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  1. #1
    Industry Mogul
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    Default Keeping the Truck-mount from freezing

    I'm in SC so keeping the truck-mount from freezing is pretty easy as it doesn't get very cold and even when it does it doesn't last. I can use a heater like the one here for less than $20.

    What do you guys in the colder regions do?

  2. #2
    Industry Mogul TimM's Avatar
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    Default Re: Keeping the Truck-mount from freezing

    I use this heater Workforce Milkhouse Utility Heater - LH-875A at The Home Depot I have used one of these for the past three years and it has been good. It keeps my van around 45-50 degrees as long as it doent get in the single digits then it will get down to around 38-40. and that temp is from the back door so it is the coldest part of my truck. I keep the heater up against my truckmount and I also keep a moving pad over it to keep the heat in.
    Last edited by TimM; 11-28-2010 at 04:00 PM. Reason: added stuff.

  3. #3
    Industry Mogul FJORDKING's Avatar
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    Default Re: Keeping the Truck-mount from freezing

    I like to use oil filled radiator one in the back of the van one in the middle with on small fan to move the air around.

    vans here also have to be insulated just a few days ago it was 4 degrees

  4. #4
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    Default Re: Keeping the Truck-mount from freezing

    We have a shop now, with 3 bays an well insulated. It has an old furnace but needs replacement.We also put milkhouse heaters near the tm
    and inside shop temps seem to stay above32 degrees.Hopefully this year we will be getting the new furnace.I have found keeping a truck out of the wind chill is half the battle.
    My next truck will get the sprayed on insulation instead of rino lined tuff coat. It is cheaper and a well insulated truck for working out in the winter months.

  5. #5
    Industry Mogul Bob Foster's Avatar
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    Default Re: Keeping the Truck-mount from freezing

    I have an insulated truck so I just use a small 1500 electric space heater on low. I might need to put a heater in my truck 7 days in a year.

    As a safety precaution for if I got caught where I couldn't plug it in I also have a gallon of windshield wiper antifreeze that if I had to I could dump it in my water box and run it through my heaters and lines.

    As a back up to that I have a small camper propane heater that I could use if the power was out.

    Less bark, more wag, but will bite if necessary.

  6. #6
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    Default Re: Keeping the Truck-mount from freezing

    Here are some of the things I do to protect equipment that is outside...coldest here was about a week ago 2.4 degrees below zero F...

    http://vortex.plymouth.edu/uschill.gif



    Don't forget to protect the heart of your business...truckmount and tools...from freezing!

    The coldest I have seen it this winter here in Reno was 2.4 degrees below F...and here is my secret to keeping my 'mount from freezing...I keep it where the Camaro was...and it stays at 48 degrees the entire winter:

    Hey, my equipment has been out side for the last 26 years before building 'The Garage'...so I have a few suggestions on keeping your equipment toasty...even in the coldest weather. If you are a veteran cleaner in a cold climate area, Please add your well-tested suggestions to this thread...

    In bitter cold climates there is an area of the van that is much harder to heat...that is the space that is about 1 foot from the walls, floor, and ceiling...it is the 'cold death zone' for any tool that has water in it...Don't let your tools reside their when you are heating the van...if you cannot figure out a way to keep them out of that area...then remove them to a heated area...

    HEATING THE VAN ... there are a lot of heaters for sale that do not cut it for heating the van. You need something that Both heats the air And Circulates it...no wimpy heaters allowed...here is my favorite...a blue blower with the heater accesory...the thing makes 300 cfm of very warm air...and really moves it around...perfect for when you are trying to keep the ravages of winter away from the heart of your business...


    Blue Blower, Blue Blower Fan, Blue Blower Heater, Blue Blower 3000, Original Blue Blower
    You can look at Sears.com and check your local store Today to see if it is available...you can get the blower and the heater for about a hundred bucks.

