Leaving trailer in the cold with full black water tank - Dutchmen Owners
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Old 11-13-2022, 05:35 PM   #1
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Join Date: Nov 2022
Location: Rocky Mountain House
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Alberta
Leaving trailer in the cold with full black water tank

Hey guys,

We have a Dutchmen Classic (fifth wheel) from 1991, 1992 or 1993. We bought this a few months ago with the idea of ​​living in it for 1 or 2 years. Unfortunately, we will not continue this, mainly due to a lot of problems related to the Canadian winter. We had prepared ourselves well, but the old beast turns out not to be very resistant and we don't want to spend any more money on it. So we are going to live somewhere else and want to sell the trailer sometime in the spring.
What we now encounter is this: We can no longer open the valves of both waste tanks. I assume it's frozen. Local heating didn't help. We do not know whether the contents of the waste tanks are also frozen. The tanks are well insulated (straw and insulation material). So I have no idea íf we manage to open the valve, if some liquid actually comes out yes or no.

- We would like to get out of the trailer asap, but we are left with a, at least, almost full black water tank. How can we tackle this? Can we wait for the temperatures to warm up a bit and then dump everything? How bad and harmful is it to leave the black water tank for what it is for now? When we leave the trailer, the propane heating will, of course, no longer be on.

We greatly appreciate all your help. Thanks in advance!

Char
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Old 11-15-2022, 05:10 PM   #2
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Wisconsin
Winterize the plumbing before it gets frozen. Drain the water heater before turning it "off".

Stuff frozen in the black tank will not be a problem until it thaws.
A partially filled gray tank may or may not have freeze damage.
Definitely drain the fresh water tank and pump RV antifreeze into plumbing.
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Old 11-19-2022, 11:34 PM   #3
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Location: Lebanon
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Oregon
Heat it up!

I have had to thaw heavy equipment frozen to the ground. I would assume you can do the same. Wrap the bottom of the trailer with tarps. Make a short tunnel and use diesel/kerosene heaters to blow the hot air under the trailer. You will have to continuously monitor the heater/heaters while using making sure nothing overheats. Also bring the inside of the trailer up above freezing! It may take a good while, but if it can thaw frozen metal tracks to the ground it should work in your case.
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Old 11-20-2022, 04:08 PM   #4
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Location: Rocky Mountain House
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Alberta
Thanks for your reply.
Fortunately we had some "warmer" days (4°) and we could drain all the tanks. Put some anti freeze in there and now the trailer is good to survive the winter.
Thanks!
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