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Old 05-25-2021, 03:52 PM   #1
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Are RVs getting too fancy?

We just got a new RV and it is full of bells and whistles. I have yet to learn all of this stuff, but we were getting ready for our shakedown cruise today and I wanted to turn on the fridge so it would be cold when we stored our food this evening.

The fridge is a 3 way and I turned on the LP gas. In this RV there is an ON/OFF switch in one of the outside compartments and after turning it on I tried to light a stove burner to make sure the propane was flowing before I turned on the fridge. Nothing happened - no propane flow.

To make a long story short I spend 30 minutes checking everything - fuses, the ON/OFF switch, the manual flow valve on the tank and other stuff, and finally realized that I was the problem. This stove requires that the burner ON switch has to be rotated and pressed to light the burner, not just rotated to ON. OK. Now I know, but that raised a question in my mind. Are we getting too fancy with our RV gadgets?

If the solenoid failed when I turned the systems back on after storage I would have no way to use the propane for anything. If it failed and closed during a trip I would have no way to use propane for anything, and the only way to get it to flow again would be to replace the solenoid. I probably can't do that myself and I would have to take it into a shop. The old way, turn a manual value on or off, was simple and relatively failsafe. The new way is not.

Part of me thinks this is just one more step in making life easier, but part of me wonders if we are just getting so fancy that simple fixes can no longer fix simple problems. Am I wrong? Just wondering what people think.
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Old 05-25-2021, 04:25 PM   #2
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Maybe they should just eliminate the propane all together and you can cook on an open campfire. That way, you'll never have worry about having issues with a regulator, broken hose, etc.

Okay, just being facetious.....how far back in time do you want to go, to possibly avoid issues, manual windows in your car, manual transmission....horse?
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Old 05-25-2021, 05:29 PM   #3
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I feel that way about my newer truck. 700+ page owner's manual and I don't even understand half the words used to describe all the fancy stuff. I think the truck is smarter than I am. Mrs Ldubs says that was probably true of the old truck too.
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Old 05-25-2021, 05:42 PM   #4
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Maybe they should just eliminate the propane all together and you can cook on an open campfire. That way, you'll never have worry about having issues with a regulator, broken hose, etc.

Okay, just being facetious.....how far back in time do you want to go, to possibly avoid issues, manual windows in your car, manual transmission....horse?
I'm OK with a campfire but I don't want to go back as far as horses, you have to feed them whether you are moving or not.
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Old 05-25-2021, 05:57 PM   #5
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There was nothing wrong with the way a 57 Chevy/Ford/Chrysler, ran ; but then the space age came along, and everyone wanted more and more , ease of operation and creature comfort , then emissions controls happened and things got way worse .
When I started in automotive , overhauling carbs, and re-building generators ( yes I'm that old) some advances in equipment were a plus, alternators for one, then it became tech for tech's sake .

I firmly believe that now that engines and transmissions are for the most part trouble free , vehicle manufacturers are installing the tech as the plan to forced obsolescence of their product . Computer controlled everything ; ever try to get a ten year old computer fixed .
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Old 05-25-2021, 06:06 PM   #6
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Yes. Way toooooooo fancy
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Old 05-25-2021, 06:22 PM   #7
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Sounds like you have a Class C with remote LP control & Fill
Tank is located between frame rails and is difficult to reach/access the Tank Manual Valve


That set up has been used for years



BUT
Bells & Whistles Sell!!
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Old 05-25-2021, 06:40 PM   #8
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I'm not sure if I'd call it "fancy". But rather more and more complex. Having spent 40+ years in IT, I know all too well that simple has a reasonable chance of working correctly will complex systems and software are very hard to verify if they run securely and correctly.

I fell much the same way about RVs. It seems that some manufactures add all sorts of new gizmos just because they can and not to solve a real problem. For example the newer touch screens to control nearly everything in RVs, from turning lights on-off to operating blinds, water pump and temperature. This means you have a single point of failure for most of your RV. I prefer discrete components where a failure likely only means a limited number of things stop working. I can turn a light switch on/off just fine mounted on the wall or the light itself.

Same goes for the motor chassis of some makes/types of RVs.

IMO- there at least three categories these "upgrades" fall into. Those things done to improve safety (but you still can't fix plain stupid), things done for plain blitz and curb appeal, and last things done to function and livability. With that said for those who full time in their RVs might reasonably want something very different from say boondockers.

