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Old 04-20-2014, 08:23 AM   #1
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2002 Owner's Manual Questions

While going through the owner's manual on our new-to-us 2002 Affinity some questions come to mind.

1. Tire air pressure. The manual makes no reference to, or allowance for, load weight. It just says 130 PSI on the front axle, 110 PSI on the drive axle, and 120 PSI on the tag axle. Really? There may be additional information elsewhere in the manual that I've not as yet found.

2. Connecting to shore power. The manual says to turn off the main AC breakers in the coach panel. Plug in then turn the breakers back on.

I've always verified power with my portable Progressive Industries Smart Surge 50amp Surge Protector, then turned pedestal breaker off. Then plugged coach in to surge protector and finally turned pedestal power on.

The Affinity has a built in Surge Guard so the portable unit is no longer needed unless I want to verify that the pedestal is wired correctly prior to plugging the coach in.

What's wrong with ensuring that pedestal power is off, plugging in the coach, and then turning on the pedestal breaker while the coach AC panel main breakers are on?

3. The manual says that the slides may not operate if the battery voltage falls below 12 volts. Twelve volts says that the batteries are about 40%-50% charged. It suggests that the main engine may need to be started, generator started, or plug in to shore power. I've had this experience and starting the main engine does indeed provide enough additional DC current to actuate the slide. BTW: this has only happened on the galley slide and not the bedroom slide.

Is there any reason not to hit the "Boost" switch to increase the amount of available power? I really don't want to start the main engine if I'm not going to drive the coach.

I need to do some additional experimenting in this area. For example, I have not tried operating the slide with the generator running. Nor have I monitored the battery voltage while operating the slide. Also I'm not sure which battery bank operates the slide pumps. The implication is chassis batteries as opposed to house. I'm sure it's in the manual. From all other indications, both battery banks appear to be healthy.

TIA
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Old 04-20-2014, 02:06 PM   #2
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Hi Dave,

Re tire pressure, best to have your coach weighed, then with axle weight info refer to the tire manufacturer's "load inflation chart" and use the recommended tire pressure from the chart that safely supports the axle weighs of front and rear axles.

As for shore power, ours is 50 amp. We always leave AC unit thermostat shut OFF as well as power to electric water heater. I then make sure breaker on pedestal is OFF before plugging in. In the 14 years with our coach, I've never switched inside AC breakers off before connecting to shore power.

When operating slides, we first level coach (if needed) then while connected to shore power operate the slides. If dry camping I'll either have coach engine or generator running before operating slides.

It's important to have a charging source to maintain adequate battery voltage when operating slides as they usually pose a heavy current draw on the batteries.

Best of luck and safe travels..
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Old 04-20-2014, 02:58 PM   #3
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I agree with LVJ58, make sure major current draw items in coach are off before hooking up, but I don't flip circuit breakers. I do turn off CB in pedestal before plugging in. I plug in, turn on CB, then check Progressive EMS display that everything is normal. With EMS built in delay, I've got time to flip pedestal back off if it's not O.K. Then go inside and turn on A/C and other 120 v items once EMS switches power to coach.
Tire inflation should be based on load, which you won't know until you weigh RV. Then use tables available online at tire maker's website. The numbers in manual (and on label next to driver's station) are maximums, not adjusted for actual weight.
If you were to use the battery boost switch to extend slides and you discharge batteries, (not likely,, I know) then what are you going to do? Either connect shore power or start engine to keep voltage strong enough for slides. Low voltage when trying to operate slides causes increased amp load on the slide system, not good in the long run.
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Old 04-21-2014, 11:31 AM   #4
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FYI on slides and leveling. I always level and put the slides our or in while the engine is running. I always check the pedestal with a multi meter then plug in. I don't have the AC or Heat Pump activated when I plug in. I've learned to trust my Surge Guard. I haven't had any problems yet. However if your traveling in cold climes and plug in a electric heater while plugged into the pedestal or when the generator is running you increase the likelihood of burning out your inverter. I just had two outlets installed that do not run through the inverter that I can plug into when it's cold and I have an outside source of power. One is in the basement next to the wet bay and the other is in the front of the coach.
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Old 04-21-2014, 04:09 PM   #5
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I agree with having the engine running while operating slides under normal circumstances. If I'm just moving the slide for something else, then I ensure I'm plugged in before doing so, even with relatively new house batteries.

