We level manually. It's a time-consuming, labor-intensive pain in the butt. A 6 point auto-leveling system is very high on the "Next RV" list of must-haves.Sounds like you're doing it wrong. :) "Time-consuming, labor intensive"? Are you on a schedule that have to have it done in seconds instead of minutes? Labor intensive? I might have to put down a few blocks, move the truck, and then hold those pesky buttons down. Apparently your idea of labor intensive and mine are worlds apart. :)
It also takes some time with ours to get the JT Strongarms and RotoChoks set to lessen the movement. From what I've been reading in the "Wiggle" thread the automatic levelers don't do much to make the unit more stable. So you still end up messing with the "manual" part of setting up. Not having money to burn I'll put up with this "time-consuming, labor intensive" minor chore.In all the years we've been doing this, we've set up camp on level ground exactly one time. Setup looks like this:
Back into the space.
Get out and check side-to-side level.
Get appropriate number of long boards out of basement and stage them by the axles. Pull the rig forward. Get out and put boards where the axles will be. Back up onto boards. Get out and re-check side-to-side level.
Repeat as necessary to get the correct level.
Once that's done, chock and block wheels. Unhitch.
Raise or lower landing gear to get level front to back. If I'm lucky, DW checks the level and calls out when I should stop. If not, I have to make trips back and forth to read the bubble.
Put stabilizer jacks down.
Set up four frame jacks (in front of and behind spring hangers on both sides) to take the "bounce" out of the trailer. This involves laying on the ground in four separate spots under the rig... no easy feat when you're 6'5", overweight, middle-aged and have a bad back, knees & hips.
Total time for this process is one to two hours, more if it's muddy or dark or raining or I'm tired. With a 6 point auto-level system, I believe that I can cut that down to 5 minutes. Totally worth it in my opinion.Wow, if I had to do that every time I'd be looking at something else too.
Mine consists of pulling up to the unlevel spot, check in the rear view mirror for the side-to-side level according to the pin level, back up about a foot, get the leveling blocks out and put the necessary number on the ground, pull forward onto them and double check the pin level. Rarely need to readjust. Now get out chock the wheels, and lower the front and rear stabilizers, tighten the JT Strongarms. Total time about 15 minutes.
From what I've been reading, getting auto-leveling won't get rid of all the wiggle. IOW you could still find yourself crawling under the trailer to put your frame jacks in place. Many people have commented that the self-leveling systems are for leveling, not to make the trailer stop moving around from movement inside. I'd do lots of research before I dumped several thousand dollars on a system that may not do what you expect it to do.
Read through the thread Wiggle to hear what others think of the self-leveling systems.
15 minutes here too but we don't have the JT Strongarms, instead we put down our rear stabilizers and use Bal Deluxe Tire locking chock between the tires which stops a lot of movement. Without them in we feel it move.
Looks like good idea not only for RV.
How much those thing cost?
Says some Costco will carry them
The Costco's in the Boise and Nampa are carry these but the packaging is different. They are just in the vacuum packaging with a paper sleeve. They are good. Too good to have on hand!
We purchased our luxury, full time 2011 model fifth wheel new in 2010 and it did not come with an automatic leveling system. We've got front hydraulic levelers and back electric stabilizers. We've thought of adding an after market leveling system, but haven't done it yet. We may still some day, but for right now it's not that important to us as it's not difficult to level the unit.
If the manufacturer thinks the cover is needed, it is usually standard equipment. Slideout sealing, construction, operation strategies vary, some do fine without covers, some are easier to live with but don't really need covers, others should have covers to help stay dry in storm conditions.
Installation methods vary, in some cases the stationary edge slips into a channel that is already there, in others a channel needs to be attached.
My slides have original equipment awnings, I've had no need to sweep the top of the slide, but if the awning is full of water the slide has to come in in stages, and I've had to brush wet leaves off the awning as it comes in. The other issue, sometimes spiders start nesting between awning and slide, it is good to check the top of the slide after it comes in to see what got through the top wiper.
Thanks for the good info Tom!
Well, I've seen our same model of fifth wheel without slide toppers, and it's considered optional equipment, but ours came with them.
Fifth wheel here but same issues with or without. This is our fifth towable. This one and the previous had slide toppers, but the previous didn't come with it over the only full wall slide, we had it installed and it was about $1800 dollars. That one flapped a lot in the wind. With our fifth wheel, they don't as much. Same brands though. With our fifth wheel, we have slide toppers on all three slides. The largest gathers water, the shorter ones do not. the largest flaps a little in the wind, the others do not. So there's a pattern here with the length of the topper. Either way. We wouldn't be without them. They also keep the inside cooler in addition to cleaner. On the rigs we didn't have toppers on the slides, we would notice dirt and leaves inside. With toppers, nothing.
bkirkpatrick - Have you visited with your RV? If so, I can only imagine how hard it is for you to return. I too moved here from LA but I was 10 years old. My parents owned a restaurant in the San Fernando Valley area and left that life for what they felt was a better one and never returned.
Our vet regularly supplies script for human meds when they are priced lower (due to sales volume, human insurance company pressure to lower price, generics, etc) than the same meds labeled for animal use.
Try to clarify filing of tanks.
The OPs profile does not specify what type of rig.
MHs have a permanently mounted tank and only needs to be shut off before filling.
Some fifth wheels have the tanks in the front compartment and are suppose to be removed to refill.
Travel trailers normally have their tanks mounted to the tongue areas in open air. They may need to be removed if filling stations requires it. Some do and some don't.
When we had a motorhome, the techs verified everyone was out of the rig before they would refill the tank. When we had our TT's and now FW - we remove them and take them to the location to be refilled.
Sounds like he is nervous or developed anxiety for traveling. Can you give him some dramamine for the road that won't interact with his medication or cause problems with his epilepsy? The dramamine will relax him. There's also a natural remedy for anxiety that is often given to dogs too, I just can't remember the name.