Because there hasn’t been a bunch going on since our last update (different from the routine we talked about) I thought we would touch base on a little hiccup that happened while we were in Creede Colorado that just got fixed.
Towards the end of our stay in Creede the temps were getting down low enough at night that one morning I felt the need to turn on the heat in the front room and it was cold enough that I figured turning on the diesel side of the Aqua-Hot system would be a good idea. So I flipped the switch and the burner kicked on just as it should have and no hot are came out of the vents, not really uncommon when we first turn on the system on a cold morning after everything being turned off over night.
After a few minutes everything in the system got hot enough that the burner shut down but we still didn’t have any warm are coming out of the vents, crud!! At that point I went to the rear of the coach and turned the system on back there and we had heat. I then checked the hot water and everything was fine there as well, hmmmm.
We have 3 zones in our motorhome that the Aqua Hot can handle either on electric or diesel burner, rear heat, front heat and water heater.
At that point I headed outside to have a look at the control panel and found we had a red light lit up next to the Pump #1 insignia, not good. I then reset the system in hope things would fix themselves but no luck.
I had read on the Tiffin Forum that others have had similar issues and that Aqua-Hot had a bad batch of pumps pass through their inventory a while back and the timing of that was right in line of when our coach was built so I had a sneaky suspicion we had fallen victim as well.
Mid-morning I called Aqua-Hot and explained out situation and after giving them our VIN# they immediately said we did in fact have pumps from the bad batch and volunteered to send us 4 new one’s at no charge so we could replace all of them which is a good thing because the pumps alone are about $135 each plus the mounting bracket adaptors and new hoses and clamps. Unfortunately they would not cover labor.
At that point we were only going to be in Creede a few more days and from there we planned to start heading south so I wasn’t overly worried about not having the heat working in the front of the motorhome especially because we had the electric fireplace and heated floors to fall back on. Plus we do carry a small electric heater with us for emergencies. So I asked them to hold off on sending the pumps until we reached Casa Grande where we had reservations for 3 months. Plus Aqua-Hot informed us that there was an authorized Aqua-Hot tech in Casa Grande in case I didn’t want to tackle the task myself.
Even though switching the pumps is something I could do I figured why not contact the tech in Casa Grande and at least see what the cost would be to have them do it for us and to get our name in the hat well in advance because once all the snow birds start hitting the area everyone gets extremely busy.
Other than having the thought in my head that the other pumps in our system came from the bad batch and they could go belly up at any time also all was good for the next few weeks while traveling south.
We arrived in Casa Grande on October 15th and had an appointment set up with the RV Medic on October 22nd just to have them take a look for themselves and we decided to go ahead and have them do the job on October 29th. They only do Aqua Hot repairs on weekends, that’s when their top notch Aqua-Hot guy works.
I decided to let them do it instead of me tackling it for a couple reasons, #1 is that all of the boiler fluid needed to be drained from the Aqua-Hot system (7 gallons) and then put back in. They have drain tubes all made up AND have a pump system that put’s all the fluid back in in a matter of maybe 5 minutes where I would have had to try to poor it into a reservoir that is in a very tight location. In fact when I need to add fluid I poor it into a red plastic hillbilly cup, squeeze it at the top and poor it in ½ cup at a time LOL!! It would have taken hours that way. Of course I would have made up a hose and funnel type thing if I would have decided to do it myself, but then I would have something to haul around that I may really never need again.
#2, I would have had to cycle the system a number of times manually to get diesel pumped back through the lines between the fuel tank and the Aqua-Hot system where they had a devise made up that made it a very simple process. Even though this part would not have been a big deal it does all come into play in our decision making.
#3, the unit was due for a service so while it was all taken apart it just made sense to have it done while he had it torn apart. A service includes a good cleaning, a new nozzle, a new filter, a new photo disc and whatever adjustments may need to be made. The parts alone are over $50.
#4, Last but not least I’m 23” across the shoulders and the door opening to where the Aqua-Hot system is located is 21” wide with a nice built in “Love handle” grabber and I would need to crawl in almost waist deep to do the work!!! Been there done that and it hurts like H*** LOL!!!
Anyway, 2 hours later the job was completed and everything was once again working as they should.
In case you are interested in what’s involved in working on a system like this here is a link to a great write up in the RV Teck Magazine.
Since the time of the repair and the writing of this update we have ran the system a couple times and all has been well. We will be here for another 2 months so we will certainly have more chances to run it and if anything pops up we will still be in the area where the tech is located which does not happen much in this full-time life style. Normally we have work done and then travel away so if something turns up later we have no way to go back on the people that did the work unless we want to back track. Lucky for us we have not experienced this except once but we have heard stories from many other full-timers that have not been so lucky. IT’s just one of the dark sides of choosing this life style.
That’s it for now, things have been picking up here at the park, The National Pickle Ball Tournament is in full swing, Diane has started taking a class in Genealogy, Diane also signed up for golf lessons to sharpen her game, Lawn Bowling starts on November 15th and we will be participating in that, I’m still hitting the air field almost every morning, I have a new plane on its way to add to the hanger and we are still working out in one form or another every day.
We also got together with our good friends Bob & Karen for lunch one day. They are staying in Gold Canyon about 60 miles away so we met in the middle in Florence. As always it was great seeing them again.