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Post by alythian on Wed Feb 14, 2018 3:23 pm

Hi all, greetings from a cold snowy Alyth.
We were in Edinburgh a little over 2 weeks ago with "Hector", using him as a base whilst we went to see Miss Saigon at the Festival Theatre.
It was our first sub-zero outing with the van and it threw up a number of issues which we never had with our caravan.

The Carver Fanmaster heater tripped, despite having all the blown air outlets open and yes it was working hard. About -5*C outside temp. Couldn`t reset the trip as we have a microwave fitted in the bottom of the wardrobe space which allows access to the reset tang on the casing. However the gas fire did work in combination with the blown air system set on gas fully auto setting. A thing that puzzled me was that the red light on top of the gas control knob remained illuminated for much of the time the fire was on. Hmmm.

The cold seeping into the Hab area from the cab was grim. No much wonder that the electric heater tripped. My good lady decided that extensions to and thermal lining of the cab curtains was the answer. There is a problem, in that the curtain rail has runners on it which do not have eyes for curtain hooks, the curtains have been attached to the runners by thread which loops around the runner and through the curtain header tape.

Can anyone suggest a supplier of suitable curtain rail or asupplier of replacement runners which have hook eyelets on them? I have noted that several of you out there have had simmilar problems. Hope you can help.

Brett.
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Post by rogerblack on Wed Feb 14, 2018 4:00 pm

Hi Brett

Hopefully someone more knowledgeable about curtain rails will be along shortly to answer your question but just a couple of points meanwhile in attempting to help with your problem:

do you already have external thermal screens (Silverscreens, Taylormade or similar)? If not then worth investing in as the single glazed glass windscreen and cab windows are the worst culprits for cold.

if your van dashboard has the means to set the vents to internal only, had you set it to that position? This can cut down external draughts considerably, especially if facing onto a cold wind.

I also found there were horrendous draughts coming in around the driver and passenger seat belt mountings, even worse when driving along; I dismantled the plastic surrounds to these and managed to fill some of the gaps with foam and/or polystyrene, obviously without in any way affecting the safe operation of the seat belts.

Hope some of this may help.

PS I believe the curtain track systems commonly used on AS are made by Silent Gliss - the thread connectors you refer to are termed 'gliders', maybe they can help with an alternative?
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Post by Paulmold on Wed Feb 14, 2018 4:29 pm

Put 'Autosleeper curtain' into eBay search and you'll find several to choose from.

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Post by alythian on Wed Feb 14, 2018 5:40 pm

Good evening both. Thankyou for your helpfull info. will let you know how we get on. Cheers, Brett.
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Post by daisy mae on Wed Feb 14, 2018 6:56 pm

The "hooks " on that rail are like little teeth, that go in the curtain tape, have just fitted new curtains to my Amethyst and all the curtain tracks have the same teeth, I bought extras when I redid my previous van a clubman , they are a bit fiddle to start with but soon get used to putting them in. once in work well,

To get the curtains off to start with I just took out the two tiny screws with a stop attached, tiny metal piece, at the end of the track and both curtains came off the same side, so leaving track in place. reverse to put curtains back.

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Post by Doris on Wed Feb 14, 2018 8:13 pm

I put squares of insulation in all the skylights. I am planning to make a thermal curtain from Insulbright to hang between the cab and habitation area. This will make the area to be heated smaller so that the heater can cope better. I also take some strips of foam to stuff into anywhere I feel draughts.
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Post by meanchris on Wed Feb 14, 2018 8:20 pm

I think that rogerblack has it right, thermal external screens make the most difference, especially the ones that cover the bonnet heater intake, along with putting the heater on recirculate.

We poo-pooed thermal screens, until we bought some.

They also allow you to reincorporate the now warmer cab area into your seating area for more space, if you have dual captain's seats.
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Post by daisy mae on Wed Feb 14, 2018 9:23 pm

I have the external solver screens and find them very good, tried the curtain across the cab, but that just made the cab like a fridge, found it better to incorporate cab into living area,
Where the cab seats are fixed into the floor there are two channels running back to front running the length of the seat , passenger side worse than drivers, there is a howling draught from there, my job tomorrow to plug it somehow,

Maiden voyage Friday, must be mad this weather. right on the coast at Norfolk of all places, that`s going home to me.

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Post by Doris on Wed Feb 14, 2018 9:34 pm

Thanks for that info daisy mae.
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Post by roli on Thu Feb 15, 2018 7:27 am

When we had the Exec Liz made a short curtain which fitted across the front under the dash which was held in place with Press Studs to the underside of the dash (if that makes sense) and its surprising what a difference it made.

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Post by bolero boy on Thu Feb 15, 2018 8:23 am

[You must be registered and logged in to see this link.]Roger, thats a good idea, not too cumbersome and works with any style of van.
to keep warm you need two things....
one is a good heat supply and the other is not to let it escape (good insulation)...Rogers post certainly helps with the latter....
this small, 200w greenhouse heater can supplement the vans heating system, is easy to site in (say) a footwell, can be left on and doesn't threaten tripping the site supply and adds heat where its needed...
i dont have one, but they get good reviews, are very compact and silent, unlike fan heaters...

