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Old 12-01-2010, 05:03 AM   #1
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How many miles on your Alpine..and what problems (if any) have yo?u had

My 2001 Alpine has 46,000 miles...and I'm about done with all the little things I've been doing to it to bring it up to speed. I don't know much of the past history on mine...or what any previous owner has done other than 1 1/2 years lube/service records.

I was just wondering how many miles some of you have gone...and at what mileage you had any mentionable issues (if any) that I might want to keep an eye on.

Stan..
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Old 12-01-2010, 09:09 AM   #2
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We passed the 70,000 mile mark on our 2001.

Change the brake fluid to a higher temp fluid than stock - especially if you do any mountain driving. Change it at least every 5 years.

During the 70,000 miles I blew a head gasket and had to replace a leaky lift pump - not much you can do about that preventative maintenance wise.

The hydraulic pump motor for the slide, jacks, and front generator compartment went out in the middle of no where in British Columbia. Not being able to put fuel in was a big problem. I pulled the motor, took it apart, and found that the ground for the brushes was bad - cleaned it up - and its worked fine since. Again not much you can do preventative maintenance wise. P.S. HWH would have shipped me a motor but it was going to take awhile to get.

Other than that I've had a number of electrical connections loosen that has caused various failures. Finding where the lose connection is can be a...........

Lots of luck!
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Old 12-01-2010, 10:45 AM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by GMDavidson View Post
We passed the 70,000 mile mark on our 2001.

Change the brake fluid to a higher temp fluid than stock - especially if you do any mountain driving. Change it at least every 5 years.

During the 70,000 miles I blew a head gasket and had to replace a leaky lift pump - not much you can do about that preventative maintenance wise.

The hydraulic pump motor for the slide, jacks, and front generator compartment went out in the middle of no where in British Columbia. Not being able to put fuel in was a big problem. I pulled the motor, took it apart, and found that the ground for the brushes was bad - cleaned it up - and its worked fine since. Again not much you can do preventative maintenance wise. P.S. HWH would have shipped me a motor but it was going to take awhile to get.

Other than that I've had a number of electrical connections loosen that has caused various failures. Finding where the lose connection is can be a...........

Lots of luck!
Thanks GM..

Not bad for 70,000 miles...
I just installed a new lift pump...and new brake fluid, although not higher temp., wish I had thought of that.

How did you get around the fueling problem...when the gen slide wouldn't open?

Also...if a dealer or shop did it, I'm curious what it cost to have a head gasket installed (if you remember)? I do all my own work and don't have a clue what repairs really cost on the road. I still haven't made up my mind on whether or not to buy insurance for that kind of thing.

Thanks...Stan
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Old 12-01-2010, 11:27 AM   #4
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I've got over 80,000 on my 2001. I've had a hydraulic leak in one of the connections to the main slide cylinder. I had the wax valve on the top of the radiator for the cooling fan fail. My roof has some lifting and ridges, but that was just rectified my a recent hail storm. I had to reweld the stiffener in my steering gear bracket, and one of the braces for my fresh water tank. Other than that just routine maintenance (oil changes, filters, batteries and brakes) and tighten things. I also had two windows fog and had the seals redone.
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Old 12-01-2010, 04:33 PM   #5
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I managed to fix the pump motor before I had to put fuel in. I've never tried, but there in winch to get the gen slide in - but I'm not sure how one would bet it out - I was thinking about relieveing the hydralic system and pull it out with my Jeep and a tow strap. Don't know if that would work or not. Any other folks out there tacled this?

$3500 to replace the head gasket at Cummins West, Bakersfield.
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Old 12-01-2010, 05:35 PM   #6
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Stan,

We have a 2002 with 106,000 miles. She had ~53K when we purchased her. The original owner was a little hard on it (evidently took it skiing and road salt did some damage we couldn't see at purchased), had to replace radiator, hydraulic pump/master cylinder combo (sorry, I don't remember the right term for that, just know that you want to have them matched) and lift pump, all in 2006, then this year the exhaust manifold and muffler.

Just replaced the front TV with a 26" Vizio on a MorRyde mount. Mount bolted right to the floor where the old TV went, TV slides in and out and both side cabinet doors are operational!

Barb
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Old 12-02-2010, 12:05 AM   #7
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65,000 miles on our '00. It had 20K when we purchased it in '04.

