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Old 02-26-2023, 08:18 AM   #1
Rivet Master
Mike1997's Avatar
1998 36' Land Yacht Widebody
Shepherdstown , West Virginia
Join Date: Jan 2016
Posts: 809
Images: 14
97 Land Yacht with Cummins Diesel

Wanted to share some updates on motor issues with the Airstream.

Since I bought it in 2015 it had an ongoing issue of loosing coolant but it was not leaking and not blowing out the exhaust. About every 700 miles it would take at least a half bottle of coolant to make the light shut off and keep the temp gage in the normal range.

October 2021 I drove from GA to Colorado Springs to get things from storage and the water pump broke in Little Rock, AR. It was towed to Freightliner where they said the pump was bad and belts were broken. $3000 later it was back on the road but the old coolant issue still existed.

April 2022 I found a new diesel shop near my home that investigated the coolant issue. They found the new water pump defective, all hoses cracked, and the radiator clogged up. $1800 and it was back on the road.

June 2022 I drove it to the International Rally in Maine and experienced overheating and coolant loss again. Had reason to suspect the temp sensors were bad as they were not Cummins parts.

August 2022 shop inspects and has Cummins rep onsite mainly to discuss why the motor with so few miles has these problems. (82k miles) It was determined it had a blow head gasket. Cummins and shop agreed the motor should have lasted 500k miles without anything major but it sat to long and was not used enough. $3500 later is running again.

November 2022 I drive to WV for the holidays and it breaks down near August, GA with engine protection lights on. Local shop finds the radiator completely clogged on the motor side of the radiator with tar and debris.
Anyone familiar with these rear engine pushers knows they get lots of debris in the motor compartment from the rear wheels. Apparently I drove on a newly paved road (Hwy25) with wet tar and clogged the radiator. $600 plus a tow bill later, its running.

December/January 2023 I drove to FL for the holidays and had no mechanical problems and gas mileage is now in the 12mpg range towing a Jeep. So far so good as I am packing for a trip to CA in March. Also put a new set of tires (6) on it for $1700. So....such is life in a classic 25 yr old Airstream
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