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Everything posted by mweiner

  1. Interesting.... I've been a AAA Member for 37 years.. and they have NEVER failed on roadside assistance ... We have AAA Premier RV now, and I wouldn't trade it for FMCA, Good Sam, or anyone else. Sometimes price is really not the main factor here... can you work with people?? Apparently not with some FMCA roadside assistance folks... yeah, I know, they're contracted individuals , BUT, it's a POOR reflection on the FMCA and means that their screening process for companies that act like this gives them a bad name. VERY UNFORTUNATE. A friend of mine broke down with his car in a remote location, had AAA Premier, went to an authorized garage in a small town, had to wait a few days for parts, AAA reimbursed him for almost $1,000 to stay in a hotel and other expenses like food.. My point is, IT WORKS.. SORRY to hear that your engine needs a rebuild... I hope that the garage you took your vehicle to is honest. I'm surprised that your 2009 Allegro Bus had an incident like that... how many miles do you have on that vehicle. Plus, since you are full time are you going to be staying in a hotel while it's fixed... I also see that FMCA has a trip interruption feature like the AAA Premier... hope that goes smoother than the tow!
  2. Bill, Well.. maybe you can purchase a mirror .. but, you can't get the service.. they quietly discontinued this in 2014 See this article link below, http://gmauthority.com/blog/2014/03/onstar-quietly-discontinues-fmv-program-exclusive/ Besides, on further discovery, OnStar is a basically another cell phone provider .... not a satellite service , SO, it doesn't have worldwide 100 percent coverage. The Garmin In Reach is a more complete solution at less cost. I'm only getting the "Safety" coverage for $14.95 per month... you can turn the service on when you travel. There is a lower price of $11.95 per month if you choose to have it activated annually. I'm going to think about both of these plans.. but, again, it's one of the services I hope I will never have to use... kinda like "long term care insurance".. I have that too. It's like this.. you want to go out in natural settings.. but, you don't want to me out there without a lifeline back to civilization, that would be bad.. Or, maybe something happens and you need to be rescued ... yeah, that can happen.. just think medical emergency. The device has an SOS button.. press that and you're connected to the response center... they know exactly where you are anywhere on earth... handy device.... I could even take that on a trip to Europe.
  3. That is correct and it's been successful for 20 years... glad to hear you're aware of the service. I discovered this evening that OnStar , the service I thought was global is NOT .... The OnStar service relied on CDMA mobile phone voiceand data communication, primarily via Verizon Wirelessin the United States and Bell Mobility in Canada, as well as location information using GPS technology. AT&Tannounced the contract to replace Verizon in 2013 based on 4G technology from 2014. It is definitely not a satellite system and NOT worldwide. You can certainly purchase a satellite phone .. but, the airtime and monthly cost is VERY EXPENSIVE. http://www.satphonestore.com/airtime/iridium-airtime.html This text message service through Garmin In Reach is a most affordable emergency solution and handy anywhere you are.
  4. Unfortunately, CB radios have a lot of problems with terrain... read this below... If you are relying on a CB Radio to help you get out of a emergency, I would take this article very seriously. https://www.rightchannelradios.com/blogs/selection-guides/18150035-cb-antenna-range-approximations
  5. Herman, Hope you're doing well. Here's some information I'd like to share with you and others. According to my cell provider, Project Fi, it's a federal law that any call place over the 911 Network must be routed through the closest provider... ALL cell phones have the capability of making 911 calls, even though your cell phone provider says you have "NO SERVICE".. it's an emergency. The trouble is .. although it's usually Verizon and they seem to have the most towers everywhere.. there's still "DEAD SPOTS" and if there is NO towers anywhere in the area ,the call cannot go through. This is where the strength of the Iridium Network lies... a cache of satellites orbiting the earth. Actually, a lot of people may have never heard of Iridium although they've been around for almost 20 years. They are a worldwide company and the service is 100 percent coverage everywhere 24/7. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Iridium_Communications Finally decided today to get one of these satellite communicators for safety. They are NOT cell phones.. Although you can buy Iridium satellite phones and the air time is extremely expensive. These Garmin In Reach devices uses the same network as the Iridium voice network except they only allow you text message two way communication to GEOS. GEOS has also been appointed as the global 911 Responder for Globalstar SPOT (Satellite PersOnal Tracker) In addition to the IERCC 911/SOS monitoring provided with your supported device (at no cost to you), GEOS offers a Search and Rescue (SAR) Benefit to its members. This special Member Benefit is available for a very affordable annual fee and can insulate you from significant financial impact should you find yourself in an emergency situation most anywhere in the world. Who Will Answer Your SOS? GEOS Will. GEOS is the world leader in emergency response solutions and monitoring. They’ve supported rescues in more than 140 countries, saving many lives in the process. And they’re standing by 24/7/365 to respond to your SOS, track your device and notify the proper contacts and emergency responders in your area. Then, while help is on the way, GEOS will continue to text back and forth with you, providing updates and critical information until your situation is resolved. http://www.geostravelsafety.com/contact-us.html Even though I'm not wandering off into the wilderness.. there's still plenty of places we go that have little or no cell coverage, especially in National Parks and other remote scenic highways.. you just never know. Last fall on our USA trip, we had NO CELL service in Wyoming and South Dakota, absolutely nothing. I hope this gives you and others a little more information. I know that the FMCA has a very nice feature of sending out a rescue to people, but, first, you need to contact someone before they can find you... The feature of this particular service is they will know your exact location. I originally looked into getting OnStar.. but, they will not provide service to anyone without an approved GM product.
