Jump to content


  • Content Count

  • Joined

  • Last visited

Recent Profile Visitors

2947 profile views
  1. Thanks for the information/suggestions. I'll be giving them a try next week (on the road until then ?). Regards, Eric
  2. glidercoach


    I've had several dealings with Directv over the last few years of full-timing, and each time it feels like I have the wrong number. No one knows much about the RV world, and the 'go to' answer is 'call the antenna manufacturer'. My (hopefully positive) question: Is anyone aware of a special contact number at Directv that will get a caller to someone knowledgeable of RV-related issues? Thanks, Eric
  3. I am researching a Directv problem, and ran across your post. Discouraging, to say the least. Currently I'm caught between Winegard and Directv, with each pointing at the other. The existence of 'RV contractors' is new to me. I'll keep an eye out for issues with them. Regards, Eric
  4. It is good to know that 'free' services have been well received. I had expected just the opposite. Maybe that is a better option than I thought. I am still considering commercial services, but the problem of losing e-mails when one leaves is troublesome. (I may be faced with this soon on my current system). Thanks to everyone for their comments. It has certainly given me some ideas that I hadn't considered before...
  5. I am looking for a new e-mail service (to replace an old account tied to a cable service). The most obvious choices are the free services, G-mail and Yahoo. I would prefer to avoid these if possible because of security issues and data gathering that goes on. My preference would be to find a commercial service that provides more security. Price is a consideration, but I would be willing to pay something for a higher level of security. --Does anyone know of such a commercial service? --Does anyone have opinions about the use of 'free' services in the motorhome world?
  6. Sounds like my experiences are not unique. Tiffin has a good factory service program for newer coaches. I've heard it said that a trip to Red Bay, Alabama, is a right of passage for Tiffin owners, and it is great for those in the south-eastern part of the country. The Freightliner chassis manufacturing facility sounds like a good stop, but it is further east. I'm surprised no one has developed a quality service facility in the mid-west or west that has a national level visibility. There is certainly demand out there for folks who would use a 'destination' service facility, rather than the current "try the local shop and cross your fingers" method. I know I would happily travel hundreds of miles out of my way to get quality maintenance performed, especially if they took appointments. After three years, my one conclusion is that, if I was younger, I'd go to an RV Tech school and start some sort of service. There is money to be made (especially with the waiting lists for even the 'weaker' shops).
  7. We've been full-timing for three years. Our experiences cover both routine maintenance (which is easy to schedule in advance), and non-routine maintenance (like an inoperative refrigerator). Here is our experience with the motorhome maintenance services: A few individual technicians are very good. We go out of our way to use them. They are busy. A number of technicians and maintenance shops are 'iffy' on a good day. They are busy. Dealers are not very useful as they are usually backed up (one told us they could get to us in three weeks, if we bought the coach from them). Our manufacturer has good support that we can call as owners, and this has helped us out a number of times. Overall, I haven't been impressed with how the industry operates. Is it just our particular 'luck of the draw', or is these experieces typical for other folks? Regards, Eric
  8. We have a Jeep we've been enjoying by ourselves, but might want to try some group offroading experiences. I met someone last fall who mentioned a group of FMCA folks who got together for 4x4ing. Does anyone know if there is a formal group like this, or is it one-off opportunities?
  9. We made some progress cleaning our DP CAC and radiator with Simple Green and water, but I wasn't convinced I'd gotten it all. Found a truck shop with a STEAM cleaner (NOT a pressure washer), who did a great job getting much more out of the cooling fins. They did the work from outside (no need to go under the floor from inside). The steam wand was run in front, between, and behind the two units. Lots of black 'stuff' came out, and the coach ran cooler afterwards. This shop was in the high desert, and works on a lot of commercial vehicles that operate off paved surfaces. They told me they have some customer units that need to be steam cleaned every two months. If your CAC and radiator have not been cleaned in some time (or you purchased a used unit), you may want to consider the steam method. Once totally clean, the regular owner-cleaning should be much more effective. Just remember: Steam (not pressure washer)!
  10. Time to close this thread out. Before further troubleshooting on the Atwood, we decided it was time for us to get a different coach (for reasons other than the water heater). We found our new home last week, and are due to move aboard our new coach this week. Thanks to everyone for the advice and suggestions on this subject!