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Post by daisy mae on Thu Feb 15, 2018 9:06 am

I find the small electric oil heater works for me, that sits in the cab, and travels behind passenger seat,
cuirtain under dashboard sounds good, I carry a draught excluder, a long sausage and put that across the back of seats. on the floor.

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Post by -mojo- on Thu Feb 15, 2018 2:31 pm

In my experience, if you're going to carry a small heater, a 200W one will not be powerful enough for a van the size of an Exec. When I owned a slightly smaller van (a Flair) I carried a Dimplex 500W Coldwatcher greenhouse heater, and that was just about right. Again, they are safe to use as long as not covered - they have no fan.

[I should add that since moving back to pop-tops I've found that anything less than 700W is inadequate for 3-season use, but that's not really relevant to this thread. You can actually buy a 1000W Coldwatcher - but they are big!]
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Post by rose49f on Thu Feb 15, 2018 5:23 pm

Just been away. -5 l think on Tuesday night. Left my 750W radiator on and was wasn't cold at all. I know l only have a small Neuvo but worth buying.
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Post by alythian on Mon Feb 19, 2018 6:45 pm

Hi all, many thanks again for your very helpful suggestions regards our draughty Executive. It is somewhat comforting to realise that our `problem` is shared within the A/S community.

Brett.
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Post by easylifer on Mon Feb 19, 2018 6:50 pm

Not that it matters much but the Executive is a monocoque.
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Post by daisy mae on Mon Feb 19, 2018 8:16 pm

Monocoques are said to be colder than Styrofoam built vans, now I have a cosy warm van that doesn`t leak through the wall seams, doesn`t have any, unlike the Styrofoam foam ones that do have seams and can leak.

.Back tonight from three days in Norfolk literally by the sea, 5 feet from the beach and the tide comes right in, my Amethyst is a lot bigger than my Clubman was and this was a maiden voyage.


Heat wise had to turn the heater down at times, got too warm, over night I left the 500 oil heater on in the cab area on a lower setting, it kept the van warm all night, in the morning before switching on the kettle I flicked the van heater on, after a while I put the blowers on, found when it went off a big variant between temperature, I turned up the heating on the wall control panel. when sun came out turned the heating off, too warm,

I also did the draught proofing  when away, as easier to do when living in the van, at bottom of fridge, there was a howling draught, on reading the fitting instructions it said refrigerator must be sealed inside, all round,  so I cut down small strips of foam pipe insulation, went prepared, pushed it in the ,gap at the bottom of the fridge, on top put Gorilla clear tape to keep it in place, cannot be seen, pipe insulation, the grey one,  pushed in the cab seat bases along the sides, in the floor, , where there is a long channel , that sorted that out, at night hung a small blanket on hab door, anchored by the waste bin lid , a make shift for that holiday, which then draped onto the floor covering the van steps, that worked, so making something to look a bit better , with better fixing, just to use at night in very cold weather, Just this,  as well as all the extra insulation put in the walls before going away, plus the thermal curtains I made, didn`t use the cab curtains , they are also thermal lined, didn`t need them, made a very cosy van, a pleasure to be in when very cold, instead of keeping feet off the floor because it was so cold, the dogs love it now, although they love the seats. hugegrins


Last edited by daisy mae on Mon Feb 19, 2018 8:31 pm; edited 1 time in total (Reason for editing : added a few more words)
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Post by bolero boy on Mon Feb 19, 2018 10:22 pm

-mojo- wrote:In my experience, if you're going to carry a small heater, a 200W one will not be powerful enough for a van the size of an Exec. When I owned a slightly smaller van (a Flair) I carried a Dimplex 500W Coldwatcher greenhouse heater, and that was just about right. Again, they are safe to use as long as not covered - they have no fan.

[I should add that since moving back to pop-tops I've found that anything less than 700W is inadequate for 3-season use, but that's not really relevant to this thread. You can actually buy a 1000W Coldwatcher - but they are big!]
My suggestion was as a supplement to, not a replacement for, the van's current heating system.
I was suggesting it be used in a cold spot to relieve that issue, not heat the whole van....

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Post by daisy mae on Mon Feb 19, 2018 10:38 pm

I use my oil heater as a supplement when very cold, left on at night in cab, it keeps the chill off, in the day use van heater, also if very cold oil heater on in cab.
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Post by Doris on Mon Feb 19, 2018 10:49 pm

I will be interested in what you make for the habitation door as the door on our Executive does not fit well and is draughty.
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Post by daisy mae on Mon Feb 19, 2018 11:45 pm

Doris wrote:I will be interested in what you make for the habitation door as the door on our Executive does not fit well and is draughty.
Louise

Will get back to you on that one, I was thinking along the lines of a curtain, but on mine needed on the bottom half of door , as top fits well.

needs to come over the floor to close off the steps, if you can understand what I mean, found if just cover the door , the steps are very draughty.so need to close them off,  I say night time as the door will not be opened, like it is in the day.it is the fitting I am working on, don`t want it to look tacky. I also have the big AS waste bin to fit in .May take me a day or so to achieve anything worthwhile , says she hopefully.
Best Regards,
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