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RE: Roof reseal options

Thanks guys. I'm also considering calling some "mobile" RV repair guys and asking for estimates/bids. I would think they'd charge less than a shop but would still have knowledge of the do's and don't in a reseal job. It wouldn't surprise me to hear that a Mobile RV repair guy charges MORE than a shop. Let us know what you find out. It really is a straightforward, simple job. Basically painting in an environment where you a)Don't need to be incredibly detailed/accurate, and b)Nobody else is ever really going to even see (...your roof)! I would suggest using painter's tape to tape around your edges that might be visible from the ground so that you don't get paint (Dicor) where you don't want it. Other than that, it's really easy. I just picked up another RV and the roof needs to be resealed. Now that I've done it before (twice), I know it will only take me 4-5 hours total. Side note: It is oddly satisfying to have a beautiful, clean, white rooftop! Let us know how it goes. -Chris
SJ-Chris 08/03/21 04:36pm Tech Issues
RE: Roof reseal options

My RV is 7 years old and could use to have a complete caulking job on the roof for the front cap, back seam, and all vents, antenna, and the bathroom skylight. I've done a complete job before on my first RV, but that was over 20 years ago. Physically, there is no way I want to attempt that now. Here is where I'm going with this: I cringe to think of the cost of this if I took it to a dealer shop and had an RV tech do it and was charged the going per hour rate. Most shops are $130.00/hour and up. Don't get me wrong here. Overall, a certified RV tech is worth every penny he earns. There is a very wide range of expertise they must possess. But not all RV work is complicated and/or technical. Some jobs are simple, but labor intensive. Here is my question. Are there companies or outfits that specialize in resealing an RV that charge rates that are somewhat commensurate with the simplicity of the job? Thanks. Resealing a roof, provided it doesn't have underlying leak/bubbling issues already, is a relatively easy job. I've done it on a couple of RVs myself. If you can paint a bedroom in your house, you can probably reseal your roof. Here is a pretty good description of my project: I see that in your post you mention physically you don't want to do the job yourself. Understood. That is probably the one barrier to doing this task as it does require you getting up on your roof, pressure washing, etc and maybe you don't want to do that. Possible solution: Find someone else who is reasonable to do the task for you. Perhaps even a Handyman can do the job and their rate would be MUCH lower than an RV tech. Maybe a painter could do the task for you. Perhaps the son or daughter of one of your friends or neighbors might be interested. The job involves about 3-4 hours of prep one day (including pressure washing), and then 3-4 hours on another day to seal the roof with a few coats and paint over all the seals. In total, it might be 8-10 hours of someone's time. You can probably find someone to do it for $20-40/hr which means it will cost you ~$200-$400 in labor (....instead of $1000-1500 at the RV shop). Hope this helps! Chris
SJ-Chris 08/03/21 03:20pm Tech Issues
RE: Project complete: 500w solar install, plus 2000w inverter

Well, at the time when I was buying, I was only looking to buy 1 panel at 250w. Since they were so cheap, I bumped up my system to 500w. At that time, I wasn't even planning on putting solar on my other RV, but I figured, "At this price, I'd better just buy it" and so I did. I have since installed it on one of my other RVs (another identical 500w system). I will likely add a 3rd lead acid battery giving me 300AH. I think the 500w of total solar power I have will be more than enough to keep them charged. I don't really boondock too much, so I don't really even feel like I need 300AH worth of batteries. But I do have a 2000w pure sine wave inverter and I want to be able to run the microwave from it. I believe it will pull ~150amps at 12v which is too much for just 2 lead acid batteries but I hope 3 will be able to handle the draw. You can look on craigslist or FB marketplace and find great deals on used solar panels for cheap. Just test them prior to buying. That makes for some very inexpensive solar systems. I think the panels will outlive the duration that most will be holding onto their RVs. Happy Camping! -Chris
SJ-Chris 08/01/21 12:27am Do It Yourself Modifications and Upgrades (DIY)
RE: Onan 4000 generator cranks but won't start

How are you making out with your genset? I was out of town (not RVing) for the last 7 days. I will continue working on it this coming week. -Chris
SJ-Chris 07/31/21 11:28pm Tech Issues
RE: Onan 4000 generator cranks but won't start