Lift pump replaced when the switch to LSD started. That is all I remember.

Aside from preventative maintenance, that's it. We were out at least 3 weekends a month from July '04 to May '10, maybe that has helped.....we use it!!

Knock on wood
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Old 12-02-2010, 02:25 AM   #8
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Stan it would be most important for you to track coaches of your year, and maybe one or two years newer than yours. That being said, here is my list, and I know I forgot some stuff:
Replaced water pump = 2 times
Replaced Mixing valve on Hydro Hot = 1
Replace/Rewired various poor connections all over the coach.
Replaced both solenoid fresh water valves.
Cummins fixed twice oil leak on rear of engine (rear of coach side).
Replaced alternator @ 21K miles went to Delco Renny 200A model.
Replaced DS windshield after bird strike and rock thrown from Truck.
Removed and replaced PS side windshield because of leaks.
Replaced windshield wiper motor - bad from the factory - new one works great.
Replaced generator and HH exhaust pipe hanger assemblies - very cheap material - one more to do.
Rewired lots of wiring behind TV so silverleaf system would display - once completed now able to level coach from main TV instead of just dashboard unit.
Replaced most of the HH (cozy II's air distribution) duct work for HH system.
Tightened up the headlight switch so it won't fall out now.
Replaced the 3 burner stove with new one (dealer did) after it caught fire.
Rebuilt the door lock so it would work.
Replaced the door open latching mechanism so it would stay open.
Inspected the genset electrical connections potential fire spot - they were lose and incorrect sized wire nuts used in original assembly.
Tightened up all electrical connections in the Surge Guard system, inverter area, many lose.
Cummins has done two oil changes, done three recalls, and one genset oil change. I have the new air filter, oil filter to do the next one.
Replaced the outside temperature sensor, and redesigned it so water does not enter it and short it out.
Replaced every ring terminal on the HWH connector block - wrong size from the factory.

Aside from general maintenance I cannot think of anything else. Have several repairs that need to be done, just need to get the parts and find warm weather. Vegas has been cold for about 10 days it seems.
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Old 12-13-2010, 11:20 PM   #9
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Our 2001 has passed 100K with no major problems other than a crack in the coach body just at the corner of the wardrobe slide that I have not successfully repaired. Also, I faintly recall replacing an HWH solenoid valve not too long after we bought the coach (at 20K) in 2004. The moving windowpane in the bathroom isn't fogged because it's translucent; but it has water between the panes. Oh - replaced the transfer switch.
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Old 12-14-2010, 12:11 AM   #10
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Franklin

One thing you might want to think about with water in the bath window. If you have water in it and it freezes it will crack. When I talked to Dave Root who does window repairs about this, he said you don't have to fix the window. He said you get the water out. He suggested using something like a dental pick to poke a small hole in the bottom of the seal in the center.
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Old 12-14-2010, 12:39 AM   #11
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With just 22K miles, we have replaced the water pump twice, one stir pump, one float switch, two control boards and a mixing valve on the Hydro Hot. Currently the HH exhaust bracket above the rear end has failed and I wired it up until I can figure out a way to climb in there and have both hands to work on the new bracket assembly. It’s not going to kill me, so I won’t fix it until I can do so safely. We have had one windshield replaced and one removed and replaced because it popped out almost. We replaced one windshield wiper motor, the alternator, had the copper brake lines in the rear replaced. We also replaced one HWH actuator for the smartbeds, and have one solenoid valve bleeding down and the SB opens a little every other day or so. Numerous wiring fixes, replaced the Drain Master hose which leaked, and today I ordered a new head since the o-ring/gasket failed and the hose won't retract with air pressure like it should. I also have fiberglass cracks in the rear lower corner of the vanity and bedroom slide, and one small crack starting at the center and top of the windshield. I have redesigned/rebuilt the air distribution for the HH Cozy II heat delivery systems since we never had any heat to speak of because of the poor way WRV installed and designed the system. I still have the steering bracket reinforcement unit to get installed. And I learned in School, every 5 years or so the windows should be removed and replaced with new caulking underneath so they don't start to leak and have bulges in the walls forming. Since it's coming up on 5 years old, that is my major project for the next 18 months or so.

