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Category: RV Repair

Enough is Enough, Bye Bye, Mr. Stinky!

June 25, 2011 by · 4 Comments 

Enough is Enough, Bye Bye, Mr. Stinky!

Well, we were officially fulltimers—at least for the next 10 months. We were also “Snowbirders,” since, after living in Florida for the past 15 years, we were hitting the road full-time, but would spend the first 3 months exploring parts of Florida that we hadn’t had a chance to see. Step #1 was to check into the RV park where we would be spending the first two months—two of the coldest months in Florida’s Tampa Bay memory; January and February of 2010. And things were not going well.  [Read more...]

Are Your Tires Tired?

June 2, 2011 by · 1 Comment 

Are Your Tires Tired?

There are few events with a towable RV that can compare with the feeling of despair and helplessness that one has when sitting on the side of the road with a tire torn to shreds. This event can ruin vacation plans, cause considerable damage to an RV, create unwanted endangerment to you and the RV from traffic, and be an extremely costly event when a new tire must be purchased on the spot. You can improve the odds against having catastrophic tire failure on your towable by following some simple but often neglected tire care steps. I do not profess to be an expert on tires.  But, after thirty something years of RV experience and tire research I can tell you what I have come to believe is the best information related to your RV tires.  The short version is, “Been there, done that”. PLEASE, I do not want anyone to become offended by the following statement: I have  noticed an increase in a seemingly lackadaisical attitude toward a towable’s tires by many campers – especially... [Read more...]

Are You Ready for the Road?

May 24, 2011 by · Leave a Comment 

Are You Ready for the Road?

Memorial Day weekend kicks off those lazy, hazy days of summer. State and national parks are great spots for family camping. Pictured above is campground at Arches National Park near Moab, Utah. © Rex Vogel, all rights reserved The long weekend is perfect for a camping getaway to enjoy biking, boating, fishing, golfing, hiking, paddling, photography, or bird watching. More than 30 million people nationwide will travel more than 50 miles during Memorial Day weekend, defined as the period from Thursday, May 26 to Monday, May 30 says AAA, an increase of 0.2 percent. “In 2010, Memorial Day travel experienced a gain of more than 14 percent,” AAA-Oklahoma spokesman Chuck Mai told the Washington Post. “Many travelers have told us they’ll compensate for higher fuel costs by cutting back in other areas of spending.” They’ll pay more too, with gas running just a bit less than $4.00 per gallon, compared to $2.85 this time last year reports TulsaWorld. But while... [Read more...]

RV Checklist Before You Hit the Road

April 22, 2011 by · 4 Comments 

RV Checklist Before You Hit the Road

With the glory days of Spring now upon us, avid RV enthusiasts across the country are gearing up to hit the road. While you may be ready for your next journey, your RV might not be. If you’re a die-hard traveler looking to get the most out of your RV, there are a number of simple, routine tasks you can perform to help ensure you’re getting the most out of your investment. Low Tires are a No-No Every vehicle’s tires are different. Before heading out on your journey, take a moment to make sure your tire inflation is up to par. This includes everything from checking the sidewalls of each tire to ensure their inflation isn’t exceeding the maximum inflation of the tire, checking for bulges while traveling and also even covering them up when not in use to help protect them from the elements. Also, rotating your RV’s tires a few times a year is also recommended. Take a Break to Check Your Brakes Make sure your vehicle’s axles are in good shape. One of the easiest ways to do this is... [Read more...]

How NOT to Sanatize Your Water System – More of Bob’s Bad Luck

April 14, 2011 by · 5 Comments 

How NOT to Sanatize Your Water System – More of Bob’s Bad Luck

You met Bob last September when he and Marge encountered a band of Raccoons on a recent camping trip.  http://blog.goodsamcamping.com/2010/09/bob-and-the-raccons-a-camping-humor-story/.  Bob has a heart of gold and will do anything in the world for you – but he is what some might call “Disaster Prone”. Things like his recent attempt to change the engine oil in Marge’s car serve as a typical example.  He successfully drained five quarts of dirty oil into a catch pan without spilling a drop on the driveway.  He even managed to replace the oil pan drain plug and screw it in tightly.  But, he somehow picked the wrong fill tube and poured five fresh quarts of motor oil into the automatic transmission.  Fortunately, the transmission would not shift gears and Marge’s engine was saved from destruction.  The bill for a wrecker and the auto shop to drain and flush the transmission plus add new oil to the engine was enough to pay for 15 oil changes at the local Jiffy Lube. But, I... [Read more...]

