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What is the coldest you've slept in RV and dealing with condensation.


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I've been down to 1 or 2 degrees in my truck camper. I've got ice on the floor near the door.

On previous trip, which was down in the 20's I found condensation 2-1/2 weeks after the trip in closets jammed packed with stuff wrapped in plastic. The water forms on the walls and plastic keeps it from evaporating. I guess all the closets need to be open after cold weather use. 

Do you have any issues with condensation and cold weather use?

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We used to hunt deer & elk in the mountains of Wyoming. It was in late October and always cold, usually with snow. There were some humidity issues but we never had ice on the floor or walls. More recently we spent time in areas that got down into the teens at night for brief periods. Condensation was at times a problem, but never ice. We did learn to watch out for moisture on the wall behind the couch and inside the wardrobe. 

Good travelin !...............Kirk

Full-time 11+ years...... Now seasonal travelers.
Kirk & Pam's Great RV Adventure

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Wow, sounds exciting. I never get hunting, but I always fantasize about fishing in Canada if I'd hit the lotto.

I also get ice on windows. I cut some insulation and jammed it around skylight in shower. I got a wet shower and it gets pretty wet from condensation even with no use.

Both skylight was painted over to keep sun out. In the summer the skylights let in too much sun. No AC, I try and cut down the heat. It gets 95 degrees inside.

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My brand new "full 4 season" trailer was picked up in November of 2013. It was sunny and in the 50's at the factory and the HVAC system was supposed to be designed for the "Upper Midwest". It was a Coleman Mach basement unit with heat pump that was "Less efficient" at lower temperatures. The problem I was told I could only adjust the temperature up by a few degrees or it would stop working for a bit until it reset. It was a problem with the thermostat and not the HVAC unit, or so I was told. 

I took my brand new home to Iowa to show it off and give it a test of an Iowa winter. I expected a usual of temperatures around freezing until I would be heading to South Florida in January before they day's of below zero. Guess what I was wrong. It started snowing before I made it to my parking spot and was 14 degrees below ZERO the next day. Needless to say I was severely tested right out the door. The first night I found the air coming out of the vents to be just above freezing. The only thing that saved me was an electric heater I had rescued from my parents. (Remember the "Amish" heaters that people sold to people to decrease their gas heating bill? My Dad bought one for their 100 year old home and while it did cut the Natural Gas consumption in doubled the electric bill.) Most RV parks have electric included so I thought I would take it just in case. Believe it or not I could set the unit to 60 degrees in my house and it would comfortable. Problem was the uninsulated area where the water pump was located allowed it to freeze so another electric heater was added to that area. I made a trip back to the factory where a Gas furnace (that I had previously declined "because the HVAC unit was less effecient") was installed to resolve the heating issue. It didn't. 

I was able to finish my commitment in Iowa before moving to Florida for the rest of the winter and found the HVAC unit had additional problems. Had I been smart I would have forced a complete replacement with something that actually worked, but I had not yet learned that lesson sufficiently. 

Fast forward to now. I haven't seen the below zero for a while but it has stayed in the low teens above zero for a few days with my Mini Split system and I can set it at what ever temperature I desire and it has so far stayed there. It took me a while to completely pay for the Mini Split because I didn't trust that it would work as I was told and there were some instillation issues that needed to be resolved before I made the final payment. I have learned a lesson and will use it wisely I hope. 

Humidity is still a bit of an issue. I purchased a dehumidifier last fall and have used it quite a bit. It helps a bit, but I think if I would just add a few fans to the areas that have diminished air circulation all would be well. It's mostly the metal frames around the few windows I have, and maybe the Aluminum framing. If building again I would request all wood. 

Rod

White 2000/2010Volvo VNL 770 with 7' Drom box with opposing doors,  JOST slider hitch. 600 HP Cummins Signature 18 Speed three pedal auto shift.

1999 Isuzu VehiCross retired to a sticks and bricks garage. Brought out of storage the summer of 2022

2022 Jeep Wrangler Sport S Two door hard top.

2007 Honda GL 1800

2013 Space Craft Mfg S420 Custom built Toyhauler

The Gold Volvo is still running and being emptied in July. 

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14 minutes ago, slackercruster said:

Never been out west to compare condensation problems. I'm always in humid northeast.

