Nov 04, 2019

Cummins results and we are exhausted

Last night we had a relaxing dinner at home and watched a movie. Colin had already taken down the dish and packed it up.  Sometime in the past few days we discovered that we could download Netflix and store them on my iPad. In order to watch those shows on our TV screen we needed a special HDMI cable to connect the iPad to our new smart TV.  Something like this.  That cable cost us $65.00 USD. We should have picked it up in Canada where it was the same price but in Canadian dollars or order it on that Amazon link at an even lesser cost. It worked and we watched a just released movie.

I did not sleep well last night, likely my mind was thinking about our Cummins appointment today.  I heard the roar of the Harley come in at 1:40AM.  Then the diesel pusher leaving at  4:10AM roused me from my light sleep.  I had been worried about starting the RV and disturbing our neighbors, I guess if he did it at 4AM then we should not worry.  The alarm went off at 5:10, I had just been waiting for it.  We were driving by 6:10AM.  I drove the Jeep using GPS and Colin followed.  Bit of a glitch once we turned onto Alexander as the GPS stopped.  Fortunately I had reviewed the route on Google maps last night and knew where to go more or less. Colin later told me that the GPS would not take the Cummins address.  We later found out that this facility was just under two years old so it likely is not in our GPS.  Did not use the freeway but Nellis Blvd instead.  We were first in line at 7:00AM when they opened.  However the RV never went in until closer to 8:00AM. Apparently it takes over an hour to check in.

Colin first in line. The doors electronically unlock at 7AM!!

I finally got a phone call from sweet 16’s insurance company while we were waiting.  The fellow had no idea how to deal with my many questions and had to keep putting me on hold to check with his manager ( turns out she was to be my final adjuster ).  He was pushing for us to take the Jeep in and get it repaired so that they could send us a cheque.  Or just take it in for an official estimate and they would send us a preliminary cheque. He did not understand that we have no mailing address here in the US ( we will have driven into Mexico by then ) or that we had no place to deposit the cheque.  He was not happy with having to wait until we get back in April to finalize all of this. I very carefully and slowly repeated what we were going to do ( so that the recording would be clear ) and asked him if that was all right with him.  Yes it was if that is how we wanted to deal with it.  Bueno.

Colin was calm but I was on pins & needles as we waited.  There was another couple in the lounge with us and they put the TV on right away but were not even watching it.  She was texting and he was literately sawing logs, quite the snore.  They had been here for five days and were still waiting for their repairs. As polite Canadians we said nothing about the noise to the TV, nor the log sawing. We finally got some RV news about 11:00 AM.  First the mechanic needs to talk to the shop foreman who then talks to the service advisor who then talks to us.  No wonder they charge so much per hour.

There were only four places to sit in the lounge and I decided that this is where we wanted to be. The other two seats were recliner loungers just in front of this area and the TV right is front of them.  Plus there was no wifi, I could not believe that.

Very long story made short based on being at Cummings for just over six hours, is that we have no problem with the coolant and the engine is fine.  However we may have air in the coolant system ( which might have happened last April when we had the coolant drained into a bucket to test it for integrity and perhaps they might not have refilled it enough )  which means that we might have to keep adding coolant until it is full.  They have no idea why the coolant reservoir empties every day.  They suggested that we probably don’t need it and perhaps the RV manufacturer added it on for no particular reason. Or perhaps it is an old plastic tank and is worn and could be replaced but they did not think that we needed it.  They suggested that we check with an RV dealership.  So Colin will just keep refilling it every day.  It does not drain when we are parked, just when we are traveling.  They did however tell us that there were no leaks in that reservoir tank.
As we were already there Colin asked them to check why we have an exhaust smell within the RV as we are driving.  We have had this problem off and on since 2012 and we have replaced the seals around the bed which is over the engine. Last April Freightliner found a small hole that they fixed.  Today Cummins discovered that we have an exhaust leak from the exhaust brake gasket.  However that gasket is no longer made and they would have to try and source one.  That means we might be stuck there for several days.  However we would have to move into a hotel as we would not be allowed into the RV.  After much discussion it was decided that we could continue on but to leave the fantastic fan vent open and operating in the bedroom as we drive.  It is not a fire hazard.  We will only get this gasket replaced once we get home in April by Freightliner.  Who knows where they will find a replacement gasket but at least we will be home and not paying for a hotel for a week or so.  It was our choice to stay or to go and deal with the issue in April.  We chose to leave.
As our bed is over the engine we had to take everything off the bed ( 5 guitars, plus, plus ) and remove the mattress which we usually lean up against the closet in the bedroom. The RV was a mess plus we had to put the tow shield on the car as well as the windshield screen and get it all ready to drive. We were there for over six hours and were only charged for 1 and 1/2 hours  which is great.  Basically we were there for six hours to get piece of mind.  The price was right.  We were finally driving by 12:55PM.
Shortly after leaving Cummins and once we were on the freeway the brake buddy started to beep and beep and beep.  We could not find a place to stop for forty minutes.  Once we were able to stop, it only needed to be reset.  The cause for the irregular beeping, who knows.

