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Old 11-30-2011, 03:22 AM   #1
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M.O.C. #11957
Removing belly cover and getting at holding tanks

I would like to install a new tank monitor system, the i-series that is sold by Camping World -- mounts on the outside of tanks and gives readings in percentages. The system costs about $250, but CW wants more than $1,000 to install it, so I'm thinking about installing it myself. However, I am concerned about removing and reinstalling the belly cover. Has anyone removed their belly cover themselves, and will it require more than one person? Also, I would like to know how accessable the holding tanks will be once I get it open. Will I be able to get to an accessable side on all of the tanks?

This is a 2011 3150RL
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Old 11-30-2011, 04:05 AM   #2
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No problemento, just use a good cordless drill and a 3/8" driver (mine is a 2007, that's what I used) I installed mine. It is good to drop the covers anyway, secure the electrical lines and the hydraulic lines, I had a bunch of them rubbing metal edges. You will have good access to the tanks. You can do it yourself.
I had to cut the drain line, but just installed a coupling when it went back up.
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Old 11-30-2011, 08:44 AM   #3
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That's what I would do. Go to Ozz and have him do it. Find out what his favorite food and drink are first.

Ozz, "problemento"? really? LOL. One of these days, I hope I'm around when you order your beloved Mexican Food. I could use the laughs.

I hope that product works better than what's in our rig. $250 is a lot of money to pay for something that should already be working. I hate that the RV industry can get away with this - installing crap then requiring us to buy overpriced alternatives after the fact which then drives up the cost of ownership.

Ozz, do you have pictures or a slideshow for your work on this? Is it one of the mods in your signature?
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Old 11-30-2011, 10:19 AM   #4
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Art, you are always busting my chops, keeps me on my toes I guess.
Most Rv'ers have just given up, cheaper and less frustrating when you just wait for the toilet burping.
My system has gone out of calibration, so I would not recommend spending tons of money on any new system. I have not tried that one, so can't say. Logic would dictate that an outside sensor would be good, but there are few systems that people like, and none that RV builders use.
Tells us something, I guess.
But what do I know, I can't even order food... Just kidding Art...
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Old 11-30-2011, 11:11 AM   #5
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M.O.C. #6415
I gave up and cut the belly pan at the xmember between the axles. Using a crawler really helps moving around under the rig. After dealing with the tank leak I reattached the belly pan using a steel strap screwed into the xmember to secure the two halves together. Now if needed I can drop the belly pan fairly quickly.
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Old 11-30-2011, 02:59 PM   #6
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I've dropped the pan on my 3150 before. Actually the grey and black tanks are above one belly pan and the galley tank is above the axles above the longer rear pan. Like mentioned ... just use a cordless drill with a 3/8" socket. The front pan is a snap to get access to the main tanks ... they are one in front of the other separated by a little over a foot. The rear pan is more of a challenge as the drain line exits right thru it, but it can be taken down enough to access the galley tank without chopping it half in two. I agree on tidying up the wiring and hydraulic lines while you are up in there as well as jettisoning any extra construction by products that you will discover like screws, chunks of particleboard when they cut out for plumbing, etc. I'd buy some fender washers about 1" in diameter or better when you go back together to put under the screws ... adds support for each screw location. Start at one end and work your way back while a helper holds tension one the loose end. They droop enough during the summer months as delivered from the factory. I hope your money is well spent ... as OZZ mentioned even the new and improved monitors have their downfalls. After several outings, you'll get a pretty accurate feel for how long you can go before you need to dump without monitors.
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Old 11-30-2011, 04:18 PM   #7
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I would just add that you purchase stainless screws and fender washers so that when you remove the OEM ones, you replace them with ones that wont rust. We did and are glad that we did.
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