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Old 03-04-2017, 02:18 PM   #1
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Things to do to a new camper

I was just wondering should we consider doing anything to a new camper to start out right?

We pick up our JF 25BH in 10 days and I have been reading about what we will need. We had a camper before so a lot of the stuff that got moved into the garage for now will find a new home in the new camper so not really looking at the common things like pressure regulator, filters, hoses, dog bones and such.

Rather I am wondering about things like should I go up on the roof Eternabond the seals because it is easier to do to a new roof compared to an old one? Is it easier now rather than doing the 6 month inspections and decide to do it a few years down road when I now have to do a lot of cleaning first? Not that I would ignore the 6 month inspections either way but I have read about how much people seem to rave about Etrnabond so I will likely do it at some point anyhow.

Maybe there is something else I should consider when it is new to help the longevity of the camper.
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Old 03-04-2017, 02:34 PM   #2
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Nothing much comes to mind. Great thing about a new camper.
I would install Max Air vents if it don't have them.
Maybe camp in driveway or local park for a few days to test systems.

I would also look at frame and tongue. I usually primer and paint any chips etc in the paint.
Otherwise, enjoy the 1st 6 months off :-)

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Old 03-04-2017, 02:50 PM   #3
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Air Max already on my shopping list. Forgot about that one but that is why I was going to be up on the roof to begin with and thought about the Etrnabond before I have 2-3 years of dicor touchups that I am trying to cover with Eternabond. We already had a reservation at a local county park (5 miles from here) for early may when they open.

I plan on a couple overnights in the yard. It may be hard to really test until it warms up more but I need to find out if the 3000w Yamaha Inverter we have is big enough to power the new camper. Being the dealer upgraded the AC from the normal 13.5K to the 15K unit. I am afraid I am going to have to step up to a 4000w generator between that and if I want to run the outside fridge at the same time. So then the debate will be do I go with a set of 2k units with a parallel kit or just get a 4k. Not looking forward to dropping about $2k on a set of Hondas like my father in law has so I might evaluate some other options like the Champions even though they are a little louder.
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Old 03-04-2017, 02:52 PM   #4
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You live in a great area!

I am not farmilar with that particular model. If it has an open underbelly, I would crawl underneath and look for every little hole a mouse could crawl into. Fill it with a small piece of steelwool and a little marine silicone caulking. Then do the same from the top side, there are lots of places a mouse can get in.

Also if you have an open underbelly, apply liquid electrical tape on the wire connections for the tanks. While there add a few zip ties to pull up and secure any wires or tube that are hanging low.

I'm going to apply eternabond to my htt, I think this year. No rush.

I would check and inspect the caulking especially in the area that are hard to see, just to be sure it is sealed up nice.

Last thing, check the ac unit to ensure the fasteners are snuf, but do not over tighten them, or you will have to replace the seal prematurely.

Hilltop is great to work with and fixed my initial warranty items immediately after my first trip.
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Old 03-04-2017, 03:28 PM   #5
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We live over in Grant (between Stillwater and St Paul) and so far Hilltop has been pretty easy to deal with. Glad to hear about their service department. The only thing that I was a little concerned about was that they seemed a bit confused. I spoke to the sales lady and she said we are getting the one that was at the RV Show. But when talking to service to set up the PDI and the finance guy they were both saying no, it was a unit that they had in storage. Though the while at the show I snapped a photo of the build sheet which showed their stock number which matched the write up and all paperwork. I do know they were saying they were swamped because with the warm weather people are flocking in and the RV Show was busy. To make matters worse in Feb they were still on reduced winter hours so trying to cram more work through in less time. Though I think she said they were back to normal hours as of 1 March.

The first trip will be out to Lake Elmo Park which is a few miles away from us. Then we will largely be dry camping at a private area near Ellsworth WI.

The unit we went with has the optional insulated and enclosed underbelly.

It also has the optional external ladder to make it easy to hop up there to clear the slide-out before breaking camp and periodically check things.

One other thing on my list is the conversion to cut the power cord and replace the hole where you stuff the cord in the camper with a 30A twist lock.

https://www.amazon.com/Marinco-30ARV.../dp/B000NUYZQC

I never liked the opening in the side of our old camper. The only problem is that the cord stuffs into an area that appears to be under the shower. I need to figure out what I need to access to install this kit. Maybe I don't need to access anything on the inside. Just pull out all the cord, cut it off, remove the current housing and install the outlet and seal it up. I still need to read up on the installation process.
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Old 03-04-2017, 07:54 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sennister View Post
Air Max already on my shopping list. Forgot about that one but that is why I was going to be up on the roof to begin with and thought about the Etrnabond before I have 2-3 years of dicor touchups that I am trying to cover with Eternabond. We already had a reservation at a local county park (5 miles from here) for early may when they open.