  6. Have any of you used Garmin In Reach for places where you had NO CELL PHONE coverage of any kind in an emergency to summons roadside assistance?
  7. OK, I'm told that I need new shocks on my 2012 Roadtrek Adventurous.... and driving over uneven pavement or rough roads, the entire coach does rock and the cabinets bang around.... I certainly don't like that.. After talking with a company who sells and recommends Koni FSD shocks.... they are also recommending me to install a trac bar, and/or an auxiliary sway bar... I've decided that putting the shocks on is a good idea.... BUT, if you had to choose between the Trac Bar or the Anti sway bar... which one would you choose and WHY??? The only other issue I've encountered while driving behind semi trucks is the feeling of the "wind" being drawing me in and causing a little wobble.... Lastly, i could just install the shocks and struts and see how it feels and go from there.... Do you think that's a reasonable plan?? Any thoughts???
  8. For my situation in Southern California...it's not a priority.. BUT, maybe you live in the Northeast or Northwest where this is an issue?? Are there any true 4 season Class B motorhomes? Or, if you are traveling in winter climate, just add the pink antifreeze to the fresh water tank..... What do you do???
  9. I know....I'm asking IF they'd considered a late model???? AND, I pointed out various options for a gasoline or diesel powered rig...
  10. Question... were you thinking of purchasing "new"...? If you can find a late model vs. getting a brand new rig.. you'll save money, at least that's my opinion.. trouble is finding exactly what you want... Also, keep in mind that the gasoline versions of Class B's are not built to the same standards as the Mercedes Benz Sprinter.... We went from a teardrop trailer to the Class B.... So, in answer to your question, NO, we didn't have any problems whatsoever making the switch.. Hymer and Roadtrek are sister companies...in fact, Roadtrek is part of the Ervin Hymer group...they got absorbed by Hymer... great company... I had a few questions about my RS Adventurous..a used vehicle and the representative called me back and answered every one of my questions... never rushed me off the phone.... I appreciated that..... Roadtrek makes a lot of different models.. but, they ONLY make Class B's.... they're not trying to be in every market segment which means they focus on one thing only...and they have been in business building Class B's since 1974... In case you are wondering...NO.... I don't work for them.... BUT, I did a lot of research and have a friend who is on his second Roadtrek and highly recommended it to me... My average MPG with the diesel engine is 18.. although I have gotten 19 to 21 depending on where I was going...all flat ground etc.. The main difference between the gasoline and diesels is the mileage and performance....sure, the diesel are more expensive...to buy and maintain?? We'll see...One thing is that the diesel engine won't slow down climbing mountains...if you plan on going to do a lot of steep mountain driving... you're going to want the diesel...and the Mercedes Benz tiptronic transmission is really great!! I purchased my rig 5 years old last May 2017....so, it's just a little less than one year old for me... saved almost 50 percent off the sales price of a brand new rig.... that's a lot on a Class B.... most newer Class B's ..it's not just the price..it's the sales tax... let me tell you it all adds up... If I were you..I'd go look at them, drive each model and look at the various features .. plus look at the WEIGHT CAPACITY...of each rig... not as important on the Class B's, but, it's all important..... One final thing... for me, getting the dual wheels setup in the back was really important.... because, it gives you better stability...one of the first things I did was examine all the tires... they looked fine, but, were approaching 6 years... remember, Roadtrek takes a coach from the manufacturer..in my case, Mercedes...it was a coach conversion on a late 2011 model... they converted it and sold it as a 2012 RS Adventurous... pretty much everyone does this as well.... There's going to be a driving difference between a front wheel vs. rear wheel driving setup... again, the Ram Promaster has been getting very good reviews... Roadtrek definitely sells them.... look at the Roadtrek website..... I've heard the Roadtrek Zion and Simplicity are quite capable... If you're giving up the Class A...is that because of poor mileage, or just too big for you....the great thing about the Class B is we can take it everywhere.... Last year... took it across the USA on an almost 11,000 miles grand tour... there's no place you can't take this ..... Good luck...we searched for quite some time... finally found a slightly used model with only 26,000 miles....
