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RE: New to truck campers

At least one major manufacturer is switching to all 12V refrigerators for 2023.That is Nu-Camp Cirrus line. They claim it is the wave of the future. They are using 12 Isotherm Cruise 130 refrigerators that draw 4.7 amps/hour. and now have 100 amp hour Battle Born batteries standard, with a 500 amp hour upgrade option (for about 10K) Maybe the new 12V fridges are different than those of a few years ago? There does not seem to be any improvement in the past 10 years or so. The Cruise 130 is a relatively small 4.7 cf refrigerator with a Danfoss compressor. A 4.7 amp/hr draw seems about right and matches the efficiency of my 12 year old Nova Kool, also with a Danfoss.
JimK-NY 11/30/22 08:04pm Truck Campers
RE: Camping at 27 degrees.

I have found a procedure that works for me and keeps propane use to a minimum. At night I crank up the furnace to about 65-70 degrees. Most evenings I also take a hot shower. Then at bed time I turn the furnace off for the night. I warm the bed with one or two large hot water bottles. I have found really warm blankets. Pendelton sherpa fleece blankets are really warm and very light weight. Two blankets will handle about any temperature. (I believe these are still available from Costco at about $35 each. By morning the camper temp might be in the 40s. I crank up the heat, sit next to a vent and after breakfast I turn the heat off for the day. This procedure works well for daytime temps roughly in the 30s and night time temps roughly in the 20s. Colder than that and it is time to leave for warmer climes.
JimK-NY 11/11/22 05:45am General RVing Issues
RE: Camping at 27 degrees.

That sounds really excessive. I have camped with the daytime highs in the upper 30s and the lows about 20. I also turn the heat off at night and sleep under a couple of large blankets. I don't take any special precautions. It takes a long time to freeze tanks hard enough to do any damage. If you are worried try a half gallon of antifreeze in each tank.
JimK-NY 11/09/22 02:58pm General RVing Issues
RE: Changing Screen Mesh - No-See-Ums?

With years of use, I thought the screening in my RV worked well. I camped next to the Colorado river near Moab and was plagued by a hatch of small gnats. The first night I gave up, turned off the lights and went to bed early. The second night I sprayed DEET on the screens. That works pretty well and I was able to stay up and watch a movie on my laptop.
JimK-NY 11/07/22 04:47am Do It Yourself Modifications and Upgrades (DIY)
RE: Carpet vs laminate or planking

I would go with thin vinyl flooring rather than heavy planting type materials. If you camp in the colder months, the floor will be cold. I put indoor/outdoor carpeting on top of my vinyl flooring. I can remove the entire piece for cleaning, including scrubbing and rinsing off with a hose if needed. I only did that once but have pulled it out for shaking/beating several times.
JimK-NY 11/01/22 05:20pm General RVing Issues
RE: Mysterious Propane "Leak"

PV=nRT applies to all gases including propane. I showed the calculations above for the variation in temperature that occurred for my last leak test. Temperature for the universal gas law is expressed in degrees Kelvin. A drop of 10 degrees F was only about a drop of a bit over 1% in Kelvin degrees so the pressure would have dropped by that same small amount. The tables cited by 3tons are for vapor pressure over liquid and would not apply for a leak test with no liquid in the system and the tank valve closed. The tables are quite useful for other purposes. As we can easily experience vapor pressure of gaseous propane over liquid propane changes greatly with temperature. This reflects a decrease in the rate at which gas can be produced from liquid propane. The tables show a substantial drop in the ability of various sized propane tanks to provide gas for heating or other purposes. The drop is so bad I long ago stopped trying to use a propane BBQ in the winter months.
JimK-NY 10/20/22 09:30pm Tech Issues
RE: Mysterious Propane "Leak"

Thanks, that is an interesting web site. Those temp/pressure tables really do not apply to this topic. They are about vapor pressures over liquid propane, not about temperature changes in pressure for propane in a gas state.
JimK-NY 10/20/22 12:09pm Tech Issues
RE: Medicare For Full Timers