Who would want to live right on the freeway?

Normal temperatures had finally returned to Las Vegas and for the first time since mid March we turned on the dash A/C. It was 45F when we got up at 5:10AM and now at 1:00PM it was 86F.  We waited and waited, thinking it was just taking time but we are obviously lacking in freon.  It was warm inside but we managed.  I was the one in the sun.  However I flatly refuse to travel further south into Mexico without dash A/C as we will not have roof A/C when we stop as we have no shore power nor generator.  So of course as we are driving I am online looking for A/C repairs in Lake Havasu.  It only took three calls and we are booked for 9AM on Thursday.  Plus it is only 1/2 mile away from the state park where we will be staying.
Not ten minutes after stopping to fix the beeping of the brake buddy,  we heard another screeching siren sound.  It was the jack light.  Colin stopped as soon as he safely could.  He checked and the two jacks on the passenger side had come down 2 inches.  So he reset the cycle on the jack system  and they retracted and we were back on the road.
I was pretty much done by now.  Lunch was a granola bar, my first food of the day.  So do two coffee’s count? However in the big picture of life all of this is not important.  We met George today at Cummins.  He is a trucker and he dropped a valve in his engine ( we think that means that something went wrong in his engine ).  He has 749,000 miles on that engine.  Repairs are costing him $32,000.00 USD.

Within 35 minutes today we were in Nevada, California and finally Arizona. All so very close together in this tiny corner.

We next stopped at Love’s just at I40 and Hwy 95 into Lake Havasu.  Colin wanted to check our tires.  He has noticed some cracking in the sidewalls of the front tires.  The back four are cracking less. The two front ones were installed April 14, 2013 and the back ones on December 3rd 2014.  Just love that I can get all this info from my blog.  The fellow also said that we should be fine to drive to Mazatlan and back ( rough estimate of 1400 miles return ).  So as we drove on we discussed it and both agreed that based on our luck this trip we should change the two front tires before we head into Mexico.  So once we got settled earlier tonight we called Love’s in Quartzsite and found out that there are no tires like ours in the Love’s warehouse and it would take at least six weeks to bring them in.  Best we can do is book an appointment for March 22nd to replace all six.  We have to leave the Isla 2 -3 days earlier but it is what it is.  However I will need you all to cross your fingers one more time that our tires get us there and back.

We were just getting parked in our site as sunset was happening

We only had the windows open and it was 83.3F inside and 75.3F outside.  We do have have shore power here but I wanted to see how warm it was.  Not sure how I am going to manage the two nights in Mexico with no electricity nor generator.  It will be much warmer.

