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Old 07-27-2013, 06:58 PM   #1
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1997 31' Land Yacht
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To Dealer or not to Dealer, that is the question

I am new to this forum and new to RVing(1 day to be exact). In our research, we just kept coming back to Airstream RVs. After looking at several and getting beat to the sale on several more, we found a nice 1997 Airstream Land Yacht, P30. We drove it home last night and first thing this morning, the infamous Auto Park locked in and we were dead. In troubleshooting, the relay is spitting the fluid out like a faucet.

In talking to the regional Airstream Service Center, they highly recommended that due to the unique build of the Airstream, one should always take it to the Certified Repair Center for service. However, today when I needed them most, they were a disappointment. Another RV repair center was fantastic! They returned my calls promptly, actually helped me troubleshoot over the phone without charging me, and didn't expect the business. For this work, I am definitely using this non-certified center, but I wanted to ask the group, should I really just be using the Certified Repair Centers when I need service and repair on my used Airstream RV for the long-term?

Thanks everyone!
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Old 07-27-2013, 07:10 PM   #2
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I am new to this forum and new to RVing(1 day to be exact). In our research, we just kept coming back to Airstream RVs. After looking at several and getting beat to the sale on several more, we found a nice 1997 Airstream Land Yacht, P30. We drove it home last night and first thing this morning, the infamous Auto Park locked in and we were dead. In troubleshooting, the relay is spitting the fluid out like a faucet.

In talking to the regional Airstream Service Center, they highly recommended that due to the unique build of the Airstream, one should always take it to the Certified Repair Center for service. However, today when I needed them most, they were a disappointment. Another RV repair center was fantastic! They returned my calls promptly, actually helped me troubleshoot over the phone without charging me, and didn't expect the business. For this work, I am definitely using this non-certified center, but I wanted to ask the group, should I really just be using the Certified Repair Centers when I need service and repair on my used Airstream RV for the long-term?

Thanks everyone!
Tough question that does not have an easy answer.

For general repairs, a good shop can usually handle it just fine.

When repairs are needed that requires an in depth knowledge of Airstreams, then what shop to use changes.

Then, when Airstream exclusive parts are needed, that you will pay for, non dealers cannot buy from the factory. However, non dealers can buy from an Airstream dealer, but it will cost you more money that way.

Andy
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Old 07-27-2013, 09:00 PM   #3
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I am not going to comment on your original question but have to ask. What do you mean by this comment.

In troubleshooting, the relay is spitting the fluid out like a faucet.

I am aware that there are hydraulic and pneumatic relays used in industrical control systems but not in automotive. What is this liquid?
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Old 07-27-2013, 09:42 PM   #4
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I am not going to comment on your original question but have to ask. What do you mean by this comment.

In troubleshooting, the relay is spitting the fluid out like a faucet.

I am aware that there are hydraulic and pneumatic relays used in industrical control systems but not in automotive. What is this liquid?
The auto park is hydraulically applied. There is a pressure sensor that is prone to fail, and spew hydraulic fluid like Vesuvius. When it does, what a mess it makes...
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Old 07-27-2013, 09:51 PM   #5
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Is the pressure sensor the piece that everyone calls "the dreaded green switch"? If so that was not where the spew was coming from. It was across the system from it. Perhaps it was the actual Actuator? I wish I would have had the camera ready. It WAS like Vesuvius!
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Old 07-27-2013, 09:54 PM   #6
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One more note...the liquid was transmission fluid. The system uses Dexron-3 fluid. I used two bottles of it while troubleshooting. All now on the pavement!
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Old 07-27-2013, 10:00 PM   #7
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Is the pressure sensor the piece that everyone calls "the dreaded green switch"? If so that was not where the spew was coming from. It was across the system from it. Perhaps it was the actual Actuator? I wish I would have had the camera ready. It WAS like Vesuvius!
I remember it being green, and looks like a two pronged oil pressure switch. I've changed more of those than I like to think about, usually while laying in a puddle of whatever was in the auto park reservoir.
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Old 07-27-2013, 10:11 PM   #8
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Thanks for the good info on dealer service Rivet Master. Much appreciated.
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