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Old 08-10-2012, 10:11 AM   #1
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Ford 450 RV Maint. no fun

Man it seems every time I turn around, another major issue crops up.
I just had to replace tires due to age and sidewalls starting to show cracks. So the tire store showed me some excessive wear on front tires and said i needed to have front end checked and aligned. Due to it being a motor home they could not do work and recommended a large truck and diesal facility. So I was shocked at the cost of alignment @ $185 and 4 hours labor. But upon checking front end they showed me the ball joints both upper and lower were heavily worn and needed replacement. There were no grease fittings and the tech said that is a common problem on 75% of the Fords he sees, especially motorhomes. So that is another $1000 after just having to replace a split plastic & aluminium radiator for $1000, new engine batteries again(2nd time), new house batteries, and reseal the rubber roof. All on a 2008 I bought new.. Sure takes the fun out of rv'ing. Is this normal? What next?
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Old 08-10-2012, 10:45 AM   #2
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I feel your pain. We just bought our rig in June and I've been spending money like a drunken sailor getting things up to speed.

It's a 2000 Jayco (34K miles) on an E450 chassis, and I just spent over $1,000 on front end work - new radius arm bushings, ball joints, steering box adjustment and an alignment. My shop said the same thing as yours - the factory ball joints are sealed & non-serviceable. The new ones they installed have zerk fittings so we can lube them as needed.

Also installed a new roof a/c unit and eternabonded the front & rear roof cap seams, along with replacing the plumbing vent roof caps. New kitchen & bath faucets were also needed. All of that work I did myself, so at least I wasn't paying for labor. Oh, and I had the tire shop install Dually Valve stems so I could actually check the tire pressures. Then we needed new rear brake calipers (seized) & pads.

There's more to do, but I think (hope) I'm over the worst of it, at least for this year. I told my wife the only difference between an RV & a boat is that the boat has water around it.
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Old 08-10-2012, 10:53 AM   #3
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I understand your pain. I don't know if there's a similar saying for RVs, but for boats it's "they make a hole in the water into which you pour money," or words to that effect. The other one I've heard is "if you have to ask how much it costs to rent dock space, you can't afford the boat." For RVs, perhaps something like "if you have to ask how much six tires cost every six years, you can't afford to buy the RV" would work LOL.
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Old 08-10-2012, 01:35 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mrfoto View Post
Man it seems every time I turn around, another major issue crops up.
I just had to replace tires due to age and sidewalls starting to show cracks. So the tire store showed me some excessive wear on front tires and said i needed to have front end checked and aligned. Due to it being a motor home they could not do work and recommended a large truck and diesal facility. So I was shocked at the cost of alignment @ $185 and 4 hours labor. But upon checking front end they showed me the ball joints both upper and lower were heavily worn and needed replacement. There were no grease fittings and the tech said that is a common problem on 75% of the Fords he sees, especially motorhomes. So that is another $1000 after just having to replace a split plastic & aluminium radiator for $1000, new engine batteries again(2nd time), new house batteries, and reseal the rubber roof. All on a 2008 I bought new.. Sure takes the fun out of rv'ing. Is this normal? What next?
Wow, seems like you are having a lot of issues for an 08. Are you sure about the rubber roof. I know the Greyhawk does but I thought the Melbourne had a fiberglass roof. When I was researching the 09 Melbourne which was my first choice (too narrow for a full sized pull out RV queen bed in the couch) before I bought my Cambria I was pretty sure (and I could be wrong) the the Melbourne had the fiberglass roof just like the Cambria. I do know that even with the fiberglass roof my Cambria manufacturer states in the manual to check and fix as needed the roof every six months. On my first roof cleaning at the beginning of this season I did find a 1/8 inch wide by 10 inch long separation in the sealant from the cab over to the roof. A tube of dicorr took care of it.
Todd
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Old 08-10-2012, 01:50 PM   #5
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BOAT stands for Break Out Another Thousand. LOL It appears RV's are the same. At least I won't have to swim to shore like my friend did with his breakdown.
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Old 08-10-2012, 05:24 PM   #6
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i know the feeling mrfoto. we paid 1300 bux for the rv. the first time through state inspection it cost me 1700 for new front rotors, calipers, pads, hoses, ball joints, and a brake flush. next time through: $16!

ralphie: i think for rvs its: "if you have to ask what the gas mileage is, you can't afford it".
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Old 08-10-2012, 05:54 PM   #7
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Like any light duty truck in heavy duty service, the required service and maintenance is required. As it gets older, more $$$ is needed.

Ken
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Old 08-10-2012, 06:48 PM   #8
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Last year was a spendy year for us. With getting 'over due' maintenance done while on vacation, replacing the front TV and new tires, we spent about $9000.00. Glad that most of the expensive stuff is done.
No matter what we put into our MH, we still enjoy it and the time we get to us it.
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Old 08-20-2012, 09:02 AM   #9
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I share your pain also with my 1998 Ford Super Duty Jayco with 40K miles.

In the past 10 months I have replaced:

The tires
Ball joints
Front brake calipers, rotors, pads
Professional rubber roof recoating
Alignment
Cleaned and lubed rails on rear brakes(else they freeze up)
Replaced batteries
Changed & flushed brake fluid(it looked like very dirty motor oil)
Now my cab A/C compressor is bad & I have some delam issues.

I get some satisfaction when I read that others are having the same issues with newer units. Seems never ending but we do enjoy the RV.
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