I cleaned out everything not needed since my rig is so small. Clutter up against cold interior walls is a condensation magnet.

I had a Murphy bed that I mistakenly thought would be better if I put it up against the wall all day to provide more "insulation". It sure did. I had FROST on my interior wall when I lowered the bed the 2nd night in the below zero days. Left the bed in the lowered position during the cold weather from that day forward. 

Rod

White 2000/2010Volvo VNL 770 with 7' Drom box with opposing doors,  JOST slider hitch. 600 HP Cummins Signature 18 Speed three pedal auto shift.

1999 Isuzu VehiCross retired to a sticks and bricks garage. Brought out of storage the summer of 2022

2022 Jeep Wrangler Sport S Two door hard top.

2007 Honda GL 1800

2013 Space Craft Mfg S420 Custom built Toyhauler

The Gold Volvo is still running and being emptied in July. 

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During the day move the mattress out from the wall a few inches to let it and the wall dry out.  Your breath during the night causes condensation.

Crack the closets and keep clothes away from walls.  Everything needs to breath.

Keep the vents open slightly; especially the bathroom.  Showers create lots of humidity.

Keep a kitchen window cracked as making coffee and cooking creates humidity.

 

Full-timed for 16 Years
Traveled 8 yr in a 2004 Newmar Dutch Star 40' Motorhome
and 8 yr in a 33' Travel Supreme 5th Wheel

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Our DRV has been down to zero and we stayed comfortable although the cheap heat system was supplemented at about 20 degrees with the fireplace and at 10 degrees, I gave up on cheap heat and the fireplace and cranked up the propane heater.

The trailer stayed at 72 and we didn't have any condensation inside the trailer.

2017 Kenworth T680
2015 DRV 38RSSA Elite Suites
2016 Smart Prime

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Our drv with one furnace was was warmer than the trailer we have now and it has 2 furnaces. It got down to 6 or 8 last couple of nights and the living/kitchen furnace run constantly all night. Wind blowing in the vents behind the refrigerator blows right around the open space around the refrigerator and through the cabinet walls. Not going to mention the rv maker but they have a lot of work to do on the insulation. 10 year old mobile suites has the new one beat on the comfort level. We run a humidifier when it gets this cold and dry, leaving for warmer places next week 

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We're stuck in north west Indiana right now... between Gary and Burns Harbor.  Been here since July due to work.  We bought a small dehumidifier to help with the condensation on the windows we have in the morning.  What will help you the most is airflow.  It's ok to be wrapped up tight, as long as there is airflow along the walls and a way to remove excess humidity. Some folks will leave a roof vent cracked open as hot/humid air will rise. 

Due to us paying for electric at this site, we're running our propane furnace set at 68* and the low humidity keeps it comfy for us.

 

 

Jim's Adventures

Old Spacecraft.... Who knows whats next

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1 hour ago, Alie&Jim's Carrilite said:

Due to us paying for electric at this site, we're running our propane furnace set at 68* and the low humidity keeps it comfy for us.

This has been cussed and discussed time and again over the years and I respect your choice. In my case I also take into consideration the time and fuel to take my cylinders to be refilled and that often tips the scale for me.

Edited by bigjim
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15 minutes ago, bigjim said:

This has been cussed and discussed time and again over the years and I respect your choice. In my case I also take into consideration the time and fuel to take my cylinders to be refilled and that often tips the scale for me.

Depending on the park we're in, I will crank the electric heat and stay nice and cozy that way as well. Add an extra 800watt heater in the basement and the floors stay nice and toasty.

 

Jim's Adventures

Old Spacecraft.... Who knows whats next

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1 hour ago, bigjim said:

This has been cussed and discussed time and again over the years and I respect your choice. In my case I also take into consideration the time and fuel to take my cylinders to be refilled and that often tips the scale for me.

I'm getting free electric now. But still use some propane. My little electric heater will only bring the camper to about 60 in 10 degree weather. So I crank up my vent free mini propane heater. I also try to have my force air furnace cycle on every few hours to refresh the cabin air. It sucks air out and pulls fresh air in.

The mini electric heater works ok down into the 20's, but that is it. I got 2 -20 gallon propane tanks. So try to limit their use. If the weather was warmer I'd use nill propane, just for cooking.

