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Old 12-23-2009, 05:17 PM   #1
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Newmar owners please help!

Hello, I'm new to this! The last RV I owned was a 1966 Frolic Camper! We camped every summer on the beach with our kids! Years and years ago! Now we are looking to get out of Michigan in the winter and want to try RVing again. We are looking at used Newmar Essex's and Mountian Aires. We thought we would start out with a used one to see if we like it. What should I look for when looking at a used coach? Are there any models that I should avoid? We are looking at units from 2005 and newer. Thanks so much for any advice.
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Old 12-23-2009, 05:31 PM   #2
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Welcome to iRV2!!! You'll get some well seasoned advice here.
There is a Newmar Owner's Forum that will probably produce more targeted viewers for your questions on that brand. You can click on that link and bookmark it. You can also do searches on various specific topic where you may have questions.

Happy shopping!
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Old 12-23-2009, 06:47 PM   #3
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Again, welcome to iRv2. Be sure and ask your Newmar questions to the folks in the Newmar Forum. Look forward to hearing from you.

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Old 12-23-2009, 11:21 PM   #4
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I own a 2008 Dutch Star DP and love it. The 2008 Dutch Star DP is equivalent to the 2009 Dutch Aire and NOT the 2009 Dutch Star DP which is equivelent to the 2007 Kountry Star Model [confused?]. If you are going to get a MH get one with the bells and whistles if you can afford it. Find one with a SaniCon Tank Drainage System installed. Also try to find one with a Tire Pressure Monitoring System [my brand is TireStat]. For convenience you should consider a stacked washer/dryer unit. I bought mine new and had to put a lot of $$ into aftermarket conveniences. Therefore, if you buy a used one try to get as much as you can on the coach. You definitely want the Hydronic heating system.
Other aftermarket products installed on my coach include the following:
ˇ UNIFIED TOW BRAKEŽ
ˇ Cobra CB [it had the CB prep kit]
ˇ Blue Ox Tow Bar [if you pull your car 4-wheels down]
ˇ half-pull out tray [mine came with a full pull through tray]
I hope this information helps a little.
If you would like a list of the factory upgrades that came with my MH, please let me know

Best Wishes!
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Old 12-24-2009, 08:01 AM   #5
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Welcome Tom! We're glad you're with us. We just love our Mountain Aire. We traded up to it from a 2003 Kountry Star which we loved also. Main reason for the trade-up? The Comfort Drive - it is a must have. It takes all the strain out of driving. Do not get a rig without it.

I second Rv4Me4Life's comments about the Hydro Hot, pull out slide trays in the basement, etc. Also, the stacked washer dryer is the only way to go. The combo's take forever to do either, and you can only run one load until it is completely done. The basic chassis differences between Essex's & Mountain Aires are the load limits & horsepower of the engine. Mine has a 450 hp turbo Cummins ISM, the Essex's I believe have a 500 hp ISM. We have had ours for 3 years now and aren't even close to the weight limits so that hasn't been a problem for us (and it's not from a lack of trying ). And the engine seems powerful enough for me.

The internals depend on the floor plans, and what color scheme was chosen. Frankly, what we saw didn't tempt me to go for the Essex. Just didn't seem to be that much more ofr the increase in price.

Hope you have fun shopping, but even more fun ON THE ROAD!

Mark
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Old 12-24-2009, 08:11 AM   #6
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Hi RV4Me4Life,
Welcome to iRV2. The only chronic problem I know of is some coaches (MA & DS) had checking paint. These are spider like imperfections in the paint. I think the years were 06-08. Very few coaches have this problem. However, the root cause is the fiberglass. This would not be cheap to fix. Other than that, I know of no chronic problems for the years and models you are looking at.

For me, floor plan sells the coach. The best floor plan is a decision unique to each couple. Personally I like the 45' bath and a half models. The living area TV needs to be directly across from two recliners. I also prefer an all electric coach.

Decide on the floor plan you want and the things that can not be changed or changed at great expense. After you are in the coach for a while, valuable aftermarket devices you "need" will be part of your improving the coach to suit your needs.
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Old 12-24-2009, 06:24 PM   #7
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Go with an Essex.
They can be picked up on the cheap and they are already loaded.
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Old 12-24-2009, 07:14 PM   #8
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WOW this is all GOOD stuff, thanks you so much for the help. There is obviously a lot to learn about these machines. If I'm looking at one a long ways from home are there appraisers who can look at it for me and give me a report on it? I do this with classic cars and it works well. Thanks again. TVB
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Old 12-24-2009, 09:04 PM   #9
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Different strokes, etc. We have a 2007 DSDP 4307, 1-1/2 baths, 4 slides, king bed, tag axle. We don't have Hydro Hot - if it is cold enough to need it, we won't be in the coach. We have also had units with the washer dryer, both stacked and combo, and did not put one in our new coach. Neither work well enough for us.

