If you have an accident without a toad breaking system, you can bet the hired lawyer for the other side will make it your fault even if it is not. You might want to check with your own insurance company also. This might give them a chance to bail on you if you do have an accident.
Anyone that is that afraid of a frivolous lawsuit does not belong behind the wheel of any vehicle.
My insurance company was my fist contact. Nothing to worry about with or without the toad brake since I am not braking any CRIMINAL laws. They realize that in every accident, at least one of the drivers had a moving violation. Not using a toad brake is NOT a violation in any way shape or form.
The sky is not falling and a lawyer cannot rewrite the State laws.
I use a brake system but to live your life being paranoid about everything is just foolish.
Suppose you use a brake system and the lawyer for the other side argues that it was not hooked up properly. OMG, you are ruined because you can't prove otherwise. :B
regardless of what you tow - you would be smart (and likely required by law) to have a supplemental breaking system (i.e. brake buddy, etc) on the towed vehicle.
above and beyond the supplemental braking system, many states ALSO require a break-away braking system. A break-away braking system will activate the brakes on the towed vehicle when it becomes detached from the primary mover (aka coach).
Towing Laws by State - CLICK HERE
I just spent several days investigating the legality of towing vehicles behind your motor home. I sent emails to various State Departments of Motor Vehicles, etc. The towing laws used by the various brake manufacturers are accurate if you are talking about a TRAILER. The States themselves DO NOT consider a vehicle in tow a TRAILER. It is considered a driveaway-towaway condition and therefor auxiliary braking IS NOT required. I started with the State of Florida and this is their reply:
A vehicle towed behind a motor home would be exempt from the braking requirements in Florida statute 316.261 as a drive away, tow away operation. Please contact me if you have any other questions.
Lt. Jeff Frost
Florida Highway Patrol
Public Affairs Officer
Commercial Vehicle Enforcement
2900 Apalachee Parkway, MS 45
Tallahassee, Florida 32399
Other States sent a similar reply with their statute and a few, like Connecticut were short and to the point:
I concur with FL and CT would treat it the same way.
Donald Bridge, Jr., Lieutenant
CT Dept. of Motor Vehicles
Commercial Vehicle Safety Division
60 State Street
Wethersfield, CT 06161
Phone: (860) 263-5446
Don't get me wrong, I think it is a good idea and I use auxiliary braking in my own toad, but it is entirely false that it is LEGALLY required. In fact, I could not find one single state where auxiliary brakes were required by law on a vehicle being towed behind a motor home. Forget all of the threats about lawsuits and liability if you get in to an accident. You may be at fault but it would not because you were doing something illegally by not having auxiliary brakes on your toad.
When was the last time you saw a tow truck driver put a BrakeBuddy in the vehicle behind his truck. :B That is an example that concerns a commercial vehicle but the point is that even the FMVSS(393.42) does not require auxiliary brakes in a driveaway-towaway situation.
What this means for me is that even tho I use a Blue Ox brake, if mine fails, I am still legal to continue my trip in any state. I do not have to leave my toad behind or have my DW follow behind in the toad.
If you do not believe me, I suggest that you do what I did and send an email to your local Department of Motor Vehicles and ask them specifically about towing a vehicle behind your motor home with a tow bar. Do not believe the TRAILER rules that are posted by the various brake manufacturers.
Now, understand that a tow dolly IS a TRAILER, as is a boat or anything else, but none of those rules apply to a vehicle in tow 4 down. The facts are that I think that an auxiliary brake is a good idea but each owner of each RV has to make the decision as to what they want to do with their own toad, now that they know what the law says.
Sorry about your misfortune. Maybe this will help. RV service reviews
The only time I have heard of one of those engines going south was caused by a bad Mass flow sensor. Make sure that they don't just replace the bad parts but they find out what caused the problem. Good luck and I hope you can get back on the road soon. A hole in the oil pan is usually a thrown rod.