We have different definitions of "pretty healthy". If I was your level of pretty healthy I would choose a different plan. The good thing is that every year I can re-evaluate what I need and choose a different plan. If I fall apart 6 months from now I'll have to absorb some out of pocket costs in 2023 (which I can) and then I can pick a more expensive plan for 2024. You may have less ability to change plans than you think. My insurance though AARP/United Healthcare is defined by the Medicare Plan F. It was very comprehensive. It is no longer available except for those of us who had it previously and are "grandfathered in". With the high cost of healthcare, I suspect we are going to see Medicare and supplemental coverage under more control with more of the costs transferred to the user.
JimK-NY 10/20/22 11:56am Full-time RVing
RE: Medicare For Full Timers

If you are healthy and relatively young, the need for really good medical insurance coverage might seem not worth the cost. I am 76 and actually pretty healthy for my age. Even so the medical costs can be out of sight. In the past year I have had a bunch of doctor visits, including specialists, also lab work and a bunch of testing and other procedures. I was seen by a rheumatologist a couple of times which also included lots of lab work. I had a couple of sessions with a neurology specialist which included some extensive EMG testing. I had a couple sessions of afib following my Covid shot. That means several cardiologist visits including an implant for a monitoring my heart. The monitoring is done by a cardiac specialist on an ongoing basis. I just finished a cardiac cath with a couple of stents. A few weeks ago, I had routine endo/colonscopy testing. I have mild emphysema so next month I am getting a complete pulmonary workup with ultrasound, echo, CT scans and pulmonary function testing. I have paid absolutely no out of pocket costs for these many tens of thousands of dollars worth of testing and care. In addition I have no restrictions on physicians or providers. I have been able to find the best and replace any doc that does not seem to meet my expectations. I highly recommend you look and pay for the most flexible and comprehensive coverage you can find. Sooner or later you will need it.
JimK-NY 10/20/22 09:54am Full-time RVing
RE: Mysterious Propane "Leak"

A drop in temperature would decrease the propane pressure. The drop is insignificant. During my testing, the temperature dropped from about 60 F to about 50F. Pressure of a gas is directly related to absolute temperature in degrees Kelvin. 60 degrees F is about 493 degrees Kelvin. 50 degrees F is about 487 degrees Kelvin. So the drop in temperature and the drop in pressure were insufficient at only a bit over 1%.
JimK-NY 10/19/22 09:50pm Tech Issues
RE: Can 'O Worms: how long can I expect my 5er to last?

It's took competition from Japan back in the 70's to force Americans to build a better car. Part of the problem is people expect their RV to be as reliable and solid as a car and it is not. I certainly agree with these points. Current RVs are built to very low standards. I would love to see a major shakeup in the industry which would likely take foreign competition. I don't think it is at all unreasonable for buyers to expect RVs to have decent quality of construction and to be suitable for typical use.
JimK-NY 10/19/22 12:44pm General RVing Issues
RE: Heating the Garage

Not for my RV. Winterizing means pulling the plug and draining the HW heater and switching to bypass. Then I need to pull antifreeze into every line and fixture with enough so the waste traps are filled. I need to empty the tank for the cassette toilet and add a gallon of windshield washer antifreeze. Just blow the lines out with compressed air. Like 10 times Drain water pump and ice maker lines (After first blow manually cycle the ice maker) on the water pump open and drain the inlet strainer on the pump and run it for like one minute after the first blow) I blow about 10 cycles using a 6 gallon compressor.. All vlves inluding low point open. Then pink drains and toilets only. One gallon on a bath and a half model and I'm done.. Don't have to flush all that pink come spring either. First step would be buying a compressor. I don't have any use for one or know a friend or neighbor that owns one. Then I would need to figure out where to attach it and the fittings needed. Once I figured that out, I suppose it would be easy to blow the lines clear. That still leaves the HW tank and I would need to be sure to blow out both the regular and bypass lines in addition to draining the tank. I would be concerned about the grey water drains. My RV does not have a "low point" or any valves in the fresh or waste water systems. I would need to add antifreeze for the waste lines and traps. Since it only takes a half gallon or so to completely winterize my RV, I am not sure I would save much on the cost of antifreeze.
JimK-NY 10/19/22 06:27am General RVing Issues
RE: Can 'O Worms: how long can I expect my 5er to last?

