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Open Roads Forum  >  Travel Trailers  >  General Q&A

 > Insulating exposed tanks

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Twistedlarch

Cottage Grove, OR.

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Posted: 11/12/19 06:07pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Hey all, I've done a search on this topic and returned no hits. So here it goes:

My kids are part of our local ski area's ski team, I would like to start taking my trailer up on the weekends instead of driving the 2 hour trip (one way) every Saturday & Sunday. The ski area has Power hookups but no water.

The average night time temps at the ski area hover in the teens and sometimes lower, average day time temps seem to hover in the mid 20's

My trailer has fully exposed tanks...33 gal.Fresh, 25 gal grey, and 25 gal black. I have purchased tank heaters for all three.

My plan is to apply the tank heaters then wrap the tanks in Reflectix, then enclose the tanks with R-5 foam board then seal with another layer of Reflectix. Overkill? Not enough?


Thanks
Brian

bid_time

Michigan

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Posted: 11/12/19 06:24pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

I think your wasting your time and money. Use the beds, stove, tv, etc and forget about trying to use the water and related systems. Just my opinion. Camped many a nights in a TT while hunting in winter. Only water I needed was carried in a 5 gal bucket, and disposed of outside.





MFL

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Posted: 11/12/19 06:35pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

IMO, not overkill. A trailer not designed for cold temps can use all the help it can get. Reflectix is a good product for holding heat in, and cold out. Foam board is good too, due to being somewhat waterproof. There is a quality difference between brands. I like Owens for my uses.

Hope moisture does not become a problem, but with hookups, you could run a dehumidifier.

Jerry





ksbowman

Kansas

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Posted: 11/12/19 06:40pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

After the heating pads are installed have you considered have the tanks sprayed with insulation? The spray insulation is also great on sealing any openings.

garym114

Bluff Dale, Texas

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Posted: 11/12/19 08:08pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Sounds like the trailer is not all weather. This means all your water piping and water manifold is also exposed.
An all weather RV has the piping and tanks enclosed with a heater duct directing heated air to the enclosure.
Take a look to see.


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Twistedlarch

Cottage Grove, OR.

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Posted: 11/12/19 08:29pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

garym114 wrote:

Sounds like the trailer is not all weather. This means all your water piping and water manifold is also exposed.
An all weather RV has the piping and tanks enclosed with a heater duct directing heated air to the enclosure.
Take a look to see.


The water pump is inside and there is only one exposed water pipe that travels across the bottom of the trailer for about 6 ft then disappears back inside. I figured I can use heat tape then enclose in pipe insulation.

beemerphile1

Ohio

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Posted: 11/12/19 08:33pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Reflectix is the wrong product. If you read the manufacturers documentation it's best at reflecting, not insulating. It is only R-1

I would consider either dry camping or buy a more suitable RV.

If you must use what you have, build a box from foam board to encase the tanks.


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TurnThePage

North ID

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Posted: 11/12/19 09:49pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

I did the heater pads, then insulated with foam board and expanding foam at the corners, then hung coroplast between the frame rails surrounding the whole thing. I also added a heat pad to the area where the black/grey tank drains merge, then wrapped it too. Probably overkill. I've never needed to use that last feature.


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time2roll

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Posted: 11/12/19 10:19pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

I have fully exposed tanks. I added UltraHeat brand tank heaters. (120v) Been fine down below zero. I have no added insulation. Might be over thinking it for just a weekend. Don't forget the drain pipes and valves. Worst case you will need to dump after it thaws a bit after you get off the hill.


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Huntindog

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Posted: 11/13/19 01:37am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

My second TT was similar to yours. It could sustain some pretty cold temps IF, I ran the furnace nonstop. Even though it did not have an enclosed underbelly, the heat ductd ran right across the tops of the tanks under the floor. Enough heat radiated into them to make it work. I did have frozen dump valves from time to time.
I did not have hookups either. Just ran a Honda EU2000.



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