REDUCING THE PAIN AT THE PUMP – Planning Ahead

March 25, 2011 by · 1 Comment 

REDUCING THE PAIN AT THE PUMP – Planning Ahead

Yep, they’re going up again.  But, we knew it was going to happen, we just didn’t know how much or when. I hate to do the old “I remember when” thing and start telling stories about other times fuel prices soared.  But, for those of us that have weathered previous storms and have become somewhat seasoned veterans of persistent price hikes, it really isn’t as bad as it may seem (on the surface).  We continued to pull our camper at 8 mpg with a gas engine (7.1L) 1-ton dually even when fuel hit $4.13 a gallon during the summer of 2008.  Looking back, I don’t remember the punch in the pocketbook, I remember the fun we had, and the great people we met.  As they say in the TV commercial – priceless. For Nancy and I, the issue isn’t so much that fuel prices are up almost a dollar from last year (current $3.79 for diesel)  as it is being prepared for the inevitable increase. Being ready for higher fuel prices is a lot like preparing for a power outage, snowstorm, or even... [Read more...]

How do YOU Dump YOUR Gray Water? (Safely, Easily and Legally – of course)

February 26, 2011 by · 8 Comments 

How do YOU Dump YOUR Gray Water? (Safely, Easily and Legally – of course)

There were six of us.  We were sitting around a campfire sharing stories and talking about most anything that came into our minds. All of us had settled at a Corps of Engineers campground in Southside Virginia for a week of boating, fishing and swimming in Kerr Lake. The campground was nicely laid out and offered both water and electric on our sites – but there were no sewer hookups.  The dump station was a considerable distance away, near the entrance to the park. One of the guys looked up at the rest of us and asked, “What do you do with your gray water?”  “My gray tank fills up in a couple of days – I can go a full week with my black tank, but not the gray.” Pete, one of the younger men in the group, responded, “I crack the drain valve after dark and let it slowly dribble out onto the ground.  Shucks, it ain’t poison – it’s just used wash water.” Mike stared in stark surprise.  “That is against the law!”  “If you get caught they will write you a ticket... [Read more...]

The Birth of THE GREAT WHITE – Part 2 (Am I Insane for doing this?)

February 20, 2011 by · 2 Comments 

The Birth of THE GREAT WHITE – Part 2 (Am I Insane for doing this?)

Purchasing a second-hand 17,000 pound, ten wheel ex-mail hauling semi-tractor trailer truck and driving it over 200 miles to get it home so that it could be parked in our driveway for conversion into an RV was my first exercise in insanity. The second insane exercise would be actually making all of the required modifications to turn it into a recreational vehicle, or as the Federal DOT calls it, a “House Car”, with nothing but your own ideas, tools and hands.   The conversion was required so that I could  legally register it, insure it, and drive it as something other than a commercial vehicle. Normal folks wanting to move into a heavier and more powerful tow vehicle for their fifth-wheel trailer usually just buy a medium-duty Freightliner M2 or have one of several companies specializing in truck conversion build a body, install the new hitch, paint, everything, and then bring it home. But I don’t do things the “normal” or easy way.  Shucks, I’m not even sure what normal... [Read more...]

The Birth of THE GREAT WHITE – Part 1

February 10, 2011 by · 5 Comments 

The Birth of THE GREAT WHITE – Part 1

It’s like this:  Winter is still making its frigid call on Central Virginia.  The camper is sitting in “dry-dock” and unlike my fellow blog writers that live the nomadic life skipping across the country and reporting on the places, sights and events that make RV’ing so great – I’m stuck here until the  daffodils and dogwoods bloom while trying to think of something to write for a Family RV Blog.  Frankly, after doing this every week for more than a year, I find myself running out of ideas. You see,  I am retired, but my younger and much more beautiful wife is still working.  She is a Librarian in a Middle School.  When you are a teacher, it is hard to take off just any time you want when school is in session.  So, she works to support all of my bad habits and projects while we wait for the day when she can kiss all of the children good-by and set out on a new adventure.  We are getting close to that day, but for now our RV adventures are limited to the 180 days... [Read more...]

IS SWEATING A GOOD THING?

January 28, 2011 by · 5 Comments 

IS SWEATING A GOOD THING?

I was visiting one of our local RV dealerships when I ran into a friend of mine.  He and his wife were looking at a new fifth wheel trailer to replace their 8-year-old Montana. As we were talking, he mentioned that he wanted the thermal pane windows on their new RV.  He was tired of having to take a towel and wipe the condensation off his single pane windows that accumulated when they were camping in cool or cold weather. He seemed determined to order a trailer with this window option, so I decided, “Not to go there” and withheld my opinion on double pane insulated glass windows in a RV. You see, I don’t believe they are the solution for eliminating condensation.  In fact, I believe the single pane window that “sweats” in cool weather to be a good thing. Single pane windows are the least insulated part of an RV.  It is where the most heat loss occurs and will be the coldest surface when outside temperatures drop and we turn the heat in our RV on. As occupants living in an... [Read more...]

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