An RV for winter?

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Steel Rat

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Joined
Mar 31, 2005
Posts
6
Hello All.

New to the forum.

I've been living out of my 27' fifth wheel for the last year on a consulting contract here in Bloomington, IL, and was wondering. Do they make RVs of any kind that are well insulated for winter use in colder areas? My current RV I wouldn't have trusted in the cold as far as interior pipes freezing in the extreme cold winter before last. And keeping warm inside is a major challenge as well. Two space heaters going with the furnace as a backup, and of course breakers tripping all the time. I just feel like it's living too dangerously.

So, I want to upgrade to a Class A coach, something with at least dual slide-outs for maximum space. And wondering if they make any with electric heating instead of, or in addition to, propane heat. The propane doesn't last long...

Thanks!

Jeff
 

Ned

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Jeff,

Yes, they make all electric motor homes but you will have to have 50 amp. electric where ever you go.  A better choice for cold climates is one of the diesel fired heating units that heats your floor and hot water.  You can then eliminate the propane completely.  Another option when you're parked for an extended period of time is to rent a large (100 gal. or more) propane bottle and not use your onboard propane. 

Also, you will want dual pane windows and the highest R value insulation available.  Be sure that the bays are well insulated and heated as well.  Not all motor homes are suitable for cold weather, but there are a lot that are.

I know others here will have more suggestions for you, but most of us just go south in the cold weather :)
 

Steel Rat

Member
Joined
Mar 31, 2005
Posts
6
lol, thanks for the info Ned. Yeah, I would be RVing in San Diego if I had a choice of where the contracts were  8).

I've been looking on web sites here and there, but they just don't have enough information available. I've seen one mention of engine hot water heating, but not living space heating. For my purposes renting a larger propane bottle would probably be a better solution.

On that note, how do they hookup to the existing propane system? Is it simple?

Thanks!

Jeff
 

Ned

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Jeff,

A tee is put into the propane line and the external bottle is connected to it.  It goes before the regulator and you can turn off your onboard tank while using it.  You can add the tee yourself or the propane vendor will usually have the parts available and do it for you.

The engine hot water heating (we have it) uses a heat exchanger to heat the hot water tank while you're driving.  When you stop for the night, you don't have to wait for the propane or electric heater to give you hot water for showers, dishes, etc.  It's a nice feature to have, but is of no help in cold weather camping.

I doubt you'll find a web site with more information available than right here.  The members here have hundreds of years of RVing experience and if one of us hasn't seen it, it probably hasn't happened :)
 

Ron

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Jan 29, 2005
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Home is where we park it
Hi Jeff,

There are some RV/s that do pretty well in the cold. ?We had a 93 Bounder and found ourselves in temps as low as 8F and never had a problem. ?Ned should remember that he was there in Ruidoso the same rally. ?Best thing to do is shop for the RV that fis you then contact the manufacturer to confirm if it will meet your weather requirments. ?Never believe a salesman on anything they aren't noted for giving the correct answers if the correct answer might jepordize a sell. ;D

We winterize by heading South but were have been in weather in Wyoming that was below freezing a couple nights in our American Eagle with no problems. ?

 

Steel Rat

Member
Joined
Mar 31, 2005
Posts
6
Ned, I'm looking for something for more long-term stuff. So I'm glad you told me.

Ron, thanks for the info. I was looking at the Winnebago Adventurer, which specifically states double-pane windows, but not much beyond that.

Any specific brands and models would be great for me to look into further.

A year ago when I got here (late Jan/early Feb) the average temp, without wind chill, was zero for about a month, and not much warmer than that for a couple more weeks. I was hurting, believe me. Fortunately this past winter was MUCH milder.

Jeff
 

Ron

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Jeff,

It will take more than just double pane windows.  Somehow I doubt if the Winnie has what it takes to survive the cold.  I may be wrong though. ;D
 

Steel Rat

Member
Joined
Mar 31, 2005
Posts
6
Ron said:
Jeff,

It will take more than just double pane windows.  Somehow I doubt if the Winnie has what it takes to survive the cold.  I may be wrong though. ;D

Oh I'm sure it will. Problem is the literature I'm seeing just doesn't tell you R values or how extensive the insulation is.
 

Alaskansnowbirds

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Mar 11, 2005
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Camp Verde, AZ
Steel Rat said:
Hello All.

