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Cost of Use

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I am not sure what fuel capacity would do for operating cost other than being able to take advantage of cheaper fuel when available, GasBuddy is your friend. ;)

Mallie, You definitely picked a great coach for a starter.

Bill

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Fuel capacity translates into greater choices of where to take on fuel.  With GasBuddy and a general knowledge of the relative fuel prices ( I check Flying J just because that gives me an index of fuel prices) across the US you can pick the place with the best rates along your route.  The greater your fuel capacity the greater number of states and stations you have to choose from.  I have 127 gallons of fuel on board at full tank, 32 gallons when the generator runs out of fuel (keeps Louise happy when we have air conditioning, etc.).  Generally when traveling west, I'm looking at the prices where I am and where I'm going.  I try to fill up as I go because generally the prices increase as you get to the west coast.  When traveling east, I'm looking at how far I can go without having to fuel up and what the price options are at stations along the route because generally prices decrease as you travel to the midwest.  On a good trip, I never purchase fuel in California!  This year was an exception, fuel was cheaper at Sam's Club in Sacramento than anywhere in Oregon (including 7 Feathers).

Given the topic, cost of use, fuel prices are only one factor.  Campground prices by the way, are not an expense of operating the vehicle.  That is a whole other topic that depends heavily on what any particular person prefers in the way of campground amenities and their predilection for boondocking.  If you just want to know what it costs to operate a particular vehicle, other costs incurred in the operation are irrelevant.  It is entirely possible that someone might never stay in a campground if they were really determined not to do so.

In the way of credit cards, the Sam's Club (not Good Sam) Synchrony Bank credit card offers 5% cash back on fuel purchases at any fuel station, not just Sam's Club.  Grocery stores are the only exception (Kroger and Safeway).  Five percent on fuel at $2.00 per gallon is 10 cents a gallon.  It beats Flying J (Good Sam) more than double their 4 cents per gallon and you can shop at the cheapest station.  I've bought fuel 40 cents per gallon cheaper than the Flying J in the same town and received the discount to boot!  There is the club membership fee but if you can offset that with fuel savings, it can reduce your fuel bill nicely.  That card also offers 3% cash back on travel (airlines, travel agencies, cruise lines, hotels, etc.)  and 1% cash back on everything else.  They pay cash back once per year at Sam's Club, either in purchase credit or an actual check.  This year I'll get a check for over $500.  It does add up but it only really works if you pay the entire bill each month, no interest.  (The fine print...  I own Synchrony Bank stock).  If you can't read that, when I got the credit card, I bought Synchrony Bank stock.  Cash?  That's so 20th Century!

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Tom, we also use the Sam's Master Card for all fuel purchases, both in the cars and coach. This gives us a clear cost of our fuel plus the 5% back.:)

Bobbie and I like you and Louise have the same fuel capacity in our coach. Always when I would fill up I would never show a full tank on the gauge. The trip tech would tell me I had 124 gallons in the tank which would drop fairly quickly. Since I have begun to rise the coach on the side I am filling from I can get 5 or 6 gallons more in the tank and the gauge would read full. My trip tech still read only 124 gallons but would still read 124 an hour later when traveling.

As far as boondocking, we try to spend every other night in a park. the rest of the time we will go to Sam's or Wally World. Save money and we are able to keep the coach stocked up.

By the way, Lone Star will be in Bandera at Skyline RV Park December 1 to 4. Would love to see you and Louise if you can make it.

Herman    

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Interesting topic.

I've never calculated the cost/mile in our coach but do log every gallon of fuel, mileage and $/gal.  This is a habit I got into when I first started driving just so I could tell if my vehicle was not running normally (fuel consumption).  I think I quit calculating MPG when we had a stiff headwind out in West Texas and I had the pedal to the floor trying to maintain 45 MPH!  If I remember, MPG was less than 3.

When I first started RV'ing I just picked up where tent camping left off.  Spent a lot of time in the mountains and deserts where no hotels or motels were available.  I used to hunt out of our trailers several times a year.  When we bought our coach our habits didn't immediately change.  But, over the years. we spend more and more time in RV campgrounds than we do in the boondocks.  And, many more long trips away from home.

We travel with our pets and would be hard pressed to find hotels and motels that would accommodate two standard poodles (priceless).

