EPDM Coatings
rvupgradestore.com Composet Products PO Box Zone
Over The Network Custom Yacht Interiors

Author Topic: Prep for long haul after 7 yrs stationary  (Read 5568 times)

highnoon52

  • ---
  • Posts: 6
Prep for long haul after 7 yrs stationary
« on: July 16, 2008, 07:44:33 PM »
Hi y'all! Just joined the forum and have already learned a bunch, though not about what I'm looking for. Thus, my first post!

My wife & I have been fulltimers since 1997, when we sold our Colorado home, bought an old Bounder to see how we'd like the lifestyle. Traveled through the midwest, down through Georgia, stayed near St. Augustine, FL for a while, upgraded to a new Coachmen Santara MH. Actually got off the road for awhile, buying a houseboat on the St. Johns River. Had to return to our midwestern roots in 2001 due to some family health issues. We bought a 38 ft. Avion fifth wheel, and have been parked here (near Rockford IL) ever since, enduring some nasty winters and mosquito-filled summers. Now, we're looking forward to weighing anchor and heading back to the southwest...New Mexico, to be exact.

Haven't invested in a truck, and probably won't anytime soon due to the fuel $$ situation. We're going to have our Avion towed by a service, and likely will "park it" for another while.

Now my question: After 7 years stationary, and with everything having been in good working order when we parked, what are the main things to have looked at in preparation for a 1500-mile haul? Obviously my primary concern is the tires. They were new (or nearly) in 2001, and have not budged since. Do they need to be replaced? Do the brakes deteriorate over time? Any other stuff that suffers from long-term lack-of-use?

Any input would be greatly appreciated.


Wendy

  • Forum Staff
  • ---
  • *
  • Posts: 12482
Re: Prep for long haul after 7 yrs stationary
« Reply #1 on: July 16, 2008, 08:01:11 PM »
Can't help much on what to do after sitting for 7 years (other than replacing the tires) but I'm interested in where in New Mexico you're headed.

Wendy
Farmington New Mexico for one more night than back up into cool Colorado
Wendy, Mike, and Gordon
~We can't be lost because we don't care where we're going~
Here's where we are http://map.datastormusers.com/user2.cfm?user=2276
2015 Allegro Ooen Road
1973 Sunshine Yellow VW Bug

John From Detroit

  • ---
  • Posts: 19633
  • ^My New Home^
    • Diabetics Forum
Re: Prep for long haul after 7 yrs stationary
« Reply #2 on: July 16, 2008, 08:03:47 PM »
I would indeed inspect the brakes... Being as it's a trailer and they are electro-magnetic  I do not THINK there will be much needed however self-adjusters (Easily replaced and not expensive) do sieze up and you may need to steel wool the inside "Face" of the drums to remove rust

There are a few other things,  Re-pack the bearings for example.. But that's about it for a trailer.. Normal lub and inspect everything paying special attention to anything that consumes propane (Fridge, water heater, furnace, and the like) test run A/C and such.

Oh, and a good wash and wax
Nothing adds excitement like something that is none of your business
My Home is where I park it.

highnoon52

  • ---
  • Posts: 6
Re: Prep for long haul after 7 yrs stationary
« Reply #3 on: July 16, 2008, 08:33:26 PM »
Can't help much on what to do after sitting for 7 years (other than replacing the tires) but I'm interested in where in New Mexico you're headed.

Wendy
Farmington New Mexico for one more night than back up into cool Colorado


We're tentatively going to Desert Haven Animal Refuge in Williamsburg (near TorC.) It's a no-kill animal shelter that hosts work campers in return for helping out with the animals and general upkeep. Right up our alley.

Where in Colorado are you heading back to? We lived in Aurora for a short time, but spent several years in Castle Rock, which we loved!

Wendy

  • Forum Staff
  • ---
  • *
  • Posts: 12482
Re: Prep for long haul after 7 yrs stationary
« Reply #4 on: July 16, 2008, 08:41:37 PM »
I didn't know shelters had work campers....sounds like something I'd enjoy if I could stop myself from trying to fit all the orphans in the motorhome. We have a yellow lab we adopted from the Las Vegas SPCA.

We live, mostly, in Cortez Colorado, far SW corner. Tomorrow we're headed to a rally north of Buena Vista Colorado. We called Colorado Springs home for 8 years....God bless the Army for stationing me at Fort Carson. But the Front Range is way too crowded now for us.

Wendy
Farmington NM
Wendy, Mike, and Gordon
~We can't be lost because we don't care where we're going~
Here's where we are http://map.datastormusers.com/user2.cfm?user=2276
2015 Allegro Ooen Road
1973 Sunshine Yellow VW Bug

highnoon52

  • ---
  • Posts: 6
Re: Prep for long haul after 7 yrs stationary
« Reply #5 on: July 16, 2008, 08:44:35 PM »
I would indeed inspect the brakes... Being as it's a trailer and they are electro-magnetic  I do not THINK there will be much needed however self-adjusters (Easily replaced and not expensive) do sieze up and you may need to steel wool the inside "Face" of the drums to remove rust

There are a few other things,  Re-pack the bearings for example.. But that's about it for a trailer.. Normal lub and inspect everything paying special attention to anything that consumes propane (Fridge, water heater, furnace, and the like) test run A/C and such.

Oh, and a good wash and wax

Oh, yeah...the propane. DUH!! Can't believe I didn't think of that. Don't want a big orange fireball traveling up the interstate.

Detroit huh? Are you a "motor city" native? I grew up near Toledo (Bowling Green, OH to be exact.) Got my FCC third-class broadcast license at the fed bldg downtown Detroit. Used to listen to CKLW ("The Big 8") in Windsor in its glory days of the late 60s.