Go tothe service dept. of any car dealer and you will find lots of new vehicles that are broke. If you maintain a well built car it will hold up and last 20 years easily. The same can be said for an RV. None of this matches my experience or the reports I hear from others. First most new cars are quite reliable and don't have any need for initial repairs. My wife and I have 2015 cars that have required only oil changes, replacement wiper blades and replacement batteries. My 2018 truck has had a couple of oil changes and nothing else. That does not seem to be the case for RVs. New RVs always seem to have a list of items that need to be fixed due to poor design or quality of construction. RVs often die due to leaks and water intrusion. Many are so poorly built that the seams crack open and water finds its way inside to create havoc. It can be an endless battle. I have never heard of a car leaking because it got rained on. That is true of a new car and one that is 50 years old. I suppose it is possible for a sun roof in a car to leak. That has never happened to me and I would not expect such a leak to destroy the whole car or result in major structural repairs. A car typically is used daily and can run up hundreds of thousands of miles before it wears out. Most RVs only have some occasional use and still fall apart typically within 10 years or so. There is just no comparison with the quality of design, construction and overall longevity. I cannot imagine buying a car and finding it came with some cheap, Chinese tires that had a history of blowouts. I cannot imagine the need to inspect and caulk the car at least every year. I cannot imagine buying a car only to find that even empty the suspension and tires were already close to maximum load capacity. Sadly that is very frequently the case for RVs and is not something most new buyers would even think about. I cannot imagine buying a car only to find that the trunk keys were the same on every vehicle and the doors could easily be pried open with a screwdriver. I cannot imagine buying a car with plastic windows that are likely to leak and scratch if you look at them sideways.
JimK-NY 10/19/22 05:52am General RVing Issues
RE: Heating the Garage

it takes 5 minutes to run antifreeze. Just winterize and don't worry about it. Not for my RV. Winterizing means pulling the plug and draining the HW heater and switching to bypass. Then I need to pull antifreeze into every line and fixture with enough so the waste traps are filled. I need to empty the tank for the cassette toilet and add a gallon of windshield washer antifreeze. Putting the RV water system back in service requires even more time and effort. First step is to add water to the FW tank and flush each line. Then I reinstall the HW tank plug. I need to pump 6 gallons of water to fill the empty tank. Perhaps I am overly cautious but I pump for several minutes and then allow the pump to cool once or twice during the process so it does not overheat. Some residual antifreeze always seems to make it into the HW tank from the bypass and fill lines. So I usually pull the plug, drain the tank and repeat the filling process. Your 5 minute procedure easily turns into a half hour or so for me. If I also decide to sanitize the water system, that becomes a half day procedure. There is another big issue. I keep all sorts of supplies and food items in my RV. If I am going to let it go through hard freezing, I need to remove any canned goods, liquid cosmetics, bleach and cleaning materials, my bear spray cannisters, laundry detergent, the waste chemicals stored under my cassette toilet, etc, etc. Since I keep basic supplies for weeks of continuous use, there is a lot of stuff to remove and I always seem to miss some items. Of course all of that needs to go back when I get ready to use the RV again. My RV lives outside so for winter storage, I often have a small electric space heater running in the camper. With some tinkering I can minimize cost and keep the inside temperature at about 40 degrees or so. In case the power goes out, I also have a remote sensor and can monitor the RV temperature from in the house. My RV is basically ready to go at all times. For a trip, I turn on the refrigerator in advance and also turn up the space heater to get the RV to a useable temperature before starting out.
JimK-NY 10/19/22 05:17am General RVing Issues
RE: Mysterious Propane "Leak"

