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If you follow my topic last Christmas Holiday season http://community.fmca.com/topic/6353-our-holiday-travel-misadventure-so-far/, you would know about the basement heater failure and pipe freezing on the first leg of our trip dry camping in twin Falls, ID. No way to get a part quickly so I had to order from Monaco while at Las Vegas and have shipped to North Carolina hopefully before I arrive there. In the meantime I travel south to stay thaw out as I knew I was lucky not to have any damage. Now I paid big money for that heater box (Cargo Heat) plus shipping and it worked when I first installed it for the few times needed on the east coast. Got chased from there by a blizzard. Then I cross southern California and up into Oregon and the basement heater failed again. Well I got no warranty on the heater just sorry but you must check the wiring in your coach. Finally last week I got one tech at Monaco to tell me how to bench test it. I took them both in my shop and found that they both fail the bench test. No surprise there as I knew they didn't work in the coach and the wiring checked out. I first took the old one apart and remove the heating element and ohm it and it check out as well as overheat switch. I knew the relay worked as it kicked in with the 12 volt signal wire. I put it back together and it work like it's supposed to. I installed that one in the coach and tested the operation there and works OK so one down one to go. I took the new one apart and ohm it out the same way and found one wire broken to the overheat switch and a bad diode. I fixed the wire but could only bypass the diode as I have nothing like that. I put that one to the side for a spare in case of an emergency. The bottom line is that these basement heaters are not reliable as the should be and Monaco not offer a warranty even though I ask them for one. Instead the sent me on a wild chase testing wiring when all alone it was bad heaters. I even had to search and find the wiring diagram on the internet. So again with another new company owning Monaco/Holiday Rambler it's same old attitude of not caring.
We're in the first week of ownership of a 2007 Beaver Patriot Thunder. Lots of small problems, most of the flaws in the coach are purely cosmetic. Until today. We were showing friends the coach, I'd pulled it out into the sunshine and opened the slideouts. In one basement, there was a puddle of water. Strange, since I'd been in the basement several times in the last week and it had been dry. Here is the painful part: the puddle and dripping wires right above it were directly under the toilet! I mopped up the water (about 1/4 cup) with a paper towel, and recalled which plumbing items I'd just used. There'd been just one: the kitchen sink. I blotted up the leakage and gave it a sniff: fresh water. Then, I stretched out dry towels and ran some water through the sink. Sure enough, the towels were again wet. Tracing back along the supply and drain lines with a flashlight, I saw all was dry and snug. The dry lines check progressed along the kitchen cabinet, all the way to the sliding wall section at the end of the slide. Unfastening the moving panel with the help of a friend, we looked into the cluttered area where bundles of electrical lines, the sink drain, and hot & cold water lines all form a graceful loop that plays out when the slide is extended. My buddy dabbed his fingers in dark wet dirt in the bottom of the bay and held them aloft: "there's your problem, it's wet." Indeed, the drain line was wet, probably leaking from where black PVC was joined with white reinforced rubber tubing. We congratulated ourselves and rejoined others in our party. Later, after he and his wife had left, I shined a light on the area. The "dirt" was hundreds of black pellets, each 3/8" long and the diameter of a Cheerio. Oh, oh... I immediately called him, told him to wash his hands and not chew his nails. What took up lodging in that crowded space between kitchen and bath must've been a huge rodent. No signs of hair, nesting debris or extensive damage, just guano. Now, the million dollar question is, did this visitor gnaw into the drain line in search of water? Replacing the tube will be a bugger-bear, further exploration will determine what work is needed. I've been all over this coach with a fine-toothed comb, not a speck of insect or rodent droppings anywhere else. This one caught me by surprise. Take a look at your enclosed spaces, see if you have visitors. Places where they might gain access to water might merit extra attention. Update: I'll post a photo of what I discovered in our album HERE. In short, the "rodent" I suspected was working on the Beaver assembly line. Before bundling the fresh water, drain, and multiple electrical conduits that comprise the "loop" adjacent to our kitchen slide, he/she oriented every hose clamp so that the sharp edges pushed against the underside of our kitchen sink drain hose. A worm-drive clamp tail was the first to completely penetrate the doomed hose, this time-bomb took 12,000 miles of vibration to activate. It is not hard (about thirty minutes' work) to expose the loop and cut away all the zip ties holding it together. If your rig is similarly booby-trapped, the time it takes to discover this time-release failure might be worthwhile. Now, I am removing the damaged section of hose, splicing in a replacement. You betcher bippy my plumbing will be wrapped in some type of anti-chafe cushion material.