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Old 09-20-2011, 11:00 AM   #15
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Thanks for the replys, feel better about looking. ebays deals are mostley repos and that could be a problem.
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Old 09-20-2011, 11:05 AM   #16
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Originally Posted by Pairajays View Post
I think the answer would depend on the home location, ie, where it is parked when not in use. If it is located in the Eastern part of the country where high humidity and extremely high temperatures variations exist, then it "could" be a problem. But, that is a problem with any internal combustion engine, diesel or gasoline. Take this for what it is worth, IMO most of the negatives opinions, about this subject, expressed on these forums are BS. I mean no disrespect to anyone. Personal experiences may have some merit but without substantial background information, it would be suspect.

Annual oil changes, without substantial milage, is not required, IMO. Operator manuals, supplied by MH manufactures, are filled with CYA stuff. The same thing applies to engine manufacturers, to some degree. They are all based on use in extreme conditions. I winter in Yuma AZ and the MH sits for 5 months. I don't start it every month to bring it up to operating temperature. I have operated this way for years and I defy anyone to find any detrimental affects. I would think the best procedure would be to have your engine oil analyzed chemically. A $25 analysis is far cheaper than an unnecessary $200 oil change. It is my understanding that trucking company's use this procedure and can extend oil changes to one or two hundred thousand miles. One last comment, diesel powered farm equipment are often used only about three months and them sit idle for nine months and last for many years. I'm sure the owner does not run the equipment every month.

If your MH is not subjected to extreme temperature variations, while parked, then use common sense.



Jim E
I have read other postings saying they store for months and don't run until ready to travel. I wasn't sure what that did. We live in Florida and temp is pretty even.
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Old 09-20-2011, 11:27 AM   #17
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We also live in Florida. We purchased our coach at Classic Motor Coach.

They are a small family owned dealership. They mainly carry bank repo's and were great to deal with. They also post prices on their site.

Good luck in your search.
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Old 09-20-2011, 11:46 AM   #18
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We bought a 7 year old DP with 26,000 miles on the odometer and 40 hours on the generator.

After our nine years and 60,000 miles of travel, it has been a great rig.

The problems that we have had to deal with are many, but not significantly diesel related. We have been towed (for free by Coachnet) two times.

Most of the fixes have been DIY and common to many other MH whether new or old.

Components replaced other than tires, fuses and batteries are:

Fuel Injection Pump
Exhaust Manifold Gasket
Engine Water Pump
Cracked fuel line
Alternator
Exhaust Brake Cylinder
CO monitor
Circuit Board on Refrigerator
Circuit Board on Water Heater
Voltage Regulator on Generator
Engine Thermostat

So, based on our experience low miles on a diesel are not such a bad thing.
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Old 09-20-2011, 06:38 PM   #19
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We also live in Florida. We purchased our coach at Classic Motor Coach.

They are a small family owned dealership. They mainly carry bank repo's and were great to deal with. They also post prices on their site.

Good luck in your search.
Went on Classic site. They have some nice rigs and a lot closer to us from Ocala then Lazy days. Thanks.
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Old 09-20-2011, 06:54 PM   #20
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A diesel engine will last a lot longer than a gas engine. But, most MH owners will never realize that advantage as we simply do not drive enough miles to make it worth the expense over the life of a typical MH. The ONLY reason to buy a diesel is for the nice, quiet ride, the power, and the fact that most of your bigger coaches don't give you a choice. Also, the benefit of a good quality, rigid frame (chassis) cannot be overstated. That usually only comes in a diesel configuration.

Having said all that, I'd be leary of a diesel that hasn't been run regularly if the owner can't produce solid maintenance records. I strongly disagree with Jim E on the mileage vs time issue. Your diesel needs maintenance and it needs it when either the mile or time values are reached. Filters age and fluids deterioriate over time, regardless of the number of miles run. I've seen air filters that were literally sucked into the engine because the binding straps on the filter media became brittle and let go of the media. Those are expensive repairs.

The manufacturers do not unnecessarily pad their maintenance schedules as a CYA tactic. They have every incentive to make their schedules a long and inexpensive as possible. That's how they attract the long haul crowd.

In my humble opinion, you disregard the manufacturer recommended schedule at great risk. And, I won't buy a diesel from anybody that can't demostrate they've followed the schedule - time or distance, whichever comes first.

Finally, here is a heads up. If you buy a unit that has sat on the lot for awhile, make sure the dealer did the time related maintenance that was specified by the chassis manufacturer. If not, you may be in for a big surprise when you go for your first service and find out you have quite a bit of catch up work to do.

Hope that helps!
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Old 09-20-2011, 07:26 PM   #21
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The diesel is more expensive to own and to operate, but I consider the air brakes to be an asset when traveling.
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Old 09-20-2011, 07:41 PM   #22
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A diesel engine will last a lot longer than a gas engine. But, most MH owners will never realize that advantage as we simply do not drive enough miles to make it worth the expense over the life of a typical MH.
IMHO another reason many MH owners don't achieve the benefits of diesels is that they don't take care of them because they believe they are "bullet-proof". From what I read I get the sense that quite a few diesel MH owners ignore "service by time" recommendations because their mileage usage is much lower than the "service by mileage" recommendation for the same servicing.