Still not's an update on what I've tried/checked... To troubleshoot so far here is what I have done to no avail... - I have a full tank of gas in the motorhome. - The motorhome is level. - Altitude adjustment set to 0 (I am near sea level). - I checked the oil to make sure there wasn't too much (it is to the low end on the dipstick as most seem to recommend). - I swapped in a good spark plug to make sure that wasn't the problem, and it didn't fix it. - I checked the air filter and it seems fine (...even tried starting it without the air filter and it didn't start). - I changed the fuel filter with a new one, primed it and tried starting it several times and that didn't fix the problem. - I disconnected all the batteries (and my solar) per someone's suggestion to "reset" the generator. Hooked everything back up and it still didn't fix the problem. Latest items: - I removed the fuel line going to the carb and tried to start to see if it was sending fuel to the carb. Yes, plenty of fuel is getting pumped to the carb (so it's not a bad fuel pump). - Compression check: I've never done this before but I think I did it right. Tough to get at the spark plug hole to screw in the compression check tool but I believe I did get it in there and snug. When I cranked it I got ZERO COMPRESSION registering on the tester. I tried it more than once, disconnecting the tester and then putting it back on and making it snug. Zero compression. So....what does Zero Compression indicate on this generator and what would you recommend my next steps be? Summary: - Yes there is fuel going to the carb. - Yes the spark plug is sparking. - No, there is not any compression (...unless I did the test wrong). Thanks in advance! Chris
SJ-Chris 07/23/21 11:02pm Tech Issues
RE: Onan 4000 generator cranks but won't start

I found this good video to test the fuel pump which I'll try out later today...Thought others would find it useful also...It also explains how to replace the fuel pump if needed... Also found a video on how to remove those special "ear style" hose clamps in case anyone else is wondering: Hopefully I find that I have a bad fuel pump which would be fairly straightforward to change... I'll let you know. -Chris
SJ-Chris 07/23/21 05:21pm Tech Issues
RE: Onan 4000 generator cranks but won't start

Did you try disconnecting the remote start? Have you tried stating from remote start? Is the remote start switch simply the start button inside the RV? I have the same result (...just lots of cranking) from either start button. Now does one disconnect the remote start? Could this actually be causing the issue (a bad remote start switch)? I'm no expert, but that doesn't seem likely to me (but if it's easy to disconnect I'm willing to try). -Chris
SJ-Chris 07/23/21 05:03pm Tech Issues
RE: Onan 4000 generator cranks but won't start

Disconnect fuel line from carb. Prime the pump. Do you hear the fuel pump and are you getting fuel? The fuel line going to the carb is connected with a hose clamp I'm not familiar with. Here is a photo: Can someone tell me the proper way to remove this clamp? I don't want to just man-handle it to get it off. Is it okay to replace that clamp with a standard hose clamp from home depot (...the kind with the screw to tighten)? When I do remove this hose, if I push the primer button should I see gas spurt out of this hose? When cranking, and if the fuel pump is working, I guess I should see fuel squirting out of this hose when disconnected, right? If not, then it seems like a bad fuel pump (since I know my fuel filter is brand new) right? Let me know. Thanks! Chris
SJ-Chris 07/23/21 05:00pm Tech Issues
RE: Onan 4000 generator cranks but won't start

When you removed the spark plug, was it wet, dry oily? The spark plug wasn't wet. It did have some black carbon on it. I have another RV with identical Onan generator that is working fine. I pulled the spark plug from that one and tried it in this generator that isn't working. Still not working. I did the spark test and it is generating a rapid spark as it is cranking.
SJ-Chris 07/23/21 04:17pm Tech Issues
RE: Onan 4000 generator cranks but won't start

:) Hi, did you check the oil level? Yes, that was one of the first items I did. It was a little high. I sucked some out so that it is right around the bottom of the dipstick.
SJ-Chris 07/22/21 11:19pm Tech Issues
RE: Onan 4000 generator cranks but won't start

Update: I checked the spark plug. Took it out, then plugged it back into the wire connector and put it against the metal of the engine and when the engine cranked it produced rapid sparks. Yellow/white/orange in color (not blue). Is that significant? Then I put the spark plug back in. Then I took off the air filter and I sprayed some starter fluid into the carb area. At least that's what I tried to do. The spray can had a ~4" straw that helped me aim towards the carb opening but wasn't long enough for me to get it 100% into the carb, and because of the angle it was hard to see exactly what I was doing. I gave it 3-4 blast while manually holding the carb flap open. Then I tried starting it up. Didn't seem to make much of an impact and the engine just still cranked and cranked but didn't really seem to get any further. I tried spraying starter fluid 2-3 times more and still nothing. Because of some residual starter fluid spraying into the carb area (the housing that holds the air filter) at one point there was a tiny fire that started burning the excess fuel. I put it out within 5-10 seconds and it didn't look like it had any damage whatsoever. (I had a fire extinguisher next to me during all of this just in case!) Does this imply it is receiving the spark from the spark plug?? I'm not sure where to go from here. Any thoughts?? Thanks! Chris
SJ-Chris 07/22/21 08:53pm Tech Issues
RE: Onan 4000 generator cranks but won't start

