Time to go Polar Bear Camping!
You pay that 15yr loan payment 12 months out of the year right? If you are in the north like me, that means that Mother Nature would have you hibernating for a few months out every year.
But I don’t want to – and you don’t have to either. But your camper was setup all that well to hold up to the cold temperatures that Up-north can dish out to us. It’s a matter of economics and numbers, why bother with it if most of our customers are going to use it?
Let’s cover a few key aspects of winter camping in your it’s-too-cold-oustide-camper.
Tubes with water in them like to freeze. The easy fix for this is to wrap them with a cord heater. You’ll need to be plugged into to power for this one, as any type of heating element will draw more juice than the solar setup can keep up with. (Who’s going to setup solar when there’s is snow on top of everything anyways?)
Bonus points for wrapping up your water lines with some tube-style insulation after running a cord heater around them. This will cut down on the energy drain a bit if you are staying at a friends place or your father-in-law is complaining about how much his next moths power bill is going to be.
Tubes that carry out your waste also like to freeze.
These are a bit more challenging to wrap with a cord heater than a straight tube can be. Not impossible, but also expensive to replace if you miss a spot and they blow apart on you.
I’ve seen full skirts around the outside of the bottom of the RV work well with a small space heater underneath. This cuts down on the heat loss from inside the cabin too and cold feet. You’ll be burning through some propane when it’s cold an this is a good way to reduce that cost too.
The also make heated fittings for grey and black tank valves for the RVer’s that aren’t screwing around.
On this inside of your camper, you’ll be noticing more condensation on the windows. A layer of clear plastic window shrink film can create an air gap that will reduce condensation build up and act as a pocket of insulation. Windows they are recessed a bit are great for this.
Insulated blocks can go into the rooftop vents to reduce heat-loss through those airways too. These can be home-made with some old pillows or I believe they make them in most sizes required. Just measure it out and add a 1/2 inch or so so it wont fall out.
The Complete A-Z Guide on RV Camping for beginners is an excellent resource to bookmark for all this little cool tricks of the RV trade.
One last camper hack that can be done before heading out is to add an air passage into your utilities cabinet. Mine is located in the front underneath the bed and accessed from the outside. So insulate that compartment door with a piece of foam and cut out a little vent to pass warm air from the cabin into the space.
This will keep your buttons, nobs, filters, and other important stuff you keep in there from being damaged or needing to get moved around.
Check out this video on how to setup your cold-weather rig: