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Old 04-09-2016, 05:49 AM   #85
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Originally Posted by tfinfla View Post

1. If you find an RV that has had a new roof is that a deal-breaker no matter what the brand?
When I bought my 10 year old DP the roof was in good shape. It had always been kept garaged.

I took it out to a local campground for a shake down. On the way home I took a road that has overhanging trees that are all trimmed to 14' (my coach is 12.5' tall) EXCEPT ONE BRANCH. I hit it with my awning and it bent the awning. In the process it took a small chunk out of the roof (about 3" x 3") where the front awning attachment point was pulled out.

I called our insurance company (Progressive) and they estimated and paid for a new roof. The adjustor said they would patch a roof unless the repair would be visible from the ground. These coaches are so valuable and they want to help maintain the value the best they can.

So I can't say a coach with a new roof hasn't been abused, but it is not necessarily so. Is there water damage apparent on the ceiling inside the coach? Take a look inside all the cabinets at the seems where the roof meets the sidewall and around the skylight, etc.

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Old 04-09-2016, 05:54 AM   #86
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I paid too much!

Ya gotta take the Missus and if she does like mine did-
'I just love this!'
'Look at this bathroom!'
'All this storage'
Well, that will cost you. Go alone, take her before $ changes hands.
Find everything wrong and remind them shop rates are right at $200/hour. You can not/ will not/ would not fix anything yourself- if he says it's an 'easy' fix- why didn't he fix it? Diesel will cost at least 3X and closer to 4X to maintain than gas (I'm retired diesel mechanic from a trucking company and parts are sky high). Start the negotiation at Half what he is asking. I'm not playing, especially if he already has a new one. He just wants to move this unit and get as much for it as he can. Chances are the dealership came back and low-balled him, so why shouldn't you?
I spent an extra $5K that should have been knocked off. No actually $10K should have been knocked off for the aggravation of dealing with Camping World, but that's another story. Have a good trip!

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Old 04-09-2016, 06:05 AM   #87
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My "First Time Buyers" mistake was buying a gas coach, 1992 Airsteam Land-Yacht 36 foot, with no slides and minimal storage inside and out.

I had planned to Full-Time in this RV and after using it for a few months I realized that I needed more room, slides, and more storage.

Did a LOT of research before buying again and decided that I wanted a 2002 Monaco Windsor Diesel with three slides and LOTS of storage inside and out.

Bought it in December 2003 and have lived in in over 13 years now. I have no desire to change or upgrade to something newer.

I have upgraded various systems and house components throughout the coach over the years as they get old and worn out after a while BUT the fundamental coach is better built than what you can find today for the same price.

Dr4Film ----- Richard
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Old 04-09-2016, 07:16 AM   #88
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We purchased out new to us Dutch Star 3891 about a year and 11,000 miles ago. We absolutely love it! The roof had been replaced in 2010 at the Newmar factory due to hail damage. We saw that as a plus! New roof, with proper maintenance, should last 15 years. Absolutely no downside. That said, our coach came with incredibly detailed repair history/receipts, work orders, down to the insurance claim paperwork for the new roof (several three ring binders full, not including all the original books/manuals, and a thumb drive of downloaded manuals, helpful hints etc!)

Just an aside, our coach also had a 2 year old full body paint job. We didn't see that as a problem either. The work order for the paint job didn't show any body work needed, was mainly to correct fading and rock chips in the front paint (from a trip to Alaska).

On the Diesel puller, bare in mind that since the engine is in front, and the drive wheels are in back, there is a drive line running the entire length of the coach which cuts into your storage space underneath. That may not be important to you, but it will severely limit any "pass through" or side to side storage. Ours is a pusher, we absolutely love the engine noise being in the rear of the coach!

Not sure what your budget is, but we were looking for 2000 through about 2006 or 2007. Ours is a 2001 Newmar Dutch Star, absolutely immaculate inside and out, excellent maintenance, lots of upgrades, never any water damage, runs and functions perfectly, we paid 45k.

Whatever you decide to purchase, get two inspections from qualified inspectors, NOT from any dealership you might be dealing with, and NOT from anyone they recommend.

1st inspection, identify your chassis, either Spartan or Freightliner, go to a Spartan or Freightliner repair center, ask for a DOT inspection. Cost should be $250 to $350 depending on whether or not they pull fluid samples for testing (recommended). Make sure they pull codes from engine and transmission.

2nd inspection, if you don't feel qualified to inspect yourself, will be for the coach itself (everything above the frame and running gear). Roof for signs of water damage, all seams etc. glass inspection for signs of fogging or leakage, interior, inspect all systems, AC, heat pumps if installed, furnace, water heater (both propane and electric), water system, both fresh and waste. Run generator for a minimum of 30 minutes with a minimum of half load, dash AC, defrost, entertainment systems, couches fold out properly, all controls on power seats . . . . you get the picture. If you don't do this inspection yourself, you can expect to pay around $300.00 depending on whether the inspector has to drive to get to the coach.

If seller, regardless of whether it is a dealer or private seller balks about having it inspected, run away! Good luck, and we look forward to hearing what you finally decide on!
Scot & Laura Kellersberger
Newmar 4 wheel drive Dutch Star 3891, 2005 GMC Canyon. Demco Tow Bar & Baseplate U.S.Army (ret)
1985 - 2006
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Old 04-09-2016, 08:35 AM   #89
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When looking for water stains inside is good, even critical don't forget outside signs of leaky roofs and seems. Look for rusty screw heads or rivets. Look inside around borders of cargo doors. Look at awning mounting areas. You get the idea, rusty screws are not a good thing.
Jerry, "EWC (SW)" USN Retired
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Old 04-09-2016, 08:41 AM   #90
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Originally Posted by b1ghwx View Post
I'm a first time buyer...er shopper right now. I can already tell that I am going to end up spending much more than I started out to spend.