But even with all that, I know of other people who have different brands, and they have had even worse trouble with those units. If we stopped buying these crappy assembled units-read all brands-to win us back the quality would have to go up. We looked at a brand new Tiffin Allegro Bus in Las Vegas 4 weeks ago, at the price of 385,000 and two zones of the Hydro Hot would not warm up the coach, all they did was blow cold air. So why would anyone buy a new one, after they get all the things wrong with their coach fixed, we were crazy to even look, and ours is worth so little, the dealer would not even call us back and tell us the difference in price/versus the trade, it was that embarrassing to him. I am going to keep this thing till the wheels fall off or the price of fuel is so high, the only place I can camp is the driveway. If it is ever totaled, burns to the ground, or otherwise destroyed in a natural disaster, I won’t ever own another RV period. I love the lifestyle, but I won’t put my family through the hassle of every time we use it something brakes down and we cannot live in it for some reason. The quality of RV’s in general reminds me of Microsoft Windows 3.1, and Windows Vista, pieces of crapppppppp!!!!!!! This is the longest time in use without a major system going south-knock on wood. And yes, I have told it like it is!!!!!
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Old 12-14-2010, 06:26 PM   #12
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Look, the answer is if you don't want to have a lot of problems then don't by a lot of coach. By a class C with no slides, no hydro-hot, no auto levelers, no air ride systems no in motion satellite, etc., etc.

These units are amazing and as Emike says if you don't have a big sweaty wad of money and or like to have the ultimate do it yourself project then you might think twice about jumping in.

As for my wife and me we would do it all over again in a heart beat. We love our Alpine.
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Old 12-14-2010, 08:20 PM   #13
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... we would do it all over again in a heart beat. We love our Alpine.
Us, too! (while the funding lasts, YMMV)
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Old 12-14-2010, 10:29 PM   #14
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Hmmm, how do I answer this one? We looked at Alpenlite 5th wheels for years before we found a great used one, and for my money, they were the best made rigs on the market dollar for dollar than any other brand. And WRV like Alfa should have stayed with what they did best, but that is water under the bridge.

We traded that 5th wheel in on the Alpine, which we regret based on the number of issues to date, however, there are many other considerations the MH has which I won't give up now, the number one being safety at our age. It drives better than the truck/5th wheel I traded in on the MH, and I also like the HWH leveling system since for the most part it keeps my back from breaking, although I always put blocks under the jacks. And now that I think I know how this thing works for the most part, I like the features it has versus the 5W. If we ever traded it in, we would get another MH, its less stress driving it seems.

There are 5 Alpines in the TT Park in Indio, CA. I have talked to every one of the owners and they all mention various problems with their MH’s. I have also talked to other Alpine owners who have not had the problems we or others have had, so it seems most do, some don’t. Now with that said, I have talked to other MH owners in my business, and all of them report some problems, no one is immune. One (my current neighbor here) of them purchased a new brand (don't remember which one) in 07, and had nothing but problems, and then he traded that in on a used one he has now, and he has had problems with it, neither of which are alpines. I personally believe the quality of 500K RV’s and below made today is no better than low average to just plan poor in workmanship. Even million dollar coaches we went through, had fit and finish issues, Newell, Parliament, Marathon to name a few.

I am finding many of the problems is/are people don't get a good and thorough explanation of how the various systems work, and it seems to me folks don't read manuals to figure out what/how things should work. Dealers don’t have personnel who know how the systems work, nor can they in some cases explain how the systems work to the customer. I am also concluding that 80% of the so called repair folks don’t have a clue what they are doing, or how to figure it out. Manufacturer personnel are an exception to this rule mostly, but not completely.

Alpine owners on the other hand are more in touch with the MH they own, and are also more of the fix it yourself owner, so these comments don’t apply to them, other owners I cannot speak for, even folks who have full timed for years.

Two of the others said they would trade the thing off tomorrow, if they would not take a bath on it. And in both of those cases, I have been asked to do work on each of them. But the alpine has a lot of things more expensive coaches don't have, which I would miss, so as long as I can fix most of the problems then we keep it, once I am too old, or my health takes a dump and I cannot fix it and have to pay someone, then it's gone. I do have Cummins do my oil changes, and will have Allison do my first tyranny service since they do an analysis of the oil and then fix whatever problems which show up from that. Then they will do every other one, if I own it that long.

I have never been into a Class C (even the 500K priced ones) which I would choose to own.
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