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Old 09-11-2016, 06:46 AM   #1
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What "unexpected" repairs have you run into with your DP

My wife & I are still on the fence about getting a used 40' DP (maybe a tag) and really want to for the obvious reasons. Cutting right to the chase so we can understand what might be ahead, besides the regular maintenance items & costs—Here's our question—what unexpected repair items have you ran into on your DP and what were the costs?
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Old 09-11-2016, 07:06 AM   #2
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I bought a 1997 Fleetwood American Tradition last November. She is 40 foot DP. Put on 4k miles and the only thing to break was the coach water pump $118. The bell crank for the steps $60. Front dash ac needs recharged every three weeks, I do that my self for about $20. The manual awning parts break everything we use it. Soon it should be a total rebuild. When I got her home I changed all batteries, oil and both filters, both fuel filters, fuel water separator, coolant filter and air, filter canister. She now has 29450 miles on the driveline almost forgot 6 new tires$4000
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Old 09-11-2016, 07:16 AM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by badturks5 View Post
I bought a 1997 Fleetwood American Tradition last November. She is 40 foot DP. Put on 4k miles and the only thing to break was the coach water pump $118. The bell crank for the steps $60. Front dash ac needs recharged every three weeks, I do that my self for about $20. The manual awning parts break everything we use it. Soon it should be a total rebuild. When I got her home I changed all batteries, oil and both filters, both fuel filters, fuel water separator, coolant filter and air, filter canister. She now has 29450 miles on the driveline almost forgot 6 new tires$4000
When I got her home I changed all batteries, oil and both filters, both fuel filters, fuel water separator, coolant filter and air, filter canister.

What did these items cost?
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Old 09-11-2016, 07:26 AM   #4
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We had a air dyer crap out the second outing with our used DP. 800 bucks!! Did the work myself 326 dollars
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Old 09-11-2016, 07:50 AM   #5
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This is very helpful. Just what we're looking for. Keep them coming.
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Old 09-11-2016, 07:55 AM   #6
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Owned 18 months, besides normal maintenance:

  • Inside door handle, $13.65 from Newmar
  • Cracked grey water pipe, repaired myself, $9.00.
  • Erroneous reading/alarm sounding for low air in rear air tank, faulty solder joints on VDU, will repair myself, $6.00 for new sealant on VDU.
  • cracked windshields, replaced under insurance, $0.00 cost to me
  • cracked engine antifreeze overflow tank, replaced myself with upgraded metal tank from Freightliner, $94.00
  • awning ripped off coach in Montana two weeks ago. Meeting with insurance adjuster tomorrow for estimate . . . . $250.00 deductible under comprehensive
  • replaced damaged vent cover over fridge on roof, along with smaller vent top (low hanging tree limb) <$50.00
  • replaced vegetable crisper tray on fridge when door opened when I ran over a curb at slow speed . . . $75.00
Nothing specifically "Diesel Pusher" related since we've owned it, just routine maintenance which everyone should be doing anyway.


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Old 09-11-2016, 08:52 AM   #7
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Bought our coach in June, it was stored inside & we think it hadn't been used for at least a year. With that being said, after our first trip the refrigerator kept shutting down but since we want to install a residential fridge we're probably not going to repair. Husband is pretty sure it's the ice maker that's causing the short. I have a fear of these absorption refrigerators so we'll be installing a Samsung Rf18, on sale around $1,000.
The entry step motor was also replaced for $120.
We also EternaBonded the roof seals to insure we had no problems with leaks, two 50 foot rolls of 4 inch & two 50 foot rolls of 2 inch - less than $100 with plenty left over "just in case".
Had to restring one day/night shade - $20
All work done by husband saves sooo much money!
So far that's about it but I can guarantee that you'll have other expenses like we did, not mechanical but cosmetic. I've tiled the kitchen and bathroom backsplashes with Smart Tiles about $200, installed sliding organizer trays under the sink $75 & will be replacing the faucets & shower head in kitchen & bathroom. Also LED bulbs throughout the coach eventually.
All in all, not bad! The fridge IS a big expense but we were going to replace anyway so it doesn't make any sense to repair it. If you buy a coach that wasn't taken care of, you're going to have more unexpected repairs/expenses no matter the age of the vehicle. We've only been doing this 6 years, not retired & I wouldn't travel any other way! I love everything about RVing... The ride, the "stop overs" in rest areas, the destination & the amazing people we meet! It's not "just a vacation" but an amazing experience from start to finish! Good luck with your decision & let us know if & when you've joined the "club"!
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Old 09-11-2016, 09:19 AM   #8
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What &quot;unexpected&quot; repairs have you run into with your DP