I plan on a couple overnights in the yard. It may be hard to really test until it warms up more but I need to find out if the 3000w Yamaha Inverter we have is big enough to power the new camper. Being the dealer upgraded the AC from the normal 13.5K to the 15K unit. I am afraid I am going to have to step up to a 4000w generator between that and if I want to run the outside fridge at the same time. So then the debate will be do I go with a set of 2k units with a parallel kit or just get a 4k. Not looking forward to dropping about $2k on a set of Hondas like my father in law has so I might evaluate some other options like the Champions even though they are a little louder.
I have run the 15k AC off my Yamaha 2400 after adding a hard start capacitor. I would suspect that your 3000 will be just fine unless you're looking to brew a pot of coffee with the AC running.
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Old 03-05-2017, 12:48 AM   #7
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Go through the trailer and tighten/clean every electrical connection you can find. In particular the neg wire to the trailer frame, the fuses, the circuit breakers, battery connections, etc.
Do the same thing with the various plumbing connections.
Snug up(do not overtighten) the bolts that hold the air conditioner down.
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Old 03-05-2017, 06:47 AM   #8
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Go through the trailer and tighten/clean every electrical connection you can find. In particular the neg wire to the trailer frame, the fuses, the circuit breakers, battery connections, etc.
Do the same thing with the various plumbing connections.
Snug up(do not overtighten) the bolts that hold the air conditioner down.
The Air Conditioner has been mentioned a couple times now. Since I have never messed with the one on my old camper, I know the mounting screws for vents and various thing are some times covered by sealant (dicor). To access the AC bolts are they visible and accessible or do I have to remove sealant to tighten them down that I will have to re-apply after I am done? Just want to pick some up if I need it.
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Old 03-05-2017, 06:59 AM   #9
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I had planned on doing the eterna bond as well when we bought our 32, but haven't yet.... I do pick up a vent cover for the bathroom vent and will at least do around the vent before installing the cover.

keep us posted if you do cut the 30a cord. I keep thinking about that as well, just haven't decided to pull the trigger.

Can't think of anything else mentioned. Maybe just start thinking about any mods to the 25 you would like to do.

Enjoy the new rig!
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Old 03-05-2017, 07:03 AM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sennister View Post
The Air Conditioner has been mentioned a couple times now. Since I have never messed with the one on my old camper, I know the mounting screws for vents and various thing are some times covered by sealant (dicor). To access the AC bolts are they visible and accessible or do I have to remove sealant to tighten them down that I will have to re-apply after I am done? Just want to pick some up if I need it.
The 4 bolts are on the inside and you need to take the cover plate off and the next panel to get at the 4 bolts. Don't over tighten them just snug them down.
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Old 03-05-2017, 07:17 AM   #11
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The 4 bolts are on the inside and you need to take the cover plate off and the next panel to get at the 4 bolts.
Ahh perfect. I would have been up top trying to figure out what you guys were talking about.
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Old 03-05-2017, 07:20 AM   #12
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You have already gotten a lot of great suggestions.

Eternabond - I did my 2016 already. I did it correctly on a previous trailer and have never regretted it.

Maintenance Regiment - I started a detailed maintenance regiment complete with documentation from the first week I got it home and have continued to do so. Every time it is washed/waxed, seal checks, filter cleanings, tire checks, everything. I use a digital program to keep it in with a paper backup.

Documentation -
I shot quality photos of every label, inside and out, if it has a label I have a photo of it and digital note page of everything I know about each option, appliance, everything, including frame and axles.

This has helped with research, recall lookups, mods, and as the rig ages some labels will fade or get damaged ie Water Heater labels. So having photos of them when new is helpful.

Consider adding a power management system when you do the detachable cord mod. I did this on ours and have my mods listed on our rigs blog at https://sites.google.com/site/stormp...fications-list

I have found doors that needing to be adjusted, etc and I have keep up the maintenance regiment like it was 6 years old. I track miles and nights used. Mileage is wear and tear on the chassis, twisting, etc while nights help gauge wear and tear on an interior.

Detailing the inventory you add, etc for insurance is a side effect. Once you get it all done then up keep is easy.
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Old 03-05-2017, 07:40 AM   #13
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Originally Posted by DanNJanice View Post
Go through the trailer and tighten/clean every electrical connection you can find. In particular the neg wire to the trailer frame, the fuses, the circuit breakers, battery connections, etc.
Do the same thing with the various plumbing connections.
Snug up(do not overtighten) the bolts that hold the air conditioner down.
2x on this and checking all of the seals religiously. We are going to put Eternabond over our roof seals this spring. We are also adding a Max Fan. Jayco needs to install these or make them readily available. The fans they use are so outmoded/dated.
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Old 03-05-2017, 11:34 AM   #14
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Another tidbit not mentioned yet. When in the A/C unit snuggling the bolts, check the connection to the ceiling ductwork. Seal up all the holes and cracks with foil tape. It makes the A/C more efficient. Also check the electrical connections at the front of the TT. The low voltage connections from the TV connector are sometimes atrocious. Several of ours were loose.
Enjoy your new rig.
Happy Camping
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