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Old 02-03-2020, 09:57 PM   #15
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Weather checked or cracks I would recommend changing. Replaced rear bags 3 years ago on mine and front were replaced October 2019. I would think that where you operate the coach may make a difference on bag aging. Exposure to
various road contaminants may be a factor. Not just time.

Best of luck and safe travels!

Cheers
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Old 02-03-2020, 10:35 PM   #16
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I always take a look at everything each time I service. Noticed that one airbag had cracks that I thought a little to large. Managed to get phone behind and took pictures, looked worse. So ordered 8 new bags. While changing there were a couple that most definitely needed replacing. They are a bugger to do. Can't imagine trying on side of road. They were not expensive.
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Old 02-03-2020, 10:59 PM   #17
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Milehghcty View Post
I recently had Bay Diesel change my air bags on 2006 40' bus.
I've got a 2003 with leaking fronts over a day or two so about how much should I expect replacement to cost at a shop. I assume you go to a big semi truck type shop, right? Thx.
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Old 02-03-2020, 11:14 PM   #18
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Darin1960 View Post
Might find this interesting. ( link below)
https://youtu.be/SMAG86c9XgM
Quote:
Originally Posted by Darin1960 View Post
More Interesting stuff.
https://youtu.be/yypw2c3Oy84
First video, gas chassis, helper air bag, for a overloaded gas MH! Not the same kind of air bag we are all talking about!

Second air bag on a semi trailer? Not the same as a RV chassis air bag, and subjected to a lot more weight!

My 97 Freightliner semi that I ran with a million and a half miles on it, had the original air bags, and the two semi-trailers with air ride suspension had the original air bags, one a 98 the other a 2000!
The only time I heard about replacing the air bags, was when things rubbed against them, and they got a hole?
Changing out the air bags because of cracks, are making a lot of shops happy, and if it makes you feel better, go ahead, it's your money!
But don't justify your actions buy telling someone else, they should do that too!
My 96 Monaco has the original air bags except for one, that had to be replaced because a rock got in the bottom of it on a rough fresh oiled and rocked road, and it rubbed a hole in it! Did it blow, no, it just leaked off in a couple of days!
You hardly ever hear of a air bag blowing! Just does not happen that often, and I am sure if you look hard enough you will find someone that it did happen too! But it is far from the normal!

NHRA225
1992 American- original Air Bags- Minor Checking on the surface- No leaks @ 238 K Miles- Why are there so many Air Bag changes on here ?


And as NHRA said, my thoughts exactly!

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Old 02-03-2020, 11:17 PM   #19
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Did my own front and back, air springs were a bit over 1000.00 maybe closer to 1100.00 I will have to look up reciept. I would suspect labor to be close to that , front is more work so more time involved , with the lifts and whatnot a big shop will probably have , I am sure they will be faster than I was . Never paid for service on anything other than alignment or recharging ac , stuff like that, so I probably am off but I guess mine would have been near another 1000 00 with the high cost of labor. All depends on the time involved.
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Old 02-04-2020, 01:47 AM   #20
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The bags on my 2001 Newmar DP were cracked and had them replaced last year.
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Old 02-04-2020, 02:09 AM   #21
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The average age of air bags is 15 years. Although the replacement depends on the condition. Sometimes bags work fine after 15, and sometimes they fail earlier. So, you should replace if air bags are in doubtful condition.
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Old 02-04-2020, 04:18 AM   #22
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My 06 Wanderlodge had the bags changed out last year. I don't know how bad they might have been. The PO had them changed out when he purchased the bus. He purchased a bumper to bumper warranty on the bus and that was covered.
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Old 02-04-2020, 08:23 AM   #23
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Concerning the video, the rear suspension is infact an air ride, they marketed it as airsensoride, much more than a" helper air bag" If you look at the video , you will notice 2 things, first the rear springs do not attach to the frame at the rear . They are attached forward of the axle to the chassis and attach to the plate where the air bag rest thus making this very similar to coaches with a solid beam rather than springs but none the less the springs and rear axle are lifted by the air bags rear of the axle . Second , the fact that the blown air bag did cause him a difficult roadside repair. As far as the bag it self , I have looked at hundreds of air bags ( actually air springs) and the one in this video is pretty much exactly the same you will find on most air ride systems. In his case , it was not a DP, but if you had a failure in a DP while going down the road at a high speed , I will bet you about any amount , there would be some serious damage. As far as the truck , I am fully aware it is a truck and not an rv but the air spring is similar to the point most folks who saw them on a shelf would not be able to tell them apart and they behave exactly the same function . I only shared these videos the show folks whom have committed that they have never seen an air bag bust or fail )