As to your sound problem, have you gone through the setup procedure on each TV? I know that mine has different settings and different sound characteristics based on input/output, movies, games, stereo, mono, surround, etc.
Turn everything OFF in the coach BEFORE you plug in to shore power. Then try turning things on one at a time to see if anything causes the house breaker to trip. You did not say what service you have(20, 30, or 50 amps) so it is possible that with 2 AC's and other things, you just may be overloading your shore power circuit.
The generator could have shut off because of low fuel, low oil, overheating, etc. that may not be related to the shore power situation.
You do the maintenance that you can do and pay others to do the things you don't want to or can't do. You go on your trips and you enjoy the ride and the whole experience. If something breaks during a trip you deal with it. Pretty simple really.
Remember, you just do not read very often when someone posts on here that they just got back from a trip and did not have any problems, even tho it happens more than you think. This is a place where people usually post about a problem but in reality the posts here only represent a very small percentage of people that are enjoying the RV life style. I have had many trips with zero problems and a few with minor problems. The ONLY trip I had in the past 150,000 miles that caused any delay was only because I had to wait for a part to be delivered. As it turned out we were in a great place in Dutch John, Utah and we enjoyed our stay in a place that we would have bypassed had it not been for the problem so even tho it interrupted our original plans, we are glad that it did.
I use a fan like this, which is available from several different online sources, and this helps minimize my fin frost build-up, especially in high humidity areas. I also spray the fins with a non-stick cooking spray which seems to prevent the frost from sticking to the fins. Not unusual now for us to take a four month trip and not have to defrost the fins.
There was a known problem with the older P chassis Workhorse. There has not been any issues with the W series ignition switches UNLESS the coach manufacturer tried to run too many things through the ignition switch, which is what happened to some of the P series units. The P series ignition switches tended to overheat because of the headlight and fog lights all ran directly through the ignition switch rather than using a relay to control the lights.
Glad to hear the good experience. There is a website called RV Service Reviews. Post your comments there so that others learn about this place and may use them if needed. We need to reward the good service facilities.
There was a discussion on this forum awhile ago about the changes with 303 protectorent. I guess it is now made in China and that the previous chemical warnings are not there now so the formula may have changed.
I was contemplating a deep green color, not too deep, Brtish racing green? The Rv is a Newmar Dutch Star 40 ft. I think a solid darker color would reduce the visual size of the vehicle as well as attract less attention. Color me paranoid? I've got a call into the Newmar rep. and waiting for a response. I just think all these swirls are too loud and trendy? We'll see. Will advise. Thanks for the input.
I agree with you and do not like all of the swirls and scallops either. I am familiar with British Racing and have seen it on may small sports cars and some mid-size coupes. If you check some of the more current European automobile brochures, you will find that BRG is not as popular as it once was.
Personally I would add another color or two to break up the monotony of a single color on a large flat surface. Here are a couple of pretty basic paint schemes that do not have the swirls. Keep in mind that really the only person you have to please is yourself.
In our area, because of concerns and a few problems with Craigslist, eBay, and other online sites, the local Sheriff's office has announced that anyone that wishes to conduct a transaction are more than happy to come to their building or parking lot to meet with the buyer/sellers. The deputies do not get involved in the transaction but, judging from the public response, many people feel that the extra security is fantastic.
You might want to check if there is a local law enforcement office in your area that will allow the same.
As far as driving the RV....When I sold some Classic Cars and my RV's, the only place I let anyone drive them was in a large park near our house. I would not allow them to drive out on the public roads. If they wanted to experience the vehicle on the open road, I was behind the wheel. Since I sold many cars and my RV's in a short period of time, usually in a matter of days, this method worked for me.
