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Subject Topic: What can/cannet be left in Motorhome over
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Message posted by LittleSole on 27/10/2013 at 12:38pm
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Hi,
First year of having a motorhome ... and as we are unlikely to use it between now and early Spring I wondered what items everyone has discovered which can or cannot be left in the motorhome over the cold months; what will suffer from the cold and damp and what wont? Obviously I've removed the bedding and towels etc. but what about personal items like toiletteries etc? Anyone had any experiences worth knowing?
LittleSole

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LittleSole

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Message posted by Whatamess on 27/10/2013 at 12:56pm
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I leave everything non-perishable in the van except for the television.

All I do with tins and packets is rotate them every so often and bring anything in the house that's getting close to its use by date.

Bedding should be OK as long as the van's dry. It might be worth leaving a greenhouse heater or something in the van to keep the chill off and leave the cupboard doors open if you've got bedding or anything in there. I did this with the last van because inside the cupboards got very cold.

Nora

Message posted by SymbolLife on 27/10/2013 at 2:39pm
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Are trays of salt useful inside? It seems to be what caravaners do.

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It is not the strongest of the species that survives, nor the most intelligent, but the most responsive to change. - Charles Darwin


Message posted by Daisy85 on 27/10/2013 at 4:17pm
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I would remove your food stuff. Make sure your toilet is well cleaned. I would also drain your water tank in case it freezes expands and causes a leak. Use a proper dehumidifier rather than salt to absorb moisture in the air. If van is parked in drive I would hook it up and put on heating a few times during the winter. Ours is an old van so she needs a lot of TLC.
Every so often I would check for leaks, windows, skylight etc. I am probably a over cautious.

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I work to camp

Message posted by Jack+Jon on 27/10/2013 at 4:26pm
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Trays of salt or any other passive dehumidifiying devices are pointless in motorhomes or caravans as they are not sealed, ie air circulates through so collecting/storing the moisture inside the vehicle just where you don't want it serves no purpose. Ensure permanent ventilation points are not obstructed & leave cupboard & toilet doors open.

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Regards, Jack+Jon.

Message posted by wineciccio on 27/10/2013 at 10:43pm
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Why leave it winterised may ask?? Use it for goodness sake, you spend all that money whatever it was that it cost you, so join a club and use it at the weekends if possible, there is always something going on with the Camping & caravanning club or the caravan club, I do not understand people  spending thousands of pounds on motorhomes/campers and then just using them an average 2/5 times a year.

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wineciccio

Message posted by Jack+Jon on 28/10/2013 at 7:03am
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Quote: Originally posted by wineciccio on 27/10/2013
I do not understand people  spending thousands of pounds on motorhomes/campers and then just using them an average 2/5 times a year.


Then understand this wine, a motorhome is a luxury purchase & a free choice to use/not use said vehicle in the buyer's chosen way should that be driving yr round to the farthest reaches of Europe or an annual fortnight at a local campsite. Once the money is spent it makes no difference what the owner chooses to do with it.

But far, far worse than that...The vast majority of American motorhomes sold new in this country are bought not for serious yr round European touring but by film companies for the stars to sit in on film sets while their nails are painted between takes.



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Regards, Jack+Jon.

Message posted by LittleSole on 28/10/2013 at 9:37am
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Ooops ... I think 'wineciccio' has upset 'Jack+Jon' in this post!

Though I do agree it's up to each owner how they do/don't use their Motorhome.

But to be clear, we do intend using the Motorhome in the winter; occasionally [we're not ones for 'social' get-to-gethers with camping; we like to enjoy our Motorhome, our own company and pursuits in peace and quiet]. However it wont be used regularly in winter but I don't want to have to unpack everything and then repack each time we use it ... so I was just concerned what items might suffer in the inevitable cold when it's not actually in use for a while.

Thank you all for your suggestions.

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LittleSole

Message posted by pepe63 on 28/10/2013 at 10:00am
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Hi Little Sole..

A bit Off Topic and  I'm probably stating the obvious..but just make sure ALL of the water system is well drained down and all the taps are left open(and at mid position, if mixer/lever types)...

I have toyed with fitting something like the FLOE system(...probably something "DIY" knowing me  )but to date, we've been lucky enough with just a "normal" drain down...

http://www.keepfloeing.com/products-motorhome.html

Just to add...

We do continue to use our van throughout the year...but during the winter/cold spells, we just use it in drained down mode and carry separate water containers...

It's best to avoid "sleepy van syndrome" if you can.. 



Post last edited on 28/10/2013 10:33:53

Message posted by chrisandsandra on 28/10/2013 at 10:30am
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We use our van all year round but in the winter we take out all the stuff we use outside such as tables and chairs etc. and replace them with our winter quilts and a couple of warm jumpers etc. These stay in there all winter with no ill effects.

As said, make sure all water tanks are drained but we keep a large water carrier half filled for emergencies.

Food seems to be ok but I do check it twice a year to make sure it's still in date. The only thing that I've noticed is that the olive oil goes thick and cloudy, but it's fine to use. The toiletries stay in there and are fine.

One of the great things about having the van ready at all times is that if we do hit bad weather and get stuck somewhere we have the makings of hot drinks, a meal or two and we can stay warm.

Using the van, or at least airing it and warming it up regularly seems to be the way to keep the dreaded damp at bay.

Message posted by Jack+Jon on 28/10/2013 at 11:13am
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Probably worth pointing out that there is a difference between damp in the structure caused by external failure of body seams & damp caused by condensation. Condensation when the van is empty over winter will be minimal, the most condensation ever in the van will be while it is being lived in.

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Regards, Jack+Jon.

Message posted by rogerangie on 28/10/2013 at 3:05pm
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We lost more "commodities" both eatable and toiletry in the summer heat (35C) some days, than we have ever lost over winter. Just make sure anything which can freeze in winter, remove it, one of our favourite red wines went one year. Now that was a disaster!
One thing I would suggest. Once everything is drained down have a drive round to make sure all water is gone, it can linger in pipe bends etc.

Message posted by pepe63 on 28/10/2013 at 3:23pm
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Quote: Originally posted by rogerangie on 28/10/2013


One thing I would suggest. Once everything is drained down have a drive round to make sure all water is gone, it can linger in pipe bends etc.

In reference to that(and my previously mentioning of the FLOE drain down kit),I've since been out and looked at ours...and as I can access the onboard freshwater tank easy enough, I have been able to just remove the "feed" pipe and pressurize and blow through the system, as described in the video on their website..

It's certainly worth taking a look to see how easy it is on your vans..(..I've been meaning to look into doing this ever since we bought the van, I just hadn't realised how easy it was going to be..)



Message posted by kbcalypso on 28/10/2013 at 6:48pm
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we move the cushions away from the walls, drain the water only when it starts to get frosty, place a dehumidifer on worktop ( it is a small one that has two big tablets and gathers water in the bottom,) all clothes taken out and food, it only takes minutes to reinstall everthing. we use ours all year round, we are away boxing day unless it snows up in yorkshire.

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keep on moving

Message posted by Karavanner on 10/11/2013 at 4:59pm
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My biggest problem with overwintering is unwelcome visitors! Mice used the front cushions in out caravan to make nest materials, and there was evidence of little visitors in the lower MH cupboards.

Message posted by SymbolLife on 10/11/2013 at 8:41pm
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Have you tried tumble drier sheets Karavanner? Apparently mice don't like the smell.

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