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 > Your search for posts made by 'DrewE' found 605 matches.

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  Subject Author Date Posted Forum
RE: New Thermostat Question

Yes, the "wrong wiring" would actually be correct in this case. The load output of these units is just a set of relay contacts--a switch--as is a normal thermostat. You connect the control lines for the furnace to that switch and it turns the heat on and off. As I said, I don't have any specific personal experience using any of these devices, but based on what I've seen and understand I think this one would work just fine. Presumably most of them come from the same few factories in China, even if they have a dozen different brand names stamped on. (If the included wire for the probe isn't long enough, you can extend it with pretty much any old wire that is convenient.)
DrewE 01/22/21 06:29pm Tech Issues
RE: Crummy headlights - Can't see, need upgrade

Many DRLs use the high beam filament rather than the low beam one (again, at reduced power). This actually makes good sense; the goal of a DRL is for other drivers to see you, so using the filament where the beam isn't specifically shaped avoid shining in other driver's eyes is helpful. It's also true in many cases that low beams are used more than high beams in normal driving, so putting the extra wear and tear on the high beam filaments doesn't shorten the bulb's lifespan as much--although the shorter lifespan in either case is minimal due to the lower power operation.
DrewE 01/22/21 06:21pm Tech Issues
RE: Overnight parking going places?

welcome stopped lot of overnighters, very best is a church parking lot, theres been times they even rigged up power for us, even had a pot luck supper. I assume (or at least hope) you ask permission at the churches first. If someone were to pull in and stop overnight in my church's parking lot, they'd be rather surprised if the next day were a school day as the lot fills up with students of the high school next door who have permission to park there in exchange for making a donation to the local food shelf or some other local charity of their choice.
DrewE 01/22/21 06:13pm General RVing Issues
RE: New Thermostat Question

I'd look up Amazon or Ebay digital temperature controllers, which are basically thermostats but more designed for process control applications than room heating and cooling. Most of them have a remote sensor of some sort--a thermistor most likely for the temperature range we're talking about--and can be set to have whatever setpoint, hysteresis, etc. one may wish. Putting the sensor in the wet bay and wiring the controller in parallel with the thermostat would seem to me to work reliably and simply. The furnace would come on whenever either the room thermostat or the wet bay temperature controller called for heat, and go off only when both are satisfied. The obvious advantage to this over a time control is that you get the heat you need, but not more or less. If the temperature drops too much, the periodic run might not be enough heat; and if it's only a little below freezing, it could be a good bit more than is necessary. A couple of examples of these sorts of controllers (no idea if these are any better or worse than others, nor how well they'd cope with "12V" supplies that are much more or less than the nominal voltage): Cheap and simple bare-board, More finished looking panel mount unit Fifteen minutes of running the furnace when you already have the interior at room temperature is going to make it a fair bit warmer, I suspect. Shorter and more frequent cycles would probably be better overall. That's not much more than a semi-educated guess, though.
DrewE 01/22/21 01:37pm Tech Issues
RE: Travelling from Nevada to Alaska in the Middle of Winter

How much wattage would I need from a generator in case of an emergency? Thinking about picking one up just in case. That depends entirely on what electrical stuff you want to be able to use in case of an emergency. If you're comfortable dry camping without the generator in non-emergency situations, I don't see why that would change one bit in an emergency situation. If you want to simply run the converter to recharge the batteries, a thousand watts might be sufficient depending on your converter model. If you want to run a couple space heaters and/or the microwave and electric water heater and...., then a larger generator would be necessary. Personally, I'd instead see about maximizing the battery bank before buying a generator for the trip; being able to run the furnace a night or two off the grid would go a long ways towards being prepared for most sorts of problems that might be expected, such as weather delays or mechanical breakdowns. Regarding the ramps: If you can use the ramp to get a wheel clear of the ground, it would work for changing a tire. Rather obviously it's no easier to change a tire when that tire itself is supported by a ramp than when it's supported on the ground. I'd give it a good check in your driveway before assuming the ramp will be sufficient.
DrewE 01/22/21 08:17am RVing in Canada and Alaska
RE: Tearing down an RV safely

The main energy source remaining is gravity. Pay attention to that and all should be well.
DrewE 01/20/21 09:18am Do It Yourself Modifications and Upgrades (DIY)
RE: Mass Pike Boston to Venice FL

According to Google Maps, the I-77/I-26 and I-66 variants are virtually identical in length (they differ by one mile). The descent at Fancy Gap on I-77 can on occasion be quite foggy. If they have reduced speed limits posted (there are electronic variable speed limit signs in that area), don't ignore them.
DrewE 01/19/21 04:12pm Roads and Routes
RE: Mass Pike Boston to Venice FL

