Xtreme Heaters vs. Michigan Winter Under a Skirted 5th Wheel RV

As RV owners discover new uses for Xtreme Heaters for winter camping, we've worked with a few to test scenarios and share the data with us.  With this data, we are able to give better product advice based on real life examples and scenarios.

Testing the Limits

This winter, we worked with a customer that has a 42' Travel Supreme 5th wheel setup in West Branch, Michigan.

The RV is skirted with foam board and protected overhead by a car port structure.  Here is a photo of the Bear's Den before the winterization and skirting work was done.

While we know we have customers using our heaters for this purpose as well as in the underbelly of their trailers, we were not sure about how well they would work or how many heaters would be required to keep up with Michigan winter conditions, which can deliver days below freezing and low temps in the negatives.  We discuss skirting and insulation options in more detail in this post:  Heating the Underbelly of RVs.

We provided two of our large heaters and asked the customer to start with 1 to see how far it would go before requiring the second to keep the skirted area above freezing.  Did we have to add the 2nd heater?  Read on to find out!

The Setup

This illustration shows where the heater and temperature sensors were placed.

We never added the second heater on the right side of the diagram as it never became necessary.


The winter started out relatively mild, but January delivered us a lot of sequential days below freezing during the day with overnight temps in the teens, which the single Large Xtreme Heater kept up with.    With the volume of space being covered and the distance, we were pleasantly surprised.

January 21st through January 22nd gave us some good data.  Below is an illustration of how the heaters did.  The data series labeled West Branch is an outdoor sensor.  The other three are in different locations under the rig to monitor how well the air is circulating.  These are one-minute interval logs over 24 hours, beginning at 10:25AM on the 21st to 10:25AM on the 22nd.  1,440 readings total.

The low recorded outdoors was 8F and as you can see, the top three lines of data all remained above freezing. The lowest temperature recorded by a sensor was 34 degrees from the sensor furthest from the heater.

We unfortunately lost our data connection for a few days, which coincided with the lowest temps of the winter, well below 0 overnight, but no one could get to the site with the snow that fell during that time.  That said, with the results above, we are fairly confident that the heater kept up and highly confident that if the 2nd heater had been added, there would have been no issues with freezing temps well into the negative numbers.

It's not Just About Temperature

As a side benefit, our Xtreme Heaters are pretty good at keeping moisture under control as well.  The chart below displays the RH readings for the same period as the temperature measurements under the rig.

 In this scenario, lower is better.  The top line is the outdoor RH and the three lines below are the same three sensors that measured the temperature in the first graph.  Because the heaters only run between 40 and 55, they aren't a primary tool for moisture control, but they clearly offer this benefit when operating.


It's fair to say that Xtreme Heaters are a great solution for keeping the underside of your RV protected from freezing temperatures.  Given our safety features and record of reliability, you can have confidence that our solution is safe, effective and very easy to deploy.  If you enjoy winter camping in your RV, you should seriously consider adding Xtreme Heaters to your winterizing tool box.



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