The non-negotiable items for us were the king bed, 1-1/2 baths, 43ft plus tag.

Try and figure out how much you'll use each feature before deciding what you absolutely must have.
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Old 12-25-2009, 04:59 AM   #10
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Interesting you mentioned your last RV was in '66. Before I bought my Essex my last RV was a new '66 VW Westphalia Bus. Anyway, we thought, after looking around for a while and renting a type C, we found the Essex. Not knowing what we "wanted" on it we ordered all the options. We have not used soe of them, but we're glad we got the unit loaded because we now know what is what. We love the Essex and have driven it 32K miles on and off for three years. We did a little research and found a car which was easy to pull, and that was a good decision too. My advice, let the wife decide which one she likes, then live with it!
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Old 12-25-2009, 06:27 AM   #11
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TomVanderBie:

Had 06 Mtn. Aire and now 08 Essex and LOVED em both. We agree with comments above. We really full time (no house, no stuff in storage....nada) and as such use our rigs and their features extensively so speak from experience.

Couple a points....... YES, get the Hydro/Aqua Hot or (in our opinion the newer quieter) Oasis diesel burner heater. YES, if ya can, get or install the stackable, full sized washer/dryer. YES, consider getting the Comfort Drive, it's a dream to drive. and, finally, here's a tip: If ya have a choice, get the tile flooring WITH infloor heating zones. I know, I know, some will argue this point, BUT, (again from experience) you'll come to know that not only is floor care easier, but, that in floor warmth will be your BEST FEATURE of your rig....even better than Comfort Drive or the full sized washer/dryer.

One last thing, if you're considering a used rig, make certain you include in your Purchase Agreement that the dealer WILL affect installation of ALL, and I mean ALL recall/fix it campaigns pertinent to the rig you select, so your rig is up to date. Check back on this forum for info on a few mechanical corrections undertaken for Mtn. Aires, and/or Essexes in the past few years (ie., see issue w. fan/fan clutch/belt system replacement; see issue with turbo to exhaust connection cracking, etc.)

You're going to LOVE running a Newmar. It's a good outfit, with VERY GOOD, conscientious folks. Despite a few issues (just like EVERY OTHER manufacturer!!) you'll likely come to "KNOW" that the overall QUALITY of manufacture is equivalent to, and more often than not, BETTER THAN other coaches on the road.

Steve & Lynette
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Old 12-25-2009, 07:19 AM   #12
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Hi RV4Me4Life,
On your question about having a coach inspected before you see the coach yourself, the answer is yes. Unfortunately, I have no recommendation on who to contact. Consider getting a list of the inspections they will perform. Ask for a copy of their contract to determine the warranty behind their work. What is their liability, in case a major component they were to inspect fails, shortly after purchase. Lastly, the cost.

I do not know where you are located. January 13 - 17 is the Tampa RV Super Show, in Tampa Florida. I know you are looking at a pre-owned units. However, Newmar will have a large showing of Aire and Star coaches. Rumor has it, the main Newmar dealer (North Trail RV) will have around 30 coaches for attendees to view. What does this mean to you? North Trail has a history of providing very good show prices. If nothing else it will provide a real price comparison between new and pre-owned.
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Old 12-25-2009, 08:11 AM   #13
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Tom,

One thing not mentioned so far is the TV setup's.

Since the country converted to all digital this past April, you won't get TV reception "over the air" on your "bat wing" antenna. Yes, you can get a $50 converter (or 2) to convert analog to digital signals. Many of us have chosen to update our TV's by replacing them with digital/High Definition units. In most cases the new LCD units will have a weight saving bonus also.

The next issue to address is the TV signal input issue. As I write this, I understand there is no DOMED antenna that can hit ALL, either Dish or Directv HD channels, at the same time. There are two "stationary" automatic antenna's on the market that can do exactly that. They are MoToSat and Winegard, both are great. I chose the Winegard unit since there are Camping World locations all over the US for service. I removed the dome on my RV. I've had the Winegard Traveler slim line unit for almost 2 years now and it works wonderful and as advertised . Bill Adams down in the RV SYSTEMS AND TECHNOLOGIES FORUMS section can answer any question you might have about TV's.

I have the Directv "distant signal reception" programming (additional fee) so I can get all network stations- all over the country (if I'm not buried in the woods). My programming is fantastic. I don't even bother hooking up in RV parks with their cable systems. I crank up the "bat wing" for local channels, and many of those transmit in high definition now.

Best of luck to you in you choice of rigs. Newmars are one of the best units out there,
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Old 12-25-2009, 09:17 PM   #14
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thanks for the reply! Why the 1.5 baths? Grandkids?!! We live in Michigan and will leave after Christmas for the southwest. Will we need Hydro hot? Do you do your laundry in the park? TVB
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