My standard route (from Boston area) would be I-90 to I-84 to I-81 to I-77 to I-26 to I-95, and then in Florida A1A to US-301 to I-75 at Ocala. For variety, I sometimes go I-81 all the way to I-40 to I-75, but this means going through or around Atlanta, which is sometimes not too bad...and sometimes a character building experience. Another not unreasonable option, though somewhat slower going, is to make your way to the Garden State Parkway and then take the Cape May ferry and Chesapeake Bay bridge/tunnel and head on down e.g. US17 until it intersects I-95. That gives the opportunity to stop at a variety of interesting coastal places, such as Assateague and Cape Hatteras, and avoids the worst of city driving.
DrewE 01/19/21 11:48am Roads and Routes
RE: New Thermostat Question

Running an RV furnace fan without the burner operating is not a great idea, in my opinion. The fan motor (there's only one) has two fans attached to it: one circulates air through the RV on that side of the heat exchanger, and the other circulates combustion air through the other side of the heat exchanger. With the burner not operating, you're basically operating the heat exchanger in reverse: cooling the inside air with a steady stream of cold air from the outside. An auxiliary circulator fan would be a bit better, in that it doesn't actively cool the burner side of the heat exchanger, but you'd still be losing a good bit of heat through it. Probably more useful would be to add a small auxiliary electric heater for the wet bay and circulate the air through the living space of the RV using either the air conditioner fan or a portable fan.
DrewE 01/18/21 03:23pm Tech Issues
RE: RVing in the winter

I am still thinking of RVing to visit all the national parks in Alaska. And definitely it. won't be in a Unimog. I might have to wait very long to have the content provided with EV charging once I get my Cybertruck -- or just drop this dream Ring off my bucket list. Anyway, excellent story and definitely NatGeo worthy. You are aware, I assume, that the majority of the national parks in Alaska are not accessible by road at all. There are seventeen national parks in Alaska, and about three are accessible by road (and maybe three or so more relatively close to a road such that it might be practical to hike in or something similar). Don't let that stop you from visiting the area, though. The parts and parks you can get to are spectacular enough to more than justify the trip.
DrewE 01/18/21 03:16pm Class C Motorhomes
RE: Help me plan my trip please! RI, DE and MD

Have you been to Washington, DC? There are a few campground options within reasonable distance of Metro stations; the least expensive option is Greenbelt National Park, which is closed to vehicle traffic for some renovation and road work but they say should reopen this spring. Their sites have no hookups. It's maybe a half hour to 45 minute walk to the nearest station. Other good options are Cherry Hill campground (which very much caters to DC tourists and gets good reviews) and the Lake Fairfax county park.
DrewE 01/18/21 09:18am RV Parks, Campgrounds and Attractions
RE: St. Mary’s Glacier NP inconsistent dimensions??

Sometimes the data in these databases is not as accurate as one would hope. Sometimes the maximum vehicle length is limited not by the site itself but by the turn into the site or the access road. Having local knowledge is a big help. Sometimes the pictures of the site they post on the reservation site (or others post elsewhere) are a big help in figuring out what is up, if they are available and show things from useful angles.
DrewE 01/17/21 09:30am RV Parks, Campgrounds and Attractions
RE: East Coast Road Trip????? Pandemic?

A lot of states seem to be going to reservation only for their state park campgrounds. That doesn't mean you need a reservation far in advance--often the same day is okay--but walk-in first-come, first-served camping seems to be going away in many places. With a reservation, at least, in many places there's no need to talk to anyone more than the gate guard or a quick check-in with the office. You just drive in and plonk yourself down in your reserved site and that's that. Quarantine requirements do not prevent you from driving through, nor generally from camping on your own. Rather, they are there to say you can't go out and interact with people not in your group--things like eating out, visiting museums, shopping, etc. Keeping to yourself in your own RV in your campsite is pretty much the definition of quarantining. I just returned from a ten-day trip down to Florida and back to bring my dear mother back to her home after a visit for the holidays. We had no difficulties finding places to stay (with reservations), though some flexibility was required especially in Florida where the state parks were predictably nearly filled up with campers. Having the motorhome to make the trip is a good part of what made a wonderful visit over the holidays practicable.
DrewE 01/17/21 09:18am General RVing Issues
RE: Group 27 deep cycle battery + 2000W inverter

For a rough idea, look at the energy star guide for the fridge and see what it says the energy usage per day is. Many are somewhere around 1 kWh per day, very roughly speaking. (I think they give it per year, but it's easy enough to divide by 365 to get the usage per day.) 1 kWh is equivalent to about 83 Ah at 12V. To the fridge's usage, the conversion inefficiency of the inverter needs to be added. Overnight should generally be doable absent any other significant 12V loads, but probably not much more. Deeply discharging a lead-acid battery is pretty rough on it and doesn't lead to its having a long lifespan. Leaving it discharged is doubly harsh.
DrewE 01/16/21 09:38pm Tech Issues
RE: Connect small wires to auto battery post?

