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ASK RV BILL - March/April 2018


Q– Bill, I have a 10 button Dometic thermostat that doesn’t show the furnace option. How do I reset it?

Thanks, Robert

A– Robert, here are the steps to reset your thermostat, the Dometic CCC2 thermostat has 10 buttons but is normally called at 12-button thermostat. Make sure that the thermostat is in the off position. Press and hold the mode and zone buttons at the same time until the display reads IniT as well as all available zones. Release the buttons and press the on off button to exit, the reset should be done at this point.

Let me know if this does not solve the problem.

Q– Is it ok to store class a motorhome with leveling Jacks extended.

Bill Shepard

A– Bill, you did not say if the jacks were electric or hydraulic, this will make a slight difference. The answer is yes, for short periods of time, depending on the manufacturer. Check with your owners manual for the duration period and what precautions you will need to take. Hydraulic jacks have a chrome-plated ram that extends down for leveling, coat them with a dry lube spray to protect them from rust.

Q– Hello Bill, I saw the readers story regarding the build up of solids at the shallow end of the black tank and was intrigued by your response. I had actually asked this same question several months ago (although I don’t remember if it was to you or not) and had received no response. When you say you “reroute” the 3″ abs piping to the liquid end what do you mean? Can you provide a drawing of such a reroute? I don’t have a lot of room to be rerouting any pipes as I own a 22′ Bullet Premier and the toilet is pretty much where it’s at. not a lot of room for wiggle. Please help as this has been an ongoing issue since owning this trailer and of course is a bit inconvenient always having to walk to the bathrooms just for that specific purpose. Thank you for any information/pics you may be able to provide.

Joseph Scott

A– Joseph, the trailer in question is a fifth wheel with a large storage compartment in which the 3 inch downpipe from the toilet is exposed until the pipe drops through the floor above the holding tank. Dropping the tank allows you drill a hole for the downpipe to be rerouted to a different part of the tank. Unfortunately with a bumper pull trailer this process is almost impossible due to the lack of access for the downpipe to be rerouted. Your problem is lack of water to move the solids to the exit end of the tank due to quick flushing. If there are women in your group, have them throw the toilet paper after urination in a trash bag, this will help with the build up of solids.

Q– Bill, I’ve been reading your articles on tires in the Trailblazer magazine, but my problem seems a little different.

I have a 31ft Carriage by Cameo 2008 three slides; I have owned the trailer since 2010. So far I have had about 6 flats, the funny thing is it is always the same tire. This is a double axle and the flat is always on the right rear (when looking from the rear of the trailer). This is the opposite side of the kitchen slide-out, this side only has the table and chair. Someone told me to have the axles flipped but seeing it’s always the same tire I don’t want to spend a bunch of money when there might be a different answer.

Thanks for any advice, Tom

A– Tom, I can imagine how frustrating this can be, especially the same tire time after time. Not knowing what the cause of the flat tires makes this difficult to answer. I do know that Carriage 5th wheels are way to low to the ground and I would recommend raising yours up for starters especially if your trailer is to low in the rear and high in the front. When your suspension sags or hits a heavy bump the tire can easily bottom out, causing tire trouble. If the flats are from road debris, all the flats are probably just a coincident. If the flats are from an unknown origin, this may be from bottoming out.

Q– I have a 2017 Class A Diesel RV.
1. When the unit is parked, no engine running, it loses all its air pressure in 5 hours. The unit has been to Freightliner twice and both times a leak has been found and repaired. It now takes approx. 1/2 to 2 days to lose all the air. Is there a specification that covers air loss when parked?

2. When traveling on a freeway at 65mph, the air gauge showing 125 psi, it starts to drop and in approx. 1 to 2 hours it drops just below 75 and the compressor starts and brings it back to 125. This cycle continues every time we are on a steady trip. The manufacturer states that this normal and i have asked other RV’ers if there unit does this and they state that they only have noticed a drop of maybe 10 -15 psi. Again is this normal and is there a specification for this when running?
I appreciate any help and information you can provide.

Thanks, John Buzzelli

A– John, without knowing which chassis your motorhome has, making this question difficult to answer your question. The pressure is definitely dropping to low when you are driving, unless you are experiencing multiple large dips in the roads unloading the suspension, which will dump air. Something is wrong with the system, and there are so many parts, this will need to be picked apart part by part until you find the culprit. Start by finding a tech that is very familiar with your chassis, probably wont be easy, and not necessarily an RV shop.

Q– I had an unfortunate incident last year, which leads me to ask you “how do I know if my tow bar is in good working condition?” I purchased a 6 yr. old car, which came equipped with tow brackets and an aluminum tow bar. I found out later that the tow bar was actually older than the car.

I was towing my car after leaving my dealer in central Oregon when I hit a speed bump/crosswalk. After going over the speed bump I looked at my tow car in the rear camera and saw it weaving and when I stopped, the car didn’t. I discovered that the arms of the tow bar had pulled right out of their sockets. The tow bar failure did over $10,000 damage to the car and motorhome (at 20 mph).

My question to the tow bar manufacture and you is, how do you inspect and determine if my tow bar is in good working condition?

Marvin Schaefner

A– Marvin, according to Roadmaster, a long time manufacturer of tow bars, they should be inspected and lubricated afteevery trip and inspected by an expert annually, don’t forget the baseplate. Roadmaster tow bars arms are designed not to pull apart as yours did during normal wear and tear. There is no way of knowing how may actual miles were on your 6 year old tow bar, however if there is high mileage it was long over due for a re-build. If you belong to FMCA, most of the rallies have a tow bar company for the convenience of the members and will perform an inspection for free, which every one should participate.

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