Using the Boost Switch might cause problems with low voltage on both sets of batteries unless the chassis batteries are fully charged. If you have not been plugged in for a while, I would not take the chance. Plus the boost is more for use when starting the motor when the chassis batteries are not charged enough. I would not depend on this boost for what you are talking about.
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Old 04-21-2014, 07:35 PM   #6
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2002 Owner's manual questions

Dave,
If you haven't had your coach weighed yet, get it done. There are CAT scales at most truck stops.
As a kind of the same point of reference, I weighed my 01 Affinity with nothing in it besides a full (164 gallon) fuel tank, and it weighed 20 tons.
Could have knocked me down with a feather, came out at almost exactly 40,000 pounds.
Any how, really need the weights for each axel to do the look up for inflation pressures from the tire manufacturer. It was a pain to weigh each axel once packed full o'stuff, and that changes some each time I get ready to hit the road.

Just an FYI,

Luck,

Bob
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Old 04-22-2014, 08:46 AM   #7
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Thanks guys for responding. I'm all over weighing the coach. Have done that already. I'm lucky in that the Sate Department Of Transportation has a scale about 10 miles from here that is open 24X7 but rarely manned. I can weigh there for free just about any time I like. BTW: my curb weight came in at 39,640 but I did not have the water tank full. Based on the weight sticker, that's pretty much where I expected it to be.

My original question was and remains, why does the owner's manual not cite load weight? With regard to tire air pressure it just says 130 PSI Steer, 110 PSI Drive, and 120 PSI Tag. It's a curiosity more than anything. I have the load/inflation tables for the tires and based on load weight will inflate accordingly.

I've operated the slides a couple more times and they seem to work fine if batteries are full up. If for some reason the slide pump motors need more power, and I cannot plug in, I'll start the generator. Am not going to start the main engine unless the coach is going to be driven shortly afterward.

As for plugging into the campground pedestal - am going to keep my Progressive Industries portable surge protector on board for testing purposes only. It can tell if the pedestal is correctly wired. I will not plug the coach power cord into it when connecting to shore power. Also, am not going to turn off the AC breakers inside. I'll continue to plug in with the pedestal breaker off and then turn it on as I've done with the last two coaches. Again, my questions center on why does the owner's manual say what it says.

Thanks again,
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Old 04-22-2014, 10:03 AM   #8
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When they write the manual they have no way to know how you might load the RV so they allow for max. weight. Safe but may give a harsh ride! Ideally each wheel should be weighed and tires should be adjusted to the high weight tire for the axle. I had it done at a rally but now with a different Coach I need to have it done again.
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Old 04-22-2014, 10:59 AM   #9
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"The Affinity has a built in Surge Guard so the portable unit is no longer needed unless I want to verify that the pedestal is wired correctly prior to plugging the coach in."

We have never shut off the 110 breakers inside the rig before powering up from shorepower. Also have had no problems from that routine.

I had the Surgeguard installed when the rig was about 7 years old. It provides the power sampling before allowing power to the power panel.
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Old 04-23-2014, 12:26 AM   #10
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"My original question was and remains, why does the owner's manual not cite load weight? With regard to tire air pressure it just says 130 PSI Steer, 110 PSI Drive, and 120 PSI Tag. It's a curiosity more than anything. I have the load/inflation tables for the tires and based on load weight will inflate accordingly."

I would suspect the chassis manufacturer bases those PSI's on the maximum load each axle/tires are capable of supporting safely. The probably use the premise that the coach chassis will be loaded to it's maximum GVWR.

But then who knows for sure

You might find an answer by contacting their customer service, just a thought.

Good luck & travel safe
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