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Old 01-04-2007, 02:44 AM   #1
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Tuesday was a lovely, sunny Florida morning as we packed up to begin the trip home. Slides in, tanks dumped . . .

1) Jacks won't come up. Called Newmar & Jeff said run the generator cover out to get to the resevoirs. Won't budge, seems it is on the same solenoid as the jacks. OK says Jeff, crawl under passengers side at the front & bang on the solenoid. Well, I don't crawl under anything anymore so he found a service tech to come to the sight. 6 hours later the tech (he's become my new best friend)- see #4 below, shows up and sure enough, it is the solenoid that is stuck. Shorted the solenoid & got the cover out, then retracted the jacks manually. While this evolution is occurring, I notice that the "check engine light" is now on. But, it is now dark, we aren't going anywhere tonight nor am I doing anything more than troubleshooting on irv2.com.

2) Next morning checked the coolant level, per irv2.com advice and sure enough, the reserve tank is dry. Where do I get recommended replacement antifreeze? Call the number on the sticker, and voice tells me NAPA or WalMart. Decided to call Newmar, and spoke to Jeff - we're on a first name basis by now (see 4 below) and he tells me the same thing - tried both outlets in local area and no joy. Back to Jeff, who gets the Spartan rep on the phone and he tells me if I can't get the correct antifreeze, use distilled water. Filled tank and tightened 2 partially loose hose clamps at the heater exchange up front per irv2.com advice(and yes, the front cover still worked).

3) We're ready to go! Not so fast - both front and rear air pressure gauges read 0 (zero) pressure and the warning buzzer is going off. Call Jeff - no need for coach number, it is his new best friend again - Jeff gets the Spartan guy back on the phone. He asks can I release the parking brake? Yep, it releases just fine. Then he says I have adequate air pressure (brake will automatically engage when pressure drops below 65 # and will not release until air pressure builds above 65#), probably a sender of gauge issue, and it's OK to drive home. He also says the gauges may return to function after I shut off the engine and start it again or hit a bump.

So, off we go. At least the idiot buzzer has quit! And sure enough, when we stop for lunch, the gauges return to normal when I restart the engine.

4) While not an electric gremlin, we also had the Hydro Hot die a week earlier. One of the hoses coming into the top of the tank had the clamp too far up the hose and all of the antifreeze (potable) had leaked out. I refilled the tank with the proper mix of chemicals, but still had the low tank sensor light on and no heat. Called Jeff at Newmar & he sent the same service tech from #1 above to come out and disassemble the unit, clean the sensor and reassemble.

Lessons learned:

1)ALWAYS carry extra potable antifreeze for the Hydro Hot & engine antifreeze for the radiator as you never know when (or where) you'll need them.

2) The people at Newmar are REALLY nice - be nice to them and they'll bend over backwards to get you help fast.

3) Most of your troubles have already happened to someone else - search irv2.com and save yourself some time and frustrations. Way to go guys.

And yes, we made it home OK. Thanks in part to Jeff at Newmar and the contributors to this BB.
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Blue Ox Alladin Tow Bar, M&G Engineering Dinghy Braking System

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Old 01-04-2007, 02:44 AM   #2
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Tuesday was a lovely, sunny Florida morning as we packed up to begin the trip home. Slides in, tanks dumped . . .

1) Jacks won't come up. Called Newmar & Jeff said run the generator cover out to get to the resevoirs. Won't budge, seems it is on the same solenoid as the jacks. OK says Jeff, crawl under passengers side at the front & bang on the solenoid. Well, I don't crawl under anything anymore so he found a service tech to come to the sight. 6 hours later the tech (he's become my new best friend)- see #4 below, shows up and sure enough, it is the solenoid that is stuck. Shorted the solenoid & got the cover out, then retracted the jacks manually. While this evolution is occurring, I notice that the "check engine light" is now on. But, it is now dark, we aren't going anywhere tonight nor am I doing anything more than troubleshooting on irv2.com.

2) Next morning checked the coolant level, per irv2.com advice and sure enough, the reserve tank is dry. Where do I get recommended replacement antifreeze? Call the number on the sticker, and voice tells me NAPA or WalMart. Decided to call Newmar, and spoke to Jeff - we're on a first name basis by now (see 4 below) and he tells me the same thing - tried both outlets in local area and no joy. Back to Jeff, who gets the Spartan rep on the phone and he tells me if I can't get the correct antifreeze, use distilled water. Filled tank and tightened 2 partially loose hose clamps at the heater exchange up front per irv2.com advice(and yes, the front cover still worked).

3) We're ready to go! Not so fast - both front and rear air pressure gauges read 0 (zero) pressure and the warning buzzer is going off. Call Jeff - no need for coach number, it is his new best friend again - Jeff gets the Spartan guy back on the phone. He asks can I release the parking brake? Yep, it releases just fine. Then he says I have adequate air pressure (brake will automatically engage when pressure drops below 65 # and will not release until air pressure builds above 65#), probably a sender of gauge issue, and it's OK to drive home. He also says the gauges may return to function after I shut off the engine and start it again or hit a bump.

