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Old 07-08-2013, 06:57 PM   #1
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Dump air bags?

When I get to an RV park, one of the first things I do is dump the air bags, then level the coach. I talked to some friends who asked why I bother if I'm only staying one night. Anyone have any thoughts? What are the advantages of dumping the air? What are the downsides of NOT dumping the air?

Jerry & Shirley Friedman; Dusty & Cricket
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Old 07-08-2013, 07:29 PM   #2
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If you want to put slides out you need to level the coach. If you level the coach the system lets the air out. I assume you'd want the slides out when you park otherwise it's a little cramped even for just sleeping.

Some of the SOB coaches use electric slides and don't necessarily require the coach to be level. I think I would want to be level or really close to level when running slides in & out.

Bob Bowers (Surprise, AZ)
2003 Alpine Coach 40' FDTS
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Old 07-08-2013, 07:39 PM   #3
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It depends--you can put [I think--mine is an 03 40ft] the bedroom wardrobe slide out on your coach without leveling. If its just an over night and or we are staying in really cold weather--we will leave the big slide in overnight. One thing you said is curious--you make it sound like dumping the air bags and leveling the coach are two separate actions?????? I "assume" you know you can [and should] just bump the HWH "on" button twice and the HWH system will automatically dump the air bags, then go immediately to its auto leveling routine--no muss, no fuss!!!!

As for advantages, the air bags are pretty robust--they are designed for many cycles of use. Dont think you are "saving" anything by not dumping them....
Old Scout
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Garden Ridge, Texas
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Old 07-08-2013, 07:40 PM   #4
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The slide will not go out if you do not have the jacks down. Admittedly they don't have to touch the ground. If you are on soft ground or asphalt you may not want to let the jacks hit the ground anyway without large pads and some people would say that is a lot of trouble for one night. As Bob pointed out, the system automatically dumps the air before lowering the jacks when you push the auto-level button. HWH advises you level the coach before you put the slide out.
John and Mary Knight
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Old 07-08-2013, 10:33 PM   #5
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The automatic program always dumps the airbags first! You can always level the coach manually without dumping the airbags. But why do that? It takes maybe 30 seconds to dump and it lowers the coach overall too, so that you have more opportunity for the jacks to overcome a slope.

The jack has limited travel. If the coach on the airbags is 5" high off of the stops, the low point can only go up so much more. (That is not the real number. Just an example.) If you dump the airbags, the high point will now be 5" lower and the low side does not need to go up as high to get level. And your step might be a little closer to the ground!

The air bags only take a few seconds to fill when you start the coach. You won't save much time. Maybe 30 seconds dumping and 30 seconds on start up in the morning. More chance at overcoming a slope makes that worthwhile in my opinion.
Jim A
'04 Alpine Coach 36' MDDS
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Old 07-08-2013, 11:25 PM   #6
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I am sure there are different ways we all operate slides for overnight which work. If reasonably level, I don't dump air bags and just one run one or both bedroom slides ok. Those slides are so small, I have never had a problem.
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Old 07-17-2013, 10:34 PM   #7
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If the coach is really unlevel, and you try to put the slide out, it might bind in the opening, and it might never go back in straight again, it could be torqued out of square. Something to think about!

The refrigerator on the other hand of the RV type (Not a residential one) needs to be spot on level or you will burn up the cooling unit, don't believe the rumor or manufacturer when they say it does not have to be all the way level, IT DOES if you want it to last 10 years. Now with that said I know all you alpine owners have all the money in the world, so buying a new refer every couple of years to the tune of 1600-3000 dollars is not a big deal to you, so if level is not important overnighting, then have at it.

Residential refers need to be level but they will operate out of level and for the most part not be worse for the wear, not so with the RV type.

And another thing, machinery needs to be used, part of that use is to cycle it, one type of cycle is the leveling system. Then you would level and un leveling part of the operation of the coach, it won't hurt it any to use it, but it will hurt it to not be used, or to be used to level then left to sit for 2-3-4 months without being stored the system pumped up and then re leveled. Do the leveling thing, it takes all of 5 minutes tops.

Monty & Janet - 2007 Alpine APEX 40 MDTS
S/N - 75715 - Retired - Master Certified RV Tech
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