January was the month that three major appliances went on the fritz in my RV. What did I know at the time about fixing them? Nothing. My RV ownership adventure has always been one of learning along the way. I figured that when something went wrong I’d find some way to make things right.
Sure enough and nuts in a bucket! I scored big on that one! Of course, being a gal I still get wide-eyed in amazement and surprise when someone randomly asks me about some routine cleaning or checking or starting that I should have been doing for, oh…. the past 4 years. But my attitude is: there’s nothing broken that can’t be fixed!
With the chassis part and under the hood, no problemo. I get regular check-ups and oil changes. When it comes to the living quarters appliances I’ve been appalled at the pricey $300+ expected for routine check-ups on the water heater, a/c, refrigerator, and furnace. Most times I’ve done the work myself.
Adding distilled water to the house batteries has been easy. I check them every couple of months. If they need water added I get out my handy turkey baster and fill them up.
When my water heater wasn’t working and needed some cleaning, a friend showed me in less than five minutes how to knock accumulated soot off the starter. For that I used some of my other “fixer-upper” tools: an old one inch paint brush and a chopstick!
When my refrigerator stopped cooling, a waitress at my job instructed me on cleaning off the sensor. I had it working again by night fall. She also gave me a supply company contact for ordering the necessary replacement parts. They cost less than twenty dollars, a mere fraction of what an RV repairman would want.
At the end of the month my RV furnace started blowing cold air when I turned it on for heat. Well, that was not right. So I shut it off and turned on my portable electric heater. The next day I asked a friend in my RV park about the furnace and what might be wrong with it.
I got the third degree! When was the last time you checked it? When did you replace the filter? Did you check the igniter for carbon build-up? Huh? What filter? What check-up? My answers were: never, never, and no! He looked at me like I was a drooling freakazoid alien with two heads.
My excuse: no one ever told me to do all those things. Not the dealer, not the manual, not the service guy who gave me the run through. I remember he sure did “run” through the orientation to my rig. So what! I was still without my furnace.
What did I do? What I had thought about doing since the cold weather hit. I went out and bought a blue flame propane heater. It’s ten times more efficient than the RV furnace. Using only a fraction of the propane. It sits inside my RV, a ventless little wonder. I just crack a couple of windows for ventilation.
At night I’m not awakened by noise from the furnace blower. My new blue flamer looks like a mini fireplace, is super quiet, and the RV retains the warmth even after the heater kicks off. I am in a blissful, toasty heaven. I don’t care if I ever get my furnace fixed. I am blessed by its broken state. It brought my new heater, my little blue flamer!
Joy! Tin Can Annie
(aka Tin Can Traveler)