Quote:
Originally Posted by marjoa View Post
When I got her home I changed all batteries, oil and both filters, both fuel filters, fuel water separator, coolant filter and air, filter canister.



What did these items cost?

This is all required periodic maintenance stuff. No surprises!
Oil, filter, fuel filters are annual. About $230 at Speedco. Batteries wear out in about 7 years.
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Old 09-11-2016, 09:20 AM   #9
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We had to replace the old Kingdome satellite and replace the cooling unit on the Norcold with an Amish unit. Total about $3500.
For us the idea of a gas coach was eliminated very early on.
This made our search much easier and bought the Windsor 4 years ago.
Never regretted that decision.
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Old 09-11-2016, 09:28 AM   #10
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Old 09-11-2016, 10:00 AM   #11
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We bought a 7 year old rig 14+ years ago.

Fuel injection pump $4,000 (covered under warranty) plus insured tow.

Dash AC Compressor $600 DIY.

Roof AC replaced $1,000 DIY.

Cummins exhaust manifold gasket replacement $1,600.

Broken fuel line $300 plus insured tow.

Broken tie rod grease boots. $400.

Failed school bus coolant pump. $300 to replace (no longer on the rig as not needed).

Failed clear coat paint. $1,500 of failed DIY.

Cracked windshield $900.

So about $360 per year of repairs on average.

Depreciation is closer to $7,000 per year but getting lower as the years pass.
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Old 09-11-2016, 10:57 AM   #12
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You'll notice only a couple of these items are exclusive to a diesel. Air Dryer, injection pump, etc. Any MH will have non diesel specific items that need maintainance.

MH's are more like boats for maintainance. You will find the only time everything is working is just before you use it. There is almost always an item or two that will go on the gripe list to be repaired. Usually it's a house item, something any MH will have. You can buy a new one and they will have items need to be fixed.

You should have access to $5k for immediate repairs, regardless of fuel requirement, for your MH.
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Old 09-11-2016, 11:39 AM   #13
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Quote:
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You'll notice only a couple of these items are exclusive to a diesel. Air Dryer, injection pump, etc. Any MH will have non diesel specific items that need maintainance.
Yes I know, that why in my OP I specified "unexpected repairs in your DP". I know all MH's have things come up but I'm particularly interested in these "unexpected DP issues" just so I can get an idea of what we might face down the road and kinda get an idea of what these things cost. But all comments are certainly welcome don't get me wrong. I've owned 1 sailboat and a twin gas motor yacht in my life so I do know what you mean. Even though both of my boats were very well taken care of they never let us down. I was very meticulous with them both and they were a lot of fun too. My grown up kids have a lot of fond memories of those days. Anyway, like some of these posters, I am very handy and have a good maintenance skill set, tools & know-how so a lot of this I'll be ably to DIY, but some things I'll just not be able to do or not qualified for or maybe just easier & cheaper to have someone else do it for me. But most stuff I'll do myself if I can. I enjoy that type of stuff but I do know my limits.

Thank you for your input.
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Old 09-11-2016, 11:53 AM   #14
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I have to chuckle at this topic - what "unexpected repairs" should I expect?

A radiator might run $3000 or more. A new fuel injector pump might run several thousand dollars. But a new roof a/c unit might be under &1000 (installed) and a new water pump only a few hundred.

We've found that an "unexpected" budget of around $1000/year usually gets used up. That's in addition to expected expenses, which include routine annual maintenance as well as routine longer term items such as tires and batteries.
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