  11. Already reported it.. yes, I'll pay the current deductible... just wondering if this is more prevalent on higher profile vehicles..if so, I'll go ahead and lower my deductible for next time... just a hairline crack.. about 10 inches long.. didn't even give it a second thought when I heard the rock hit... short time later it appeared...it will only get worse over time..
  12. How many of you have experience a cracked windshield ?? And, how often does it occur? Did you consider lowering your deductible on your comprehensive insurance??
  13. Jim, just sent you another private message on this subject, please reply to me there. ---Mark
  14. Aside from traveling, you sometimes need to just stay in place.. weather conditions, resting from driving, medical conditions, or just taking care of business... There's many large cities that restrict access to where you can land your rig or just park overnight. Some situations might make it feel like you're a shark, always in motion, so what do you do? You can't always just head for the hinterlands. Then, there's time when repairs just are required and your home is temporarily disabled....and you have to dock for repairs or take the rig to a professional? I'm sure that very few of you do major mechanical work on your RVs.... including transmission, engine, fuel and electrical problems? All of these are serious questions.... what's the best alternative for these things? Having a contingency plan for all of these things are really important.
  15. AAA helps with car registration, sales, insurance matters, overseas travel, DMV and much more.... It's not just hotel rooms....
  16. There's a lot more to a AAA membership than just roadside assistance.. obviously, you don't know that...I've been a member for more than 35 years... I'm sure not going to try and even explain this to you or anyone else.. http://www.camperreport.com/best-rv-length-for-national-parks
  17. Thanks for your replies, I figured it was around 10- 12,000 miles per year, give or take...on average, sometimes more sometimes less.. I expect that we'll do about 10,000 miles per year... Since I purchased my rig last May 2017... have gone about 14,000 miles...of course, the USA trip last fall was almost 11,000 miles .... I certainly don't expect to do a cross country trip like that every year... More local regional trips... Enjoy your rigs...
  18. How many annual miles on average do you expect to drive in your rig and what's the age of your coach?
  19. As a point of information....AAA Premiere including RV'S is available and they will tow you to the facility you choose within the 200 miles tow range...oh yeah, they will make sure it's an approved AAA garage...so, you probably won't get ripped off.. they vette the people they work with... The AAA has been operating in the United States for over 100 years.
  20. Hi and thank you for your reply, Our rig had 26,000 on it when we purchased it in May 2017.... and now have just under 40,000 miles...the last 11,000 miles were last fall on a USA trip... Are you able to take advantage of the FMCA's program to get Michelin tires at a discount?? I purchased Michelin tires before I became a member...the Defender series is great.. actually, if you got over 40,000 miles on the first set, I think you have done well... So, you're average miles per year are about 10,000 or so?? I changed my tires and batteries when I purchased the rig.. they were six years old.. didn't want to drive on old tires.. Easy on gas.. what's your MPG? 15 to 17 MPG?? Doest the 4.8 litre really struggle on hills... Aren't these your specifications below, why is it struggling ..? Engine Drivetrain Engine Type: 4.8 L, SFI V8 Horsepower: 285 Hp (213 K W) Torque: 295 Ft. Lbs. (398 Nm) Fuel Type: Gas Fuel Tank Capacity: 31 Gal. (117 L) Transmission: Automatic, 6-speed, Heavy Duty Awning?? I have a manual awning on my rig..is that what you mean? Yes, the 2.5 gallon water tank is small, we actually have not used our shower.. prefer to go to campgrounds or hotels occasionally... very occasionally.. it's an option if we had to use it....at least you have a small window in the bathroom..we don't have that... Our bathroom is also a wet bath and didn't want to deal with wiping down the water every time we used it, has this been a problem for you with moisture ?? I have solar panels on the roof..we have used the generator, but, the solar works extremely well.. only need the generator for the boon docking to run the air conditioning or microwave... Yes, we have the rear king size bed..and use a mattress topper makes it very comfortable...we can't feel any seams..on the sofa... We roll up the mattress topper and put it away during the day to use the living room... My propane needs a service once a year.. it's under the chassis above the rear wheels... also hard to access..my RV mechanic services this for me.. and I do exercise it once a week for about 20 minutes ... One thing we don't like is the heater and AC is a little noisy... Have you experienced any high winds..we went through some areas with winds blowing 15 to 20 MPH and it was OK, but, anything higher I would have considered pulling over... Otherwise, we love the RS Adventurous....drives nice and goes everywhere with ease... no slowing down on hills... ample power... This is the vehicle we purchased... see link below, https://www.conejowholesaleauto.com/vehicle-details/f22d7e5afa634d388dbeffb59e9eb708
  21. RV's are more prone to high wind conditions due to their profile..so, how fast does the wind speed have to be BEFORE you consider pulling over for safety and waiting for the weather to get better? Have you had to do this on long distance trips and where do you look first? Rest areas ? Fortunately, I didn't have to do this on my cross country trip, but, there were a few times I considered it...
