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Going away for a few days this weekend

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Post by wilksy Mon Nov 29, 2021 1:58 pm

After a bit of advice please, we shall be going away for a couple of days at the end of this week and as I have never been away in the winter before I could do with a few tips regarding water in particular.

Yesterday, as I hadn't yet used the heater, I decided to make sure I knew how it worked so after an hour with the Truma at 22°C the motorhome was nice a warm - result.  However at 10pm last night I could hear water coming from somewhere which on investigation seemed to be coming from the frost protection drain, this has confused me, where did the water come from I drained down both fresh and grey tanks on my last outing so this has confused me somewhat.

Also when I get to site on Thursday (fully serviced) and connect up my auto water fill system what stops that from freezing if the temperature drops to low.

Any other winter away tips would be gratefully welcomed.
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Post by PLOUGHLIN Mon Nov 29, 2021 2:00 pm

Did you drain down the water heater previously as well as the tanks?

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Post by wilksy Mon Nov 29, 2021 2:09 pm

No I didn't is the water heater integral within the Truma, I'm guessing it must be, the next question is how should I have drained down the water heater.
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Post by Weegie Mon Nov 29, 2021 2:20 pm

Your Truma unit is both a water boiler and a space heater. 

As mentioned above, your boiler does not empty just because you've drained the fresh & grey waste tanks, it needs to be drained itself. Generally, this is done by manually tripping the frost protection valve. If you confirm the Truma model, someone will confirm the exact process.

As for your autofill, if you mean you'll be attaching a hose from a tap to a (whale?) connection on the van, then nothing you do inside the van will protect that hose. It will be vulnerable to freezing, so, it either needs to be insulated / lagged or, more easily, just connect and fill the fresh tank as and when needed instead of leaving it attached.
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Post by wilksy Mon Nov 29, 2021 2:40 pm

I believe it has the Truma 6E fitted, out of interest can this be run on gas when travelling or will it only operate when on site (or stationary)
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Post by IanH Mon Nov 29, 2021 2:49 pm

IMHO you should never travel with anything gas powered in operation.By definition, somewhere inside it is both a source of fuel and a live flame.
In the event of an accident the results are predictable to say the least.
The same applies when at a filling station.You certainly won't be allowed anywhere near the Chunnel or any ferries.

The Truma has an emptying valve both temperature operated (drains when ambient below 3C from distant memory) and also an override for that which is button operated or lever operated. That is the only way I know of to drain the inbuilt hot water tank

With a 2021 vehicle, surely all of this is in the autosleepers owners manual???
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Post by Paulmold Mon Nov 29, 2021 4:14 pm

A 2021 model should be fitted with a crash regulator so in theory you could travel with the heater on but I'm with Ian on this, not something I'd be happy to do.

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Post by wilksy Mon Nov 29, 2021 4:31 pm

I didn't think it would be a good idea so I wont be doing that, with regard to the manual, yes it will be in the manual somewhere there are pages and pages of information so I was hopefully circumnavigating all the stuff I didn't need to read.

It almost certainly was the water in the boiler and the drop in temperature last night, just so happened to coincide with be starting the heater up.
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Post by Weegie Mon Nov 29, 2021 4:31 pm

We don't travel with the heater on either - we actually find the cab heater is sufficient to take the chill off the habitation area until you arrive at your destination and xan switch on the Truma.

On the off chance that your manual doesn't explain the boiler draining process, see attached. [You must be registered and logged in to see this link.]
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Post by wilksy Mon Nov 29, 2021 4:42 pm

Now found that thanks, printed off as a standalone sheet ready for Thursday
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Post by Richard G Mon Nov 29, 2021 5:07 pm

Just done a3 nights Isle of Wight. It was freezing at night and i expected boiler to drain off but it did not. Overnight kept the heating on electric at low temperature, but ran out of electric on last night so at about 2am switched to gas and it all worked. Would have been inconvenient to reset valve as its buried deep under bed. Was expecting boiler to drain off in daytime when we were touring and parking but it did not.  Used water tank on board never froze water or waste.
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Post by IanH Mon Nov 29, 2021 5:44 pm

