com/portables/400p

Ok, great. Thanks for the insights-- makes me even more happy that I bought the Viar. Expensive, but it's proved to be very useful multiple times.
Wandering in our 2012 Fleetwood Bounder 33C Class A

John From Detroit

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Re: Winterizing with air pressure
« Reply #13 on: October 30, 2019, 04:25:26 PM »
I tend to support the 10 gallon luggable tank suggestion.. Mine is a six gallon 120 volt compressor. I've not found a tankless that delivers the volume save for some rather large industrial jobs.
Nothing adds excitement like something that is none of your business
My Home is where I park it.

Gary RV_Wizard

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Re: Winterizing with air pressure
« Reply #14 on: October 31, 2019, 09:45:55 AM »

A "luggable" auxiliary air tank is a good alternative if you have only a small compressor or none at all. Fill the tank somewhere/somehow and take it to the trailer and get to work.
Gary
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Gary Brinck
Summers: Black Mountain, NC
Home: Ocala National Forest, FL