For example, rather than changing transmission filters and fluid on a 3-4 year cycle as recommended by Allison they argue that it isn't necessary because their mileage is far lower than the 100K miles which is the "service by mileage" recommendation. The reason is usually $$; a transmission drain and refill with Transynd and filters is $400-600 depending on where you have it done. (Fluid life can be extended with oil sampling and analysis, but many people are not aware of that.)

Even if you purchase a MH with good service records (as we did) make sure that all the recommended service has been performed. As well cared for as our MH was, I have found a number of service areas which were "shortchanged" by the PO.

The bottom line is that diesels can last a lot longer than most of us will ever drive but they do require regular servicing. Diesel service can be expensive (~$200 oil changes), but ignore the service recommendations at your own peril.
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Old 09-20-2011, 08:35 PM   #23
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Bought our current MH 6 years ago with 35k on it now has 65K, and is 12 yrs old. Runs like a top serviced completely every 12 mos, regeadless of mileage. However it is old like everything else time gets to things. So part of PM service as far as the diesel is concerned over the years, rebuilt Alt and starter, belt tensioners and belts, fuel transfer pump, new T/stat with coolant change. Also checked and repaired battery cables. The moral of the story mileage doesn't affect things as bad as time. The older they get gas or diesel the more they cost to keep running. As others have said Diesels cost more to service and repair, but in the larger coaches they are a necessary evil.
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Old 09-20-2011, 09:13 PM   #24
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Hmmm, i've read what, 3 posts here from owners of 10 year old deisel coaches that have needed gobs of serious repairs? fuel pumps and manifold gaskets and starters and things? and they call it normal?

I'd really have to say that is not normal. My 04 silverado (gas) pickup has 180k miles, on nothing but oil changes. 1 set of tires, 1 set of brakes, 1 trans fluid change, 1 set of shocks, 1 battery. I'd call this normal. Previous american cars and trucks, same same, 200k plus each with basically no problems other than wear items.

99 ford V10 pace Arrow, same same, zero problems with the drivetrain, suspension, or chassis.

Current 08 knight, bought last march with 18k, now with 29k,zero problems of any kind so far (knock wood)
I expect my knight to go a million miles on nothing but lubricants and filters, and maybe a belt. That's it. (knock wood)
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Old 09-21-2011, 06:01 AM   #25
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Hmmm, i've read what, 3 posts here from owners of 10 year old deisel coaches that have needed gobs of serious repairs? fuel pumps and manifold gaskets and starters and things? and they call it normal?

I'd really have to say that is not normal. My 04 silverado (gas) pickup has 180k miles, on nothing but oil changes. 1 set of tires, 1 set of brakes, 1 trans fluid change, 1 set of shocks, 1 battery. I'd call this normal. Previous american cars and trucks, same same, 200k plus each with basically no problems other than wear items.

99 ford V10 pace Arrow, same same, zero problems with the drivetrain, suspension, or chassis.

Current 08 knight, bought last march with 18k, now with 29k,zero problems of any kind so far (knock wood)
I expect my knight to go a million miles on nothing but lubricants and filters, and maybe a belt. That's it. (knock wood)
I'm with you Jim. Our 04 Escaper we purchased in January with 28,000+ miles, now with 37,000 and zero problems. (knock wood) I expect the Cat to be going strong for many, many miles on nothing but preventative maintenance. PM being periodic changing of lubricants and filters. There may come a time when the serpentine belt needs replacement or an alternator fails but only time will tell.
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Old 09-21-2011, 09:13 AM   #26
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I still work full time and put on average 8 to 10 thousand miles a year. We go somewhere almost every weekend and take a 2 week long trip every year. I like the diesel for the power and they have a lot heavier chassis so they drive like dream.That's my story and I'm stick'en to it.
Amen brother!
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Old 09-21-2011, 09:32 PM   #27
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In my experience 5-6,000 miles a year on a coach is about ideal. Very low miles usually means the motor home sat for long periods which is very hard on them. I would rather buy a coach with higher miles than normal than less. But this is only on a diesel pusher. Miles on a Cat or Cummins mean little. One of my best friends bought a Dutch Star that had sat for 18 months waiting to be sold. It took him two years to get the lot rot out of it.
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Old 09-21-2011, 09:58 PM   #28
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In my experience 5-6,000 miles a year on a coach is about ideal. Very low miles usually means the motor home sat for long periods which is very hard on them. I would rather buy a coach with higher miles than normal than less. But this is only on a diesel pusher. Miles on a Cat or Cummins mean little. One of my best friends bought a Dutch Star that had sat for 18 months waiting to be sold. It took him two years to get the lot rot out of it.
I have a 1997 Beaver which I drive about 4,000 miles per year. During the colder months it sits in Yuma AZ for about 5 months and about 5 months in Quincy WA during the warmer months. I never start the MH during those periods and have never had any problems. Is 10 months a year considered a long time? What is it that makes this kind of usage hard on the them?

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