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Old 04-04-2019, 02:28 PM   #15
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Welcome April. This group is a wealth of information. When I bought my 18' TT in 2013, I read everything I could about the rig, tow vehicles, and learned about how the trailer operates on the road and while camping (mostly dry camping in the west). Then I spent a few weeks at a campground in Utah, where the owners let me pick their brains too. I learned how to hook up to "shore power", fill my fresh water tanks, empty my black tanks, general use, like running the furnace and using electric both on and off the grid. Anytime I had questions, the people in this group got back to me within a day with so much information. I now know what I'm doing, go off grid with solar, winterize, and tow at ease. Hang in there, read all you can...watch the youtube videos too. The internet has so much to offer. Check back often here for responses to your questions. I learned about my tow vehicle and it's limitations and it's strengths. I am conservative in my spending and simple in my needs. See my photos for my recent renovations.
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Old 04-04-2019, 02:35 PM   #16
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Top things I needed to learn:
Replace all lamps to LED
Battery needs, maintenance, solar charging and maintenance
Grey, Black and Fresh water systems
Tire safety, axle maintenance, pack the bearings
Roof maintenance
How the refrigerator operates
How the furnace operates
Electrical hook ups, sewer hook ups and fresh water (I don't hook up, I use the fresh water holding tanks) I don't use my hot water heater or shower. But I use my sinks with the water pump from fresh water tank.

And JohnB was a great help to me about tow capacities, weight distribution. (investigate all the threads about tow capacity and safety)
And a friend took me to an empty school parking lot for towing lessons.
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Old 04-04-2019, 03:16 PM   #17
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Photokit View Post
Top things I needed to learn:
Replace all lamps to LED
Battery needs, maintenance, solar charging and maintenance
Grey, Black and Fresh water systems
Tire safety, axle maintenance, pack the bearings
Roof maintenance
How the refrigerator operates
How the furnace operates
Electrical hook ups, sewer hook ups and fresh water (I don't hook up, I use the fresh water holding tanks) I don't use my hot water heater or shower. But I use my sinks with the water pump from fresh water tank.

And JohnB was a great help to me about tow capacities, weight distribution. (investigate all the threads about tow capacity and safety)
And a friend took me to an empty school parking lot for towing lessons.
Another tip, with regards to keeping bearings greased. DO NOT use those Bearing Buddys, those caps on the end of each axle to grease your bearings. They're okay on a smaller trailer with no brakes, but once you have a braking system some people may tend to over grease their bearings and the grease can squirt or leak out of the hubs and get on the brake shoes themselves. Even a small gob of grease on brakes shoes is hazardous. Your bearings need to be repacked by the book.