Tom

  • Administrator
  • ---
  • *
  • Posts: 44393
    • RV Forum web site
Re: Prep for long haul after 7 yrs stationary
« Reply #6 on: July 16, 2008, 08:45:00 PM »
Quote
... Desert Haven Animal Refuge in Williamsburg (near TorC.) It's a no-kill animal shelter that hosts work campers in return for helping out with the animals and general upkeep.

Oh gosh, I'm sure we'd come away from there with an extended family.
Tom.  Need help? Click the Help button in the toolbar above.

Carl L

  • Forum Staff
  • ---
  • *
  • Posts: 7303
Re: Prep for long haul after 7 yrs stationary
« Reply #7 on: July 16, 2008, 09:41:45 PM »
Quote
Now my question: After 7 years stationary, and with everything having been in good working order when we parked, what are the main things to have looked at in preparation for a 1500-mile haul? Obviously my primary concern is the tires. They were new (or nearly) in 2001, and have not budged since. Do they need to be replaced? Do the brakes deteriorate over time? Any other stuff that suffers from long-term lack-of-use?

Replace the tires -- they are at the end of their service life of 5-7 years.   

Repack the wheel bearings.   

Have the brakes checked for operation.   

Have the breakaway switch checked for operation.   

Check out running and brake lights. 

Check the batteries for charge and condition -- they may well be at the end of their service life of about 5 years.  

Check and lube the jacks.
« Last Edit: July 16, 2008, 09:44:22 PM by Carl L »
Carl L/LA   [Forum Staff]  KI6SEZ

Prowler 23LV TT pulled by a '95 Ford Bronco

highnoon52

  • ---
  • Posts: 6
Re: Prep for long haul after 7 yrs stationary
« Reply #8 on: July 16, 2008, 09:55:11 PM »
Replace the tires -- they are at the end of their service life of 5-7 years.   

Is this true even if the tires were virtually new when we parked the fifth wheel and it hasn't been on the road since? We've been living in it during that time, but have not traveled. Does the rubber degrade even though not in use?

Tom

  • Administrator
  • ---
  • *
  • Posts: 44393
    • RV Forum web site
Re: Prep for long haul after 7 yrs stationary
« Reply #9 on: July 16, 2008, 10:09:06 PM »
The tires will degrade faster if you don't use them.
Tom.  Need help? Click the Help button in the toolbar above.

Gary RV_Wizard

  • Forum Staff
  • ---
  • *
  • Posts: 60421
  • RVer Emeritus
Re: Prep for long haul after 7 yrs stationary
« Reply #10 on: July 16, 2008, 10:32:03 PM »
Replace the tires - seven years of age is enough to kill them, whether driven or not. I'd also get the wheel bearings repacked with grease and have the trailer's electric brakes checked out thoroughly, both mechanically and electrically. The brakes can rust into an unmovable mass and the wired connections can corrode. Also check the trailer running lights and breakaway switch to be sure they are in working order.
Gary
--------------
Gary Brinck
Summers: Black Mountain, NC
Home: Ocala National Forest, FL

Carl L

  • Forum Staff
  • ---
  • *
  • Posts: 7303
Re: Prep for long haul after 7 yrs stationary
« Reply #11 on: July 17, 2008, 12:37:26 AM »
Is this true even if the tires were virtually new when we parked the fifth wheel and it hasn't been on the road since? We've been living in it during that time, but have not traveled. Does the rubber degrade even though not in use?

Absolutely.   RV tires rarely treadwear out unlike a car's tires.   They just rot out by 5-7 years.  The rule is replace all the first failure after 5 years and in no case let them go unreplaced by 7 years.    Leaving them stationary just speeds the process up because the solvents in the composition are not distributed by flexing.
Carl L/LA   [Forum Staff]  KI6SEZ

Prowler 23LV TT pulled by a '95 Ford Bronco

Ron

  • Former Staff
  • ---
  • Posts: 18087
Re: Prep for long haul after 7 yrs stationary
« Reply #12 on: July 17, 2008, 09:52:24 AM »
Like others have recommended replace tires that are 5 - 7 years old.  Personally it the rig has been parked for a long period iof time I would replace tires that are over 5 years old.  Age of tires are determined by the date code on the tire not when they were installed.
Ron & Sam-home is where we park it. Currently located   HERE

highnoon52

  • ---
  • Posts: 6
Re: Prep for long haul after 7 yrs stationary
« Reply #13 on: July 19, 2008, 07:30:00 PM »
Hi, everyone. Thanks for your input. I've started checking prices for new tires...turns out there's only one tire made that fits the manufacturer's specs, Unisteel G614 RST, which means it's expensive (at least to me)...$306/tire! The hang-up is that the manufacturer (Avion) specifies a load range "G." Just about every possible alternative I looked at was "E", and priced in the $125 to $150 range. I'm la little worried about going down on the specified load range, so guess I'm stuck.

Anyway, again thanks for the input! See you around the campfire.

Len

Carl L

  • Forum Staff
  • ---
  • *
  • Posts: 7303
Re: Prep for long haul after 7 yrs stationary
« Reply #14 on: July 19, 2008, 08:33:11 PM »
You do have a big trailer and weight will be an issue.  If you have been pricing P or ST series tires, you might try the LT (light truck) series.   You may find a more competitive market in the G rated tires.   If the outside diameter will fit, you could save a buck or two.
Carl L/LA   [Forum Staff]  KI6SEZ

Prowler 23LV TT pulled by a '95 Ford Bronco

 

Hosted by Over The Network