Hello everyone! My husband and I are relatively new RV owners, purchasing our very first motorhome in May of 2006 (a 1995 Safari Sahara--35'--Cummins 5.9L). Our reasoning behind our purchase is that my husband is a caddie, and he travels from our home state of SC to Colorado every summer to caddie, and it was more reasonable for us to purchase a home on wheels than to search for housing every year (at highly inflated prices) in the Vail Valley.
While searching for our RV, I was immediately taken by the Safari Sahara that we found simply because of the diesel engine. Being the daughter of a General Contractor who regularly operated Caterpillar machinery, and drove a Dodge pick-up, I knew the quality and advantages of diesel over gasoline engines. Of course, we overlooked other issues--no slides
--while making our purchase.
During the 3 months we were on the road, we learned a lot about our RV (yes, I can cook with convection, the awning stays UP in Colorado winds, changing the oil and fuel filters is FAR cheaper than the $250 that Cummins charges, the Carbon Monoxide detector beeps when your house batteries are low, among other items).
Of course, the learning curbe also involves not so fun things, and after encountering some other issues (cracked overflow bottle while driving from Denver to Eisenhower Tunnel--6000 ft. climb--resulting in 2 day stay in Breckenridge), and electrical problems that we may never understand (we were absolutely screwed by a repair shop in Denver--$1300 repair, broken down 15 miles later), we know that we want issues minimalized during our next venture.
So...for those of you with years of experience, what advice would you give to a relative newbies like us? For us, it's sort of like the blind leading the blind. We've become great friends with the Safari tech. guys who work at Monaco, and have been befriended by many RVers while looking dazed and confused over some issue with our RV.
We're members of Good Sam's and have their Roadside Assistance (which was VERY helpful when we had to get a tow in Denver). Any helpful reading, things we must know, etc.?