Time is the coin of your life. It is the only coin you have, and only you can determine how it will be spent. Be careful lest you let other people spend it for you. -- Carl Sandburg
There's only one rule that I know of, babies -- goddammit, you've got to be kind. -- Kurt Vonnegut

April 25, 2018

JRs RV Repair in Gettysburg, PA

I had my appointment with JRs RV Repair in Gettysburg, PA yesterday. I am very pleased with him. A very nice, professional, and competent RV tech. He nicely answered all my questions and I learned from him and he showed no disdain when one problem was revealed as self-inflicted. Because I was not in an emergency situation, I got a 10am appointment at his shop just west of Gettysburg, PA, about an hour's drive from my house in MD about 2 weeks from when I called him. He said he normally does work in the shop in the morning and does his drive to fix in the afternoon.

My AC died last summer on Greeley's hottest day over 100F and I was told it had to be replaced because it is 11 years old but no one could deal with it for a month. JRs listened to it and knew the compressor was ok so it was probably the solenoid. The compressor kept trying to start, then stopped, then tried, then stopped. He explained that it had two solenoids. One does the AC startup and the second does the AC running. Up onto the roof, removed the cover, then the metal cover containing the solenoids. The start up solenoid was melted so that was the culprit. It took a bit of time and a phone call to find the right replacement because the lettering was unreadable but after some searching, he found the right one and replaced it. He also sprayed a little WD-40 to ensure good operation. We tested it and eh voila, it worked. We ran it long enough to ensure it worked and lowered the inside temperature a degree. So that saved me several hundred dollars. He said lots of ACs from the 1990s are still working so there's no need to insist on replacement just because of age.

He said poor power supply could have been why it melted and recommended using a 10 gauge power cord all the way from outlet to the van even when moochdocking at a house with a 15amp circuit. The excessive heat could well have compromised the city power and done the deed. So, I'll get another 30amp cord to make it all the way to my sister's house. I had been using a 12 gauge cord but he said that was marginal.

My second problem was my LP would not turn on. This happened about 3 years ago when I started on a trip. I just did without since I wasn't going to boondock. I suspected electrical because I thought when I turned the switch for the LP on (wired to a solenoid on the tank) and remembered it made a noise when turn on. It was silent. He couldn't find any power to the switch so that looked like the culprit. Next came much searching for where the wire went. The documentation I have failed to show anything at all about what the switch went to. He knew it had to be to a fuse. My electrical cavity is tight and the wire went behind stuff. I finally remembered the cabinetry is all put together with screws and the closet floor over half the cavity. We removed that and he saw where it went.

He found that a wire was cut into fuse #5 with a new wire put in its place. I had trouble with fuse #5 and fuse #6 and had rewired it a few years ago. What I didn't know, in large part because while the fuse block was mapped out in the manual, they only marked fuse #5 with monitor and not the LP switch. So, having failed to understand the link, I did the LP failure to myself. From the time I rewired to the time I next tried the LP was a few months, so I didn't connect the two. He quickly spliced the switch wire back in and the LP worked. Duh! So that was a self inflicted wound. But shout out to JR.

If I had known enough, I could have fixed both problems but I did not. It was well worth 2 hours of his time to get these fixed and if anyone needs a good RV tech near Gettysburg, PA, he's your guy.

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