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Old 03-31-2013, 07:41 PM   #1
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Goofs

It seems we could use a list of goofs, especially ones that seem to cause the most trouble. No matter how much some of us read, others do not. Here are a few common mistakes. Feel free to add others and/or explain your situation regarding any. I am not going into big explanations about these. They.are worth noting by anyone as even long-term RVers have goofed them up.

1. We turn the electric water heater to "off" on the exterior when there is no water, the water is getting low or we are in storage. Turned on only after verifying that the hot water tank is full.

2. We have very long lists, interior and exterior, regarding everything that needs to be done before taking off with the Escape. We use them. There are lists around but you need your own with items particular to you.

3. When about to travel, bath vent needs to be closed so it is not torn off.

4. Awning needs to be in "closed" position. That position needs to be noted when using it as one cannot tell by looking up there without having tried it. There are straps to hold it that can be purchased. Insurance companies hear about awnings more than anything --- torn up, torn out, gone from blowing away --- which is why awnings are usually not covered.

5. We do not turn on the water pump if hooked to city water. That can damage the pump.


6. We have a lock through the coupler latch for traveling. There are numerous instances of trailers disconnecting from tow vehicles. Part of our exterior list contains many items to check on the hitching.

7. Turn off water pump switch and also hot water heater propane switch if using propane.

8. When travelling and having been stopped, we always check the hitch and the trailer up and down for departing.

9. Dump station check. We cover the exterior list but then at the dump, have to recheck door locked, valves closed, slinky container cap on and more.
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Old 04-01-2013, 09:57 AM   #2
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7. Turn off water pump switch and also hot water heater propane switch if using propane.
Please explain why.
Thank you, Jubal
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Old 04-01-2013, 10:48 AM   #3
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My goof was turning on the stove to bleed the lines to operate the refrigerator and leaving one burner on. I returned minutes later to put food in the refer and the propane alarm was going off. Boy was I lucky!!!!
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Old 04-01-2013, 11:36 AM   #4
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Forgetting to pull the toilet flush handle while draining the water lines.

Forgetting to remove the X-chocks before pulling away.

Pretty darn sure that neither of these will reoccur again. Lesson learned.
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Old 04-01-2013, 12:04 PM   #5
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Jim,

What alerted you that you hadn't drained the toilet line? I ask, because I'm not sure I did. Don't think it got cold enough to matter this winter, but what burst in your case?
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Old 04-01-2013, 01:52 PM   #6
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Jim,

What alerted you that you hadn't drained the toilet line? I ask, because I'm not sure I did. Don't think it got cold enough to matter this winter, but what burst in your case?
After filling with water and turning on the pump, I had a stream of water coming from behind the toilet into the drain. The plastic flush valve had cracked. A few bucks, and a couple hours, and all was good. The guy where I bought the new valve from said they sell a few dozen every spring.
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Old 04-01-2013, 02:07 PM   #7
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oops,
I may have overlooked that in mine. what were the parts that you had to replace.
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Old 04-01-2013, 02:13 PM   #8
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I occurs to me that if I hook up the city water ( or run the pump ) and open the flush valve, and, if pink water comes out, that I actually did winterize properly.
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Old 04-01-2013, 02:16 PM   #9
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oops,
I may have overlooked that in mine. what were the parts that you had to replace.
Just a flush valve.

I had trouble turning the water line connector off of it because of lack of room behind the toilet for my fat mitts or pliers, so got advice from Reace to just cut the waterline behind the toilet under the dinette seat to remove the toilet, then just splice it back together after.
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Old 04-01-2013, 03:57 PM   #10
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7. Turn off water pump switch and also hot water heater propane switch if using propane.
Please explain why.
Thank you, Jubal
I have found that leaving the pump on when driving can result in water being pumped out where it shouldn't be if a faucet handle gets bumped by shifting RV (this has happened to me in a motorhome, not a trailer) contents.

If you don't intend to leave the water heater running while driving (you can, but this is controversial), then you might goof by leaving it on. That would use up extra propane, and you might then fail to have it turned off at gas stations where the flame must be off for safety.
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Old 04-01-2013, 05:12 PM   #11
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Jubal, I meant for travel but couldn't edit it because it is pretty impossible to edit a long post. You don't want problems with water or propane running when not using them.

I should add to 7. Also turn off water on exterior city connection, if using that, if leaving the trailer for the day. That prevents mishaps while gone.

To add to Brian's comments, a guy came back to his trailer after being gone during the day to find the floor covered in water. The cat had turned on a kitchen faucet.




