Go Back   iRV2 Forums > MOTORHOME FORUMS > Class A Motorhome Discussions
Join iRV2 Today

Mission Statement: Supporting thoughtful exchange of knowledge, values and experience among RV enthusiasts.
  This discussion is proudly sponsored by:
Please support our sponsors and let them know you heard about their products on iRV2
Thread Tools Search this Thread Display Modes
Old 08-13-2015, 12:11 PM   #1
Senior Member
jondrew's Avatar
Join Date: Jan 2014
Location: Orlando
Posts: 1,687
Driving with the airbags deflated

I'd read in a recent thread about driving with the airbags deflated. Can't find the thread now, but it made me wonder why one would do that? I know some coaches will supposedly crunch your wheel wells if you have the front tires turned when the coach drops. Mine seems to have plenty of clearance, but I don't know why I'd want to do that unless of course it was to drop the roof 2-3 inches to clear an obstruction.

2015 Fleetwood Discovery 40G
2014 CRV w/EZ Tow
jondrew is offline   Reply With Quote
Join the #1 RV Forum Today - It's Totally Free!

iRV2.com RV Community - Are you about to start a new improvement on your RV or need some help with some maintenance? Do you need advice on what products to buy? Or maybe you can give others some advice? No matter where you fit in you'll find that iRV2 is a great community to join. Best of all it's totally FREE!

You are currently viewing our boards as a guest so you have limited access to our community. Please take the time to register and you will gain a lot of great new features including; the ability to participate in discussions, network with other RV owners, see fewer ads, upload photographs, create an RV blog, send private messages and so much, much more!

Old 08-13-2015, 12:46 PM   #2
Senior Member
BFlinn181's Avatar

Gulf Streamers Club
Join Date: Jan 2012
Location: Cincinnati
Posts: 12,654
The front suspension dropped can cause clearance issues in the wheel wells as you know. The rear air bags deflated will cause the drive shaft, which is very short in a rear engine set up, be severely out of alignment and cause damage if moved more than a few feet. It's not recommended to put any torque on the drive shaft when height is incorrect.


Bob & Donna
'98 Gulf Stream Sun Voyager DP being pushed by a '00 Beetle TDI
BFlinn181 is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 08-13-2015, 04:10 PM   #3
Senior Member
FIRE UP's Avatar
Join Date: Dec 2009
Location: Out there, somewhere
Posts: 4,076
I don't know what kind of person would actually "drive" with the bags deflated, as in down the road but, as both of you have stated, there will be severe clearance issues with tire vs fenderwell on the front end of many coaches and, potential damage to drive lines if any speed is incurred while in that type of operating condition.

However, there are a very few on here that have to deflate their air bags enough to allow clearance to enter and exit, their motor home garages. But, no turning of the front wheels is needed in those situations.
2004 ITASCA HORIZON 36GD, 2011 GMC Sierra 1500 4x4 Toad '08 GL 1800 Gold Wing
Retired-29.5 yrs, SDFD, Ham - KI6OND
Me, Karla and the Sophie character, (mini Schnauzer)
FIRE UP is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-13-2015, 07:35 PM   #4
Senior Member
Rusty years's Avatar
Join Date: Dec 2012
Posts: 528
Interesting since my coach won't move if bags aren't inflated.
Follow us at: http://joelandesta.blogspot.com/
2006 HR Endeavor 40'...2002 Corvette
2011 Forest River 20' Cargo Trailer
Rusty years is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-13-2015, 11:04 PM   #5
Senior Member
dons2346's Avatar
Country Coach Owners Club
Join Date: Dec 2010
Posts: 3,669
Driving with the air bags deflated will be the roughest ride you will ever have. I had the front ride valve go bad while driving and it was one rough ride until I could get stopped along side the road. If you ever loose a valve, you will know it and could possible ruin a tire while you are at it because of tire clearance in the wheel well.
2002 Country Coach Intrigue
dons2346 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-13-2015, 11:58 PM   #6
Senior Member
CountryFit's Avatar
Join Date: Sep 2011
Location: Between Oceans
Posts: 2,650
i second don on this. i once too had my front valve cooked. the coach kept bouncing just like my shocks were with zero resistance. i first replaced the front shocks then realized that was not the solution. in my case the tires were ok as the tire wall clearance was just good enough to not make them touch (i had to give cc some credit on the chassis design).
2000 Country Coach Intrigue 40'
CountryFit is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-14-2015, 04:33 AM   #7
Senior Member
Join Date: Sep 2013
Posts: 1,150
We bought our coach at Lazy Days, it is our first, knew little about it. We packed and tried to head home early on Sunday morning, and our air bags would not inflate. I drove the coach from the delivery lot down to the shops on their property in Tampa...... heck of ride, very rough. And our flaps on all 4 wheels dragged most of the way. 5 mph tops!

I did not have tires hitting anything, but just the noise of the flaps sounded like we were wrecking it. Their 24x7 support guy came to the coach and got us up and running. (it was early Sunday morning shops were closed)

Problem was I had raised the jacks without the engine running. On our coach it is all automatic, raising jacks the engine should be running. With the engine running he hit the raise all jacks button again, and we air'ed up.

2008 Thor Mandalay Presidio, 400 ISL
RVing since 1974!
Lots of Motorcycles
Lloyd in S.C. is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-14-2015, 07:32 AM   #8
Dale70's Avatar
American Coach Owners Club
Join Date: Jan 2014
Location: Palm Beach Gardens FL
Posts: 85
I recently drove about six miles with the rears deflated. two before I realized what the vibration was. then four to reach the campground at about 30 miles an hour with flashers on. the issue was a broken ride height rod. You do what you want to do and I will do what I need to do to reach the campground when four weeks out on a trip. thx Dale
Dale70 is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 08-14-2015, 11:19 AM   #9
Moderator Emeritus
Gary RVRoamer's Avatar

Fleetwood Owners Club
Freightliner Owners Club
Join Date: Jan 2000
Location: Silver Springs, FL. USA
Posts: 16,446
Perhaps that thread you saw was about a leaf spring chassis coach with auxiliary air bags? Those are just an assist and driving without them inflated is nothing at all like driving an air suspension coach with no air. Or it might have been referring to aChevy or Workhorse P30 chassis that has a combination of air bags and coil springs for a front suspension. It is possible to drive those without any air in the bags, though it is rough and handles poorly.

As the others have said, if an air suspension coach has no air in the bags, you have no suspension at all. Rough ride, no wheel clearance and poor cornering are some things you will notice immediately, and chassis damage will soon result as well.

Gary Brinck
2004 American Tradition; 2014 Buick LaCRosse
Homebase in the Ocala Nat'l Forest near Ocala, FL
Gary RVRoamer is offline   Reply With Quote

Currently Active Users Viewing This Thread: 1 (0 members and 1 guests)
Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off

Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
RV Driving Course- Driving Like a Pro & 5TH & TT's "007" New Rig Show-Off! 65 02-23-2015 07:40 AM

» Virginia Campgrounds

Reviews provided by

Our Communities

Our communities encompass many different hobbies and interests, but each one is built on friendly, intelligent membership.

» More about our Communities

Automotive Communities

Our Automotive communities encompass many different makes and models. From U.S. domestics to European Saloons.

» More about our Automotive Communities

Marine Communities

Our Marine websites focus on Cruising and Sailing Vessels, including forums and the largest cruising Wiki project on the web today.

» More about our Marine Communities

Copyright 2002-2015 Social Knowledge, LLC All Rights Reserved.

All times are GMT -6. The time now is 09:23 AM.

Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.8 Beta 1
Copyright ©2000 - 2016, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.