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Old 03-22-2019, 05:58 AM   #1
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Setup order question

I am looking for some help/guidance from the experienced/experts here. We have a new to us 2009 Monaco Knight 38PKQ. I am unsure of the ‘proper’ sequence when setting up our unit once we arrive at a site. I’ve listed below my thoughts, but not sure it is correct.
1. Arrive at site and with engine still running drain ride height air bags. (It appears that engine must be running to drain)
2. Drain brake air tanks (Can be drained with engine on or off)
3. Level coach. (Engine must be on to power hydraulics for leveling system)
4. Turn off engine and extend slides (slides will not move with engine running).
My confusion is that while the engine is running the compressor is also running and attempting to fill both the suspension and braking air systems. With the engine/compressor running can I ever get the air out of the suspension?

Is this process what you use? If not please let me know how it should be done. Thanks in advance.

Laurice and Jennifer Hermiston
Fort St John, BC
2009 Monaco Knight 38PKQ
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Old 03-22-2019, 06:40 AM   #2
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Laurice View Post
I am looking for some help/guidance from the experienced/experts here. We have a new to us 2009 Monaco Knight 38PKQ. I am unsure of the ‘proper’ sequence when setting up our unit once we arrive at a site. I’ve listed below my thoughts, but not sure it is correct.
1. Arrive at site and with engine still running drain ride height air bags. (It appears that engine must be running to drain)
2. Drain brake air tanks (Can be drained with engine on or off)
3. Level coach. (Engine must be on to power hydraulics for leveling system)
4. Turn off engine and extend slides (slides will not move with engine running).
My confusion is that while the engine is running the compressor is also running and attempting to fill both the suspension and braking air systems. With the engine/compressor running can I ever get the air out of the suspension?

Is this process what you use? If not please let me know how it should be done. Thanks in advance.

Laurice and Jennifer Hermiston
Fort St John, BC
2009 Monaco Knight 38PKQ
Another one of those "5 RV'ers 7 strong opinion" issues. I'll go first and then stay away so I don't get aggravated by the "experts"....

You don't tell us, so I am assuming you have an electric or hydraulic leveling system as opposed to an air leveling system. (If you have the latter my advice may be incorrect and you need to read the book..... which you should do anyways).

So, if your auto level system is set up like most coaches it will dump the suspension for you automatically. You do not need to dump it, you certainly don't need to drain the tanks. The dump valve shuts the suspension off from the tanks and, as the name implies, dumps the air out of the suspension. This is so the air doesn't fight the auto level system.

So you arrive at the camp site and shut down the engine. There, nice an quiet and no need to hurry anything.

Now if your genny is not running plug in the shore power. Everything 12V works better if there's solid power.

Now you can do the following things in either order, and this is where the fighting starts and I'm just telling you what I do and let others tell you what they do and why they are righteous and right....If you want to know why I do it this way look on my blog below.

1:Unless you are on REALLY uneven terrain extend the slides, and yes, the engine has to be off to do this. If you are on really uneven terrain you can try and level first so no slide has to go seriously up-hill, but odds are you'll get an uneven terrain error as the leveling systems are limited in what they can fix.

2:Hit auto level and the suspension will dump and the coach will level.
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Old 03-22-2019, 06:41 AM   #3
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Laurice-

Welcome to iRV2!

The owner's manual for your coach should list the recommended setup procedure. The procedure can vary from manufacturer to manufacturer, model to model, and year to year, so it is best to follow the manual.
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Old 03-22-2019, 07:01 AM   #4
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Originally Posted by l1v3fr33ord1 View Post
Laurice-

Welcome to iRV2!

The owner's manual for your coach should list the recommended setup procedure. The procedure can vary from manufacturer to manufacturer, model to model, and year to year, so it is best to follow the manual.
Agreed..... except my coach didn't come with a manual that was even remotely complete. One of Forest River's strong points....
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Old 03-22-2019, 08:00 AM   #5
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While the engine is still running we do everything that requires the engine to be running. 1st we level the coach then put the slides out. Then shut the engine down. I donít like starting and restarting the engine. Then wife starts setting up the inside while I do the outside. After Iím done outside I go inside and make sure all systems are operating properly. HVAC, water heater, entertainment ect.
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Old 03-22-2019, 09:15 AM   #6
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I'm with oscarvan - that general outline has worked well for me for a dozen years.

If your coach leveling system doesn't auto-dump, manually dump suspension air before leveling. No need to do anything about brake air at all.


A lot of emotion has been expended here on when to deploy slides vs when to level, but I don't think it is an important factor at all and. 99% of the time, i.e. on a prepared site that will be reasonable level from side-to-side, it will make no difference what you do first. The slides simply are NOT that sensitive.
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Old 03-22-2019, 10:07 AM   #7
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We do like Gary and oscarvan said. Find the site, level with engine on (in case it doesn’t level and we have to move), turn engine to Acc, and run the slides out. I usually wait on the rear driver side slide until last because that’s where the water and power is, and DH is generally hooking those up while I do the interior. Our auto level dumps the air before it starts. I don’t worry about the slides jiggering the level because I have two pretty equivalent ones on each side.
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Old 03-22-2019, 10:23 AM   #8
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I agree with the statement below. You need to find someone with a manual or find one online to learn about your coach. Ours states in "Caution" do not deploy slides prior to leveling the coach.

