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Old 04-26-2011, 09:07 AM   #1
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New Owner w/General Maintance Questions

Hi all,

I have an Eagle Superlight 284BHS. I was just wondering about a few things pertaining to maintenance. First of all, do most of you do your own or bring it in? I would like to do my own if possible but was wondering what sort of things I'd be dealing with.

Are there certain things that should be done on a fairly regular schedule? I guess I'm looking for some sort of guide or schedule showing what should be done and when. I'm new to travel trailers but I want to keep it in tip top shape.

And how about winterizing and storing. Do most people bring it somewhere over the winter months or do you keep yours at home? I'm tempted to keep it home just from a sort of security standpoint kind of thing I guess. I know where it is and under what conditions it's in.

Thanks for any input,
Chris
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Old 04-26-2011, 12:26 PM   #2
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StarGazer, Congrats on your new Trailer! Your owners manual should have a basic maintenance schedule. I makesure that everything is lubed properly. I also before each trip check battery levels, tire pressure, wheel nut torque, trailer lights. I do take mine i once a year for a bearing pack from the dealer since my trailier is new and want record for warantee. Hopefully this helps.!
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Old 04-26-2011, 02:54 PM   #3
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Hi StarGazer.

I do my own TT, Utility and boat trailer maintenance (and repairs / upgrade items). Everything from cleaning, to waxing / treating, to brake inspections, to complete repairs / rebuilds. Being a DIY person since a young age, doing DIY tasks is easy for me. But for some, certain tasks (like plumbing, electrical, heights, brakes, wheel bearings) worry them. Thus, they "farm out" some jobs and do other jobs (that are within their own comfort zone) themselves.

For me, typical DIY items are:

- Manually wash its roof every 6 months. I use Protect-All Roof Cleaner, crawl on "all 4s" and use manual spong - using full arm circle movements. Just like manually scrubing a kitchen floor, I do it manually. Protect-All roof cleaner in spray bottle can be purchased at most RV dealers.

- Visually inspect the caulking every 6 months. If needed, apply Dicro Self leveling sealer (especially in the holes). Will do 12"-15" strip, smooth out (feather it out) with my wet finger, then do the next 12"-15" strip. Where possible, I remove the old caulking by taking a sharp knife and cutting off the high spots. Like shaving high spots off a smooth surface. Deep cleaning and feathering out the new caulking is the main trick.

- After roof is clean and roof caulking is dry, I then apply Protect-All roof treatment. Some say to apply Roof treatment every 6 months and others say every 12 months. For me (and my harsh weather region), I apply Rubber Roof treatment every 6 months. Starting applying roof treatment AFTER factory warranty was finished. Some don't believe in roof treatment. After seeing before and after results (of rain water beading up, elimination of black streaks, easy removal of dirt 6 months later), I'd recommend Protect-All Roof treatment. But, only after the Factory Warranty is completed.

- Every spring (if towing a trailer), I pull each wheel hub off, inspect its brakes and if needed, remove any rust (from winter moisture). When all looks good "behind the hub", I then add new boat wheel bearing grease (which repels water much better then normal wheel bearing grease). And every other year, I replace its wheel hub seal. When trailer is on jacks, some recommend the removal of leaf spring leafs and re-grease their leaf spring eyes as well. And, grease their leaf spring support bolts and plates as well. Thus, reducing their natural wear.

- Ever 6 months, I manually wash the sides and front/rear of my TT. Manual arm movements using mild soap. For the white plastic items, I use "no scrub" bacteria cleaner - which helps remove the mold - like on the hidden outside shower spray handle. And, mold off its white plastic LP Gas tank cover as well.

- After cleaning the sides, front and rear, I manually check its outer caulking as well. Where needed, I'll add some external silicone (clear or white) and if needed, apply caulking in its corners and around the ladder screws as well. Take my time by applying painter's tape around the area, apply only 12-15" at a time, smooth with my wet finger and once it gets tacky, I remove its painter's tape. Thus, creating a nice looking edge.

- Ever 6 months, I manually wax the sides and front/rear of my TT. Use McGuires boat/RV Cleaner / Wax #50. If unavailble, I use normal McGuires auto wax. Or, I might use Mother's Cleaner / Wax. I manually wax (using manual "wax on - wax off" arm movements) 1 x side are per weekend. At end of 3 weeks, all sides are completed. And, my arms don't feel over tired either.

- I use awning cleaning chemicals as well. Manual scrub tasks as well.

