Wednesday, October 17, 2007

'Baby' Maintenance, TV and Water Filters

Being a newbie to RVing and after using Babe for a few months I learned that there are certain items that need more attention than others. While I was periodically checking the tires, oil, and other obvious things a somewhat mechanically inclined person would check, I was missing some items that need at least monthly attention. I had failed to check the coach batteries and so the first time that I checked them (four months after purchase) they were of course lower than they should be. Oh and they are a pain to check. The first few times that I checked them I removed them because there was not room to see the acid level much less add water if needed. Since then I have purchased a mechanics mirror (similar to a dentist mirror only it has a flexible head) and use it with a flash light to check the acid levels. It is hard to be precise this way but I can see well enough to know if I need to add water.

Yesterday, when I checked the batteries I noticed some corrosion starting around one of the terminals and on the shelf the batteries sit on, so I decided to take the batteries out and clean things up. It was a good decion because as I was removing the batteries I bumped the angle iron that is there to hold the batteries in place and it moved. One of the screws that held the bracket in place was broken. It was an easy fix, I just backed the screw head out then used vise grips to turn the threaded end out of the hole and replaced the screw with a stainless steel screw. I know God watches over fools like me for what would have happened if those batteries began slidding around in that compartment?

Other things on my monthly check list? Engine: oil, coolant, drain fuel/water separator, check air cleaner/restrictor, look at belt, and check for leaks. Transmission: fluid level. Generator: run under full load, oil, and coolant. General: batteries, tire pressure, bleed air tanks, washer fluid, AC filter washed. While I do these things I try to spot any thing that does not look right.

As you know from our blog we go to all of Trevor's football games. The home games are televised in HD on the local channel. At one of these games we asked Kyle to bring his small flat screen tv so we could watch the pregame, half time and post game shows. It did not work...all we got was static. Today I traced down the problem (hopfully) to a splitter that was miswired not allowing signal to get to the outside jack. Now all we have to do is test it.

Lately I've been researching water filters as I plan to replace ours soon. There are a lot of different opinions out there about what is best and how to use it. Right now I leaning toward a Hydro Life filter system. When I fill the tank from home I will not filter the water allowing the chlorine in the water to help kill bacteria that might be in the tank. On the road, I plan to use a Hydro Life HL-180 in line filter. I discovered the Hydro Life filters while searching for a replacement filter for under the sink. Hydro Life uses a filtering systems that I read about on other web sites. It is priced in the mid 30's (a little higher than other brands) and scews in between two hoses making it compact and easy to use.

This is my first addition to our blog site, so please send your comments. In particular, I would like to know if any of you have helpful comments on my maintence list or water filtering.


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