GUARD RAIL53 WROTE, "The only time I heard about replacing the air bags, was when things rubbed against them, and they got a hole?
Changing out the air bags because of cracks, are making a lot of shops happy, and if it makes you feel better, go ahead, it's your money!
But don't justify your actions buy telling someone else, they should do that too!"

Sir , that is a pretty harsh reaction, I have zero reason to " justify" anything. Dang man , just sharing my experience and opinion being the OP asked a question . You say that the only bags you ever "heard of" being replaced were the result of something rubbing the bag or developing a hole . Suppose an earlier inspection would have alerted someone that their bag was being rubbed or developing a hole, would that justify them replacing their bags or should they just wait for a roadside failure?
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Old 02-04-2020, 11:55 AM   #24
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air bag change out

My coach is a 2000 model and I blew an air bag when it was 9 years old. I had no more problems with the original air bags, I decided to change them all a few months ago. Labor was $450 and air bags were about $150 each. Keep one each of the old ones for spares. Just in case they may get me out of a bind sometime.
The old bags were looking pretty shabby,but not leaking.
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Old 02-04-2020, 10:59 PM   #25
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"Sir , that is a pretty harsh reaction, I have zero reason to " justify" anything. Dang man , just sharing my experience and opinion being the OP asked a question . You say that the only bags you ever "heard of" being replaced were the result of something rubbing the bag or developing a hole . Suppose an earlier inspection would have alerted someone that their bag was being rubbed or developing a hole, would that justify them replacing their bags or should they just wait for a roadside failure?"

I stand by my statement! With over a million and a half miles driven with my own air ride equipment, and now with my 8 bag air ride 96 Monaco, yes the bags are checked/cracked, but they don't leak! I got to know quite a few mechanics in all of my travels, and some of my best friends are wrenches, and they all say the same thing, if it is compromised, replace it!

The air bags/air springs on MH's are the same used on class 8 trucks, which load them to 80K lbs day after day, week after week, year after year, and most of the MH's carry half of that weight, a tenth of the time! So replacing them at a tenth or a hundredth of the duty cycle, is in my opinion, is wasting money! Like I said earlier, if it make you feel better, go ahead and replace them! Hearing that a air bag/spring has blown out is a very rare occurrence, even in the trucking world, even rarer in the MH world! And most of them are from something rubbing a hole in it, causing it to fail!
But as I have said, "if it makes you feel better" go ahead and replace them, and save one of the better looking ones, for a spare!
One more thing, most don't know, the front air bags/springs are usually smaller than the rear one's! Rail!
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Old 02-05-2020, 03:10 AM   #26
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This was copied from the American Trucker Association.
Inspection (50,000 miles) – Air Spring
1. Visually inspect air spring for cracks, gouges, distortions,bulgesand chafing. Replace damaged air springs. If the air spring is damaged, there is a high probability that there may be other problems with the suspension. 2.Check air suspension for leaks. With vehicles.
As you can clearly see , they recommend replacing if damaged which includes all of the mentioned conditions Also take note they recommend checking every 50,000 miles. I could share other info that states most bags " age out" much like the tires on our MH's . The age out has little to do with the miles driven as a matter of fact pretty much all the cracks I had on mine were at the folded area when deflated . While inflated , the cracks were an inch or so up on the side because when they inflate they sort of roll upwards ( best description I can think of) so sitting deflated did more damage simply because of time and also the fact that while deflated , the bottom has a tighter bend upward , when inflated it is swollen and has a much more rounded profile. That 50,000 mole inspection would equate to atleast 2 inspections per year on a commercial truck but some other sources recommend quarterly inspections every year. The fact that several sites Recommend REPLACEMENT if cracks are found and also mention that they do infact age out . Before you even say it , yes these are recommendations from a trucking association but it covers class 3- class 8 commercial vehicles so it is safe to say class A coaches fit in there somewhere. As another comparison, ( mentioned a bit above) commercial trucks have basically the same tires we run but 99% of the time our age out waaaaay before they wear out. So you go ahead and run yours till they are "compromised" , that is your right and I have no problem whatsoever with your decision , shoot if I see you sitting on the side of the road I'll stop and help but dont come on here and accuse me of "justifying"my actions by telling someone eto do something I did when the fact is I never told anyone to do anything, I merely pointed out some Info.
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Old 02-05-2020, 11:34 PM   #27
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Darin1960, First, the ATA is a "for profit" trucking association, that has nothing to do with the DOT or the FMCSA! What you quoted is a guideline?

