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Old 07-15-2011, 06:02 PM   #1
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Smile Finally Home

Just finished a 10 day, 2900 mile trip to Michigan and back to Florida. The trip north was without incident. First time towing my Wrangler behind our Rexhall 30' class "C". All went well and the Wrangler towed like it wasn't even there. The weather was in the mid 80s + all the time we were there. We went up for my nieces wedding. Great time and a beautiful bride. We decided to head home a day early as we had seen everyone and had done all we wanted to do. That turned out to be a good choice.
We were heading south on the east bypass around Cincinnatti when the rig began losing power and running poorly. I thought I got a bad tank of gas. It was about 6:00 in the evening and we decided to stop for the night. We barely made it off the highway. While enroute to our chosen campground, it began running worse. As we only had a mile to go, we limped along at 10 mph. The campground was no longer there. Just our luck. We found a large parking lot at a soccer complex and stayed there for the night. I called the Ford dealer and they did not work on motor homes but gave me the name af a very large RV dealer (Holmans). I called them and they said to bring it in.
As luck would have it, they were located only 2 miles from where we were. We got there at 7:30 am and unhooked the toad and took the dog and 2 cats into the waiting room. They went right to work on the coach. First was to replace the fuel filter. That made an improvement but still not right. Next he disconnected the catalytic converter. No change. Next checked fuel pressure at the fuel rail. Very low pressure. We needed a new fuel pump. There was not a place in Cincinnatti that had a fuel pump. They had it overnighted from somewhere out of state. They let us stay overnight on one of the temporary sites they have at the dealership. At least we didn't have to get a hotel.
At 11:00 the next morning the pump was delivered. They went right to work and by 3:00, and $1500.00 later, we were back on the road. If anyone needs service in the Cincinnatti area, I highly recommend Holmans. They are very acomadating and treated us very nice. They are only one mile off I75. They service everything from SUVs to diesel pushers. They do everything from body work to heavy mechanical.
The next morning while heading south on I75, approaching Jelico TN, the traffic came to a halt. Evidently a semi hauling acid overturned on the top of the mountain and spilled it's load. They routed us off the highway onto 25W which is a 2 lane road which goes around the mountain. It's full of hairpin turns with sheer rock on one side and sheer drop off on the other side. Traffic was a mix of cars and semi trucks and us. After 10 minutes traffic came to a stop. A truck had to stop quickly and his trailer slid into the rock wall and ditch. We sat in one spot for 2 1/2 hours while they worked to clear the road. Finally it was cleared and we raced along at 25mph until we finally got back to the highway. From there on the trip was uneventful. We finally made it home on Sunday at 5:00 pm. Only 2 days late but my wife Lynda made it to work on Monday. As I said, It's a good thing we decided to leave a day early.

Total mileage for the trip... 2900. Total gas mileage for the trip was 7.5 mpg while towing the Wrangler and with at least 50 hours of generator run time. Speed was 65mph on the highway.

Lets see. Last trip to Michigan,,,, $1600.00 transmission. This trip to Michigan.... $1500.00 fuel pump. Maybe I should take Michigan off our destination list.

Sorry this is so long, but the trip was long.

Bob
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Old 07-15-2011, 07:02 PM   #2
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well good to hear your back safe and sound. ah, the world of RV's. don't ya just luv em!.

Outlaw
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Old 07-16-2011, 12:38 AM   #3
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It's always good to 'click' those ruby slippers after a long trip. I think the best two things I enjoy most about coming home is...That First LONG hot shower and the first night of sleeping in a BIG bed. Remember that first night you made the transition from the crib with the cell bars to the BIG KIDS BED? It's kinda like that. Welcome home. Bob
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Old 07-16-2011, 01:31 AM   #4
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Just curious how they justified $1500 for some diagnostics, fuel filter, and a fuel pump. Is it just me or is the cost of RV repair out of control?
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Old 07-16-2011, 07:06 AM   #5
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Originally Posted by dunlapml View Post
Just curious how they justified $1500 for some diagnostics, fuel filter, and a fuel pump. Is it just me or is the cost of RV repair out of control?