The approx 3c which dumps the hot water tank is ambient TO THE TANK.
Not ambient outside, unless, of course the van isnt heated, in which case ambient in and out will become equal.
So, if you're living in it its extremely unlikely it'll dump.
If it does it needs 7C ambient at the valve to close it. The heating itself will do this, a hair drier or similar will speed the process
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Post by gef Mon Nov 29, 2021 6:08 pm

I would make sure you switch the pump off when you are away from the van and during the night in case temperature drops.
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Post by Caraman Mon Nov 29, 2021 9:01 pm

wilksy wrote:I didn't think it would be a good idea so I wont be doing that, with regard to the manual, yes it will be in the manual somewhere there are pages and pages of information so I was hopefully circumnavigating all the stuff I didn't need to read.
My advice is to read all of your manuals and ensure you have understood them before you use your van.  If there is anything you don't understand, you should ask your dealer to explain it to you.  This is the least he can do given the money you have paid him.
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Post by Caraman Tue Nov 30, 2021 8:58 am

Some cold weather tips when there is a risk of freezing:

Leave all summer paraphernalia behind e.g. chairs, bbq etc.  Ensure winter covers are fitted to the external fridge vents.  Use the cab heater to take the chill out of the van en route to first site.  On arrival at site, fill the fresh water tank and after connecting to the EHU turn on the fresh and waste water tank heaters.  Check the Truma dump valve is closed.  If it is still too cold for it to close, turn the Truma heating on.  Once the valve is closed, prime the water system and fill the hot water tank in the normal way.  Before nightfall fit a silver screen to the cab windows.  Do not leave a hose or a full water roll outside.  Overnight and when leaving the van, set the heating to about 14 degrees.  When leaving the van, ensure the water pump is switched off.   When travelling between sites in the daytime, the van should retain enough heat to stop the Truma dump valve from opening and anything freezing inside the van but I would still empty the external fresh and waste water tanks.  At the end of the trip on your way home, completely drain the water system and tanks with the taps and all valves open and the of course pump off.
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Post by daisy mae Tue Nov 30, 2021 10:25 am

Sorry do not agree with the last sentence, god help a biker if behind your van when you are unloading your water tanks, especially in cold and frosty weather plus it is not the thing to do, neither is it to use a drain on the highway,

Use the site emptying points if you need to dump water.

If you keep your eye on water levels and not fill up when on site if only staying for a few days no need to empty,the bit that is left,  take it back  home with you and then drain down properly.

No wonder motor homers are getting a bad name and being banned from some places.then some will wonder why.

I have been a caravanner for 30 years and motor homing for 10 years. so I do have experience .

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Post by rgermain Tue Nov 30, 2021 10:30 am

I have never in all my years fitted the external fridge vents and have never had a fridge fail.

Am I just lucky, I also have read that if vents are fitted and running on gas, remove the top vent to prevent overheating.

Must add we do live and only use the van along the South Coast, other area's might benefit from covers.
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Post by rgermain Tue Nov 30, 2021 10:33 am

daisy mae wrote:Sorry do not agree with the last sentence, god help a biker if behind your van when you are unloading your water tanks, especially in cold and frosty  weather plus it is not the thing to do, neither is it to use a drain on the highway,

Use the site emptying points if you need to dump water.

If you keep your eye on water levels and not fill up when on site if only staying for a few days no need to empty,the bit that is left,  take it back  home with you and then drain down properly.

No wonder motor homers are getting a bad name and being banned from some places.then some will wonder why.

I have been a caravanner for 30 years and motor homing for 10 years. so I do have experience .
Off subject, just wondering if you managed to get your van problem sorted?
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Post by wilksy Tue Nov 30, 2021 1:15 pm

Thanks for all the advise, much appreciated, could I just ask about the fridge vent covers - are they fitted with the fridge still running and do you keep them on all the time during the colder months.