Did you try spraying starter fluid into the intake while it's cranking? If it starts and runs a few seconds you probably have a fuel delivery problem. Thanks for the suggestion. Please help me understand how to implement your suggestion... I assume the "intake" (carb?) is basically where the air filter is sitting, right? So would I remove the air filter and then spray starter fluid in there while cranking? The way the air filter housing is situated, I cannot see inside there so that will make it a bit challenging. I guess something like this would work? Does it usually come with some sort of straw so that I could get it in closer to where the carb is (...the air filter housing is probably 4-5 inches deep). I'll give it a shot. Thanks! Any other suggestions? -Chris
SJ-Chris 07/22/21 06:04pm Tech Issues
Onan 4000 generator cranks but won't start

Hi all, I have a 2015 Cummins Onan RV QG 4000 generator. It has somewhere between 300-1000hrs (not sure, I've only owned it for about 2 years and it was a previous rental...might not be the original generator on this RV and I don't trust the hour meter coming from the rental company). About 1 year ago, I replaced the oil, air filter, and spark plug. Since then there has been 50-100 hours. Up until recently it has been working fine. Recently, it won't start. It cranks and cranks very strong, but doesn't start. To troubleshoot so far here is what I have done to no avail... - I have a full tank of gas in the motorhome. - The motorhome is level. - Altitude adjustment set to 0 (I am near sea level). - I checked the oil to make sure there wasn't too much (it is to the low end on the dipstick as most seem to recommend). - I swapped in a good spark plug to make sure that wasn't the problem, and it didn't fix it. - I checked the air filter and it seems fine (...even tried starting it without the air filter and it didn't start). - I changed the fuel filter with a new one, primed it and tried starting it several times and that didn't fix the problem. - I disconnected all the batteries (and my solar) per someone's suggestion to "reset" the generator. Hooked everything back up and it still didn't fix the problem. It still cranks very strong...just doesn't start. The only error code I could get from the lights was '4' (which is over-cranking). I don't think in all the testing that I did I ever let it crank for more than 10-20 seconds at a time. I have reached the current extent of my generator knowledge! lol.... I'm hoping some of you can help me expand that knowledge with some more suggestions/recommendations. One thing I've learned about owning an RV (...I actually have 3 now) is that it makes sense to try to learn to fix as much yourself as possible because RV mechanics are a)busy, b)expensive, and c)a hassle to drop off/pick up/etc. Plus, it's fun/satisfying when we can fix our own rigs and not be as dependent on others. Thanks in advance! Chris
SJ-Chris 07/22/21 04:31pm Tech Issues
RE: Project complete: 500w solar install, plus 2000w inverter

So how is the system working? Update: I've been boondocking 3-4 times with this RV (200AH lead acid batteries and 500w of solar installed) each time for 3-4 days. The most strain on the batteries was a trip where I was camping in 35-40 degree F nighttime weather and running the furnace at night. Plenty of TV time and computer use also. I think the lowest I saw the battery bank in the morning was in the high 60s (60% batteries full). As soon as the sun came up the solar kicked in and within a few hours I was up to 85-90% and always up to about 95% by sundown. As you know, the last ~5% charge on your battery tends to take a very long time with lead acid batteries (...they only seem to allow about 1-2 amps in at a time even if your system can deliver 20-30). All-in-all, I haven't had to worry at all about my batteries at all with my newly installed 500w solar system. I ended up adding an identical 500w system onto my other Majestic 28a. The last battery related project I need/want to do is to add one more 100AH lead acid battery to one of my RVs. This will give me 300AH, but more importantly I believe I'll be able to run my microwave through my 2000w inverter with 3 batteries. (With just 2 lead acid batteries the amp draw through each will be about 80amps which I'm not comfortable with. With 3 batteries it drops down to ~50amps from each battery which I think is manageable for a few minute microwave task.) Happy Camping! Chris
SJ-Chris 07/21/21 02:27am Do It Yourself Modifications and Upgrades (DIY)
RE: Quiet series generator 9500 watts!!!

10-30 times louder? Someone needs to read up about the db scale. :B He references the Honda which is listed 59 dB, since the power doubles for every 3 dB of gain, 62 dB is double the racket of the Honda, 65 dB is double the 62, 67 is almost double of the 65. That's **** close to 10 times louder. The difference between a quiet conversation and having a hoover exhaust stuck in your ear. Does anyone really give a ratsass? No quite. Twice the perceived loudness is a 10 db increase. Maybe on Fantasy Island, but whatever you say. Fantasy Island, along with the rest of the world. A 10 db increase is 10X the power, but we, as humans only perceive that as being 2X as loud. Do some reading up on the subject, it's quite fascinating & goes against a lot of common understanding of the subject. But all that aside, 67 db is way too loud for a campground. Campers 10 sites away would complain, I'm sure. Just trying to help everyone out...I just called the front desk at Fantasy Island. They do not allow generators there.
SJ-Chris 06/08/21 03:21pm Tech Issues
RE: need back up camera suggestions

I have installed this brand/type of wireless backup camera on 3 RVs I've owned. My RVs have all been 30-31'. I imagine other brands that are similar would do the trick also. EASY to install. Install them high on the rear of your RV or TT just under the running lights. You can tap power from the middle running light which makes it easy. On the inside with the monitor, just find a convenient place to mount it and use the included double sided tape. Then plug the monitor in to your cigarette lighter for power. I always drive with my lights on (day or night) so the running lights are always on and giving the camera power. With this setup, you can keep it on while driving or turn it's up to you. Just need to remember to turn off the monitor when you park. Good luck! Chris
SJ-Chris 06/04/21 02:59pm Tech Issues
RE: Class C RV cost in the Covid era...

