So this year we decided it was time to upgrade our camper in which we purchased a 2022 30BHS Cougar Travel Trailer Camper and so far, we love it! Many people have gotten a lot of use out of how we winterized our old camper, so I figured I’d put together a video and post about how to winterize a 2022 30BHS Cougar.
There are two things that you can do to make winterizing your 30BHS travel trailer easier year after year.
- The first one is to cut a hole in the removable panel. With the angled panel being screwed into the one that you really need to remove, it can be a pain climbing up inside the baggage compartment. So, when it is out, simply cut a hole big enough for your arm to fit in to turn the hot water heater bypass valve on.
- The second one is to install a bypass valve between the fresh water hose and the water pump, which is super easy to do. Once the bypass valve is installed, you simply turn it to bypass the fresh water tank and you can then pump the antifreeze through your system. In the spring, simply turn the bypass valve off, flush the lines and you are done.
Items Needed to Winterize a 2022 30BHS Cougar Camper
- 1 1/16″ Socket
- Ratchet for the socket
- 3 Gallons of RV Antifreeze (I like to buy 4 just in case)
- Camco Permanent Pump Converter Winterizing Kit
How to Winterize/Drain the Water Heater in a 30BHS Camper
As I mentioned above, this hole in the partition does not come stock like this from the manufacture. The first thing you need to do in order to winterize the water heater itself is to put the water supply line in bypass.
If you don’t have a hole cut in your partition it is just a bigger headache, but still very doable. The first thing you need to do is pull the screws out of the angled partition and then the couple screws that go into the floor by where the hole is cut.
Once the partition is out I recommend cutting this hole, but it doesn’t have to be done if you don’t mind removing the partitions every spring and fall.
Now that you have access to the backside of the water heater, you are looking for the bypass valve. It is pretty much centered on the back side of the water heater and toward the bottom.
The bypass valve should be in the vertical position which bypasses the water heater all together (the lines will get filled with antifreeze at a later step).
The water heater itself just gets drained. There is no need for antifreeze and this is done to help eliminate corrosion on an expensive water heater.
So the next step is to drain the water heater itself. If you have been hooked up to the city water connection or ran the pump on your last trip then the hot water tank is most likely pressurized.
Before removing the anode, it is best to relieve the pressure. This is simply done by pulling up on the pressure release in which water will start to spray out. Hold it open until most of the pressure has gone away.
Now that the tank isn’t under pressure, the next step is to remove the anode. You will need a 1 1/16″ socket to do this.
Simply loosen and remove the anode.
Water will begin to flow out of the hot water heater. To speed up the process, you can open up the relief valve again.
That is all there is to winterizing the hot water heater. It is probably a good idea to purchase a new anode for the spring so you have one handy when you are ready to de-winterize your 30BHS camper.
If you are looking for the water heater model number along with which anode model number you need to purchase, I have an article here that covers all of that.
How to Drain the Water Out of the Lines in a 30BHS Camper
The next step to winterize the camper is to turn our attention to the water lines. Our goal is to get all of the water that we can out of the lines before we run the antifreeze through.
This will prevent a bunch of water from getting into your black and gray tanks, which should already be fully emptied from your last camping trip.
Under your camper, you’ll find a blue and red hose with caps on them. These are your hot and cold water low point drain lines. Remove the white cap from each line, water should come out.
Once the two low point drains stop dripping there is still a chance that there could be some water vacuum locked in the lines. Go inside the camper and turn the kitchen, bathroom and shower cold water faucets on.
Go outside and let the lines drain. Once they are done dripping, repeat this process for the hot water lines.
Now that you have gotten all the water out of the lines that you can, you can put the caps back on the low point drains.
One other things you want to make sure you do is turn all the faucets back off that you turned on. You want to control the antifreeze being sucked into the lines when you turn the pump on and not let it run while or you’ll find yourself using more antifreeze than you need which is ultimately more money.
How to Run Antifreeze through the Lines of a 30BHS Camper
If you have made it this far, you are finally at the last step in the process which is running antifreeze through all of the lines.
Start out but lifting the master bedrooms storage compartment open. On the left hand side, you can remove the top to gain access to the water pump.
If you have used my suggestion of installing a bypass valve, turn the handle of the valve toward the antifreeze suction line, which is perpendicular to the water pump line.
If you haven’t installed a bypass valve, simply disconnect the freshwater intake line (the white hose) and attached your suction line directly to the left side of the water pump (which should be facing toward the back of the camper).
Now that everything is hooked up and the hose is in the antifreeze, it is time to let the pump do all the work for you. Go to the Cougars command center and and turn the water pump on.
The lines will start to fill and pressurize your system.
With the lines filling, I find that one gallon gets pretty much used up with just the bathroom faucet. Turn on the hot water to the bathrooms faucet and run it until the water turns pink.
Once the water turns pink, turn the hot water side of the faucet off.
Repeat this process for the cold water side of the faucet.
If you followed this sequence, it should be time to swap out antifreeze bottles.
Not that another jug of antifreeze is ready to go, move on to the toilet. Flush the toilet until you see the pink antifreeze running.
Next, turn on the hot water to the shower.
Run it until you see pink. Repeat this process with the cold water side of the shower.
Next, move on to the kitchen sink. Start with either the hot or cold side.
Repeat the process with the other.
Again, if you are following this sequence you should be about out of antifreeze again but feel free to check it between each cycle.
The last bottle will be used to winterize the exterior showers of the camper.
On the passenger side exterior shower, repeat the same process. Turn on the hot water until you see pink antifreeze and then do the same again with the cold water.
Finally, the last fixture that needs to be filled with antifreeze is the exterior shower on the drivers side. Again, repeat the same process by turning on the hot until you see antifreeze and then the cold.
That is all there is to running antifreeze through the lines! The last step is to turn the water pump back off. Don’t forget this step as you don’t want to burn your water pump up sucking dry air!
Ok, one last think I like to do but is probably over kill. You now have three jugs with an inch or so of antifreeze left in them. I like to pour at least one of them down the kitchen sink on the opposite side that I used when running antifreeze through the lines.
There is a p-trap under the sink that prevents smells from coming back into the camper just like in your house. These p-traps are just water trapping the sewer gas down. I put the antifreeze here so the water in the p-trap can’t freeze either. Good luck, and until another great camping season next year!
Ben has a bachelor’s degree in construction engineering. When not constructing or remodeling X-Ray Rooms, Cardiovascular Labs, and Pharmacies, you can find him at home with wife and two daughters. Outside of family, He loves grilling and barbequing on his Big Green Egg and Blackstone Griddle, as well as working on projects around the house.
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