• Kitchen Grey tank
    For a number of years my grey and black tanks always read 1/3 to 2/3 full. I finally used a bunch of automatic dish washer gel (two cups or so) in the grey tank and some heavy duty enzyme in the RV black tank and let them set for awhile while mostly full.

    I have been using my septic tank cleanout at home for a dump station instead of having to fight in line at the local campgrounds (short weekly stays). With the agitation in the tanks it really helps break loose the hard crusty buildup (you can see the chunks while cleaning the sewer hoses)

    This probably hurt my fuel mileage , driving with fullish tanks and I have been told that this buts a lot of strain on the tanks themselves, but for the first time when I dump my tanks, both say empty.
  • Anyone ever use to locate cell towers?
    I do most of my camping on the east coast but cell signal can be worse here than out west. In the west, most towers are situated for maximum coverage. in the east they are placed in towns where the most people are.

    I use Opensignal and Network Signal and play with a few others. The more I try to get a good signal the harder it gets. This app says to point your directional antenna this way and another app says to point it another way. (If there are competing poor signals my phone keeps switching between them looking for the best signal.)

    Out west there was usually a clear winner.

    I got a good omni-directional antenna and put it on top of a tall flag pole and with the booster it usually does the trick.
  • Best RV GPS?
    A little trick that I came up with on mounting my rear view screen, which had a mounting plate, was to use Command Strips to attach it to my dash. I has worked just fine. No holes! Just make sure to leave part of the pull tab where you can get to it for when you want to remove it.

    I use a Garmin 780, Google Maps, CoPilot and RVTripWizard. The 780 is OK but it thinks that RV's prefer Interstates or else going directly through small towns (Main street) instead of taking the longer truck bypass. It has also taken me down one-lane dirt roads before.(Yes it was the shortest way)

    None of them are perfect. I try to have the GPS suggest a route and then I try to check it out with the others to look for surprises. Most GPS devices do not do height checks! On one trip into Texas on what looked like decent road, RVTripWizard gave a height warning! Zooming in with Google street view, I could clearly see the 10 ' 6" warning sign. This caused a 30 mile detour to find a bigger bridge and had to listen to the the GPS telling me "to make a U turn" most of the way.
  • Puzzler on our Furnace
    Let me start off by saying that I have a 2005 Glendale Titanium camper that was made in Canada. They are now out of business so other owners are the only source of information. On the Titanium RV owners forum, there is lots of discussions on the Attwood systems. According to the gurus on the forum:

    The Attwood uses a two stage fan logic to determine when you need more fan for the heater and for the AC. I think Ray had a post where he installed a manual switch for low speed or high speed on his fan. The Atwood apparently uses some digital codes to tell the fan to run slow of fast and thus a simple switch will not work.

    The logic board for the fans (heat and AC) are in the furnace and connected to the Attwood thermostat. This also means the thermostat can not be replaced with a standard thermostat. The heater has two circuit boards, one is the normal ignition board which you can get easy and cheaper replacements for but the other is the fan controller is not cheap.

    I'm sure that with work, I could figure out how to isolate that board and scrap everything else but since I not an electronics tech, it would be a lot of trial and maybe error. Currently it is not worth my trouble so it just sits in my RV, wired into the thermostat. I never turn on the heat setting so I get by.

    The forum people tell me that unless you looking to replace everything, it is not worth fooling with. As long as my AC keeps going, I'll just live with it.

    I have tested that if the thermostat connector is not connected to the furnace then the AC will not run.
  • Puzzler on our Furnace
    I have an Attwood furnace, old obsolete etc. It failed a couple of years ago during the bomb cyclone in the Texas Pan handle. I went to Walmart and bought a Mr Heater Little Buddy and a case of propane tanks. It worked so well that when I got home and fought with the furnace (As an FYI the sail switch is to make sure the fan is blowing.) Apparently over time the combustion chamber got clogged with soot. Cleaned it out, replaced burner parts, finally got it to work on a bench outside the RV but when re-installed, wouldn't work.

    I got a Mr Heater Big Buddy and using a Natural Gas hose, direct connected it to the RV propane system. (The connector in the heater uses Natural Gas fittings instead of Propane connectors.) At the end of heating season, I disconnect the quick connect, slide the hose into the furnace area through a little door, and the heater goes under the bed or in the garage. We like to sleep cool so we always have a window cracked and I invested in a carbon monoxide detector as well as the normal smoke alarm.

    Some day I'll just dump the furnace and gain some more storage room. I have to figure out a work around for the stupid fan controller setup. Without the connection to the furnace, the AC won't run. Apparently the two stage fan controller for both the furnace and the AC are built into the furnace boards.