I just replaced the fuel pump on our HR and it was $358 plus $24 for the wire shunt to go from the four wire revised pump to the three wire chassis harness, I did the work myself at my leisure in my driveway but we don't always have that option. It usually involves dropping the fuel tank too. Most of the cost is labor and the $1500 Bob paid sounds in line with the filter and diagnostics...
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Old 07-16-2011, 07:44 AM   #6
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My fuel sender unit is erratic. A quote last week to drop the 100 gallon tank and replace the sender unit was $800. This from a mechanic that specializes in this type of repair. So $1500 from a well-equipped shop that does a multitude of repairs and has a large overhead has to charge a lot more than a small independent.
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Old 07-16-2011, 02:31 PM   #7
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Guess I'm can remember the days not too long ago when I dropped the tank on my Jeep and replaced the sending unit for a few $$. BUT, that was a 15 gal tank! LOL ...and getting to the fuel pump was easy in the days when they didn't want to stick em in the tank! Oh well, progress - right?
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Old 07-16-2011, 02:34 PM   #8
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$1500; in my estimation a lot to much; had a fuel pump replaced; $187.00 for fuel pump $250.00 labor.
fuel filter, 15 minute job; filter $18.00 got charged min labor charge 1 hour $125.00.
Water pump replaced; $250.00 labor. pump, $75.00
May be really nice folks but I think you were overcharged.
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Old 07-17-2011, 05:20 AM   #9
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$1500; in my estimation a lot to much; had a fuel pump replaced; $187.00 for fuel pump $250.00 labor.
fuel filter, 15 minute job; filter $18.00 got charged min labor charge 1 hour $125.00.
Water pump replaced; $250.00 labor. pump, $75.00
May be really nice folks but I think you were overcharged.
It sounds like you got a screaming deal on the fuel pump ! When I replaced my fuel pump I couldn't find a price anywhere near that low...
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Old 07-17-2011, 11:39 AM   #10
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It sounds like you got a screaming deal on the fuel pump ! When I replaced my fuel pump I couldn't find a price anywhere near that low...
Buy on line; this is an example of the price you can get
-------------------Fuel Pump & Sender Assembly--- list price$787.40------------your price$236.22

AIRTEXFuel Pump & Sender Assembly$787.40$236.22
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Old 07-17-2011, 12:12 PM   #11
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Wow, sorry to hear about the expense

Hi Bob,

I'm glad you made it home OK. Just for comparison to those reading the thread and not at all to make you feel bad about the price you paid since labor and parts can be very different in different areas of the country but we had our RV die on Wolf Creek Pass in CO last weekend. The diagnosis was a bad fuel pump. they indicated it might be pricey since they had to move the plumbing to drop the tank which weighted 300 lbs and they had to find something to support the tank's weight. Also it took all day as the mechanic could only stay under there for about 10 min. at a time due to the heat and the fumes.

Cost: $557.37.

Break down of cost: Fuel Pump - $93.32
Fuel strainer and fuel pump strainer and misc. $11.99
Fuel filter - $11.76
Additive to clean fuel injector - $15.00
Labor to diagnose - $82.77
Labor to replace - $331.08
Hazardous materials - $2.34
Tax: $9.11

I was pretty happy when we left as I thought it would be closer to $1000 as they had us in a tight spot since we were traveling. I'm happy to say that they were nice and treated us fairly. The only problem we have had with the repair was the fuel gauge started behaving wildly when we went over bumps as we got to home. However the repair came with a nationwide 12 mth warranty and I already put in a claim. They said to take it anywhere and the fix will be covered up to the amount of the original repair. My husband thinks we should just take the RV down to Pagosa Springs to Piedra Automotive any time we need it worked on because this shop was sooooo much better than any experience we have had in Denver.

I have to admit that after that experience I don't want to go back to the shop I use in Denver. They recently have taken to overcharging. In addition they always leave the RV dirty and usually damage something in the process of fixing it. If ours had broken in Denver we probably would have ended up paying close to what you were charged.

When your on the road you get the luck of the draw and we just happened to luck out.

Michelle
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Old 07-17-2011, 12:12 PM   #12
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Glad you got your rig fixed. Yes the cost was high but when fuel pumps are in the tank it costs and the service etc.. you received was very good.
Boy, 2900 miles in 10 days didn't leave much time for sightseeing. Even without the repair would you not have been better taking your car? I always think if you are limited on time and have a place to stay at your destination the RV is the most expensive way to go.

Tom
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Old 07-17-2011, 01:16 PM   #13
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What's with the labor charges being higher every time you go into a shop? Same job, but higher labor charges? Just more RV"s into repairs I guess.
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Old 07-17-2011, 03:14 PM   #14
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Michelle,
Yes, you are right about the luck of the draw. When you break down, they have you over a barrel. I am sure if someone locally had the fuel pump in stock it would have been cheaper. Having it overnighted and us being stranded I was in no position to shop. Sounds like you got a really good deal and I am happy for you that you found a quality shop.

Tom,
Yes, it would have been cheaper to just take the car but we refuse to stay in hotels with all of the stories you hear today.We didn't really have a place to stay on this trip with all the in-laws and outlaws and kids coming in for the wedding. We stayed in my nieces driveway and it worked great. Fortunately there was no sightseeing we needed to do. Just the obligatory pre wedding parties and dinners to attend. It was a quick trip for sure. In a year an a half, when my wife retires, then we will the long slow trips. First trip after retirement will be west and at least 8 weeks +++++. Until then, just shorter trips.

Bob
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