Freezing Water Lines

by Rod
(N Illinois)



I'm living full time in northern Illinois in a 33' travel trailer, as a necessity for work. It's not a 5th wheel and doesn't have a basement. This is my first winter in the northern cold.

In prep for winter I skirted the camper with sheet insulation, heat taped my waterline, put plastic covered r-13 roll insulation in all of my windows, and put a 500W heat light under the camper (inside a metal box made for added safety with a small gap for heat to escape) but I still can't keep my water lines within the camper floor from freezing. Even running my furnace on 70 deg will not keep them from freezing when we're below about 16 deg for multiple days.

I cut a whole in the side of two of my heating ducts to allow heat to enter the cavity under the floor but it hasn't helped. Right now we have single digit lows and mid teen highs so I've been froze up for a few days and will be for at least a couple more.

I seem to have a weak spot where the lines run perpendicular across the camper above my bath grey tank. First the hot to the shower freezes and a few degrees lower the main cold line in the same area freezes so I lose everything except the cold to the shower, which tees off the main line and goes directly to the shower without going into the floor.

Since I seem to have narrowed it down to one section I plan to make a small cut into the undercarriage on one side of the camper, zip tie a metal pipe snake to the water line, and then send a heat tape line along the water line to the other side of the camper where the water lines penetrate back up through the floor (I'll cut into the undercarriage here to disconnect the pipe snake so I can pull it out), then close up my cuts somehow.

Anyone have an easier or better idea on how to keep these lines from freezing? I tried putting an electric heater blowing into where the water lines penetrate the floor but it didn't help. Thanks

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