I just wanted to say how amazing this forum has been since purchasing our AS last year. I've came to it time and again on the dozen or so nights that I've been able to stay in it since our purchase. Now that our son is 2.5yrs old and our daughter is 16 weeks, I'm hoping to get a lot more use out of it next spring. HUGE moment as we were just able to move it to our place in the mts in VA last weekend. I'll be staying in it several days coming up while we build a workshop.
I'm hoping that I can significantly shorten the learning curve on the AS by finding someone willing to meet up with me to do a walk through on the unit. I live in Raleigh but the AS is about 30 minutes from Virginia Highland Haven between Floyd and Stuart VA. If anyone is available in that area, it would be much appreciated to meet up... I'm willing to compensate you for time & gas as well as grill you the best steak of your life in exchange for your expertise. 8-) The previous owner that we purchased from was a bit cynical so I only asked as many questions as I could before he got a passive aggressive 8-)
So here are the areas of knowledge that I'm lacking:
1) Understanding of the winterization process including blowing out the lines, R/V antifreeze etc
2) How to utilize the pump system and the cleaning of the fresh water tanks. I read about the bicarb, vinegar, and bleach solutions but have no idea yet how to begin to execute that on our model. I'm not quite sure of the hot water heater drain plugs etc.
3) I'm setting up the electrical panels and hookups on our property now so want to make sure that I take into account the feedback of seasoned RVers in picking the things that are most needed. The neighbor's had a 20amp RV outlet and we tripped breakers a few times when A/C would kick on while Microwave was running. I'm assuming b/c the AS is 30 amp, correct?
4) I'm currently trouble shooting the gas furnace.. last trip it started blowing cold air after a while... I'm going to recheck breakers and fuses on next trip before exploring replacing high limit switches, boards etc.
5) Most importantly - every time that I stay in the AS, I'm amazed at the level of engineering found in every little nook and cranny; I would love a seasoned AS'er to walk me through it.. I'm confident that there's a ton that I would discover about it
6) Does it hurt resell value if we replace out some of the brass lights etc? I'm assuming that we would keep all of them so that a future owner would have them if they wanted OEM parts.
7) We'll likely utilize the AS mostly stationary for the next couple of years as we enjoy our land and get a ton of permaculture principles in place. We'll likely begin construction of our cabin in 2-3 years. Is there any advice for the sewer hoses for a more permanent solution? How about for the fresh water hose to keep it from freezing. I have hose insulation and some heated strips for it but was thinking since the run is so short that I might be able to do it a different way from the faucet. Anyway to keep the power cable compartment more secure? I found a field mouse had made a home in that compartment since we parked it last year.
8) I've got a little rust in a couple of compartments like the water connection compartment. Ya'll see any problem with taping off the section and neatly spraying the compartment with some of the rubber compound to stop it from rusting further and to clean up the area?
9) I would like to clean up the exterior since it was parked under trees previously without any protection. Is Walbenizer still the preferred cleaning solution for our model? I was thinking of going over it lightly with my pressure washer then hand washing, then buffing with Wal? good plan or you have a more efficient method?
10) I would like to learn more about the 12V
system. Since we removed from shore power, I turned off the connection for the batteries to keep it from draining. I have not explored yet if I need to add water to the batteries or whatever else maintenance is even needed on them. When boon docking, do you all run inverters from 12V
outlets to charge your phones and other 120V devices? Could you run tv from inverter off battery? I've got a generator that I will run periodically to recharge the batteries. How does being on battery effect the heating options in the AS (I've only been on shore power so far) We used the gas furnace mostly with radiant floor heater as the primary heat source.
11) How do you all run things like coaxial cable etc into the AS? I want to hook up a large external tv antenna to see if I can pick up local channels. The little flat antenna got nada in the mts 8-) We'll be getting internet as well so sure there will be a cable for that as well.
Thank you all so much for the feedback. It's greatly appreciated.