A checklist and no rush do it for us.
We started using the checklist after we once forgot some pretty basic things on a rushed weekend trip. Ever since, a new list is printed before each trip, and we make sure we plan for ample time to do the packing.
The checklist doubles as a sort of log book for the trip. Any items that were missed are added manually, and the checklist master is updated after the trip.
At least we have never forgot our breakfast coffee again...
on 12 May the wife and I will fly from Frankfurt to Calgary. The next day, we will rent a TC for the following two weeks.
We have been TCing in Germany and France since 2009 with an american Truck and Camper, so we should be fine with the rented rig in general. But we have never been RVing in Canada, so I am wondering if there are any Canada/Alberta-specifics that we need to know about. And, of course, any must-sees that may not be in the international travel guides. TCers that we are, we like to avoid the tourist traps and rather go to lesser-known destinations.
Also, do any of you have experience with TC rentals there? Anything we need to bring as it is not in the camper? We rent with the big company that begins with an "F" and ends with a "way".
@mods: feel free to move my question to a different forum if you think there is not enough TC-related content in it
@dadwolf2: I didn't know the Terry Rey fix yet, but have since read the thread in question from last September which I link to here:
When the line blew, our water heater was on, nearing the end of the cycle. As a result, we didn't get to take our showers that night because we didn't have a hose clamp with us to fix the issue there and then.
The pressure relief valve of the water heater is set to 100-125psi per the Atwood manual (http://bryantrv.com/docs2/docs/operating/atwood1.pdf; page 5). My personal guess is that the water heater creates pressure in the water system that is higher than what the pump delivers & maintains. Possibly because the air bubble in the water heater is not large enough (same document, same page). This pressure can significantly exceed the design limit of the hose (65psi per Terry Rey's post) before the relief valve opens.
I still have the original hose in place without modifications. It had ruptured near the end (exactly like Terry Rey's) and I could just cut off a few inches and reuse it. Ever since, we have our "special procedure" in place when we need hot water:
- turn off water pump
- open faucet to relieve pressure
- turn on water heater
- when heater is done, turn off heater, close faucet, turn on pump.
I agree that this is a somewhat clumsy approach to the issue and certainly not a fix, but the problem didn't reoccur in the past 2 years. And we were too busy doing other things to really address the issue again.
You may be right. But I suspect that it started filling the water heater as soon as the water had reached the pump. Because the heater was very full very soon... We will see. This camper has had its surprises in the past. And you are right about them coming not always at a convenient time.
I remember sitting behind the camper on a warm summer evening when something went ka-pfft inside, followed by the water pump starting to run, followed by water running out the bottom of the camper. Gets you up quickly. Luckily we were near the camper when it happened.
That was when the hose connecting the cassette toilet blew. It was the 5th or 6th night with the new camper, too.
Allright, everything is back to normal.
Eventually I applied a combinaton of pressurized air to the water inlet, all faucets open, and several minutes of waiting time. Then, the first faucet started to sputter.
(Happy Camper now)
Thanks for all the responses!
RV type antifreeze seems to be unheard of over here in Germany. And there are no bypass valves I could forget.
I disconnected the supply hose and I can get water from the tank with the suction from my mouth, so the line is open.
I will try again with the output side disconnected (and "hopefully" spray the camper with water in doing so...). I'll keep you all posted.
last weekend I started to dewintereize our Outfitter. Tanks and water heater were drained. Filled the fresh water tank, but pump will not prime. Everything worked fine before we winterized last fall.
I checked the usual and everything should work unless the pump itself is broken (Shurflo 4008, less than 2 years old). Water is available at the supply hose. Pump motor runs fine. There is no filter before the pump that could be clogged, but I can not feel any pull from the pump.
There was some residual water in the pump. Is there a typical failure mode that happens when it is freezing cold? This is our 4th winter with a TC (2nd with this one), always used the same procedure, never had an issue before.
here is the service manual for a Suburban water heater:
That site has other manuals as well. Maybe it helps.