Well, they're 'asking' 44 grand. I believe most people shopping for one of these ex-rental units don't have cash in their pocket, so they need to finance. The unit they're buying is going to have to book out for a potential lender to approve them. But, my guess is that these inflated prices aren't going to be around that long before the bubble bursts, just like the housing market did in 2008. Most people's experience with buying from Cruise America is that their prices are very firm (other than the advertised sales they have sometimes). They don't negotiate on price. They WILL make repairs and fixes if you ask them prior to purchase. But the listed price is what they sell them for. Yes, I understand what you are talking about regarding financing. But people are usually putting some money down and financing the rest so I don't think lender valuation will be too much of an issue. -Chris
SJ-Chris 06/01/21 02:18pm Class C Motorhomes
Class C RV cost in the Covid era...

Class C RV cost in the Covid era... Here is a good data point for USED RVs for anyone interested... (I haven't shopped for NEW RVs so I don't know about that market...perhaps someone else here can comment on that.) In Feb 2019 (pre-Covid), I bought two 2015 Class C Thor Majestic 28a renovated units from Cruise America. Each had ~115,000 miles. One I paid $26,750 and the other one I paid $25,000 (from someone who purchased it from Cruise America 2 months prior but decided it wasn't for them). Assumption: Cruise America, the largest renter/seller of RVs in the world, knows what the current market for RVs is... Today, Cruise America sells their used 2017 Thor Majestic 28a renovated units with ~125,000 miles for $44,300. Newer RVs (2017 vs 2015) but more slightly miles. The interior/etc of these units is just about identical. $44,300 vs $26,750. Today's price is 66% higher! I would NOT be in a hurry to buy an RV in this market. In the USA, we are almost done with Covid (...anyone who wants to get vaccinated can now be vaccinated). Everything is opening up. Hotels/airlines/resorts. I have to imagine prices will drop significantly. Maybe not all the way down to pre-Covid levels, but hopefully just 10-15% higher than pre-Covid levels. That means they are probably due for a 30-40% price drop over the next 3 months to 3 years (....who knows?...) Seems like a great time to just RENT an RV for your vacations over the next year. That's what I would do (...unless you plan on camping more than 50-100 days during the next year or two which most people won't). Side note: Beware used RV sale scams....they seem to be on the rise! Good luck! Chris
SJ-Chris 05/31/21 06:25pm Class C Motorhomes
RE: Buying a Former Rental Class C. How many of us out there?

Well golly. I just finished reading all 154 pages and many, if not most, of my questions have been answered. I've truly enjoyed reading about all the fixes and changes and whatnot. Thanks to all for the info. My husband and I are seriously considering the Majestic 28a. We would like to go talk to someone and considered going to Newark on Friday. Then I remembered the holiday. We'll wait. I would guess that they would be too busy. I have several questions that deal with the bedroom. We're full timers and have two cats and a dog. Pepi, the dog, is a dachshund/beagle mix. Short legs. Any suggestions to make it easier for her to get on the bed? I figure I'll have a better idea of what I can do once I get a better look. I'll probably have to build something. Also, is there any way to make a cat-sized opening for access from the bedroom to the rear storage? Keeping the litterboxes in the storage bay would be so much nicer. Thanks in advance. I'm in the South Bay and have two 28a RVs from Cruise America. If you have any questions or would like to see one and ask lots of questions feel free to send me a private message. -Chris
SJ-Chris 05/31/21 06:23pm Class C Motorhomes
RE: Strange noise from engine..."Whirling" sound

Update.... Regarding the pin looking item...My mechanic tells me that's just part of the tension assembly and it should not be pulled. Regarding the noise, it was diagnosed as a leaking exhaust manifold (one bolt had broken off). It makes sense that once things warm up and expand the noise goes away. I've heard exhaust manifold leaks before (when more bolts have broken off) and it was a much louder rumbling sound compared to this. Always learning... The "good news" is that this RV had the manifold replaced 10k miles ago (~$8k repair bill) and it is still under warranty, so the shop is going to fix it. Thanks for all the suggestions/etc. Happy Camping! Chris
SJ-Chris 05/31/21 05:24pm Tech Issues
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