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Old 02-07-2014, 01:22 PM   #1
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How many miles are too many miles...

...for a gas powered RV? We recently went to the RV show and talked a lot with the various company reps regarding type of RV...Class A, Class C, Gas powered, and diesel powered.

One of the things that has stuck in my mind concerned gas power: I was told that 100k miles is just about the limit for the gas engine; and, the lack of power when tackling hills is a very negative consideration.

My question...just how much of a negative (if any) is a gas engine? Do the positives outweigh the negatives? I kind of like the fact that it doesn't cost the farm to change oil...I like the idea that gas costs so much less than diesel...and I like the idea that the gas engine costs so much less to maintain.

Thank you for your input.
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Old 02-07-2014, 01:36 PM   #2
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Other factors to consider: How many miles a year do you plan to drive the RV. Weekend warriors average 2-3K. How many years do you plan to keep the RV before trading up. Is the higher insurance and registration fees worth a new RV? Like a car, bigger it is, more buttons and whistles it has, more the cost and maintenance. If need be, Gas engines can be rebuilt or replaced when the coach is in good condition.
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Old 02-07-2014, 01:47 PM   #3
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Given the same unit a diesel will use less fuel that a gas engine and there is a big
difference when it comes to large hills.
With proper service the diesel will out last a gas engine by 3 or 4 times.
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Old 02-07-2014, 01:50 PM   #4
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We drive a '06 37' class a with the 362 hp ford v10 and tow a 4200 lb jeep Liberty. I really like this engine and have never felt that I lacked power. I will admit that I haven't been in the Rockies or any serious grades like that but have been in the Smokies and Arkansas mountains. As to longetivity, it entirely depends on your usage and maintenance habits but I believe modern engines are good for much more than 100k.
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Old 02-07-2014, 03:15 PM   #5
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My opinion is that a properly maintained gas engine should be good for 150,000 to 175,000 miles and maybe more.

Your question is somewhat vague unless you narrow it down to what sort of motorhome you want, and a price range. For a class A, once you get beyond 38 - 40 ft. the weight tends to require a diesel engine. While many owners understandably rave about moving to a Diesel pusher from a the typical front-engined class A gas motorhome, these are really different products and it's not fair to do an apples-to-apples comparison. A "stepvan-related" gas chassis is in a different league than a purpose built Diesel pusher chassis. For a class C, the Diesel Sprinter chassis motorhomes are usually smaller than the stretched chassis, gas engine, Ford products. The Super C (medium duty truck cab/chassis) are yet another animal and, I think these are diesel only.

Others will chime in since the gas vs. diesel debate has long raged here on the IRV2 forum, but there isn't one single answer. Use SEARCH to find lots of information, opinions, recommendations, and testimonials.

Quote:
Originally Posted by aimhigh46 View Post
...for a gas powered RV? We recently went to the RV show and talked a lot with the various company reps regarding type of RV...Class A, Class C, Gas powered, and diesel powered.

One of the things that has stuck in my mind concerned gas power: I was told that 100k miles is just about the limit for the gas engine; and, the lack of power when tackling hills is a very negative consideration.

My question...just how much of a negative (if any) is a gas engine? Do the positives outweigh the negatives? I kind of like the fact that it doesn't cost the farm to change oil...I like the idea that gas costs so much less than diesel...and I like the idea that the gas engine costs so much less to maintain.

Thank you for your input.
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Old 02-07-2014, 08:16 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by wb7auk View Post
With proper service the diesel will out last a gas engine by 3 or 4 times.
My 13 year old gas engine has 150,000 miles on it and is showing ZERO signs of age or 'wearing out' at all, it still runs down the road just fine.

I couldn't imagine driving it 3 or 4 times that, until it's 36 or 52 years old and with 450,000 or 600,000 miles on it.
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Old 02-09-2014, 07:11 PM   #7
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I'll add my .02---You'll be tired of your motorhome before your cared for engine or tranny goes, with today's products. That wasn't the case 10 years ago with Fords tranny in the F53. We just traded our Allegro Bay with it's gasser 8.1L engine with 78k miles, and it was still going strong. That's not to say if the new owner revs it up to 5k rpm that a piston won't go flying thru a head! It's in part how you drive it and how you care for it.

hth, Ron
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Old 02-09-2014, 07:26 PM   #8
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Like anything else it depends on how the engine was cared for and maintained. A vehicle driven by multiple drivers with different driving habits, that isn't maintained the same as if it was your own vehicle, will probably not last as well as one that is driven by one or two drivers, who have a financial investment in the vehicle.

