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Old 04-02-2011, 10:02 AM   #1
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Thumbs up Radiator Work/RV Specialists - San Diego

I had the dreaded Alpine (radiator) drip. I had had it for a couple of years, but since we donít use the coach a lot (4-5 times a year) and it didnít leak much, I had been putting off having it fixed while I did the research on what the problem was, what was the best way to fix it, what parts to use and who to have do it.
Then I noticed that my extended warranty with First Extended Service Corp was going to expire within three months, uh oh Ė better get busy. Since I live in south Orange County and am in the San Diego area once or twice a week, it seemed like a shop somewhere between here and there would be geographically convenient. I selected RV Specialists in San Diego. I called them and had a lengthy conversation with Mark and then went to see him.
He was very direct and I was not encouraged. He mentioned how hard it can be to deal with the insurance/extended warranty companies and recounted a couple of horror stories about customers who had problems collecting and had to go out-of-pocket for the expenses the insurance wouldnít cover. In addition, here I was with a coach whose manufacturer had gone out of business and an extended warranty from a dealer who had gone out of business (Saddleback). I was not even close to warm and fuzzy. Mark didnít sugar coat anything, but in spite of his ďpep talkĒ I brought my Alpine to them.

Due to no fault of RV Specialists, this was not a speedy process. Mark kept me updated, but between waiting for the insurance inspector to approve every nut and bolt and having to reject the first radiator (Mark said it looked like the fork lift had run over it), it took over six weeks before my coach was done.

Mark provided me with all of the paperwork to send the insurance company for reimbursement (I had to pay RV Specialists in full) and I sent in the claim via registered mail immediately.

I had been mentally rehearsing my tirade to the insurance people in anticipation of a delay or rejection of my claim. I was going to take them to small claims court, hire a battery of attorneys and was generally ready to do battle Ė when, after only two weeks, the check came, paid in the exact amount Mark indicated on his paperwork.

In a refreshing development, the repair shop had done exactly what they said they were going to do in a workmanlike manner and according to their estimate. The insurance company had also acted as they should and stood behind the claim and their policy.

I am a happy camper, no drip, not much poorer than when I started and the coach is running about 20o cooler than it had been.

Thank you Mark and Bob of RV Specialists in San Diego and thanks to Extended Service Corp for doing your jobs well.
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Old 04-02-2011, 03:29 PM   #2
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Twenty degree cooler may not be a good think-- 20 degrees cooler than what?....lots of info on the forum but think mid-190s is a common opts temp....lower than that suggests something might be a miss with your cooling sensors/thermos and in turn, yr mileage will be impacted.....so what is its current fully warmed up operating temp?
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Old 04-02-2011, 09:31 PM   #3
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Hello Old Scout. My coach had been running at 200 degrees as a "normal" temperature. I always felt that it was running too hot. I made the relatively short trip from San Diego to Laguna Hills (72 miles) after the repairs (65-70 degree day over mostly level ground) and did not see over 180 degrees. I did not get into the "books" to see what the optimal temp for the ISL 400 should be.
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Old 04-03-2011, 09:26 AM   #4
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YUP--around 200 degrees is pretty "normal" ops temp--"180 aint!"...In my humble opinion, your engine thermostat is stuck partially open or your electronic fan controller is not working properly. Perhaps they unplugged it during the install.
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Old 04-03-2011, 10:57 AM   #5
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Thanks Old Scout, I will consult with the shop about the temperature issue. Cheers.
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Old 04-03-2011, 01:03 PM   #6
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180 might be OK if it was a cold day and this didn't include any interesting hills or serious acceleration (somehow my drives always involve serious acceleration until the PS velocity warning system kicks in). If otherwise, 180 is on the low side. Could be the radiator fan is now on permanent high setting and the fan controller is not hooked up properly or just not hooked up. Might just be a matter of redoing wiring connections. I don't think they can mis-wire the controller so as to burn it up, as it comes w/proprietary plugs, but that doesn't preclude not having 12V to it or just not plugging it in. If fan runs on high at idle, that's the problem.
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