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Old 03-06-2015, 08:35 PM   #1
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Keeping it clean

My wife and I would like to begin full-timing in the next couple of years. I have several questions concerning how full-timers with large motorhomes (40ft+) who constantly travel and don't have a home base (S&B) keep their MH clean.

If you keep it clean yourself:
a) How often do you need to wash?
b) Where do you wash? Do campgrounds allow or do you have to take it to a car/truck wash?
c) What do you use for cleaner?
d) Do you wax, polish or neither?
e) What do you do for the roof and how often?

If you don't do it yourself:
a) Do you use a place like Blue Beacon? What is the average cost?
b) Do you use a mobile service that comes to the campground? What is the average cost or cost per ft? What is included in the price?
c) Do you use a local service where you take it to them for cleaning/detailing? What is the average cost or cost per ft? What is included in the price?

If you park for a month or two by the coast or ocean where there is a lot of salt in the air, how often do you clean? Is there a special way to clean to make sure you get the salt off and avoid rust? Same for if you happen to travel through snow in the winter where they have salted the roads.

Thanks for your answers. John
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Old 03-06-2015, 09:41 PM   #2
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CG either allow you to wash ( some charge fee ) others have authorized mobile detail outfits that come to your site . I usually watch the guys in action on another coach and if I think they do a good job ask them for a quote .
Safe travels
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Old 03-06-2015, 09:49 PM   #3
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20k miles, full timer family, across country twice in 8 months, havent washed it yet

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Old 03-06-2015, 10:07 PM   #4
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Originally Posted by MisterT View Post
20k miles, full timer family, across country twice in 8 months, havent washed it yet

2014 Thor Palazzo 33.3 DP 35'
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Cousin Ernie - is that you? LOL. It just depends upon where you are when the rains hit.
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Old 03-06-2015, 10:32 PM   #5
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How often do you wash your house? Most don't average once a year. Many think they must be as fanatical about their RV as they are their car. Every three months at a Blue Beacon truck wash, about $40. Out west water is too scarce to wash at a campground.
There is a "dry" wash system called Aerowash. Check that out.
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Old 03-06-2015, 10:35 PM   #6
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Amazon.com: RV Aircraft Waterless Wash Wax Mop Kit: Automotive for keeping it clean and waxed after you get it that way...
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Old 03-07-2015, 09:11 AM   #7
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Amazon.com: RV Aircraft Waterless Wash Wax Mop Kit: Automotive for keeping it clean and waxed after you get it that way...
X2
I have been using it for about 6 months. Works as advertised.
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Old 03-07-2015, 11:18 AM   #8
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I guess I am one of the fanatics, but I still enjoy keeping the moho and Jeep clean, inside and out. Nothing like the feeling of a really clean ride! Does anybody remember Friday night during high school, "cruising the lane" in a freshly cleaned car? Come on, now.

The military and fire service taught me about honor, integrity, and PRIDE, and I still put them all to good use. While we were full-timing, I would either pay $5 at a CG, or agree to wash and rinse the moho with a 5-gallon bucket for no charge. Then I would apply some Aerospace-303 with a small dust mop. While on the road, I wash the windshield every evening. I like my stuff clean, and when I sold my previous moho's and boat I was always asked how I was able to keep them so clean. Always made it easy to sell them, too.

Now that we have a small home again, it is easier to take care of the toys. But I still wipe them down once we arrive at the next adventure. I wash and wax (yes, with a buffer) the toys twice a year, including the roofs. I spent over $100K on our moho ten years ago, and most folks think it is only a year old. Really, all that matters is that I think it is only about a year old!

To answer another posters question, yes I wash my S&B! Twice a year, just like the moho. Not with a sponge, just a good power washer. Who doesn't?

Bruce
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Old 03-07-2015, 11:33 AM   #9
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Here is my trick: I buy liquid turtle wax carwash with wax in it. I put a little in about a quart of water in my shallow bucket (I cut the bottom 4-5 inches off of a plastic 5 gallon bucket-keep my water hose in it when I travel). I have an extendable pole with was mitt (bought at Harbor Freight for about $6)

I split the motor home into sections. Dip mit into bucket-do section-wipe with towel (if I can)-clean mit- keep going- Then- wrap towel around mit & wipe the rest of Motor Home I could not reach by hand-do windows too. Turtle Wax does not Spot & Shines good!

I clean the mit between sections-so soapy water does not get so dirty.

