Wednesday, June 9, 2010

The Wealth of Full-Time RVers Knowledge

When I started full-time rv’ing, I lived in a small town where there was one RV “specialist”. I had decided to stay in the RV in a back yard for a while to acquaint myself with all the nooks and crannies, but more importantly with the various systems. The service manual lightly skimmed over these and posted at least 3 or 4 warnings per page. Not at all illuminating or intimidating.

The RV hadn’t been used for 2 years. New tires were a must. Next I proceeded with the water tank and got flooded. Poor winterizing. Too many problems cropped up, one after the other, to enumerate them all here. Every time something would pop up, I’d go to the “specialist” and ended up changing many modules that later on, proved to not have been faulty at all. $$$$ went down that way.

One was the fridge. First, he advised that the eyebrow board had to be changed. It didn’t fix the problem. I tried another “specialist” in the next town. He advised to change the control board. I did. The problem kept recurring. The fridge would start for a few seconds then quit. The second “specialist” had mentioned that almost NEVER does an eyebrow board have to be replaced. Yet HIS new control board was not solving anything. I went back to him determined that the problem would be solved. He felt the same way.

roof and fridge 007 So… he opened up the fridge compartment where all the controls and connections were and methodically checked each and every connection, cleaned each thoroughly and reset it. No change. Finally, he got to the ground screw, removed the wire ring, sandpapered it (it was lightly caked with white stuff), put it back in place and BINGO, the fridge purred into life and never quit!

Later on, full-timers reminded me of my old boss engineer’s motto, “The Devil is in the Details”. Since then, I’ve been as vigilant as possible in checking each and every part of the working systems in the RV—at least those I could feel safe accessing. Last night, in a blinding electric storm, rain pelting down, the fridge was up to its former antics. I had to go out and check it, rain-wind-lightning-thunder or not. I noticed that one connector seemed loose. I removed it, cleaned it as best I could, reset it, and BINGO, the fridge came to life and has not quit since.

Beware! I reminded myself. THE DEVIL IS IN THE DETAILS. And when in doubt, check with a full-timer. A few days ago, I’d been having problems with my generator and decided to check with George full-timing in Mexico, but now in Israel. He told me that the fuel in Mexico is not too clean, and that therefore, he always carried an extra fuel filter, and an extra fuel pump. So I figured he was right, the fuel was responsible. I let it rest overnight and a full day. When next I pressed the button, it came to life and stayed on for as long as I needed it. Thanks George, and may all full-timers be blessed with a long and enjoyable life!

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