    PLACEMENT OF THE HEATER...Oh just throw it in any place....WRONG!...you need a very specific placement on your heater...you want it initially blowing on the truckmount itself! I think it is best to take a couple of moving blankets and drape them over the tm...paying extra attention to covering the face of the tm...which usually is facing a van door that has a window in it...so it could be one of the colder areas...also the face or instrument panel of the tm usually has the most fragile pieces on it when exposed to freezing condions...think plastic Dwyer meters...and small brass fittings...usually not very sturdy when they are frozen.

    LIFT THE SKIRT UP!...Ok..so we have the entire tm draped with moving blankets...keeping in mind that the ONE SIDE the heater is going to be blown into needs to be lifted up a bit...maybe 15 inches...to let the heat blow in safely...and also let the heat spill out into the van...AFTER heating the tm.

    WAIT A MINUTE...THE BLUE BLOWER WITH HEATER DOES NOT HAVE A THERMOSTAT!...Very observant!...Here is mine...



    It should cost about 35 dollars to pick up the parts for this thermostat...it is a Wall thermostat for an electric baseboard heater..Honeywell Manual Electric Baseboard Thermostat - CT410B at The Home Depot a box with a couple of duplex outlets on the back side.

    Where Do I put the thermostat? Right on the tm you are working so hard to protect...and it controls the heater that is blowing hot air into the little tent that securely covers your tm.

    WAIT A MINUTE, JIMBO...I'M A REGISTERED BROKE DICK...HOW CAN I PROTECT MY VAN?...I'm Really glad you asked my friend...you are the last person on earth who can afford the needed repairs if your van freezes up...so you, my BROKE DICK FRIEND...are the guy that has to work the hardest to protect what you have.

    BD ADVICE...you have a different set of rules...Anything that has water in it and is not bolted down in your van needs to come inside where it is warm...What, your spouse does not like it inside? Does she/he like to eat? Keep it inside...it IS your livelihood.

    SUCK IT OUT, BABY!...Pressure lines need to be drained of water....put a quick connect on each end of the hose...it's now open on both end...and roll it up...once...twice...three times...now almost all the water is out of it. The rest I want you to vacuum out with your truckmount...you do have the worlds most powerful vacuum...so after rolling the water out of the hose...with the spare quick connects still on it...hook it up to the vac port on your tm and Suck it out, baby...If you decide to leave the pressure lines outside...make sure to leave at least one spare QC on each line...to allow for any leftover water to expand when it freezes.

    BD TM ADVICE...What about the mount? I had a van that broke down about 15 years ago...my trusty Prochem 800a was inside...and I expected it to be froze for a day or two...I went to the hardware store...bought a couple of cases of RV antifreeze...poured it in the water box...and ran antifreeze through the machine...heat exchangers...thru 300' of pressure hoses...through the chemical feed system...and thru all the spraying tools...No freeze ups...don't forget to loosen the fitting on the back of your water pressure gauge...it is a dead, end line that has water in it...even if you antifreeze the machine itself...freezing in that line will destroy the gauge.

    You can reuse the antifreeze if you save it in some 5 gallon buckets when you get the next job...In the past I have used conventional car antifreeze in the tm...but it seems like it is hard to rinse out...that is why I would suggest the RV antifreeze.

    If you are trying to protect your tm without heating the van...all I can say is good luck...It is a risky business...I think it might be better to take all the tools in...find a couple of old blanket/comforters/quilts to drape over the tm...and just run your heater in that space...you save a lot by not heating the entire van...yet protect the vital heart of your business.

    Here is one other thing you need for monitoring your now toasty van:Wireless Indoor/Outdoor Thermometer System - RadioShack.com

    I'm sure I will hear from a couple of distributors that thrive on frozen vans for winter repair work...maybe carpet cleaners who don't hang out here will continue to support them!

    Hope it helps!- Jim

  7. #7
    Industry Mogul Bob Foster's Avatar
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    Default Re: Keeping the Truck-mount from freezing

    Lots of great ideas Jimbo.
    Less bark, more wag, but will bite if necessary.

 

 

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