I was originally looking at Class C... but now I'm sold on Class A.

Looking at Gas but can feel the 'creep' towards just blowing it up and getting a diesel. Never have to wonder what I missed out on that way

So for all you experienced folks.. what are your top tips for 'buying mistakes' to avoid? What did you regret in your early purchases?

Might help to watch this webinar on "Which RV is Right for You": https://youtu.be/ka4Z0XOGA_8
Tom Johnson
Former Allison Transmission Fluids Engineer, "Mr. TranSynd"
President and Founder at JG Lubricant Services, LLC
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Old 04-09-2016, 03:09 PM   #91
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We had sold our house and had $85,000 to buy an RV to go full-time in. (Our only other RV had been a medium-sized Pop-Up.) The selection was overwhelming. What helped us the most was to develop a "short list" of must-have options, then to not even look at anything which did not have everything on the short list, plus most everything on the long list. We ended up finding a four-year-old diesel pusher with everything on both lists, and then some, for a negotiated price of $85,000.
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Old 04-09-2016, 03:31 PM   #92
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We had a 38' gas and now a 40' diesel. The difference in anxiety level at the fuel stop is amazing. If you go gas, always always always (one for each crunch) have a spotter at the pump area. Happy trails to you.
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Old 04-09-2016, 04:40 PM   #93
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My biggest mistake was buying a 36' gasoline motor home and six months later I was buying a diesel pusher. I should have gone for the diesel right away and could have save me lots of money. Very happy with the diesel.
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Old 04-09-2016, 05:07 PM   #94
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As you can see, nobody is speaking up for the diesel puller. There weren't that many of them made. While I can't say anything specifically bad about them, I would not buy one because I want the noise and heat and vibration to be in back, not in front.

If I were you, I would look for a well-kept diesel pusher. I wouldn't care if it is a few years older or younger. Condition is much more important than the calendar. If you like the floorplan and amenities, and the unit has been given good care, then it is a fit. If any of these factors give you pause, move on. But don't be afraid to go a little bit older to get a more deluxe RV. With a diesel the miles are not important, it is how it was cared for. Given good care, you can get more value in an more upscale older coach versus a newer one that was a cheapie to begin with or that has not had good care.
Marc and Jill, Wellington FL
2013 Entegra Anthem 44SL
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Old 04-10-2016, 07:34 AM   #95
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We bought our first MH without doing much research. I did go online and do a title search and I knew more than the dealer about the history of the coach.
It was a repo and looked so pretty.

The dealer did none of the repairs my DW asked for but it ran and I wanted it.

Low miles and absolutely no maintenance records which I found out that it had never been serviced in the 5 years before us and had all original fluids, etc.

It took Gaffney and a Cummins dealer to get the systems to working order and it is now a great coach.

Once I got the bug I became blind and very stupid.
It worked out but could have been a real disaster.

My DW now wants to go shorter as a 42Ft can limit you in some places.
Until then I was thinking Tag and longer.

I like the floorplan of the new 2016 Excursion 36K but now DW thinks we should and could FT in a Class B Plus Diesel.

I think she's lost her mind this time but am willing to review.

I don't want to be buying numerous coaches and would like to buy new so I can maintain it from day one including the undercarriage is road spray can cause problems with metal and would like it to be sprayed with Fluid Film from the start.
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Old 04-10-2016, 07:36 PM   #96
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We are still looking and thanks to everybody out there have a new checklist

I can't think everybody enough for giving me their opinions I have a long list of things I must do when we are checking out used RVs. For example checking inside the cabinets and the seams against the ceiling, to running the home and generator for 30 minutes, and getting an inspection..... well worth the money and mini other pieces of advice we have written down on our list. We have ruled against a Fred and now trying to come up with enough money for a pusher but as a second choice we will get a yes but in a good brand as we have Newmar and Tiffin in our sights. I will keep everybody posted and thanks for your help what a nice community you find among the rv-ers!😉
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Old 04-10-2016, 07:40 PM   #97
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Sorry for the typos everybody... As a second choice we will get a gas, and also thank you for all the many things we have added on our list to check out.... I hate the voice activation... So many mistakes!
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Old 04-11-2016, 05:47 AM   #98
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Inspection, Inspection, Inspection...

I am so thankful for the $ spent at the rvinspection.com

I had found a 2001 Newmar Dutchstar DP on Craigslist (Minneapolis) that had what I needed. I liked the seller and he had all the maintenance records.

I decided, from advice on irv2, that I should get the inspection. I spent $1,200 for the full deal and do not regret it at all. As some have said on here, I knew I could get my money back in something the inspector found wrong.

The inspector spent 9 HOURS going through that motor home. I got a 70 page book of everything wrong with it! The report was so detailed that it was filled with pictures (with arrows) showing exactly what the inspector found. The fluid report cam back to show that the transmission had two different types of transmission fluid which suggested that fluid had been added and not fully replaced.

I took that report to an RV mechanic/refurb guy and he sat down and said that the report had detailed about $10,000 in repairs and updates that needed to be done. $3,000 for a complete roof for starters. The inspector had also found a recall on the refrigerator that had not been updated.

I took that information back to the seller who basically told me to 'piss-off'. He was upset. He said he would have no problem taking that motor home to Alaska tomorrow.

Needless to say, we did not arrive at a deal and the coach is still listed on CL.

I learned so much in the inspection process. Now I know what to look for when I go see a motor home.

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