Edited by slackercruster
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1 hour ago, Alie&Jim's Carrilite said:

Depending on the park we're in, I will crank the electric heat and stay nice and cozy that way as well. Add an extra 800watt heater in the basement and the floors stay nice and toasty.

 

Sounds nice!

No basement. Floors have towels over a lot of it to keep them warmish. Floors are about 50 degrees. Head height is 72. Floor near rear exit door is colder. Has ice on it. 

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6 hours ago, slackercruster said:

No basement. Floors have towels over a lot of it to keep them warmish. Floors are about 50 degrees. Head height is 72. Floor near rear exit door is colder. Has ice on it. 

Have you thought about skirting. Will your park allow it?  I lived in a log cabin one winter in Maine.  The cabin was raised on posts about 18".  I skirted it with heavy duty plastic and ice no longer formed on the floors.  The cat's water bowl didn't freeze either.  It looks like there are plenty of RV  skirting articles and videos online.

 

Jinx and Wayne

2006 Carriage Carri-Lite 36KSQ

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7 hours ago, slackercruster said:

Floors are about 50 degrees. ........ Floor near rear exit door is colder. Has ice on it. 

Am I correct to assume that your camper is not sitting in the truck bed, but on jacks? If that is the case it would help a great deal to skirt it in some way as suggested above. Something to block air movement from under the camper and especially near the door. I would be concerned that the ice is an indication of a very serious moisture problem due to condensation in that area. 

Good travelin !...............Kirk

Full-time 11+ years...... Now seasonal travelers.
Kirk & Pam's Great RV Adventure

            images?q=tbn:ANd9GcQqFswi_bvvojaMvanTWAI

 

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12 hours ago, Danandfreda said:

Our drv with one furnace was was warmer than the trailer we have now and it has 2 furnaces. It got down to 6 or 8 last couple of nights and the living/kitchen furnace run constantly all night. Wind blowing in the vents behind the refrigerator blows right around the open space around the refrigerator and through the cabinet walls. Not going to mention the rv maker but they have a lot of work to do on the insulation. 10 year old mobile suites has the new one beat on the comfort level. We run a humidifier when it gets this cold and dry, leaving for warmer places next week 

I'm surprised, do you have a residential fridge? If yes, why do they have vents on the outside? Even with a RV fridge that requires vents, you would think they could seal it better than that.

2017 Kenworth T680
2015 DRV 38RSSA Elite Suites
2016 Smart Prime

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Rv fridge, you would think they could. I’ll do it tomorrow 57 here tomorrow then cold again

12 hours ago, GeorgiaHybrid said:

I'm surprised, do you have a residential fridge? If yes, why do they have vents on the outside? Even with a RV fridge that requires vents, you would think they could seal it better than that.

 

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We have been pleasantly surprised and impressed by the lack of condensation in our 2015 Forest River Blue Ridge fifth wheel and with the ability to heat it during cold weather. It does have dual pane windows but evidently is also insulated very well. Depending on the temperature and whether we have hookups or are boondocking, we use a combination of an electric heater, our fireplace and the furnace for backup overnight. And then a buddy heater/furnace when boondocking. But we have had absolutely no condensation whatsoever. Something we use to battle constantly in our Winnebago Minnie Class C. 
 

Vicki

 

Vicki, Mark and Sadie 

Fulltime and having fun!

2016 Newmar Ventana LE 

2019 Jeep Cherokee Trailhawk 

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-35C  = -31F

But with 2 howlin' RV furnaces the unit can dry the inside air to the point your nose could crack and fall right off.  A Mr. Buddy type catalytic heater is a no-go under these conditions. 

The bottom aluminum window frame with condense first - that's the sign to ventilate. The glass is not a problem. The windows are Canada made dual pane units by Sun-View. 

Yes, yes it do use more propane than camping at +60F. 

 

 

Edited by noteven

"Are we there yet?" asked no motorcycle rider, ever. 

 

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16 hours ago, noteven said:

-35C  = -31F

But with 2 howlin' RV furnaces the unit can dry the inside air to the point your nose could crack and fall right off. 

At those temperatures you don't need a furnace to dry out the air.  There isn't any moisture in it to begin with.

Jinx and Wayne

2006 Carriage Carri-Lite 36KSQ

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