Before towing, I check wheel lug nuts, safety chains, ball/coupler play, all light, brakes, etc. etc.

If wondering, my Jayco TT is at a seasonal camp site. I "contract" Winterizing tasks out. I either pay them $60 to winterize or spend the same on Gasoline (to perform 3 hour round trip) - to perform the Winterizing task myself. Thus, the CG owner winterizes my TT. If wondering, each fall he by-passes its HW tank, drains the H/W tank (leaves its bottom plug out), then he uses blown air to clean out the lines. Then, he pumps RV antifreeze into the lines and plumbing goose-neck areas. Thus, ensuring its winterizing is done properly. And in the spring, he re-installs the HW plug and turns the values to normal usage settings. I simply connect the shore power water and "rinse the pipes out".

These are the minimum items I perform every year to my 2006 Jayco TT.

Hope this helps in your research...

.
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Old 04-26-2011, 03:52 PM   #4
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Wow Spike, thanks. Great writeup.

Just a few things. When you say wait until after the factory warranty expires to do the roof treatment, you mean to basically wait two years? Why is that? Would I be voiding my warranty by doing that?

As far as calking goes, there is quite a bit all around the trailer. How do I know when it's no good? Does it become brittle and start cracking off or something? Is it necessary to remove all the old before applying new or just get as much as you reasonably can?

When I bought the trailer the salesman said it's fine to go on the roof and do your maintenance but don't go up there to hang out watching a race or anything. I'm not really sure how to take that. I'm around 205-210 lbs. Will that roof support me?

Yeah, I need to dive into my owner's manual. I picked the trailer up on Friday 300 miles away, got a 2 hour or so demo, turned around and drove home 300 miles. Was a very long day. I was exhausted when I got home. Saturday, it poured and Sunday was Easter. Yesterday I worked all day but at least I finally got the trailer level. I'm hoping tonight I can finally set foot inside the darn thing since the demo. Then I can retrieve my manual from the cabinet over the sink and enjoy some quality reading time.
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Old 04-26-2011, 04:06 PM   #5
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Some folks do NOT treat their roof and others do. Just like some folks NEVER wax their vehicle and some do. I started treating my RV roof AFTER its base warranty is completed. Just like staining (or painting) pressure treated wood, many say to leave the item alone for some time. re: Some say 1 year and some say 2 years. Then, treat the surface.

Treating a roof is an open topic. Some feel its needed. Some feel its a bad thing. IMO, folks apply hand cream when their hands are dry. After applying proper cream to their bare hands, their hands are softer, repel water (actually "bead up" the rain water) and are much easier to clean afterwards. And, the cream fills in the little natural micro-cracks in their skin. I apply Protect-All Roof Treatment to my TT's Roofs because of the same reasons. And, in my region a treated roof lasts 20 years. Untreated roofs need new Rubber coatings or new replacement in 10-12 years. That also proves that treating Rubber Roofs are good in the long run...

I'm 240 lbs, use thick sock feet, install "soft surface" padded knee pads and crawl "on all 4s" on my TT's roof using a high step ladder. Always using 3 contact points on the roof surface at the same time - keeping near its outer edge. And, I never "twist" a contact point in the same spot. Move as if "walking on rice paper" - as some Kung Fu folks say. It might be best to pay 1/2" sheet of plywood (approx 2.5 ft x 4ft on your TT's roof). Thus, distributing one's body weight even more.

This works for me and my 29ft Jayco (and previous 19ft TT).

Hope this helps as well...

.
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Old 04-26-2011, 04:31 PM   #6
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Look at the caulking of brand new TTs. Notice that its caulking is soft (can press with a finger nail) and can be spread around. If the caulking is hard and cracked, it must be replaced. To replace in the side corners, I used a wooden popsickle stick. Scraped out the old stuff and applied new stuff. Only apply 12"-15" at a time and smooth out using a wet finger. And if terrible on edges, use painter's tape on the outer edges. Then, remove tape after the new caulking is appied. Only use Dicro self leveling caulking on the rubber roof. Normal external house caulking can be used around marker lights and around storage doors.

Hope this helps as well..

.
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Old 04-26-2011, 04:53 PM   #7
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.

To apply caulking (Dicor on roof or external house caulk on the outside walls), surf:



Notice he often wipes his right hand finger on a yellow wet spong. He only does 24" at a time and applies only a little amount. Smoothing it out makes it look better as well.

Same technique can be used when applying caulk on the TT as well...

.
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