While you're doing this adapting/modification, if the small wires don't have a fuse or circuit breaker in close proximity to the battery, add in an in-line fuse holder and an appropriately sized fuse to help prevent the possibility of a fire starting should they short out. (One important exception: the circuit for the emergency trailer breakaway brake system is often not be fused...and of course never should be switched.)
DrewE 01/14/21 08:07am Tech Issues
RE: Albany NY to Newport, VT

ACZL's routes sound just fine to me; I'd recommend something like them, probably the second one (though the first is just fine, too). There are a couple of good fuel stops in Fair Haven, just barely south of the intersection of US4 and VT22A, that usually have pretty good prices on gasoline. I don't know how their diesel prices compare with other places. The mentioned stop on 22A is a nice one, too. To get from Harrisburg, PA to Albany, NY, I like to take I-81 to I-88 E to I-90 E to whatever (I-87 N in this case). I-88 used to be a pretty rough road, and while it still has some rather rough areas, they've done a lot of work on it the past few years and greatly improved most of the worst bits. It, and I-87 north of Albany (and more especially north of Glens Falls), go through some rather pretty rural areas. For that matter, the Interstate highways in Vermont are also comparatively scenic.
DrewE 01/13/21 07:36pm Roads and Routes
RE: Watkins Glen ny

I've stayed at the state park. Some of the sites are smallish, some are quite large indeed, and I don't recall anything about the road and the loop I was on being particularly tight for most any RV. Their maximum RV lengths in some cases seemed unnecessarily conservative (though probably not all cases). If memory serves, I stayed at site 292 which is advertised as a 30' site but in reality is huge. For (many of) the New York public campgrounds, the campadk.com campsite photo database is a great resource. I've nothing against the other campgrounds in the area--I just have no first-hand experience with them.
DrewE 01/13/21 07:14pm RV Parks, Campgrounds and Attractions
RE: Rear View Camera - Cell Phone Hotspot as Wifi Booster?

My cell phone says it can do "hotspot" or tethering. Would that work as a "booster" for the camera wifi in a long trailer/long truck? (where it is too far for the wifi now) Eg, I have an iPad on the truck's mirror and the camera at the back of the RV. If I use the cell phone in the front of the RV with the Hopkins app to get the camera's wifi (so it is free that way NOT using "data"), and turn on the cell's "hotspot", would that give the signal to the iPad it could select as its "network" in the truck for that extra distance? EDIT--the cell seems to have its hotspot with Bluetooth. I have a question about this idea or another booster in to Hopkins. I will pass along any info. Almost certainly the phone will not work as a WiFi extender. The cell phone has three radio systems (that matter here--there are others as well, such as GPS and often an FM radio): the cell phone system, the WiFi system, and the Bluetooth system. Tethering basically connects the WiFi to the cell phone's data connection, with the WiFi unit acting as a hotspot/host rather than a client. (Or, in the case of Bluetooth tethering, it connects the cell phone data connection to a Bluetooth connection.) What you need is a WiFi to WiFi connection/extender, which cell phones are generally incapable of doing; I believe it generally requires additional hardware or at least specialized software.
DrewE 01/13/21 07:02pm Tech Issues
RE: What do you do?

If I am setting around the campfire I AM relaxing. I don't need to do anything else except stare at the fire. I'm with you. I'll also poke the fire with the fire poker about five times as much as is necessary, and maybe drink a cup or two of tea. The same thing works at home in my backyard, at least if the ground is not covered in that icy cold white stuff.
DrewE 01/13/21 06:37pm General RVing Issues
RE: Filling large propane tank on the road

Most places that sell propane in bulk will be accessible to most motorhomes, at least in my experience. Maybe less so if you have a toad attached (and so it's difficult or impossible to back up). Around me in New England, at least, many hardware stores (as distinct from big-box home improvement stores) sell propane, as do Tractor Supply, some UHaul dealers, propane distributors, some gas stations, etc. Some Pilot/Flying J truck stops have propane, and their web site lets you search based on that criteria. I stopped at one a couple days ago found with said web site and filled up my tank that was approaching empty.
DrewE 01/13/21 06:03pm Beginning RVing
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