Vanlife Q&A: Using portable tank as black water?

In this post in the Van Life Q&A, a user asks:

Using portable tank as black water?

My thoughts:

That’s exactly what it is – a waste tank. They’re not intended to be the primary waste tank, but rather a way to dump your waste tank into them and then haul it to the dump station. It makes it more convenient for people who would have to move a complex/large setup and break camp to go dump their waste.

Vanlife Q&A: Batteries – Winter Full Timing at Ski Resorts

In this post in the Van Life Q&A, a user asks:

Batteries – Winter Full Timing at Ski Resorts

My thoughts:

Other factors to consider:

Lead acid batteries will loose around 50% capacity at 32F and below, lithium iron phosphate loses around 10%

Recharging the lithium’s below freezing can cause damage to them unless charged with low amperage so the BMS needs to communicate with the charger or handle it on its own. Some lithium’s BMS does handle this scenario.

Another option is to warm the batteries so they stay in the temp range.

Vanlife Q&A: Why build instead of buying a used class B?

In this post in the Van Life Q&A, a user asks:

Why build instead of buying a used class B?

My thoughts:

Modifying an RV isn’t so simple. Ex, if you want to change the carpet to a solid surface floor and do it right, you have to pull literally everything out.

Also, some people want a newer vehicle with modern conveniences or under at least power train warranty vs an older one even with low miles.

We all have our own preferences. Do what you feel is best for you.

Vanlife Q&A: Vandwelling in Scandinavia?

In this post in the Van Life Q&A, a user asks:

Vandwelling in Scandinavia?

My thoughts:

0 degrees F is cold. I was born in Finland and have dealt with winters there. 3ft if snow piled up on the side of the road, cars plugged into to electric block heaters covered in so much snow during the night you don’t know which one is yours in the morning.

Then there are the times when you get a bit of a cold streak and it’s -40 C for a couple nights.

Living in a vehicle there? Maybe if it’s one of those arctic expedition vehicles. Otherwise, no thanks.

Vanlife Q&A: Avoiding sleazy motels

In this post in the Van Life Q&A, a user asks:

Avoiding sleazy motels

My thoughts:

How I roll now: Don’t just try to find something when you’re tired unless you’re prepared to sleep in the car at a rest area or truck stop or Walmart. None of those are terrible if you’re prepared for it, but most road trippers aren’t set up terribly well for sleeping comfortably in a car, such as with window shades.

Pick a stop some time during the morning and make a reservation. This helps reduce the chance that everything including the ones above your budget are sold out besides the sleazy ones and you’re dead tired and have no other option. Been there, a few times and it’s not fun.

Vanlife Q&A: I could use some help figuring out what I need to buy for my camper-van solar system.

In this post in the Van Life Q&A, a user asks:

I could use some help figuring out what I need to buy for my camper-van solar system.

My thoughts:

Those all in one things are very inefficient bang for your buck. Simple appearing, yes but costly. They also can have limitations on things like charge voltage so you can’t do various array types in the future.

As far as battery goes, Lithium is your best for capacity per LB but a simple battery protect can shut off the lead acid bank so you can’t inadvertently over discharge it and the initial investment is much less.

Vanlife Q&A: 2 days into vanlife. here’s my current routine. what would you change?

In this post in the Van Life Q&A, a user asks:

2 days into vanlife. here’s my current routine. what would you change?

My thoughts:

So I didn’t think about the brushing teeth in a public bathroom. That kind of grossed me out. I think having a jug of water and a small gray water jug would be better. I mean, lots of random people use those bathrooms after doing their business. I don’t mind using the facilities for the same purposes but don’t really want to be brushing my teeth there.