On the Job Training - Fiberglass RV


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Old 08-24-2007, 04:41 AM   #1
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Name: Gerry
Trailer: Boler 13 ft / 31 ft Holiday Rambler
Maine
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For the first time I took my 1980 13ft Boler to the RV shop to have the furnace worked on,
I had replaced all the parts last spring from new hoses, regulator, pilot, thermo-couplin, and it worked fine.
This fall it would light.
Been in shop for 2 days so I went down and cought the machanic working on it and he told me some bad grounds on the fan switch and off the fuse holder was the problem.
Why did it take him, removeing the furnace 2 times before he figuered this out.
I haven't seen the bill yet but do you think I may have a reason to complain if it is too high?
Gerry the canoebuilder
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Old 08-24-2007, 12:09 PM   #2
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Gerry, when it comes to anything electrical, faulty grounds are usually the hardest thing to find.

If there were multiple faulty grounds, then I can understand the possibility of the furnace being in and out more than once. Think you found something, repair it, put it back in then find another fault further down the circuit line, remove & repair newly found problem.

Don' forget that a 1980's trailer is now over 25 years old and has seen a lot of condensation in the normal air around it in that length of time, so if you are repaired with just a few ground connections cleaned up, your not doing too badly. It's not unusual to replace 25 year old furnaces at home or in your RV. Maybe you can drop by and help me trace a couple of electrical problems on my 31 year old British Sports Car

Some shops that do a very large amount of furnace or gas appliance repair are set up for full bench testing of these appliances, but not many have the space for a dedicated test area so they test the units in place in the trailer etc.
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Old 08-24-2007, 10:12 PM   #3
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How many technicians do they employ? Are they specialists, or does every tech work on different systems? How many rigs are in the yard, waiting for attention?

I work in a service shop myself, and I face many issues that are similar to the ones my RV techs face, even though in a different specialty. Keeping up with new technology is demanding, as is keeping up with OLD technology. Older systems were all about adjustments; newer ones involve more module swapping.

Just because I take my Fiber Stream to an RV shop, I don't expect them to NOT have difficulty fixing it. The only schooling for a lot of this stuff is on-the-job, and techs today are oftentimes left to their own devices to figure it out. Until I can afford to order a brand new trailer from the factory, I need to put repair bills in perspective, relative to the age of the equipment.
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Old 08-25-2007, 04:10 AM   #4
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Name: Gerry
Trailer: Boler 13 ft / 31 ft Holiday Rambler
Maine
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When I stopped in the large shop on Thursday, as said the repair teck was checking out the battery box and although the thermostate was still just hanging by wires, he assured me he was all but done.
This was about noon Thursday.......
here it is early Saturday morning and I have yet to get a call from the dealership....
More problems????
Got business to attent to today but will send wife down to find out what the problem is.
I got a feeling I should have posted this all in Feeding and Careing for your trailer because I feel I am going to be feeding a fist full of $$$money to get my trailer back from the shop.
Gerry the canoebuilder
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Old 08-27-2007, 05:13 AM   #5
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Maine
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Picked up Lady-Bug last Saturday and was going to try out the furnace right in the RV dealers yard but due to the heat, thermostate could not be set high enough to get furnace to ignite.
Cost was $225, alittle upsetting for no new parts were installed.
Got it home where I could get the AC running to bring down in/Boler temps so thermostate would call for heat and it worked on shore power.
BUT..........
It wouldn't ignite on on the battery power.
Has anyone ever been told that unless the battery is 100% it will not have enough power to turn gas valve on because the fan is taken so much power?
Also there was a plastic cover that covers 2 wires right near the pilot that had printed on ti "Do Not Cross These Wires" and this is missing.
Going to call RV repair shop today and I am sure they are getting it back with the understanding I need this for Thursday at the latest.
Gerry the canoebuilder
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Old 08-27-2007, 07:47 AM   #6
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I know our battery does need a full charge for our furnace to work, when we're boondocking.

Good luck with it!
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Old 08-27-2007, 06:54 PM   #7
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Has anyone ever been told that unless the battery is 100% it will not have enough power to turn gas valve on because the fan is taken so much power?
When an RV shop did an inspection on my newly-purchased B1700, they reported that the furnace would not fire without shore power... and they were right. The battery was fully charged, but old and defective. Under load it would not run the fan enough to move air fast enough to trip the sail switch which is included in the furnace as a safety interlock. For the furnace to work, the battery does not need to be fully charged, but it does need to be in good enough shape to supply a few amps without unreasonable voltage drop.

Depending on the interpretation of "battery is 100%", this can be an entirely valid observation. If you have a converter onboard, connecting shore power can help diagnose the situation.
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Old 08-28-2007, 03:42 AM   #8
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Name: Gerry
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Depending on the interpretation of "battery is 100%", this can be an entirely valid observation. If you have a converter onboard, connecting shore power can help diagnose the situation.
As stated in previous post the furnace did work on shore power and after charging battery for 24 hours it did turn fan fast enough to gas valve on, so I guess this was the problem.
Now I am just wondering if a fully charge battery will still have enough power after 3 days of boondocking to ignite the furnace on the 4th day???
Guess we'll find out.
Gerry the canoebuilder
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Old 08-28-2007, 09:34 AM   #9
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Now I am just wondering if a fully charge battery will still have enough power after 3 days of boondocking to ignite the furnace on the 4th day???
It will if you connect it up to a solar panel...
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Old 08-29-2007, 05:14 AM   #10
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Name: Gerry
Trailer: Boler 13 ft / 31 ft Holiday Rambler
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It will if you connect it up to a solar panel...

When we go camping we are always on the go and do not sit around the campsite much. I could be wrong but I think I have read that these smaller solar panels only work well when they are pointed to catch the sun almost direct so repositioning them thought the day is needed.
Also we are in Maine (The Pine Tree State) and unless you ask for an overflow field campsite your under a nice canopy of trees, which I love.
Thanks for all the input'
Wonder how well these solar panels with the charger would charge the battery????
Gerry the canoebuilder
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