This is our steps according to our manual
1. Dump Air
2. Level Coach
3. Deploy Slides - Uses Chassis Battery and shouldn't deploy if under 13 volts.
4. Turn Engine Off.

Some manufacture state to deploy slides then level our manual says just the opposite.





Quote:
Originally Posted by l1v3fr33ord1 View Post
Laurice-

Welcome to iRV2!

The owner's manual for your coach should list the recommended setup procedure. The procedure can vary from manufacturer to manufacturer, model to model, and year to year, so it is best to follow the manual.
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Old 03-22-2019, 10:29 AM   #9
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Welcome to the Forum, be sure to read your operations manual.
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Old 03-22-2019, 11:03 AM   #10
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Hi Laurice! Welcome to IRV2! We're sure glad you joined the gang!

As has been stated, everyone has their own ideas about the correct setup order, and yes, it does depend on the rig you have. Here is what I do.

1. Plug into the CG power pedestal so my Progressive Industries EMS system can determine that the power is safe to use. If it finds a problem I can immediately move to another site, before I have wasted a lot of time doing things that would have to be repeated! Also, I can then turn on any heat or air that is needed.

2. Turn off engine

3. Our leveling system is air only. I dump all the air out of the system to place the door entry steps as low to the ground as possible.

4. I level the coach using the auto leveling feature.

5. After checking for obstructions I extend the slideouts.

6. Connect freshwater hose and filter.

7. Connect sewer hose.


Of course, there are many other things on our checklist such as awnings, tire covers, etc, etc., but the above is the basic outside list. You need to make your own checklist for arrival and departure, and follow it to the letter!

Have fun and keep her between the ditches!

Good luck, happy trails, and God bless!
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Old 03-22-2019, 11:24 AM   #11
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I am a solo so I have to do everything by myself. After I back in, with the motor running as required, I hit my auto level button. The leveling system dumps the air and then levels the rig. I then turn off the motor and go outside to hook up my electric, water and sewer with my slides in so I donít have to bend down under the slide. Now with my shore power hooked up I go back inside and extend my slides. Then I raise my dish on the roof, and set up the inside for daily living. Next I grab a beer, go outside and set up my outside table and chairs, sit down and watch everyone else pulling in.
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Old 03-22-2019, 01:36 PM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Laurice View Post
I am looking for some help/guidance from the experienced/experts here. We have a new to us 2009 Monaco Knight 38PKQ. I am unsure of the Ďproperí sequence when setting up our unit once we arrive at a site. Iíve listed below my thoughts, but not sure it is correct.
1. Arrive at site and with engine still running drain ride height air bags. (It appears that engine must be running to drain)
2. Drain brake air tanks (Can be drained with engine on or off)
3. Level coach. (Engine must be on to power hydraulics for leveling system)
4. Turn off engine and extend slides (slides will not move with engine running).
My confusion is that while the engine is running the compressor is also running and attempting to fill both the suspension and braking air systems. With the engine/compressor running can I ever get the air out of the suspension?

Is this process what you use? If not please let me know how it should be done. Thanks in advance.

Laurice and Jennifer Hermiston
Fort St John, BC
2009 Monaco Knight 38PKQ
Why drain the air tanks then?
Any time is fine later on
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Old 03-22-2019, 02:42 PM   #13
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I didn't have instructions for my rig when purchased but I do what seems logical. Don't exactly do what poster does but close.

Park, set air brake.
Shut down engine.
Exit RV and leisurely check my site while plugging into shore power.
Hook up water & sewer sometimes.
Level, my HWH jacks are manual so I have to oversee the process.
Extend slides.

When leaving, I reverse the process except that I start the engine just after pressing 'Retract' on the Jacks. The vibration helps them along. By the time they've retracted, the air bags are filled. And off I go.
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Old 03-22-2019, 03:52 PM   #14
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Monaco had a specific procedure for their coaches, since they only use three jacks.

- Park the coach.

- Attach water, sewer power (attaching power first, keeps from depleting batteries unnecessarily) ***Not part of the procedure, but common sense to prevent bending under the slide***

- Dump air

- Extend jacks.....this is important....when you watch a Monaco with auto leveling, it will always lower the front jack first and raise the coach. The rears will lower next and adjust the coach side to side. If you manually operate the jacks, you need to lower the front single jack first. This was a procedure developed by Monaco to prevent cracking the windshield.

- Extend the slides.

That was the procedure for Monaco coaches, with the three jack systems, that were built before the sell off to Navistar and Fleetwood (about 2009).

With all that said, common sense plays a big factor sometimes when deciding to deploy a slide in a very unlevel site. Sometimes it's wiser to do this while at ride height, the position the slides were originally installed.
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