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Old 09-16-2019, 08:29 AM   #41
Figit090
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Bought a used 2003 Montana

Toilet needed replaced after a few months of use the pedal cable snapped
Both grey tanks cracked near the valve area
We still have to reseal the windows.
Roof has some questionable spots near each corner.
The fridge vents don't have seals so they draw in water.
Waste valves are hinting they need replaced
I can tell the sinks will wear out before the rest of the rig.
Awning looks sad when it rains and I've had to poke numerous drain holes. Dunno when I'll get to resealing the layers.
I live in mine full time though so....its WAYYY CHEAPER than a house! If you think of it as a house, it's pretty inexpensive.

Right now the next project is fix each grey tank, add supports so they don't crack again, and add lots of foam insulation to the bottom of the rig.


I think unless you buy a top-of-the-line rig that has a huge bus chassis...you're going to get flex and things wear out. More bracing means more weight and when your minimums for structural integrity on a 5th wheel put you around 14k lbs for a 38' rig. It's difficult to see how they could make it better without cutting weight somewhere.

I can say I think if 5th wheels had less freaking storage units they could save a few hundred lbs and stick that into structural bracing though.... There's probably three cabinets we shouldn't need for full timing, and even less if you just camp.
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Old 09-16-2019, 09:24 PM   #42
florencesak@aol.com
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Had AC go out on a trip, went to Walmart and bought one of the portable units that vent out the window and runs on 110. Worked great, we keep it for a backup.
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Old 09-17-2019, 07:02 AM   #43
Slow Hand
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Originally Posted by scottkeen View Post
I'm sure my list will grow, but I'm keeping duplicates of many RV parts in the RV:
  • Dometic toilet valve (tip: Don't buy the non-Dometic knock-offs, I bought 2 and they both leaked)
  • Hot water heater anode rod
  • Hot water heater electric heating element
  • Hot water heater electric on/off switch (replaced this already)
  • Water pump and connection hoses
  • Sewer hose, water hoses, water pressure adapters, etc
I also have backups of certain appliances in case the primary appliance fails:
  • Big Buddy propane heater in case the RV furnace fails
  • Electric oil-filled radiator heater in case the Big Buddy fails or I'm out of propane. Plus I'd rather use the CS electricity instead of my propane
  • Electric fans in case the RV air-conditioner fails
  • Induction cooktop in case the RV propane stove fails. Plus I'd rather use the CS electricity instead of my propane
  • Portable 100W solar panels and charger so I can charge my RV house battery in case the RV converter fails
  • ...and (drumroll...) 5-gallon bucket in case the RV toilet fails
I plan to get a 2nd air-conditioner (the bedroom is pre-wired for 2nd A/C) not because I need it, but in case the main RV air-conditioner fails. I'm actually considering a portable air-conditioner instead that vents out a window, just so I can wheel it around to use where it's needed.

Also plan to get a dual-fuel (gasoline/propane) inverter generator. Looking at the Champion 3500W Dual Fuel.

Love the RV. But I don't trust it 100%, so I've learned to have spare parts and backup systems, and keep my tools with me.
Back ups for the back ups LOL that's so funny.
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Old 09-17-2019, 08:17 PM   #44
StageCoachDriver
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I've found the major parts seem to hold up, but the fit and finish *SUCKS*. RVing can be a challenge for even above average DIY individuals. I do notice women to go for Airstreams which seem to be pretty solid units. I, personally don't like the floor plans sans pop-outs.
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Old 09-18-2019, 05:08 AM   #45
Dave W
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When you have two major manufacturers, Thor and Warren Buffet's Berkshire Hathaway's Forest River building 80 plus percent of ALL RVs along with only one and sometimes two manufacturers assembling most of the accessory items (HW heaters, a/c, furnaces, etc) in a land in the Far East, you have little competition to make real quality parts. Things tend to break. There is a price to pay for these foreign made items ant it's quality since they have been cost reduced so these RVs can be sold at the highest margin for the sake of the bottom line, first at the builder and second, at the dealership. There is no incentive to build these RVs better as long as we, the buyers, are still willing to sit down with his favorite loan shark and sign the bottom line of a loan agreement, occasionally for 20 years for a Class A or 10 yeras for a towable.



Stop buying these mediocre quality RVs, demanding better product and they will eventually get better (in my dreams, maybe). Unfortunately I and many others couldn't afford one them along with that now $75-100K tow vehicle
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Old 09-18-2019, 05:52 AM   #46
DanandBrenda
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Originally Posted by Byron B View Post
Not EVERYTHING breaks. Frames(chasis) is normally good for 8-10 years....
Just got my 2016 3820FK back from the dealer having the frame that cracked under the kitchen slide repaired.
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Old 09-18-2019, 07:23 AM   #47
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Originally Posted by DanandBrenda View Post
Just got my 2016 3820FK back from the dealer having the frame that cracked under the kitchen slide repaired.
Do you think that your broken frame may have anything to do with the fact that you have a rear axle set up designed to carry up to 34,000 lbs and you are probably placing less than 4,000lbs on it? After almost 40 years in the LTL trucking industry, I can tell you that the cargo in a lightly loaded trailer rode much rougher than in a heavily loaded one.
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Old 09-18-2019, 08:12 AM   #48
mlh
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Originally Posted by allenclme View Post
Jim55 - I had two Fleetwood products before they went under in the 2009 recession and those were bulletproof. Well made - no problems. I don't want to debate the quality of the current brands, but there were some out there that made a great product and stood behind it. We love our Montana but it has had more initial quality problems than anything we've owned in the past. I think if they towed these around for a few thousand miles like GM for example does hundreds of thousands of miles before a new product launch, the failure points would be corrected before the customer finds it

I agree about the Fleetwood products. I have a Fleetwood MH 2007 model. Every thing you can compare on it is way better than either Montana I have owned. Of course it’s hard to compare a fiver and a MH but there is things you can compare like the slides they will not mess up the floor they don’t touch the floor.
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Old 09-18-2019, 05:44 PM   #49
beeje
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I'm confused, I always thought Fleetwood/ coachman were the at or near the bottom of the RV chain.
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Old 09-18-2019, 07:04 PM   #50
DanandBrenda
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Originally Posted by Theunz View Post
Do you think that your broken frame may have anything to do with the fact that you have a rear axle set up designed to carry up to 34,000 lbs and you are probably placing less than 4,000lbs on it? After almost 40 years in the LTL trucking industry, I can tell you that the cargo in a lightly loaded trailer rode much rougher than in a heavily loaded one.
That's why I have the custom built ET air ride hitch.
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