    It also doesn't my batteries overnight like the furnace fan would do!
  • Snow Chains on Trailers???
    I asked about this topic on another RV forum and it stirred up a hornets nest. I had made the suggestion that there ought to be chains or something on the camper to keep it from sliding etc. (also stopping). Since I have minimal clearance between the top of my camper tires and the bottom of the RV, I was asking what others did in that case.

    Most people thought that it was ridiculous to even think about chains on campers. Nothing that they said convinced me that they were right. Camper tires are hard rubber and made for strength. These attributes make for poor wet traction (let alone snow and ice) and the normal tread pattern and depth also do not give me any confidence on slick spots.

    So far I have gone the "When in Doubt, Don't" side of the discussion. I grew up using chains, Once I had a new job in southern VA, An unexpected over night snow of 4 inches had me cursing and digging out my chain for the car. I got them on and got to work just a few minutes late. To my surprise, no one was there! Apparently the locals thought that a blizzard had come through and everything was shut down. To me it was just what you did.

    Since I have so little clearance between my tires and the RV body, Standard chains won't work. Does anyone have any suggestions? Also what is a snow sock? I am not familiar with that term.

  • New Roof
    Several years ago my roof was worn down to the black was showing through. I used a product called Henry's Tropi-Cool. It is like a super thick paint and is 100% silicone. I just rolled on and let it dry. It flows into pinholes crevasses and cracks.

    I have been very happy with the life of the product (still going strong) and as a DIY project, it was less than $500 for materials (about 30 feet of roof and had lots left over).

    As a DIY guy, the other options were out of my league.

    They have a web site and there were some YouTube videos out there. My grandson and I did our camper in a weekend.
    With a mppt controller normally you can run higher voltage and that get converted to more charging amps.

    On my 4-100 watt panels, I put each pair in series and then paralleled the two pairs. So I get half the amps but twice the voltage and my mppt controller converts the extra amps on the output side so everything is charged at full power.

    Another benefit is with less input amperage you can use smaller (cheaper) wires on the long runs between the panels.
  • Construction pictures of our "Mobile Homestead" home on wheels!
    I'm impressed!

    I'm assuming that there are two slide outs, one on each side, from the frame with two big gaps in the walls and the framing around that section in the finished pictures. Did you use standard slide hardware or did you do a custom installation? Pictures?

    My wife was also impressed except for the small windows! She loves windows and light. Our unit has standard sliding glass doors with a slide out patio. Her chair is positioned right next to them.

    Small windows are more efficient (Definition of a window: a hole in the wall that the wind doesn't blow through!) but dark rooms give my wife the willies.
  • Using a 2 KW Champion Generator with a RV with a 30 amp shore cord.
    I made my own from an old three prong plug. Just jumper neutral to ground.
  • Replacement backup camera
    When you are looking at cameras, one of the main things to look for is the "field of view". These cameras are like fish eye lenses and are measured in degrees of width. Typically they are 170 degrees which is very wide to see what is to the right and left but as you have noticed, everything gets microscopic a few feet back.

    If you can find a camera with 120 degree view, you will lose the side view but you can see better directly behind.

    I have been thinking about setting up two rear view cameras with different fields of view, one to see what is to the sides as well as one for straight back. (my monitor can split up into 4 screens.)
  • Tables
    We also have one of the tables as described by Ray but ours is black. I use it as a grilling table mostly. I have one of the folding aluminum tables but my latest grill is too wide for it. (Grill shopping and I lost my sense of scale in the big box store when I bought their smallest grill.) I may have gotten the tale at Walmart.
  • Trailer Leveling
    We used to do the board trick as it was cheap and easy. Here on the east coast almost every state park has dirt drive ways or if they are paved, drainage is more important than level! I use my Anderson levelers all the time. (Last winters 3 month west coast and back trip, I only need to level a few times.) Unless you have a blue tooth level like Ray, they make it real easy to level as I can see my level in the rear view mirror (Master level). I just slowly pull onto the levelers until I'm level, put the safety chocks under the levelers amd I'm good to go.

    With boards and the legos, it was always trial and error. Put down the boards, drive up, check level, repeat.
  • Hanging items on interior RV wall
    I have had great luck with the Velcro type command strips. I prefer the newer type Velcro which has sort of a mushroom shaped (pin head) attachment on BOTH strips. I think they call them picture hangers.

    The display should be easily in their weight range.