My wife reminded me of the coach we saw going over a steep incline in an RV park. The tow bar was not level to begin with but then the coach crested the hill, the long overhand on the back of the coach, was enough that it lifted the entire front end of the toad off of the ground. This probably put a lot more stress on the base plate then it was designed to handle. There is a lot that can happen to the tow hitch that most people are not aware of as they drive down the road. Since this guy was on his way out of the park, I am sure that he never even realized what had just happened to his toad and hitch.
Rgatijnet1, one thing that I want to point out is anytime there is a comparison of gas and diesel, which is not what the OP was asking, so I know I'm off topic.
There is no way you can put a gas engine in the size motorhome that usually has a diesel engine. Referring to what John S. wrote and your response, a gas pusher would get 4 mpg in the same size motorhome that John S. is getting probably 8 mpg.
As we all know, it's about weight when you start seeing diesel engine's installed. So, in your example, the cost difference of diesel is a wash-out when comparing the fuel mileage of a gasser.
A good example would be the sprinter diesel compared to a similar sized Ford V-10.... 18 mpg vs. 10 mpg.
You are absolutely right when it comes to overall weight of the coach. He did seem to be inferring that at 163K miles a gas engine coach was near the end of it's life, which I disagreed with. If I did have the fictional gas engine coach, and had put 163K miles on it, compared to his coach, which was granted heavier, longer, etc, I would still be happy with my coach, hence the 163K miles, and be $10,000 ahead. Not everyone wants a longer and heavier RV and are perfectly happy with a shorter lighter gas powered RV. We all still get to see pretty much the same sights as we travel around the country and everyone has different requirements on how we chose to travel. One sizes does not fit all when it comes to RV's. Any coach will get you to point B eventually and once you are enjoying the views, who cares what engine got you there?
If it is the vinyl wrap you should check with the wrap manufacturer before you try anything. A wrap is different than vinyl graphics and probably requires special cleaning products so as not to damage it.
I would say the issue is not underpowered but longevity. I just turned 163k on my coach. I am not concerned about the drivetrain. If I had a gasser, I am sure I would be thinking of a new engine or transmission sooner or later. Now some people put a few miles on but the old diesels of the early 90s are still running strong on the original drivetrain. If you are going to travel 5k a yr and keep it under 10 years either works but mine is now 13 years old and I totally remodeled the inside and it is good for another 13 years at least. Friends took a 93 up to Alaska this summer. The other thing people forget when they say floor plan is the deciding factor is how you are going to use it. I have 110 gallons of water and a 110 grey and 80 black tank. I can boondock pretty easy and for a while and my fuel rank is 200 gallons too. Means I can drive across country filling up at the cheapest locations.
It is all relative. If I were you, at the age and mileage on your coach, I would be worried about the radiator going bad, which from reading the numerous posts on this forum about DP radiator problems, can easily cost as much as a rebuilt long block for a gasser.
I also agree that you probably have a longer range but figuring that you pay 50 cents or more a gallon($100/fill-up) the extra fuel cost for your 200 gallon tank, that is not really all that good.
Using your 163,000 miles, at 8 MPG, you spent an extra $10,000 for your fuel then the same gas engine would have spent. That is more than enough for a new gas engine, even tho both the Ford and GM engines were designed for 250,000 miles. There is no doubt that some DP's are superior to some gas powered coaches but the question was whether the gas RV was underpowered, which as many gas owners have stated, they are not.
I haven't had the problem with my Atwood WH yet but my neighbor, who happens to be a plumber, just replaced his plastic plug with a brass plug and coated it with teflon pipe paste when he installed it for a permanent fix.
If the base plate was loose at the time this vehicle was attached, it seems to me it would have been very obvious. I am guessing that there was some type of unusual stress put on the toad after they got on the road. Maybe the tow bar was not level, maybe they hit a big pot hole, or whatever. I know that parts of I95 are very rough and I would not be surprised if road conditions put some undue stress on the base plate. I think most base plates are attached with locking nuts and bolts. I have seen pictures of very elongated holes in the attaching pin locations so there is a certain amount of stress on the entire tow system.