In this blog post, we will answer the following question: What is the Forest River Arctic package? We will explain what the Arctic package includes, and what extra measures you can take to keep yourself and the RV warm while camping in cold weather.
What is the Forest River Arctic package?
The Forest River Arctic package is an option that included the following amenities in order to keep you and your vehicle warm during cold winter nights:
- Heating pads created for your RVs water tanks and sewage drains;
- Dual pane windows;
- Additional insulation;
- Heat turns automatically to warm the underbelly of the RV when the temperature drops to below freezing.
In addition to the Arctic package option, which is out there for a few RVs, there are other RV quirks to look out for. If you are camping in an area with heavy rain (snow), your RV should have:
- A solid roof. There are ratings for each roof, so it is important to ensure that the roof can withstand the stress of a thick layer of snow.
- Closed drainage valves and suspended grey and white water tanks. This helps air circulate around the tank.
- Awnings. This is a substantial resource to protect extraction mechanisms. Keep snow and ice away to avoid damage.
All these functions specifically help to ensure that the motorhome is protected from the snow. Wherever you are camping, it may not rain a lot. In that case, these functions are not mandatory.
However, as a lot of snow piles up, these qualities keep you from worrying about your RV. This is another reason why validating the weather before starting your trip is so outstanding. Snow comes and goes, but your RV must be ready for something.
Additional steps to keep your Forest River RV warm in winter
To reduce heat losses in your Forest River RV and improve your comfort, follow these tips:
- For your safety: Do not heat your vehicle improperly to avoid any danger. The use of heaters with no external outlet is not suitable for maintaining room temperatures, such as space heaters or the gas stove/oven.
Heaters with no external outlet generate monoxide carbon, a colourless and odourless gas that can be fatal, and they also produce about ½ gallon of water per gallon of fuel.
- Humidity Control: Unlike heaters with no external outlet that burn fuel like gas propane, electric heaters and ventilated combustion do not generate humidity problems. People and animals that live in the RV will produce a lot of moisture, and condensation will form on the surfaces where the air is saturated.
Health Problems can arise when the levels of humidity are high due to mould growth. Be sure to provide some kind of ventilation periodically to avoid the presence of unhealthy conditions and avoid parts damage from your camper.
Monitor levels of humidity and keep them below, or between 30 and 40%, depending on the amount of condensation that forms. You can find monitors from moisture in most hardware stores.
- Use a heat pump instead of the heater, especially on cold nights: If your RV has a heat pump in addition to your boiler, we recommend that you use it occasionally if it is over 40 degrees outside. In addition, if you are connected to electrical support, it will save your propane consumption.
The difference between a boiler and a heat pump is that the furnace heats from the floor of your car, and the heat pump heats from the ceiling. However, beware of the outside temperature and always follow the manufacturer’s instructions for use.
- Insulate with window covers, blinds, carpets, etc.: The cold air circulating your windows and under the floor of your vehicle robs you of heat. If you have day-night shades and windshields, like almost all RVs, you should keep them closed.
Even if you don’t have thermal glazed windows in your RV, closing the shades will trap an extra layer of air between the window and the shade, which will help with the overall insulation of your RV interior.
Another thing you should do is place rugs in the middle parts of your RV floor where you walk most often. These mats, placed in the busiest areas of your RV, can protect your feet from the cold and often uninsulated floors of the trailer.
- Turn on the ceiling fan: A ceiling fan helps circulate the air in your living space on your RV. And since your furnace vents are on the floor, you’ll need to adjust the direction of your blower to pull the hot air up.
- Close the AC ceiling vents: closing a room keeps and focuses the airflow where you want it. If you spend more time in your kitchen and living room, close the bedroom and bathroom doors. This will help you concentrate the heat where you want it in your RV.
- Install an electric fireplace: Many 5th wheelers and motor homes are equipped with luxurious electric fireplaces. And it’s not just for looks! Most have temperature control. If you’re plugged into an electrical stand, they’re great for relaxing in the morning without having to turn on your furnace.
Note, however, that if you are on electrical supports with a meter, your wallet will take a hit.
- Cover your RV: Covering an RV means putting material around the bottom of the vehicle to protect the lower parts of the unit from the cold. While you can wrap an RV with any material, materials such as vinyl, plywood, thick plastic sheets, styrofoam panels or even snow… these are the most popular with RV travellers.
- Use portable heating units: The purpose of having a portable heater is to raise the interior temperature of an RV room a few degrees above the base level provided by the furnace.
This heater should be your second source of heat. It will be economical to operate, and it will provide constant heat in the room. Place it in the living room during the day and in the bedroom at night.
Are Forest River RVs any good?
Forest River trailers are a good deal for their price and a popular choice in the United States, sometimes due to the considerable number and models that there are on the market.
The best-selling Forest River vehicles are the very popular Georgetown or the C-Class Sunseeker, built with an arched fibreglass monocoque roof having an R-18 insulation ratio. The advantages of this choice of construction are numerous and essential for a future buyer:
- Longer lifespan;
- Greater weather resistance;
- Does not require annual maintenance (roof);
- Fewer joints creating possible water infiltration in the future;
- Double windows for better insulation and therefore a more extended period of use;
- More excellent soundproofing in the vehicle;
- The higher resale value of the vehicle;
- 2-inch Vacuum-Bond Laminated exterior walls;
- Block foam insulation;
- Superlite composite named AZDEL;
- Plastic-coated fibreglass exterior;
- One-piece Beauflor coating in certain vehicles;
- Aluminium frame.
Forest River makes travel trailers, fifth wheels, toy hauliers, pop-up trailers, Class C and Class A motorhomes, with a price under the $30,000 mark.
Numerous Arctic packages on RVs provide the option of temperature guarantees. In addition to sleeping bags, indicate your guaranteed temperature. So if you are scrutinising a trailer for the winter, make sure there is a usable Arctic pack included!
In addition to the Arctic package option, which is out there for a few RVs, there are other RV quirks to look out for, and we have mentioned some helpful tips at the beginning of this guide.
Make sure you check out our other articles on how to stay warm in winter in an RV, whether you have the Arctic package pre-installed or not. Please feel free to contact us should you have any questions, comments or if you want to share your experience of travelling with a recreational vehicle during the cold season.
FAQ on What is the Forest River Arctic package?
What does thermal package mean?
A thermal package means the underbelly of the RV is better insulated and heated than a motorhome without this package. A two-sided reflective foil is customarily used for isolating the underbelly, the roof and the room floors of an RV.
What is an Arctic package on an RV?
An Arctic package on an RV means that the motorhome is better isolated and fitted for long and cold winter days. The package usually includes dual thermal pane windows, preinstalled heating pads for the water tanks, better floor and roof insulation.
How does a heated underbelly on an RV work?
A heated underbelly on an RV has a two-inch diameter hose that transmits heat to the underbelly area of the motorhome to prevent the water tanks (including sewage) from freezing during winter nights.
What is the best motorhome for cold weather?
Although there are plenty of motorhomes for cold weather, these are the vehicles that can withstand freezing temperatures, freezing winds, and even snowy conditions:
- Keystone Montana
- Keystone Raptor
- Heartland LM Arlington
- Heartland Bighorn
- Arctic Wolf Forest River
- Jayco 327CKTS Eagle.