More mystery!! When I first replaced pigtails and the regulator, after shutting off the tank, the empty indicator on the regulator showed red in 2 hours of less. I think I check that several times. A day or so later, I tested and found the indicator took 6-8 hours to turn red. The tank has been open for the past 10 days with no other work and no appliances in use. I tried another leak test. I went to bed 14 hours after shutting off the tank and the indicator was still green. This morning after 20 hours and a 15 degree drop in temperature, the indicator was red. So how does the leak test go from under 2 hours to 6 hours and now to over 14 hours without any changes?
JimK-NY 10/18/22 08:46am Tech Issues
RE: How do you sell a relatively new rv and downsize/moneywise?

When I want to sell something I put a sign on it saying "FOR SALE" and park it in my front yard. If you are driving it around make sure the phone number is on it and large enough to read. That might work for selling a lawn mower but I would do a lot more to reach the right audience for an expensive RV. I saw an RV near my neighborhood with a for sale sign. It was there for a couple of years.
JimK-NY 10/18/22 08:38am General RVing Issues
RE: How do you sell a relatively new rv and downsize/moneywise?

I am not sure about selling, but I had a great experience buying through a dealer with the RV on consignment. The RV, a truck camper, was very lightly used and just a few years old. I got the advantage of the high depreciation rate of a new camper plus no concerns about repairs or problems. The dealer and I went over the RV in great detail and he charged the seller for every possible issue. In addition I got a 1 year guarantee. Perhaps you can work out an arrangement with a dealer to both buy and sell on consignment. You will lose depreciation on the sale but gain on buying used. Also I think you will find it difficult to sell and RV you are living in. Others might have more experience as to how well that works.
JimK-NY 10/17/22 11:54am General RVing Issues
RE: Mysterious Propane "Leak"

I don't mind electrical or most mechanical work, but I absolutely hate plumbing. Even replacing toilet parts is a task I hate. Even the shutoff valves never seem to work and always leak afterwards. Anyway, my knowledge of plumbing parts, valves, fittings, etc is poor. First time I had an old stiff and leaking pigtail, I tightened the Acme fitting until it cracked. It seemed like a really poor design, so I used lots of teflon tape on the replacement. Of course, I also used plenty of teflon on the 1/4" inverted male fitting. I was lucky I didn't have a leak. Fortunately I also learned better. Otherwise I would have been using a foot of teflon tape every time I changed the tank.
JimK-NY 10/17/22 05:35am Tech Issues
RE: Mysterious Propane "Leak"

It seems beyond doubt that there are some slow leaks. I just don't know the significance. Currently it takes about 6 hours for the pressure in the system to drop enough that the pressure goes below 5"water and the indicator switches to red. That seems like a small amount but I don't know. I have already passed the 10 day period and will wait about a month before weighing the tank. I only have a bathroom scale and need to see a drop of a pound or more. If a lose a pound every month or so, I will probably live with it. I have not seen any bubbles with leak tests and odor is absent or minimal. I have not used my RV in over a year and barely used it since Covid started. After my month long test I plan to cycle the furnace, stove, HW heater and check afterwards using the switch over indicator.
JimK-NY 10/16/22 06:56pm Tech Issues
RE: Mysterious Propane "Leak"

John, thanks for the impressive detailed information. I know for sure I would like to avoid tackling all of these possible issues. At this point I am trying to assess the amount of leakage. I weighed my primary tank and have had it opened for 10 days. In another couple of weeks, I will do a weight check. I did check the HW heater again and think there is a very, very faint odor. So if I decide to do more checking and possible repairs, I will start there. Thanks again.
JimK-NY 10/16/22 03:23pm Tech Issues
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