    One thing on command strips is that they will stick to the cheap RV wallpaper better than the wallpaper will stick to the actual wall. I had a hook holding a small cutting board to my kitchen wall. One time I went to use it and noticed it was swinging on a large bubble of wallpaper. I had to carefully remove the command strip, slice the wallpaper bubble, and add glue under the wallpaper to get it to lay back down.

  • Nature's Beauty Thread - Post Your Pictures
    Page AZ just before we headed home because of the virus.

    Horseshoe Bend now costs $5 per person to park and walk to the overlook.


    Here are some shots in lower antelope canyon, the next day all tours were cancelled so we didn't get to see the upper canyon.

  • Tank sensors not accurate
    After about a month on the road, my sensors are shot! Just after dumping, I still show 1/3 full on both grey and black. The next day they both may say 2/3 full.

    They are bogus readings. I see thick chunks of stuff in my dump hoses so I know that there is an old build up of crud that is starting to break up. After a trip, I try to clean the tanks. My method is to start with a normal dump with a good flush. Next step is to dump a LOT of liquid automatic dish washer detergent into the tanks, fill them with water and let them sit for a few days (or more). Then repeat.

    Last summer, I did some camping in Ohio, Michigan, etc. and the state parks apparently never heard of self draining water faucets as their sites did not have water on site. They said that it was to prevent freezing but I think they were just cheap. (commercial parks all had water) The main thing was that I had to use my fresh water tank almost exclusively. Since all of my tanks were the same size, as long I had fresh water then I wasn't filling any of the other two tanks.

    I wasn't staying at any one place for a long time so it worked out that when I dumped then filled the fresh water, I was good to go.

    I have read that you should wait until the black tank is at least 2/3 full before dumping. This is to prevent the poop pyramid and keep everything floating.

    Anyone have any thoughts or experience with this?
  • Our 14 Day Quarantine Over - How is everyone doing?
    Glad you all made it OK!!!

    When we got ejected from our campground (it was our last day anyway but everyone else had to leave.) in Monument Valley and getting cancellation notices from future parks (mostly state parks and COE), we bailed and burned it for home (South Carolina). 2000+ miles in 7 days was not a lot of fun.

    Got home on March 29th so this Sunday will be our 14 days. I hadn't been worried about it but will have to go out for supplies next week. We still had some staples in the RV but the sticks and bricks need some work after we had been gone for months.

    Of course No one seemed to think that staying in a campground or boon dock site for 14 days was a good idea except maybe Georgia, they are using some of their parks for quarantine sites.

    My biggest problem is trying to determine just exactly what is essential about keeping the nearby golf course in full swing, multiple people in the same cart, groups standing round on tees and greens, taking turns holding the flag etc.

    They say that this next week will be one of the worst so everyone still be extra careful!
  • Finding a place to park
    Great shot! Is this the Cathedral canyon state park in southeast Nevada? If so then we were there around the end of February. How was the canyon lit with the stars like that? What was the camera exposure?
  • Trailer Tires Failure
    When I started the RV lifestyle, I read a lot about "china bombs" and it had me worried. I had bought a used 2005 Glendale Titanium and it had the original tired on it (bought in 2011). The DOT codes on the tires made the tires almost 7 years old.

    They had good tread and minimal cracking so I continued to use them for a while. I consulted my tire guy and he said they seemed OK but they really ought to be replaced. At the next season I got new tires and asked my tire guy about "china bombs".

    He said that there will always be a few bad tires and switching to a new facility usually makes it worst, BUT he said that tire pressure and speed were more important. He showed me that "Trailer" tires (ST type) had a maximum speed rating of 65 mph!

    I try to keep my trailer at or below that speed and as you can guess I get passed by almost everybody. I sort of try to avoid interstate highways because I hate to be in other peoples way. I get passed by lots of other RVers that are flying. They are probably doing 75 or 80 mph. That and a little low pressure and the next thing you know another of those "china bombs" had a blowout.

    I had increased the load rating on my tires to E rating from the D rating that the manufacturer recommended and I bumped up my tire pressure about half way between the manufacturer's recommendation and the max suggested by the tire maker. I also have one of the infrared temperature guns that Ray recommended and check the tires at every stop to see if I any issues.

    So far everything has been fine but it is about time to replace the tires again. This again will be age based as they still have decent tread left. My next set I plan to actually wear my tires out instead of them dying of old age.

    Keep them rolling everyone.

  • How to torch a RV
    When I was looking at them, I didn't see any theory of operation but I just did a quick scan. The wiring is unusual in that each circuit has hot and neutral going to the breaker and then another pig-tail going to the real neural. Lots of places in the states are starting to require them in bedrooms. Like GFI has been in bathrooms.