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7. Turn off water pump switch and also hot water heater propane switch if using propane.
Please explain why.
Thank you, Jubal
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Old 04-01-2013, 06:08 PM   #12
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Thank you Cathy
A good list of problems to avoid. I will probably be adding to the list after camping with the Escape this summer as it is a jump in technology for us tent campers.
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Old 04-01-2013, 09:49 PM   #13
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Oops, how many of us leave the fridge on gas and pull in to refill and not even think of that.!
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Old 04-01-2013, 10:13 PM   #14
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I turn off the gas at the tanks as part of my to-do list prior to moving out.
Ice cream in the freezer compartment was only somewhat soft after 5 hrs. Wasn't 90 degrees F out though.
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Old 04-01-2013, 11:26 PM   #15
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Oops, how many of us leave the fridge on gas and pull in to refill and not even think of that.!
Ditto on that piece of advice. Thanks for the heads up.

We have typically left the propane fridge running while towing, but only one summer of trailer experience now. Never had to worry about it with our tent!

Now we just need to remember this advice when we gas up once we get back to camping. Or as Glen noted, probably to just turn the fridge off when traveling and get rid of the concern.

You have to turn the propane off to travel on the BC Ferries so only makes sense to extend that safety precaution at all times when traveling.

With the 3 way fridge, are there concerns to be aware of if you run the fridge on DC while traveling? Does the fridge take the DC power from the trailer or the tow battery when plugged to trailer? If you stop for an hour or two to take a short hike or other, with the DC powering the fridge, could you quickly drain one of the batteries, and if so which one, trailer or tow?
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Old 04-01-2013, 11:43 PM   #16
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Well...This winter I left the furnace thermostat in the lowest on position and the propane bottles open after camping only to learn that after a cold front hit, it cycled on and off until the propane ran out.

Here's a goof I witnesed at a SP dump station yesterday. A guy across from me was teaching his wife how to dump the tanks. When he took off his cap, he learned that his black tank valve was open and they both got a suprize. I really not sure he is still alive.
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Old 04-01-2013, 11:52 PM   #17
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The 3-way fridge will get power from the alternator on the tow vehicle. However, there won't be enough left over to charge up your trailer batterie(s).
And, you need to have a #10 gauge ground wire to deliver enough power to the fridge.
As for stopping for lunch, with the fridge on DC, don't - according to all the posts I've read on the subject.
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Old 04-02-2013, 10:16 AM   #18
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Quote:
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...With the 3 way fridge, are there concerns to be aware of if you run the fridge on DC while traveling? Does the fridge take the DC power from the trailer or the tow battery when plugged to trailer? If you stop for an hour or two to take a short hike or other, with the DC powering the fridge, could you quickly drain one of the batteries, and if so which one, trailer or tow?
If your tow vehicle does not have an isolation relay, both batteries will drain, although a short stop won't kill your batteries. A couple of hours will, so for long stops, switch to propane. I have seen reports of dead batteries on both the tow vehicle & trailer when owners left the trailer & tow connected & on 12V overnight.

While I have a 2 way refrigerator, I added an isolation relay to the RAV4 that shuts off the feed to the trailer when the vehicle ignition is off. Some trucks come with an isolation relay already installed. It is probably worth checking to see if pin 4 on your 7 way trailer connector shuts off with the ignition.
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Old 04-02-2013, 06:46 PM   #19
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We are definitely with you on that, Glenn. To many of us, the mistake is not forgetting to turn off the propane at a gas station but having it on while driving. I feel sure without seeing many propane appliance manuals that they all say to turn off the propane for driving. There are about 4000 RV fires per year, many of which are refrigerator, one of the biggest categories that Good Sam is called about. I can only guess that most of them involve propane. From posts on it, you can see that people do forget to turn off the propane. I am surprised that the insurance companies even cover such incidents, assuming they do. We use a little cooler with ice packs.



Quote:
Originally Posted by gbaglo View Post
I turn off the gas at the tanks as part of my to-do list prior to moving out.
Ice cream in the freezer compartment was only somewhat soft after 5 hrs. Wasn't 90 degrees F out though.
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Old 04-02-2013, 08:49 PM   #20
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I feel sure without seeing many propane appliance manuals that they all say to turn off the propane for driving.
In contrast I read my manuals, and have never seen a statement to this effect. If someone has, please share the appliance model and documentation source - I would be genuinely interested.

Quote:
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There are about 4000 RV fires per year, many of which are refrigerator, one of the biggest categories that Good Sam is called about. I can only guess that most of them involve propane.
Since those fires are usually while stationary, the obvious conclusion is that we should not use our refrigerators on propane while camped.
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