BTW enjoy your new sunny and welcome to the forum. A bunch of super and knowledgeable people here
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Old 04-07-2019, 08:25 AM   #18
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Hi JohnB! Thanks so much for taking the time to explain the basics to me. Now that I have my Toad I can concentrate on the Sunny. I have an inspection appt with Shady Maple RV on 4/22. I asked them to go over it because I just bought it. I also asked them to flush the water system but the guy said they will run water through it but don't have a dump so I will have to dump the water myself. This didn't sound too good to me. I'm worried they may run water with the antifreeze in it through the water heater and it sounds like this could be bad. So I'm thinking maybe I should tell them not to flush and I will do it at a dump station somewhere. Or I'll wait to flush it until I take it on a local trip and do it at the campground? You know whats really cool? A read a lot about this and also the guy that sold me the camper said to use air to push the water out. I don't have access to air and I think I posted that somewhere. I was walking down the street the other day and there sitting in front of someones house was a portable air compressor with a free sign on it. haha. I don't know how to use one of these so I'm not sure if I'm gonna use it but isn't the universe cool! They say when your following the right path things just flow.
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Old 04-07-2019, 08:39 AM   #19
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Originally Posted by AprilL View Post
Hi JohnB! Thanks so much for taking the time to explain the basics to me. Now that I have my Toad I can concentrate on the Sunny. I have an inspection appt with Shady Maple RV on 4/22. I asked them to go over it because I just bought it. I also asked them to flush the water system but the guy said they will run water through it but don't have a dump so I will have to dump the water myself. This didn't sound too good to me. I'm worried they may run water with the antifreeze in it through the water heater and it sounds like this could be bad. So I'm thinking maybe I should tell them not to flush and I will do it at a dump station somewhere. Or I'll wait to flush it until I take it on a local trip and do it at the campground? You know whats really cool? A read a lot about this and also the guy that sold me the camper said to use air to push the water out. I don't have access to air and I think I posted that somewhere. I was walking down the street the other day and there sitting in front of someones house was a portable air compressor with a free sign on it. haha. I don't know how to use one of these so I'm not sure if I'm gonna use it but isn't the universe cool! They say when your following the right path things just flow.
If your RV antifreeze is pink in color then it should be animal and environmentally friendly. You can dump it almost anywhere. If it's obvious of being an automotive antifreeze, then yes, collect all the antifreeze and take it to your local recycling center. If you're not sure what it is that you have, then still collect it and take it to your recycling center. JMHO
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Old 04-08-2019, 05:15 PM   #20
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Oh my goodness....I'm so sorry. I did not see all these last posts. I was concentrating on getting my toad I guess. Thanks so much for all the great advice and tips!
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Old 04-08-2019, 05:23 PM   #21
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Holy crap! GVWR, GAWR, tandem axel, ..... Soooo this is not english to me. JohnB does this mean my trailer is required or not? I'll still take it and I still have to check the window for a sticker but I'm just curious what the answer is. Thanks
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Old 04-08-2019, 05:26 PM   #22
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I'm going to flush the water system myself. I can fill up the fresh tank with 5 gallon jugs and then run all the water through and into the black tank. Then all I have to do is take it to a dump station right? I'm wondering if anyone has posted a video for a similar model showing the bypass valves, on and off valves, water heater, etc?
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Old 04-09-2019, 08:18 PM   #23
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Quote:
Originally Posted by AprilL View Post
Hi JohnB! Thanks so much for taking the time to explain the basics to me. Now that I have my Toad I can concentrate on the Sunny. I have an inspection appt with Shady Maple RV on 4/22. I asked them to go over it because I just bought it.

I also asked them to flush the water system but the guy said they will run water through it but don't have a dump so I will have to dump the water myself. This didn't sound too good to me.

I'm worried they may run water with the antifreeze in it through the water heater and it sounds like this could be bad.

So I'm thinking maybe I should tell them not to flush and I will do it at a dump station somewhere. Or I'll wait to flush it until I take it on a local trip and do it at the campground? You know whats really cool? A read a lot about this and also the guy that sold me the camper said to use air to push the water out. I don't have access to air and I think I posted that somewhere. I was walking down the street the other day and there sitting in front of someones house was a portable air compressor with a free sign on it. haha. I don't know how to use one of these so I'm not sure if I'm gonna use it but isn't the universe cool! They say when your following the right path things just flow.
I know this is all new to you and we are here to help as we can. When you said this
Quote:
I have an inspection appt with Shady Maple RV on 4/22. I asked them to go over it because I just bought it.
It is good they are going to do something to it. Did you tell them specifically what to look at or did they tell you specifically what they are going to do?

Understanding you may not know what to ask them, the list I posted earlier is a place to start.

Before you go, ask them what they are going to check (try to be specific) and for what cost. That is a simple question and they should be able to give you some specifics. Just because they "looked it all over" does not always means they actually checked everything.

At least tell them you are about to go on a cross country trip or X,XXX thousand miles and the camper needs to be able to hold up to that kind of towing. They may approach the inspection differently.

If you want to share the list, we can help to see if there are any other things that could be helpful.