My van is on the drive with a hook up connected 24/7
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Post by Paulmold Tue Nov 30, 2021 1:29 pm

Leave them on if temp below 7 degrees.

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Post by daisy mae Tue Nov 30, 2021 3:49 pm

rgermain wrote:
daisy mae wrote:Sorry do not agree with the last sentence, god help a biker if behind your van when you are unloading your water tanks, especially in cold and frosty  weather plus it is not the thing to do, neither is it to use a drain on the highway,

Use the site emptying points if you need to dump water.

If you keep your eye on water levels and not fill up when on site if only staying for a few days no need to empty,the bit that is left,  take it back  home with you and then drain down properly.

No wonder motor homers are getting a bad name and being banned from some places.then some will wonder why.

I have been a caravanner for 30 years and motor homing for 10 years. so I do have experience .
Off subject, just wondering if you managed to get your van problem sorted?
---------
Richard
She is going into the garage tomorrow, rubber smell is a wiring problem, all gauges on the dashboard have gone haywire, plus the gears need adjustment or the linkage does, will know more
tomorrow. hopefully. Thank you for your interest,


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Post by rogerblack Tue Nov 30, 2021 4:24 pm

This from the manual for my Electrolux RM4230 fridge:

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Post by Caraman Tue Nov 30, 2021 4:37 pm

daisy mae wrote:Sorry do not agree with the last sentence, god help a biker if behind your van when you are unloading your water tanks, especially in cold and frosty  weather plus it is not the thing to do, neither is it to use a drain on the highway,

Use the site emptying points if you need to dump water.

If you keep your eye on water levels and not fill up when on site if only staying for a few days no need to empty,the bit that is left,  take it back  home with you and then drain down properly.

No wonder motor homers are getting a bad name and being banned from some places.then some will wonder why.

I have been a caravanner for 30 years and motor homing for 10 years. so I do have experience .
All I was proposing is that having emptied the tanks in the proscribed manner for the site, drive home with the taps and valves open so that the motion of the van shakes a little more water out of the system.  This is only going to be a cup or so which no one is going to object to.
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Post by Caraman Tue Nov 30, 2021 4:51 pm

rgermain wrote:I have never in all my years fitted the external fridge vents and have never had a fridge fail.

Am I just lucky, I also have read that if vents are fitted and running on gas, remove the top vent to prevent overheating.

Must add we do live and only use the van along the South Coast, other area's might benefit from covers.
---------
Richard
This is the first of 4 fridges I have had that has been supplied with winter covers and instructions when to fit them.  My view is that they should only be removed if the fridge is being used in temps >10 degrees.  If the fridge isn't being used because the van isn't being used, or if the van is being washed with a hose, its best for them to remain in place regardless of the temperature.
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Post by daisy mae Tue Nov 30, 2021 7:35 pm

Caraman wrote:Some cold weather tips when there is a risk of freezing:

Leave all summer paraphernalia behind e.g. chairs, bbq etc.  Ensure winter covers are fitted to the external fridge vents.  Use the cab heater to take the chill out of the van en route to first site.  On arrival at site, fill the fresh water tank and after connecting to the EHU turn on the fresh and waste water tank heaters.  Check the Truma dump valve is closed.  If it is still too cold for it to close, turn the Truma heating on.  Once the valve is closed, prime the water system and fill the hot water tank in the normal way.  Before nightfall fit a silver screen to the cab windows.  Do not leave a hose or a full water roll outside.  Overnight and when leaving the van, set the heating to about 14 degrees.  When leaving the van, ensure the water pump is switched off.   When travelling between sites in the daytime, the van should retain enough heat to stop the Truma dump valve from opening and anything freezing inside the van but I would still empty the external fresh and waste water tanks.  At the end of the trip on your way home, completely drain the water system and tanks with the taps and all valves open and the of course pump off.


That doesn`t come across as empty before leaving site, sorry if I misunderstand but perhaps you can see why.

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