  11. Schedules aligned and I was able to check a few things. First, the power supply. So far, no sign of a plug as part of the circuit. Tracing the line for several feet, it appears to go directly to the circuit breaker panel. Next, since the electrical heating components are 'inboard' on the unit, I had to decide if it was better to pull the unit out, or access it from the inside. Talking with several service folks (including the coach manufacturer), the opinions were unanimous: Leave it in place if at all possible. There are simply too many lines to work with when it is pulled out, not to mention re-sealing the unit afterwords. So, I had to create access. The heater is behind three drawers. I modified the back of the drawer sub-frame, and I now have good access (even if it is a bit of a strech to get in). With access to the components, I tested the continuity of the heating element, and it appears to be ok. My next step will be the thermostat. Need to read up on that a little before going further.
  12. Thanks for the suggestions. I will need to set up a period to take the heater offline and pursue these. I'll post what I find.
  13. A problem has developed in our water heater, and I'm debating the best course to take. We have an Atwood LP/Electric 6-gallon water heater, model number GC6AA-9E. A few days ago the electric 'side' of the unit stopped heating. It happened all at once, not a slow degradation of the heating capability. The LP heating continues to work well. Trouble shooting so far: Circuit breaker reset Cleaned some electrical connections in the outside heater access Drain and flush hot water tank The unit does not have an anode, so I don't have replacing that as a possibility. The unit appears to have a single thermostat, and since the LP heater is working, that should not be a cause. Having said that, I have read that older Atwood units have two thermostats (LP and Electrical each being unique). I don 't know where 'older' begins, or how the unit would look if it had two thermostats. Our coach is a 2001 model, and this looks like the original unit. The next step I have in mind is replacing the heating element. The element is on the back side of the tank (inside of the coach). Replacing the element will require either partially disassembling some drawer mounting frames for access, or removing the heater from the outside. Here are my questions: 1) Is there any other trouble-shooting I should perform before tackling to the electrode? 2) Is it fairly easy to pull the unit (and unhook/reconnect all the LP/water/electrical connections), or 3) Should I try to change the electrode with the tank in place, if possible? All suggestions/thoughts appreciated! [reposted from the tank discussion section]
  14. Earlier this year I promised some notes after visiting Chaco Canyon--here is my summary. My information is based on two visits during the summer of 2013 (we drove in by toad). Others may have more thoughts to add. Chaco Canyon is an amazing place to visit. A little extra planning and preparation is appropriate, but it is well worth the effort. The place to start planning is the park website: http://www.nps.gov/chcu/index.htm Pay particular attention to any road information on the NPS website. Some routes may be impassable at times. Consider calling ahead if there is any question. Main entry to the park is from the north (turning off of Highway 550) or south (turning off of Highway 9). See the park website for latest directions/details. NOTE: Some maps and GPS systems still show access via Highway 57 off of 550. This access no longer exists, per the park website and latest New Mexico state maps. The dirt roads in are rough, in places very rough. My experiences on the northern route lead me to recommend leaving your coach at a campground outside the park and driving in via toad. (I pictured every loose item in our coach ending up on the floor, and every cabinet filled with a jumble of overturned items.) Most of the folks we saw camping in the park came via pickup, van or car. During our two visits we only saw one Class A and one or two Class Cs. (A few trailers were also in the park.) We talked with one motor home owner who came in via the southern route. He said it was very slow, rough going, but his impression was that the southern entry was a little smoother than the northern route. I would recommend carrying basic necessities in your vehicle in case of breakdown. While traffic on the northern entry is regular, it is not always frequent--you may be on your own for a while in the event of a problem. I pictured a breakdown in the evening, and a night in the desert before morning traffic picks up. Jackets, water, and maybe some sleeping bags in the trunk gives great peace of mind. Don't depend on your cellphone, signals are weak to nil on the roads in, and we had no coverage in the park. Finally, NO gas or diesel is available in the park--plan accordingly. Once in the park, the roads are paved and driving easy. Bicycles would be great to use in the park. Many great places to see, via guided tours or on your own. Good hiking opportunities. There is a camping area. The park website gives very complete details. We stayed in Bloomfield (north of the park) and found it a great place to base out of to explore the Chaco history. It was an easy drive down 550 to the dirt roads to Chaco. Leaving in the early morning, coming back late afternoon worked well. We had many hours in the park to explore during each visit, while still returning at a reasonable hour. Check the website for park hours. The Chaco culture was centered in Chaco Canyon, but many smaller settlements (referred to as outliers) exist outside the park. Two worth seeing are Salmon Ruins (on the west side of Bloomfield) and Aztec Ruins (in the city of Aztec, about 9 miles north of Bloomfield). Both have been partially restored, and are good places to get a feel for the Chaco civilization. Don't worry if you see them first, they will in no way detract from what you will experience in Chaco Canyon. Chaco Canyon is a great place to visit...Enjoy!
  • Create New...