So, off we go. At least the idiot buzzer has quit! And sure enough, when we stop for lunch, the gauges return to normal when I restart the engine.

4) While not an electric gremlin, we also had the Hydro Hot die a week earlier. One of the hoses coming into the top of the tank had the clamp too far up the hose and all of the antifreeze (potable) had leaked out. I refilled the tank with the proper mix of chemicals, but still had the low tank sensor light on and no heat. Called Jeff at Newmar & he sent the same service tech from #1 above to come out and disassemble the unit, clean the sensor and reassemble.

Lessons learned:

1)ALWAYS carry extra potable antifreeze for the Hydro Hot & engine antifreeze for the radiator as you never know when (or where) you'll need them.

2) The people at Newmar are REALLY nice - be nice to them and they'll bend over backwards to get you help fast.

3) Most of your troubles have already happened to someone else - search irv2.com and save yourself some time and frustrations. Way to go guys.

And yes, we made it home OK. Thanks in part to Jeff at Newmar and the contributors to this BB.
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'07 MADP 4523, 2012 GMC Terrain SLT 2 wd
Blue Ox Alladin Tow Bar, M&G Engineering Dinghy Braking System

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Old 01-04-2007, 03:42 AM   #3
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Oh, Mark. Well at least you are on your way.

Now to the air problem. My guess is you started the coach with the parking or headlight on. If you turn the light all off it will start normal with all guages good. You can try it. Next time you are starting turn on the parking lights first. If the air fails, shut it off and turn lights off and restart and it will be okay.

Solution if this is the case, reflash update needed to light bar by Spartan.

Peter
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Old 01-04-2007, 04:18 AM   #4
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<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-title">quote:</div><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-content">front and rear air pressure gauges read 0 (zero) pressure and the warning buzzer is going off. </div></BLOCKQUOTE>
Hi Mark! Happens way to many times on my coach. If the air gauges do not move off zero before starting, I turn off the key and do it again. It works. Paul
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Old 01-04-2007, 05:46 AM   #5
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Paul, try turning on your parking lights first before even turning the key. It may cause the guages to read zero.

Peter
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Old 01-04-2007, 03:07 PM   #6
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Hey cuz, If I find a good used one that has already had all those bugs dealt with, can I still be friends with Jeff? (Does the number of bugs and glitches expand with the dollars spent?)
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Old 01-04-2007, 10:38 PM   #7
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Where did you find the boiler antifreeze for the hydro hot? Can't find it anywhere locally.
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Old 01-05-2007, 04:34 AM   #8
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The Hydro Hot uses propolene glycol-based antifreeze. It is available in most auto parts stores or Wal Mart. Look in the section for marine or RV stuff. It is in gallon jugs that have visable pink liquid in them.
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Blue Ox Alladin Tow Bar, M&G Engineering Dinghy Braking System

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Old 01-05-2007, 04:38 AM   #9
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Horsevoice - it seems to be an exponential expansion. But I'm sure Jeff would always like to make a new best friend!

Jacks still don't work but I'll save the fix until I can get a service appointment. Around here most pads are nearly dead-level so not a real problem.
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Blue Ox Alladin Tow Bar, M&G Engineering Dinghy Braking System

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Old 01-05-2007, 05:02 AM   #10
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<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-title">quote:</div><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-content">
Where did you find the boiler antifreeze for the hydro hot? Can't find it anywhere locally. </div></BLOCKQUOTE>

One of my friends had already told me to carry an extra supply of the Hydro hot antifreeze solution, so when I was at the dealer to pick up the new rig, I bought a gallon. Of course that is not much of an option if one is not near a dealer. I have not ever seen any sold other than at dealers or rallies, if looking for brand specific solution.
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Old 01-05-2007, 12:16 PM   #11
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Seems to be some difference of opinion as to the use of RV (pink) winterizing anti-freeze in Hydro-hot systems. My notes (from various sources) on the subject are as follows.
---- note begin -----
Vehicle Systems says NOT to use regular antifreeze (Ethylene Glycol & toxic) nor the RV winterizing stuff (Propylene Glycol non-toxic, pink stuff). What you really need is 100 degree boiler antifreeze to prevent damage to the HydroHot boiler. They recommended Camco boiler antifreeze. Here's A Link to the product on Camco site. The good part is that any RV dealer has access to Camco products through their distribution channels because they make sewer house, etc. Dealer quote about $8.00 a gallon for the Camco product. Vehicle Systems original antifreeze is $19 a gallon and hard to find except direct from Vehicle Systems. Service manual says mix 3/1 The unit takes around 4 gallons.
----- note end ------
Can anyone shed more light on this potential discrepancy between using regular RV winterizing antifreeze and the special non-toxic high temp antifreeze recommended?

(Also note the Camco product specifically says to use in Hydro-hot systems.)
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Old 01-05-2007, 04:43 PM   #12
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The manual that came with the Hydro Hot says to use propolene glycol antifreeze. They don't specify a brand name.
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