That having been said, I've had personal trucks that I've driven in excess of 150,000 miles. The 7 ltr. motor in my chevy 3500 RV, has been know to last in excess of 250,000 mi. in commercial trucks, still in use. My neighbor, who is a retired mechanic, both gas and diesel, has told me, one of the companies he repaired vehicles for, had a number of trucks in service, that they got rid of with 260K miles, that still ran strong, and were still dependable. They had been well maintained by the company mechanic (him).
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Old 02-09-2014, 07:55 PM   #9
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Here is the truth of it...If we ALL could afford 40 ft 4 slide 500 hp diesel pushers...we would ALL have one

I have a 30ft class a, no slides, 8.1 workhorse gaser. I have pulled most mountain passes I have attempted and only a few times did I have to stop and unhook the toad so the wife could drive the toad on up over the top and down the other side. Going down the mountain is more of a problem that going up. Diesels have engine brakes gasers don't.

I do all my own maintenance stunts on my gaser. If my rig was diesel I wouldn't have a clue. I have only 25,000 miles so far but I don't expect to wear out the engine any time soon even though we are full time and have crossed the US twice. We travel slow and explore a lot. That's what the toad is for.

If we were buying new we would probably buy gas because of the cost. If we were buying used we would definitely consider diesel. The depreciation on diesels is huge and you get more for your dollar.

But it is all about how you will use the motorhome. How much, how often and how far.
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Old 02-09-2014, 08:01 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by aimhigh46 View Post
My question...just how much of a negative (if any) is a gas engine? Do the positives outweigh the negatives? I kind of like the fact that it doesn't cost the farm to change oil...I like the idea that gas costs so much less than diesel...and I like the idea that the gas engine costs so much less to maintain.

Thank you for your input.

Hi there, you are absolutely right.
You have to ask yourself how much are you planning to drive and how much are you willing to spend on your maintenance?

At the first glance Diesel powered trucks and motorhomes look great, but when you release the cost of simple oil changes, tune up, DPF service, injectors, fuel pumps or even fuel filter all the "fuel savings" are completely gone.

So far, driving through Rocky's and Cascade's passes I was never out performed by any diesel MH or truck, and as of long jevity, the Ford V10 6.8L engine would last you well over 300 K miles.

Thank you, and remember the choice is yours.
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Old 02-10-2014, 04:02 AM   #11
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A study by FAmily Motor Coach Assoc years ago showed you needed to drive an additional 250000 miles to justify the addition cost.
There is no price on comfort and convenience not to mention power
I'll keep my gasser
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Old 02-10-2014, 05:32 AM   #12
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IMHO, the first mistake would be to take a sales persons point of view as anything but an attempt to get you to spend more money.

You should read the threads here. Many dIesel engine owners have very expensive engine failures as well as gas engine owners. I would not believe anyone that says it is only those that have a gas engine are the ones that have most of the failures. That is a bunch of hogwash.

You need to think it through based on your own needs and expectations. What are your expectations for years of use? How many miles do you plan to derive per year? Are you going to use it as a full timer? Even your personal health and life expectancy should be considered.

I put all these things into consideration for my own situation and then made the choice of a gasser for the following reasons;

1) I plan to drive 10K to 15K per year for as long as I can, but with some health concerns, that may only be the next 10 years or so at best. I have no plans for doing this full time.

2) My wife and I are retired, and therefore I knew what I could afford over the next 10 years, and that prevented me buying the top end luxury coaches. If money was no object, that may have been another thing, but alas, I have to spend within my means.

3) The cost of fuel, general maintenance, and etc.

In my case, within the price range for the coaches I could afford, a gasser made the best fit. A few things I considered;

- I would have had to add at least 30K to the price of the coach up front to go with a comparable diesel.

- I would have had to pay 40 to 60 cents more per gallon for diesel.

- My general maintenance and servicing cost would be significantly more for a diesel.

- Regardless of what some people may argue, the MPG is not dramatically different for a diesel over a gasser.

- Regardless of what claims are made about the difference between diesel and gas engine pulling capacity over mountain passes with a diesel versus comparable gas engine (as an example: Cummings 300 HP, versus a Ford Triton V-10 362 HP), you can expect a similar experience from either type coach.

- Consider renting coaches that are in the same class with diesel and gas engines before making your final choice.

- Consider buying new, with a dealer warranty and buying an extended warranty, versus the crap shoot with a used an no warranty.
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Old 02-10-2014, 07:32 AM   #13
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Thank you all for your comments and opinions...after reading your inputs and other info I have found, I am no longer locked into a diesel...should a good buy come along, I probably wouldn't pass it up (I will have to buy used), but I have broadened my search to include gas powered as well.
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Old 02-13-2014, 08:38 PM   #14
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First of all I have seen many 3-450 passenger vans with over 200,000 miles on them and they keep running.

The diesel will cost more and you will loose more on the resale just because you paid a lot more money for the coach.

The fuel is about 25% higher on the diesel and maintenance is a lot more.


Agree the diesel motorhome drives nicer and the brakes are great.

I think they are just different animals and yes do not listen to a salesman that was selling cars two weeks ago.
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