  22. Good for you... smaller footprints have many advantages, fuel economy and lower maintenance ... How do you like your Minnie Winnie? We sure see a lot of those on the road.. Our rig also accommodates the two of us..why take more than you need....
  23. Herman, Mike and Jennifer Wendlend have talked about this sign on their blogs...it's a very good idea...I agree.... nice, but, not actually necessary... However, if you have actually PAID for a site for several days in advance...the camp hosts or RV park manager should know that you're staying there .. I have NEVER had any difficulty coming back to my site after going out for the day with my rig.. As for security... I've been lots of places and have never felt like we were in any jeopardy for vehicle theft... actually, if I even suspected something like this ..I would have found another place to stop... --MARK
  24. It's all about "priorities" isn't it??? RV's are great.. they can take you to pretty remote locations and still have your sleeping accommodations with you...you definitely pay for this convenience.... Look, we all made choices about the particular rig we purchased and the reasons we did it.. OK, this thread got me thinking... what were my costs... Actually, I revisited this more closely... We actually traveled 10,646 miles..at an average of 18 MPG.. that's 591 gallons of fuel.... And, I figured on the high side of $3 per gallon... SO, that's $1,773 for fuel costs.. or just under 17 cents per mile... There are fixed costs annually for maintenance, insurance, registration, monthly payment ( if you have one) whether you drive 5,000 miles or ZERO miles. You need to get oil changes based on time or mileage... Even tires, batteries and other things have to replaced over time due to age whether or not the tires show a significant amount wear...One of the first things I did after purchasing our rig was replace all the tires and batteries.. they were 6 years old and started to show signs of small cracks in the rubber.... Don't know about the rest of you, but, the last thing I want is a tire failure on the road in an RV.. and got the tire pressure monitor system as well...These are all fixed costs and regular maintenance items..SO, I excluded all of these costs..in my calculations for just running the rig.... You cannot have deferred maintenance on an RV.... it's unsafe to operate. And, no matter where you are at home or in the RV, you have food expenses, so, let's skip this as well... Which leaves the cost for parking, sight seeing and staying at RV parks or even a hotel once in a while.. YES, we actually have done this.. And, we've even boon docked a few times and stayed at BLM lands. You control how much or how little money you spend on things.. my point is, just enjoy your rig and your travels... All of these rigs depreciate, like cars....so I wouldn't get excited worrying about it..it happens..we all know that..so, why even factor it in.?? Just use the RV and get the experience you acquired it for... For me, I decided that the overall cost of taking it out places trumped all other considerations... fuel consumption over time is the most expensive thing you put in your rig...and I didn't want that to prevent me from going places with it. Again, priorities...
  25. As someone stated above, it ALL DEPENDS on how you use your rig. We tour and visit places, sometimes stop for one to four days..? It's all relative, but, we certainly don't need or want a tow vehicle with our setup .. there's just the two of us, and the Sprinter can go literally anywhere and park easily. Yes, like someone else, we have no sewer connection, just unhook the electric, close up and take off..and yeah, we get 18 to 19 MPG.. same mileage as an SUV.... Sprinter does double duty as our sleeping quarters and car when we need it to... On our 12,000 miles USA trip last fall, there wasn't anyplace where we couldn't take the van... Now, that's convenience....no rental car, no extra fuel costs, no extra rental insurance costs.. nothing extra.. We travel part time and have the great outdoors...the whole point of going traveling is to see things.. many of them are outdoors... where there's plenty of wide open spaces .. The ONLY reason I would even consider having a tow vehicle is if we lived full time in a larger rig and that's not likely to happen... Oh, by the way... my little Sprinter has a tow capacity of 5,000 pounds..no kidding.
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