At least, I think manufactures should be publishing detailed diagrams and explanations how these RVs are assembled and how these ever more complex systems are related and interlocked. Our forum is full of people asking how to fix things and we see many responses with well intended but frequently wild guesses and just wrong information. There are some members here I have the greatest of respect for their contributions.

But this is just my opinion.
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Old 05-25-2021, 07:06 PM   #9
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Im good with all the high tech gadgets and sophistication. There's no way I'd be full timing to live everyday like were camping, were not camping were living and i want all the modern conveniences and luxury. Now if I was just camping then I'd just get a Coleman tt and sit by the fire and make Smores after I split wood but having an rv to live in is a whole other story and then I want all the room, comfort and tech that I can get. Yes more tech means more things to be fixed by specialists because you can't diagnose the problem and correct it yourself but that's the life in which we all live in now a days. Just trying to enjoy all the new gadgetry that these young people invent now a days and not be stuck in the rotary dial phone generation. Some young person is going to eventually read this post and be like " what was a phone that had a dial that rotated". Ahhh yes those were the good old days. With the evolution of technology it's so hard to not feel old and left in the dust.
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Old 05-25-2021, 07:26 PM   #10
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Im good with all the high tech gadgets and sophistication. There's no way I'd be full timing to live everyday like were camping, were not camping were living and i want all the modern conveniences and luxury. Now if I was just camping then I'd just get a Coleman tt and sit by the fire and make Smores after I split wood but having an rv to live in is a whole other story and then I want all the room, comfort and tech that I can get. Yes more tech means more things to be fixed by specialists because you can't diagnose the problem and correct it yourself but that's the life in which we all live in now a days. Just trying to enjoy all the new gadgetry that these young people invent now a days and not be stuck in the rotary dial phone generation. Some young person is going to eventually read this post and be like " what was a phone that had a dial that rotated". Ahhh yes those were the good old days. With the evolution of technology it's so hard to not feel old and left in the dust.
What's a rotary dial? My phone has a crank on the side.
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Old 05-25-2021, 07:32 PM   #11
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.... This stove requires that the burner ON switch has to be rotated and pressed to light the burner, not just rotated to ON. .......
Thats far from fancy or new. Water heaters, gas log fireplaces, etc. The push to light the pilot has been around longer than RVs.
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Old 05-25-2021, 07:37 PM   #12
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My budget would never allow for a new motorhome. But, I certainly could have purchased one a lot newer than the one I have (1997). I spent a long time looking for one which was old enough to have a mechanical diesel. When I was younger, I worked on tractor-trailers and I am comfortable with them. There are very few things that will prevent a mechanical diesel from running. Most of these things can be overcome with a bit of work which is possible with hand tools in a parking lot. This is not the case with newer models. Computer this and sensor that.... They have engineered the reliability out of diesels by adding all of the unnecessary stuff they have these days. An example of this is when my fuel solenoid failed while I was on a trip in South Dakota. In a few minutes, I was able to determine the issue and figure out a work around. I was able to complete the trip and replace it when I made it back home. That's not likely to happen with a computer controlled model.

The same applies to vehicles for the most part. The drivetrain reliability has improved, but the drivetrain reliability does not matter if the computer garbage fails. I am not at all interested in any new vehicles.
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Old 05-25-2021, 07:43 PM   #13
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Are we getting too fancy with our RV gadgets?

.
Yes!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Outside kitchens
Outside TV
Outside Lights
Outside Speakers
Black Tank macerators
Pop up TVs
Vibrating/heated/Reclining lazy boys
Heated floors
Mood Lighting LEDs
Indoor Fireplace

The list goes on and on.
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Old 05-25-2021, 08:14 PM   #14
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Yes with the computerized gadgets, touch-screens, bluetooth appliances, etc. not even the factory technicians can repair them, sometimes they simply remove the non-working electronics and install a new one for that reason.



Propane cooktops and ovens have turned on that way since 1968 that I'm personally aware of, have you read your appliance owners manuals?
That's the first thing I do when I buy something complicated, sit down with a beverage and read the owners manuals, I carry them in the MH JIC I need to refresh my memory.
Don't fall victim to the male mantra, "if all else fails read the manual".
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