Blake

 

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49 minutes ago, hermanmullins said:

My trip tech still read only 124 gallons but would still read 124 an hour later when traveling.

By the way, Lone Star will be in Bandera at Skyline RV Park December 1 to 4. Would love to see you and Louise if you can make it.

Herman    

Herman,

Thanks for the invite for the rally in Bandera.  Once we get to the RGV, we're in for the winter.  Our coach is in the shop getting prettied up for the spring.  Weather here is nice, playing tennis this morning at 67 degrees, just perfect.

When we got our coach and realized that the tank wouldn't fill completely I learned the trick of tilting the coach to get a full tank of fuel.  I had them reset the Aladdin System from 120 gallons to 127 which is what it does now.  I get a good true fuel reading from the Aladdin.  When I fill the tank it is almost always within a gallon of the amount shown on the Aladdin. By the way, if I'm not going to drive after a fill-up I won't pack the fuel into the tank, have to allow room for expansion, but most of the time we're on the road and that seven gallons gets us 50 or 60 miles down the road.  Our analog fuel gauge is crazy, it sits past full for several hundred miles.  At the 3/4 mark the tank is actually about half full and when it hits the half full mark I'll lose the generator because the tank is actually at 1/4 full. 

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I agree with FIVE, if you can't afford it, do not get into this hobby.  I did check my cost per mile this year with my 45 foot class A coach and it came out to $1.35 per mile.

Fuel and campgrounds were up in cost this past summer. The cost of service can vary depending where you have it done.

I did not consider the cost of the coach because that is our hobby. I do not like to fly and I do not sleep in hotel beds.

Be Safe

Lex Cauffield

 

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On ‎8‎/‎19‎/‎2016 at 5:24 PM, manholt said:

Joe.  My CC has no rewards, no interest charge and it's free, year in and year out. I suspect a lot of folks on this forum has the same card.

As for Flying J, Pilot or Love's...I stay away from them.  I use any other brand that is a truck stop and have found that my fuel is around .10 to .18 cents cheaper per gallon!  In Texas it's Bucky's the Beaver, that has the cheapest Diesel, mostly in the .20's cents per gallon, better!

On this Forum, back in  14' after the Redmond rally, I did an OP on the merging of Pilot, FJ and Love's into one ownership...he also owns CW & GS and all it's subsidiaries.  I don't care for him, Marcos Lemonis, is from Lebanon....got it?   

Tom Love still owns Loves. He is alive and kicking in Oklahoma City

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10 hours ago, manholt said:

Then how come Loves is intertwined with Good Sam and the same discount card that Pilot and Flying J uses?

I wonder why this is not on the Good Sams website. The only mention of a fuel discount is with Pilot/Flying J. I can't find anything on Loves site either about a Good Sams discount. Where did you see this?

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10 hours ago, manholt said:

Then how come Loves is intertwined with Good Sam and the same discount card that Pilot and Flying J uses?

Facts About Love's

 

 

Company: Love's Travel Stops & Country Stores
Founded: 1964 in Watonga, Oklahoma
Corporate Structure: Privately held by the Love Family
Number of Retail Sites: More than 440 in 41 states
Number of Employees: More than 20,000

 

This was taken from Love's website today.

There was no mention of any RV fuel discount cards.

Herman

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Herman, since I don't use it anymore (had a 1,000 point's on it. 1 point per dollar spent on fuel), I'll show it to you in Tyler, next week.  It's Yellow, with Loves on it.

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I've done the math..... NOT counting depreciation...... it cost me about 40 cents per mile to operate my 2017 Fleetwood Pace Arrow 36U (diesel pusher). This includes fuel, DEF, insurance and scheduled maintenance.  Since it's under warranty I haven't included any repairs. 

Used in calculations:   8.9 MPG, Diesel cost 2.85 gallon, DEF is about 500 MPG and cost 3.00 gallon.  Engine oil  change every 15,000 miles cost $400, generator oil change $40 every 200 hours.  (then I add a couple cents for tire use, coolant, etc that will be future cost.)

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On 11/26/2016 at 7:25 AM, hermanmullins said:

Tom, we also use the Sam's Master Card for all fuel purchases, both in the cars and coach. This gives us a clear cost of our fuel plus the 5% back.:)

Bobbie and I like you and Louise have the same fuel capacity in our coach. Always when I would fill up I would never show a full tank on the gauge. The trip tech would tell me I had 124 gallons in the tank which would drop fairly quickly. Since I have begun to rise the coach on the side I am filling from I can get 5 or 6 gallons more in the tank and the gauge would read full. My trip tech still read only 124 gallons but would still read 124 an hour later when traveling.

