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Winterize the RV
If you aren’t a full-timer yet, you will probably need to Winterize the RV fresh water system. Winterizing can be a simple process, if you
just follow the steps below. There are other ways to do this; I have given you
the most common.
Water Heater Bypass Valve
If your rig does not have one, an important accessory to help Winterize the RV is a water heater by-pass. It is a simple device; one or two
valves that isolate the tank from the rest of the water system. A water heater
tank is normally about 7 gallons. If you do not have one of these, you will
have to fill the tank with seven more gallons of expensive RV antifreeze than
you need. Installation is a pretty simple do it yourself project, or any RV
dealer can install it for you. You will save the cost of the valve in just a few
years with the value of the antifreeze you save.
RV antifreeze is safe to use in drinking water systems.
Please do not use automotive antifreeze as it is poisonous and can cause
serious illness and possibly death.
Procedure to Winterize the RV
So let’s get started. Here are the steps to Winterize the RV:
fresh water tank.
hot water heater.
and flush both black and gray water holding tanks, leave gray water valve
off fresh water supply
a compressed air adapter into the fresh water inlet. The adapter is
available from Camping World or most RV dealers.
compressed air, keeping the pressure less than twenty pounds per square
each faucet, one valve at a time, allowing the compressed air to force the
water out of the line. Don't forget the shower and toilet.
the drain plug from the hot water tank and allow the compressed air to
blow out the remaining water. Reinstall drain plug.
the compressed air and the adapter.
the water heater by-pass valve.
the water line that runs between the fresh water pump and the fresh water
tank, where it joins the fresh water tank. There is an inexpensive adapter
kit to make this easy and it is available from most RV parts dealers.
the end of the line into a gallon jug of RV antifreeze. (Again, do NOT use
the fresh water pump. It will run for a few moments, sucking antifreeze
from the jug. It will stop as pressure in the system builds up.
each valve of each faucet, one at a time, until the red antifreeze
appears; then shut the faucet. Don't forget the shower, toilet, and
the line from the jug of antifreeze and reattach it to the inlet side of
the water pump or close the valve if you have an adapter.
a cup or two of antifreeze into each drain including the shower.