My 24 foot Winnebago is clean & waxed in about 1/2 hour. The wax shine lasts a couple of weeks when the coach is not on the road. When traveling, I do this as the coach gets dirty, and I never let it get too bad.

It does not take much longer than cleaning the bugs off the nose.

I do not run the hose-so the campground does not have anything to complain about. If they campground does complain-you are just at the wrong place.
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Old 03-07-2015, 11:58 AM   #10
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Originally Posted by Firebug5 View Post
I guess I am one of the fanatics, but I still enjoy keeping the moho and Jeep clean, inside and out. Nothing like the feeling of a really clean ride! Does anybody remember Friday night during high school, "cruising the lane" in a freshly cleaned car? Come on, now.

The military and fire service taught me about honor, integrity, and PRIDE, and I still put them all to good use. While we were full-timing, I would either pay $5 at a CG, or agree to wash and rinse the moho with a 5-gallon bucket for no charge. Then I would apply some Aerospace-303 with a small dust mop. While on the road, I wash the windshield every evening. I like my stuff clean, and when I sold my previous moho's and boat I was always asked how I was able to keep them so clean. Always made it easy to sell them, too.

Now that we have a small home again, it is easier to take care of the toys. But I still wipe them down once we arrive at the next adventure. I wash and wax (yes, with a buffer) the toys twice a year, including the roofs. I spent over $100K on our moho ten years ago, and most folks think it is only a year old. Really, all that matters is that I think it is only about a year old!

To answer another posters question, yes I wash my S&B! Twice a year, just like the moho. Not with a sponge, just a good power washer. Who doesn't?

Bruce
X2, I like to keep mine looking better than the day I bought it. It takes a little work but well worth the effort. I actually waxed the whole thing by hand three times this year. It's a hobby taking care of things and always helps with the resale should you ever choose to. There is nothing like driving a nice clean MH or any vehicle for that matter.
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Old 03-07-2015, 03:37 PM   #11
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Here is what I use...It is a water less system and works amazing!!

http://washwax.com


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Old 03-07-2015, 11:32 PM   #12
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One thing I forgot to mention. KEEP IT AWAY FROM SALT! One of the worst things you can do to you motorhome, is drive it on roads that have been salted. If you are snowbirding or fulltiming, get out of there by October.
Also parking your motorhome on the beach or by the ocean will also RUIN your motorhome. Maybe not a day, but more than a week will rust it in p!aces you didn't know you had.
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Old 03-08-2015, 12:36 PM   #13
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jlazar.... To some degree it depends on where you are and what you're doing. Look at houses in some parts of the country: in desert country the houses may be clean but covered with a layer of dust, while half the houses in eastern Carolina have their north facing roof and sidewall surfaces covered in mildew. Ever lived someplace where you had to pressure wash your concrete driveway just to keep it looking like concrete?

We fulltime, spending a few months here, five months there, a month here. When we're in travel mode the coach gets dirty- period- and I don't waste my time on useless endeavors. When we arrive someplace, I just go with the flow. When we were around Puget Sound, the coach would magically become clean within a few days just by waiting for the inevitable rain. Other places, a few times I've given it a 5-minute sluice with a hose, just to get rid of the heavy road dust. I've never tried a Blue Beacon or other truck wash. Went to a BB once, but there was a line of about ten trucks ahead of me. Moved on.

In three years of fulltiming my coach has actually been "thoroughly cleaned" four times: once by me with bucket and brush, twice by local guys who did a thorough wash/wax for a couple or three hundred, and another time by me at a coach-sized DIY spray wash. That seemed like an OK idea going in, but I wound up as wet as the coach.

Bottom line for me is this: keeping a coach looking spiffy on the road will require a substantial investment of either dollars or effort. Your choice.
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Old 03-08-2015, 11:20 PM   #14
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Keeping it clean

I bought a small pressure washer and keep it under the MH. When the MH is dirty I get out a bucket and fillit with water and small amount of detergent. I spray a section of the MH down with the pressure washer to knock off the crud and then wash the section with a mop type mitt on a pole. Then I rinse again with the pressure washer and move on to another section. If the mitt gets dirty I will hit it with the pressure washer. If the water in the bucket gets too dirty I will throw it on a bush and start over.
I use this method to wash the Coach, or the toad or the RZR or sometimes all 3 together.

2001 American Eagle 40 US 8.9 ISL, towing 1999 Cherokee or 2008 GMC Sierra 1500 4x4 with Polaris RZR in the back.
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