New to the forum.

I've been living out of my 27' fifth wheel for the last year on a consulting contract here in Bloomington, IL, and was wondering. Do they make RVs of any kind that are well insulated for winter use in colder areas? My current RV I wouldn't have trusted in the cold as far as interior pipes freezing in the extreme cold winter before last. And keeping warm inside is a major challenge as well. Two space heaters going with the furnace as a backup, and of course breakers tripping all the time. I just feel like it's living too dangerously.

So, I want to upgrade to a Class A coach, something with at least dual slide-outs for maximum space. And wondering if they make any with electric heating instead of, or in addition to, propane heat. The propane doesn't last long...

Thanks!

Jeff

Jeff,

After reading all the posts so far I see you have got some good information. From your first message I take it that you are at one place for a long time. I'm not sure a motor home would be your best bet. Motor homes that sit for long periods usually don't age to well. I would suggest that you look into the Teton brand of fifth wheels. I have seen their ads where it states they are guaranteed down to 40 below zero IF you order it from the factory with their arctic package. A fifth wheel will give you a more room than a motor home of the same length.

Forum members Dan & Jeannine Wainwright have an Alfa Gold fifth wheel and I know they spend a lot of time in cold weather skiing so they would be a good source of information.


 

Ron

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Home is where we park it
Jeff,

Don has given you some very good advice.  The Teton 5ver is an excellent suggestion.  Like Don indicated be sure to get the artic package. 
 

Jim Johnson

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Mar 4, 2005
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Newton, AL
Jeff,

I don't remember the particulars on it but the Triple E made in Canada is built  to withstand really cold temps. 
 

obelix67

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Sep 7, 2009
Posts
65
Location
Highlander in the Swiss Alps
This is the Triple E climate Spec http://www.tripleerv.com/climateguard.html

I am interested in using the RV to go to one ski resort one weekend, another the next ...a week in Jan, a week in feb :)
 

Bobandpamlemay

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Apr 26, 2009
Posts
383
Location
Schaumburg, Illinois
Jeff: I'm not sure if this will help but I thought I would pass it on. I just bought a Komfort 5er that is well constructed (at least according to the pictures) and it has insulation of R17 in ceiling and floor and R10 in the walls. My unit has a 42,000 btu furnace and a fireplace. While we haven't taken it out in the winter yet, we are planning on doing so at the end of January on our way to Texas. Hopefully......
Komfort is made by Thor in Oregon near Canada and if I understand correctly, manufactured to meet some of the Canadian requirements.

Bob
 

Dragos

New member
Joined
Nov 6, 2011
Posts
4
I stay in a THOR citation supreme. Been in it for over five years winter and summer. Coldest so far has been -51 C. I work in Northern Alberta. I put some skirting around it and put a trouble light under it to cut back the frost. When I went to buy this one I had all the different reps in one room at the same time.(was at a RV show). The citation rep told me that the only Fifth wheel I should be spending the winter in Canada is a Citation Supreme and that anyone said different then they were lying to me. None of the other reps said a word. The same reps that in the hours before, when we were alone, told me that their Fifth wheels were the best. I have no problems with the citation. I just ensue to turn on their attic ventilation fan when I take a shower. This keeps out the moisture which in time will mould out and rot your RV. All the tanks are enclosed and are heated by the Front furnace which also heats the bedroom. Normal temp for here in winter is around - 25 C. MY furnace will kick on for about 5 minutes every 20-30 minutes. It keeps the trailer at a nice 73 F. Comfortable enough to sit in track pants and T-shirt. I hear Citation supreme is no longer being made but there are some still around for sale. They are expensive ($75,000 for my model) but well worth the money for my situation. I think you have to look at how cold will it get where you will be parked and then start shopping from there. Remember a manufacture in Texas might not have the same idea as Winter package as a manufacturer in Alaska for example. I almost bought an Artic Fox and I'm glad I didn't, a guy next to me one winter had one and said he had to wear sweatshirts and that his furnace never shuts off. I guess they don't insulate their slides. Good luck with the RV shopping and I hope this helped. Remember if you are below freezing and all you have for your water tanks is heat tracing and you lose power, your gonna freeze up. Look for an enclosed system heated by one of your furnaces. Then make sure you don't run out of propane. lol
 
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