As to antifreeze water inside the hot water heater, it happens from time to time and it ends up there. It is not bad, it will not hurt the heater, it will through need to be flushed/drained enough to get it all out so you do not end up with fizzy hot water.

If there is antifreeze, it "should be" the food grade RV antifreeze that is often pinkish in color. If the prior owner used compressed air to blow out the camper, then where may not be any antifreeze in it. Do you know that there is any antifreeze in it? if so how did you know this?

I do not know where the camper is located. City, country etc, Just flushing plain water through the camper and letting it out on a gravel driveway is not a problem normally. This is no different then washing a car. But, if someone did put automotive antifreeze in it that is deadly, that is a problem. Try and ask the prior owner if he can confirm that is not in the system. That would be bad.

RV antifreeze is made to not be deadly. It can give you the runs maybe, but not lethal.

Caution about towing with full tanks. While in the campground this is done all the time, the speed is very slow and not a problem. Towing with full black or gray tanks down the highway can be an issue. Ideally you do not do this as it can upset the weight and balance of the camper at highway speeds if not accounted for. And pending your setup, it may crack a tank from a bad bump. Suggest you can find a different way then filling the tanks and towing to a dump spot if possible. Odds are high you are not going to have enough capacity in the gray/black tank to do a good flush, sanitize and then flush with just filling your gray and or black tank. It takes a lot more water then 1 gray tank full.

Looking up your 86 T1850, it has a 24 gallon fresh system, 25 gal gray and 25 gal black tank. First you need to flush the system. Then do a system sanitize with a bleach solution, then several clean water flushes to get rid of the bleach water. You will run out of tank capacity on both the gray and black tank trying to do all the flushing needed. Try and find a place you can dump the water while flushing and not holding it in the tanks.

Hope this helps

John
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Old 04-09-2019, 08:32 PM   #24
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Holy crap! GVWR, GAWR, tandem axel, ..... Soooo this is not english to me. JohnB does this mean my trailer is required or not? I'll still take it and I still have to check the window for a sticker but I'm just curious what the answer is. Thanks
Your camper has the ability to be close to 5,000 lbs when fully loaded, it has 2 axles and it has electric brakes. I do not know all the PA laws, but the last camper I bought from PA had a law that campers of that size had to be inspected. The sticker on mine when I got it was on the left side front window.

We have many members here from PA. Try asking in the community forum if anyone knows the PA rules for state required inspections on a 5,000# camper. Or calling your local BMV office they will tell you if it must be inspected.

NOTE: Before you tow the camper it to an inspection station, the truck has to have an operating trailer electric brake controller connected to the camper. The camper needs to have the emergency breakaway cable hooked to the truck and emergency breakaway switch and camper battery in operating condition. Most inspection stations use the truck or the emergency break away system to test the brakes. If your camper has neither, that will be a violation most likely.

If the RV dealer you are hiring to look at the camper also does the state inspections, they should be checking for that before trying to pass an inspection.

Hope this helps

John
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Old 04-16-2019, 07:32 PM   #25
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From one new member to another, hello
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Old 04-17-2019, 03:57 PM   #26
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Hello and welcome to the group. I am a retired RV Tech here in Lebanon Pa. If your dry weight is 2700 which I saw in one of the posts your Gross will be over 3000. In Pa any trl over 3000 gross weight has to be inspected. Yes you must have a brake controller for the tow vehicle and breakaway. Sorry I am a little late on this, nothing against Shady Maple but if you are closer to Stoltzfus in Adamstown I would recommend them.
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Old 04-18-2019, 05:58 AM   #27
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Hello KrazeDave and MeCamp! If I remember correctly I called Stoltzfus and they are closed or not inspecting anymore or something like that. Or maybe it was they were scheduled way past when I needed to get in. There was some reason I couldn't go there.
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Old 04-18-2019, 10:39 PM   #28
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Yeah, I believe Stoltzfus shrunk down their service department in recent years and they only work on trailers that were bought from them. I’ve heard great things about their work over the years, but unfortunately they’re no longer an option.
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