As far as boondocking, we try to spend every other night in a park. the rest of the time we will go to Sam's or Wally World. Save money and we are able to keep the coach stocked up.

By the way, Lone Star will be in Bandera at Skyline RV Park December 1 to 4. Would love to see you and Louise if you can make it.

Herman    

Herman,

Have you ever had problems filling to the top that way just before parking somewhere? I filled the tank on our coach pretty much like you do, and then shortly after parked it for the day once. The temps rose as it sat, and then suddenly fuel was coming out the overflow. Guess the fuel was pretty cool sitting underground, and the ambient temps being much warmer caused the fuel to expand enough to overflow.

Later I read that the recommendation on the tank was never to fill more than 95% according the the operator's manual. I presume this is to give room for expansion. Lesson learned.

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So I am late seeing this post but I just did the math and I have a head ache after doing the numbers. 

So, I dont have a Coach note so I included camping - and with about 5K in miles a year and fuel Maint and other misc cost, I am about $1.44 to own this coach a year & actually go out and camp including insurance. 

Thats not bad when my boat was almost $270 for every hour on the water. 

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Quote

Filling to top & top off

I never top off a fuel tank, gas or diesel.  When the handle clicks, that's it.  It goes for Lawn mower, MC, car, golf cart, coach or anything else that is fuel driven!  It's not just ambient temp that will cause expansion, also there is the heat from the road surface, depending on time of year!

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Richard, no I have never had a problem with expansion. While on the road I will generally try to fill up in the morning when all is cool. Then during the day I hope for the fuel to expand. Will I get more fuel to burn, heck I don't know. It is just something I heard about too many years ago to count. First click or top off it is just a matter of choose. 

Herman

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Herman, you and I have the same fuel tanks, after reading the post above I do the same, lean the coach and fill it up as I could never get a full reading on the gauge either. There is still quite a bit of space above even after leaning the coach for expansion. I actually remove the vent fitting with a full tank, I do it every spring to make sure no bugs clogged it up and the fuel level was still 2" from the top. Our fill necks are directly on the tank like a road tractor saddle tank, not like the Freightliner chassis (or a gas coach) where there are rubber hoses going down to the tank which you cannot access or see. The fill necks are too low on the side wall's of the tank. 

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Anyone ever wonder what the guy in the 18 wheeler next in line is thinking while you are tipping your coach to and fro trying to get 5 or 10 more gallons into a 150 gal tank ???

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5 minutes ago, jrock said:

Anyone ever wonder what the guy in the 18 wheeler next in line is thinking while you are tipping your coach to and fro trying to get 5 or 10 more gallons into a 150 gal tank ???

Its more like 15-20 gallons on mine. When I pull into the fuel lanes, I lean the coach before exiting, as soon as I start it up it levels itself within 10 seconds. What do they think? I could care less, no one ever passed any comments and I've talked to a few at the fuel islands.

I called Monaco on this a few years back, the tank is physically 158 gallons, but only could take 128 of liquid. 30 gallons of air space is to much, in the winter that is like not filling the tank and creating condensation issues.

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Joe.  That's a big difference.  I have been wondering if mine is bigger than advertised, should be 150 and the generator will shut of at 1/4 of a tank, that = 37.5 gallons.  Last Thursday, after using AH furnace on diesel for most off 3 weeks and showing 503 miles, I took 127.4 gallons!  I did the math and it dose not add up, as the generator was still running!  I'm on a Spartan K2 chassis.

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John,

I have gotten a few looks and only one question. When I told the trucker why he just nodded his head OK. As Joe said when you pull forward after filling the coach will be level in just a few second.

Joe,

I had never thought about the tank being larger then stated in the manual. I do know that when I tilt and fill my Trip Tec says I have 124 gallons, and will read the same after 80 to 100 miles. 

 Carl, 

As to your AH keeping going below the 1/4 tank mark must be in the way the float is or pickup tube is set. My tank will tell me I am at the LOW FUEL mark and when I fill up it will take maybe 80 gallons. We both used our AHs quite a bit this last week.

Herman

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