This is a direct Quote from the FMCSA (Federal Motor Carriers Safety Association)
§393.207 Suspension systems.
(a) Axles. No axle positioning part shall be cracked, broken, loose or missing. All axles must be in proper alignment.
(b) Adjustable axles. Adjustable axle assemblies shall not have locking pins missing or disengaged.
(c) Leaf springs. No leaf spring shall be cracked, broken, or missing nor shifted out of position.
(d) Coil springs. No coil spring shall be cracked or broken.
(e) Torsion bar. No torsion bar or torsion bar suspension shall be cracked or broken.
(f) Air suspensions. The air pressure regulator valve shall not allow air into the suspension system until at least 55 psi is in the braking system. The vehicle shall be level (not tilting to the left or right). Air leakage shall not be greater than 3 psi in a 5-minute time period when the vehicle's air pressure gauge shows normal operating pressure.
(g) Air suspension exhaust controls. The air suspension exhaust controls must not have the capability to exhaust air from the suspension system of one axle of a two-axle air suspension trailer unless the controls are either located on the trailer, or the power unit and trailer combination are not capable of traveling at a speed greater than 10 miles per hour while the air is exhausted from the suspension system. This paragraph shall not be construed to prohibit—
(1) Devices that could exhaust air from both axle systems simultaneously; or
(2) Lift axles on multi-axle units.

NO where does it say anything about cracking of the air bags/springs!
So you now know what the rules from the D.O.T. say! This is right out of the hand book that every qualified truck driver has to carry with him, at all times!
Rail!
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Old 02-06-2020, 09:59 AM   #28
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guardrail53, we are not talking about regulations , we are talking about preventive maintenance , two different things. There are several things that the ATA covers or others such as rv owners , truck owners and so forth do that FMCSA rules dont cover. A good example is tires and tire age . FMCSA section 393.75 ( Yeah I still got one too) on tires has no restrictions covering tire age , NONE but we all agree that there is a safety issue with tire age and most people have a timeline as to when they change out tires in relation the date on the tire. So going by your thought on using the FMCSA as you go to maintance/inspection guide , we can run 20 year old tires as long as they pass all the rules in section 393.75. Don't think that will be a good idea but that would be you choice as well. Look, done with this, not going to get into a p-----g contest with you over this anymore. You have accused me of things that I did not say ( You wrote:
"But don't justify your actions buy telling someone else, they should do that too") I never told anyone to do anything , period, I passed on my experience , made statements concerning the aging crack and so on even told one posted whom seemed to disagree we me that he may be ok with cracks but did warn what could POSSIBLY happen if his failed while going down the road. That is all I have said . No one can predict the future, my brand new bags could blow up today, my tires that are 2 to 3 years old could all blow out as soon as I drive out my driveway, heck a meteor might fall thru my roof and kill me in the middle of the night, who knows. Will share one last thing Firestone , probably the biggest name in airsprings , list age crack along with several other issues that need attention when doing an inspection , they mention inspections at 50,000 miles as a suggestion , or quarterly, bi annually and so on . they even have pics that show issues and one of the pics is the age crack , others are cuts , bulges and overexertion . ALL of these issues are mentioned and are warnings of future failure . Done here .
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