Your other LPG appliances work fine (cooktop, refrigerator, furnace)? What type of regulator / bottle do you use? The pressure should be 11in Water Column or around 28mbar (the standard euro-type 30mbar regulator works fine). What does the pilot flame look like? The pilot flame should be nice and yellow and reach the thermocouple head, and it should stay that way. Very small and blueish may indicate insufficient gas flow.
Did you disassemble and clean the burner unit?
BTW, that heater is rather noisy and can be scary when you stand next to it when it ignites... So don't be surprised when it finally decides to work ;-)
I would say have it checked. You don't want to have this happen when you are out travelling, without AC hookup, and a drained battery when you come back from a hike...
Here is my take on the issue: When the thermostat cycles the furnace. all it basically does is connect / disconnect two wires that run from the furnace to the thermostat.
In your case, I would think either the thermostat did not disconnect properly, or a switch / relay in the furnace got stuck, or the wires mentioned above short-circuit somewhere in between. Of course it could be something else entirely. I suspect the thermostat, though.
My TC has a digital thermostat originally made for home use, and inside there is a very small relay that switches the output. It did not hold up well to the apparently pretty high current that runs through it. In fact it failed in the second season we used the camper. Only in my case the furnace wouldn't come on again.
AFAIK, neither Hallmark nor Outfitter goes through a dealer network; both sell directly to the end customer.
On the other side, both are very willing to accomodate your special wishes, as all units are hand made to order. It was no problem for me to get my Outfitter with euro-style (yellow turn signal) taillights, a gas compartment that fits a german LPG bottle, and a number of other adaptions made for use of the camper over here. And I am positive Hallmark would have been at least as cooperative. As well as probably a number of other small manufacturers that are very customer-oriented.
Everything that has been said, plus
>2. When I dump the black/gray tanks, does that dump all of the water in the camper, to include the potable water? If not, how do I do that?
No. When you use any of the faucets or the toilet (whenever you can hear the pump running), the used up fresh water goes to the black/gray tanks.
To empty the fresh water tank, you use the drain valve (look up google images for "RV fresh water drain valve" to see what one looks like); it sould be somewhere at the lower back end of your camper.
Hm. Let me think.
Always check the clearance when backing up. It is very easy to miss a small roof sticking out. Especially while you are paying close attention not to hit something with your rear bumper or jacks.
Never back into a patch of muddy grass when you have no 4WD or locking differential.
Butane doesn't evaporate in below freezing temperatures.
Always double-ckeck that all skylights are really closed before departure.
Get the right truck for the camper, or the right camper for the truck.
Hi weymard, long time no hear ;-)
With my old Lance, the receiver under the sink had failed and I had to replace the complete unit. They seem to just fail after some years. Since it is all covered in some black rubber goo, there is no way to repair anything.
Before anything else, check if you get +12V and a good ground at the reveiver. A wire may have slipped out. Since you have no light at all, there is a good chance there might be no current at all.
I think we can rule out the four individual fuses for the jacks, as it is quite unlikely for them all to blow at the same time.
In my case, the red LED next to the switch stayed on indefinitely until I disconnected the battery, so there's a difference.
If you do need a new Atwood controller, I got mine from an ebay seller named panther-rvproducts who was willing to ship to europe back in 2011. It went by the name of "WIRELESS REMOTE KIT for Atwood ELECTRIC Camper Jacks". They don't seem to stock it right now, though.
As far as I know there is also a replacement receiver/controller by an aftermarket company that is somewhat cheaper than the Atwood one. I don't have a link to the product, but maybe someone else here has it handy.
If you will leave the camper on the truck full time then ease of drivability could be a bigger consideration then mpg.
With the Outfitter, the truck handles like there is no load (well... almost).
With the Lance, there was a lot of sway. Plus, the Lance was higher and wider.