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Old 06-29-2017, 07:13 AM   #1
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1st RV Purchase Help - 1994 / 1996 Jayco Eagle 28' Motorhome

Hi everyone, my Wife and I are getting ready to purchase our first motorhome and we are pretty novice when it comes to the RV world and wanted to know if anyone could give us advice on this RV that we are planning on purchasing this afternoon.

It says that it is a 1996 Jayco Eagle 28' but the title says that it is a 1994 and the owner said that is for the Ford Frame.

It seems to be very well maintained by an older couple and has 32,000 Miles on it.

The asking Price is $8000

Is this a okay deal and is there anything specific that would be a red flag I should be looking for when buying it?
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Old 06-29-2017, 07:56 AM   #2
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Looks like a nice clean unit.

Water damage is your enemy with any type of camper including MHs. I would look over the unit with a fine tooth comb looking for water damage, including soft spots in the floor and roof. Roofs and front overhead bunk window are known to leak (any camper) go top side and check the caulking, inside look for water staining. If you see open cracks, be concerned. If you see lots of different caulking up top, be happy, that means it has been maintained. Check the walls and all the joints especially between the Ford cab and the house.

If there is an on board generator, check the hours. They need to be exercised at least 1 hour per month at 50% load, so it should have at least 240 hours on it. Run it and turn on the AC to excise it to see how it works.

Beyond that look at standard wear and tear. Take it for a good test drive, on a variety of roads and speeds. If it meets your initial inspection bring it in to a FORD shop for larger vehicles and have it inspected. 32K miles sounds great, but it is low miles and on some vehicles it is hard on the seals, in the engine and transmission. Do you know what engine is in it? could do a Google search for known issues.
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Old 06-29-2017, 07:59 AM   #3
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First off welcome to the JOF. You will find a lot of good information here so don't ever hesitate to ask a question or share anything with the rest of us.
The Ford chassis was most likely built in 1994 and Jayco built the coach in 1996. You may be able to find a label somewhere in the coach providing that info along with tire and weight capacities. Keep in mind that a coach built in 1996 is now 21 years old so even though it has been well maintained and has low mileage all the components are 21 years old. That's not necessarily a bad thing but just be aware that you may come across items that may eventually need to be replaced/repaired. Tires and batteries are key items but you have a lot of things like the refrigerator, stove, propane system, plumbing (black water, grey water and fresh water), electrical components, roof, awning, engine, exhaust system, etc. Has the MH been stored inside or has it been exposed to the elements? As far as price goes it comes down to what you think you can afford and if you're happy with the price you pay for it then that's all that matters. It doesn't hurt to make a lower offer because they just might accept it but if they say no you still have the option to accept it or walk away. Good luck with your search and eventual decision and let us know how it turns out.
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Old 06-29-2017, 08:29 AM   #4
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Nothing to add really, as mentioned water intrusion is the killer for trailers/motor homes. If you are really new at this, you might want to see if you can get someone out to inspect it.
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Old 06-29-2017, 08:31 AM   #5
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194 Generator Hours

Thanks for the quick replies and advice! The generator has 195 hours on it currently, I took a quick look around yesterday at it and looked for water leaks, the rear window on the drivers side looks like it had a leak at some point and was repaired, you can see it in the pictures, and a little of the inside of the window shows some water damage.

The generator started right up yesterday but I could not get the furnace fan / ac to turn on, I only tried for a quick second so I am sure it could have been user error.

The propane tanks are empty and currently the vehicle is winterized, should I just fill the water tank with hose water and test the faucets / plumbing?
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Old 06-29-2017, 08:33 AM   #6
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All good advice above. I would say though that the MH was likely built in 94 and sold as "old new stock" in 96. It's a couple extra years on any parts, but shouldn't make any significant difference.


Agreed on water damage as the major issue. Personally, at first sign of any water intrusion (open seams, old caulking that is cracked or pulling away, etc.) I would walk away. Just not worth it. Especially if there is signs of actual water damage, the signs are like icebergs, there is way more below the surface than what you can see.


Service records will also affect the value IMO. A well documented unit will be worth more than the same unit in the same condition without documentation.
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Old 06-29-2017, 08:47 AM   #7
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I always worry about the on board propane tank too.
I believe anything over 10 years has to be re-certified and maybe fittings changed.
They will not re-fill your lp tanks if not certified.

Also check hanger straps and frame around lp tank, generator, black and grey water.

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Old 06-29-2017, 11:33 AM   #8
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Inside the coach, the fridge is the most costly item to replace. Make sure that one is good, even though you have to wait a day for it to cool. This thought comes from personal (and expensive) experience.
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Old 06-29-2017, 12:19 PM   #9
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Thanks Again everyone! It is very helpful having all these tips before I make the plunge.

I am planning on going back to do a final inspection and decide if I am going to purchase it in a couple hours.

I will be sure to test everything that I can.

As for water, the back window on the drivers side looked like it was repaired, it does not look like there is much water damage or anything but you can defiantly tell that there was an issue of some kind as some point. Is this something that I should take as a reason to walk away or is this something that is common and if taken care of properly should not be an issue?
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Old 06-29-2017, 12:32 PM   #10
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New Camper

I know crazy question are the black and grey tanks empty? I would fill the freshwater tank. Then check all the plumbing.Make sure dump valves work. Check battery charge levels.Could be costly if your have to replace several. Does camper have shore cord, sewer drain hose?Spare tire? Enjoy welcome to the forum.
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Old 06-29-2017, 12:44 PM   #11
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Talking water damage. Of you see what looks like bulging/waviness in areas of the exterior fiberglass siding it is a sign of water damage. There will be a little waviness to fiberglass just due to the manufacturing methods, just compare to what the majority looks like.

On my phone there appears to be water damage behind and above the rear wheel, but it could just be bad resolution on the phone.
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Old 06-30-2017, 10:52 AM   #12
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So, did you buy it?
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