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maltnhops 09-01-2009 03:01 PM

Classic Motorhome Air Horns
I feel a little silly asking this, but...

How do I get the air horns on my '89 345 to work? To my knowledge, the horn button on the steering wheel is activating a "standard" horn that is mounted behind the front access door behind the grill. I have air horns on top, but I have no idea to activate them. Any help is appreciated.

maltnhops 09-01-2009 03:03 PM

Whoops... I guess I forgot to update my saved signature. No more Bambi. :(

pjude 09-01-2009 03:41 PM

air horns
On my 86 345 the horn button on the steering wheel activates the air horn look alikes on the roof. I do not have any horns behind the grill. I am thinking about adding a real set of air horns but it requires a compressor and tank.Pete

345bill 09-01-2009 04:02 PM

On our 90 345 the roof air horns are activated with steering wheel button. There is a electrical horn relay under the dash to the right of steering column and a solenoid for the air lines mounted at the left kick panel.

I'm calling left & right as if you're sitting in driver seat.

A plunger, inside solenoid, stuck open one time and horns blew until air was depleated. It wasn't easy to find solenoid but it was easy to fix once I found it. Just had to dis-assemble, clean with very fine emory cloth & lubricate. Havn't had any problem since. Perhaps your's is stuck in closed position.

maltnhops 09-01-2009 08:58 PM

Thanks for the replies, but now I may be more confused than ever. pjude says they're not even real air horns, but 345bill says they are. I will be looking under the "hood" again at what I think is a horn and I'll have someone else press the horn button so I can determine where I think the sound is coming from. I will also look for the horn relay and solenoid described by 345bill.

Someday, I would like to add some annoying musical air horns just for fun. But for now, I can think of plenty of better ways to spend $90 on the MH.

I just bought an expensive brass bathroom faucet on ebay for $37 because brass is definitely out of style by today's standards. But, it's perfect for 1989!

Thanks again for your replies.

345bill 09-02-2009 10:33 AM

[QUOTE=maltnhops;742733]Thanks for the replies, but now I may be more confused than ever.

maltnhops-one thing I've learned here on the forums is that there are many different items and locations of items even on the same year and model MH. You'll get two different people describing what's on their particular MH, each may or may not describe whats the same as yours.

What has worked for me is reading all posts I can find on a particular subject then use that to whatever circuit I'm presently trying to figure out on mine and usually come up with an answer. Might be because of so few MH's produced they never stuck to actual production line type assembly or might depend if original owner had certain options he wanted?? Also how many items have been added or removed through the years.

Everyone here has helped me out many, many times and it gets easier to understand the more familar you get with your own coach.

maltnhops 09-15-2009 10:34 PM

I had a friend listen outside as I blew the horn (from the steering wheel button). It definitely blew a horn "under the hood". It's mounted directly in front of the driver, about in line with the headlights, vertically speaking. There was a point when my buddy thought he heard some noise from the airhorns, too. I thought maybe it something to do with the compressor building up pressure to blow them. It sort of made sense to me that there would be a "normal" horn because there would be no air pressure to blow air horns if the motorhome was not running. Am I making any sense?

Buttercup 09-15-2009 10:49 PM

Hmmm - on Airtini, all I hear is a relay clicking - nothing else. I have seen the horns "under the hood" but have not touched anything else yet.

Mikethefixit 09-16-2009 01:34 PM

If they are for real,you may need to dis assemble and clean them. If they have been open (NO BELL COVERS) they get dirt and moisture and they do corrode inside. If they have ever been in a salt environment that definitely will add to the interior corrosion of the horns.
Depending on the OEM U may be able to get new gaskets for them. Most of the horn company's that make for big trucks are still in business.


cooperhawk 09-16-2009 02:04 PM

Okay, I drove semis with real air horns for some time and they all had air lines running to them. When I look at the horns on the roof of my 345 all I see is an electrical wire running to them. I think they are electric.

3 Dog Nite 09-16-2009 02:54 PM

My 1989 345 has electric horns on the roof & a standard horn behind the grill. Both are activated by the steering wheel button. You can check the rooftop "airhorn" by unplugging the standard horn & pushing the steering wheel button. You can also look at the rooftop horn. Does it have electric wires or airlines going to it? I dream of putting those railroad engine airhorns on Laverne. Of course I'll need a 2nd reserve tank for this.


ScrapIrony-2 09-16-2009 10:35 PM

Our 345 has the horn button on the steering wheel, and another set of horns under the 'hood' has a toggle switch on the dash, to the right of the steering wheel...m

Howard Lefkowitz 10-18-2009 11:48 AM

They are not air horns.
The horns on top are not air horns just fakes. There is no air supply and there is a 12 volt wire going to them. They are not even as good as my Jeep. It pained me every time I had to blow the horn with no one believing it was the big beautiful Airstream Motor Home. The solution was purchasing a set of real air horns from Camping World that would fit in the front, lower section, of the Motor Home. I rewired the steering wheel switch to the new horns and now people took notice. I kept the fakes to keep the holes filled.:lol:

klattu 10-18-2009 02:37 PM

Electric on roof and electric in grill.
Mine on top had stopped up with age and bugs, just clicked and hummed.
Found a good set of S/S at a marine supply

345bill 10-18-2009 04:17 PM

Here's more on how mine came from AS.

There's an air line that originates at the rear tank (tank for rear bags) then comes up to the left kick panel where a solenoid is mounted, from there the air line goes directly to the roof air horns. This solenoid is activated electrically from the horn relay, which is mounted to the right of the steering column.

Besides the roof air horn there is a regular looking 12V horn under the hood, on mine.

Both are activated by pushing the steering wheel button.

GlenCoombe 10-18-2009 04:25 PM

Best solution here is to tap into your air supply for the rear suspension on the coach and plumb up to the grill. Mount your new "truck stop" supplier true air horns under the grill away from the real world and then hold on to your ear drums. Those critters are loud!

jy electric air horns are under the grill and just don't do the job and I'm ready to mount real air horns. Just another of the long list of items to add to Airstream One.

DaveFL 10-18-2009 04:58 PM

When we bought our AS told DW that it would be nice to have air horns, she didn't think it was needed. Then I was looking under hood and there were 5 horns, two looked like car horns but the others were trumpet shape, turns out the three are electric air horns. but weren't wired right.
I solve my wiring problem then figured reason for low decibels was that they were hidden behind hydraulic tank for jacks, realigned them to grilled area facing forward and was able to test on neighbors cat ;) who happened to be approaching coach so I waited until it would do some good and now know they work great.

ScrapIrony-2 10-18-2009 08:17 PM

Our PO installed a set of real airhorns under the hood, and a toggle switch on the dash...the wimpy roof horns often stick...embarassing, when yer leaving a rally...m

klattu 10-21-2009 12:14 AM

This is what I replaced my electrics with...
Very easy swap too.
Stainless Steel, and less than $100 for a pair.

Seachoice Trumpet Horns -

John H. 10-24-2009 09:58 AM

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Chuckles 02-04-2010 11:31 AM

I did the same as Klattu, Bought them out a chandlers for 70 here, sounded the same as the original horns only better, but fitted the same holes!
I have got a pair of very large chrome air horns. rigged them up to the workshop compressor at 45psi - oooooh! sounded like the Queen Mary (1). Think I will need some air tank for them!

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