We finally arrived at the Lake Havasu State Park at 5:15PM local time.  We were still operating on Nevada time of 4:15PM.  Drat!  We did get into our site and settled including setting up our Shaw dish by 6:30PM.  Once Colin had everything perfectly aligned it only took two minutes to get 90 green on both lines.  However by then it was dark.  With me holding the flashlight we also checked the engine oil level and it was perfect.  The coolant reservoir was yet again empty.
So it is now 10:50PM local time and I am working on the blog and Colin is emailing Erik in Mazatlan about numerous issues plus responding to our Kelowna Freightliner dealer who had called our home line while we were driving today.  So sweet as they were concerned as to how we had made out with Cummins today.  Great company to deal with.  I am pushing to get this out to you all tonight. So much to say but it needs to be written.

Lovely location.  I only had to book this site on May 2nd and it was the last site available in the park for a three night stay in November.

Time for dinner, good thing that we like to eat late.  Stay tuned for whatever tomorrow will bring us.

<< Older Posts        Home        Newer Posts >>

19 responses so far

19 Responses to “Cummins results and we are exhausted”

  1. MaxxTrails says:

    Wow I get exhausted just reading everything you have gone through! I can’t imagine how you and Colin are dealing with it all. Although that was a beautiful sunset so maybe that helps … we’ll that and the wine!

    • contessa says:

      Wine is my friend. The sunset was calming and I just kept looking out at it. As you know writing a blog takes a good deal time so I haven’t have much down time. So looking forward to arraign on the Isla and get setting up. Sadly we have to get the generator removed before we can set up and that will be the final nightmare I hope.

  2. ro says:

    Colin if your anti freeze kept going down every day when you travel that good mean you have a bad head gasket or a crack cylinder head, because if the anti freeze was top off at cummin,s yesterday and it already low that is DEFINETLY not normal bring the rig to another cummins dealer ASAP

    • contessa says:

      Colin says that the coolant pressure test was positive and the coolant is fine. This is an additional coolant reservoir that has been attached to the engine that keeps getting emptied. We really appreciate your advice and don’t ever hesitate to give it.

  3. Carol says:

    glad everything turned out okay with the RV and you made it to Havasu. Hope you get to relax for a few days. We are in Quartzsite but will leave today. Bill wants to drive to Amado – I think that is too long of a drive. we’ll see where we end up.

    • contessa says:

      Quite the saga we are having. We will be in Amado on the 8th. Not so sure the LHC is going to be relaxing. A few things are happening. The is easy and go as far as you can. DOn’t forget about Gila Bend and the PPA Shell.

  4. George Yates says:

    Nice that you go some answers at the Fv place and sounds like nothing serious. Enjoy your the Time there in Lake Havasu we have some friends who bought a home there, travel in their RV and spend a few months here In Ontario every summer.

    • contessa says:

      Thanks for checking in George. I know that typing is not easy for you right now. Appreciate seeing you hear everyday.

  5. Cindy says:

    Oh my what a trip down your having! ???????? For the rest of your trip!

    • contessa says:

      Well can it get any worse? Thanks for checking in and taking the time to leave a comment. At least those of you at home have something to read.

  6. Dorma Robison says:

    Contessa, my two cents on your accident w/sweet 16… I suggest you and Colin both see a local doctor for documentation, etc., get estimates locally (2 or 3) w/documentation, and perhaps a known accident lawyer (yes, some call them ‘ambulance chasers’) for advice…usually here in the States at no cost unless a lawsuit is filed and a settlement is reached w/sweet 16’s insurance company. Of course they (sweet 16’s insurance) want you to take a check…then that closes the issue no matter if you have future problems due to the whiplash. Best of luck and health!

    • contessa says:

      Thank you for your input and support. I wish we had more time here in the US but we have people waiting for us to arrive before they move on plus was have an RV appointment in Mazatlan before we get to the Isla. Nice to have you reading the blog and taking the time to make a comment.

  7. Audrey says:

    So glad you did not have a major expensive problem on your motorhome! Now hopefully you can start to enjoy your trip- no more problemas!??? Happy travels from now on, hasta luego

  8. Sally says:

    When are you going to wake up from this nightmare! I would be a wreck with all the anxiety. Here’s to calm seas until you land in your beautiful spot in Mexico.

  9. Dave Davis says:

    You could get anything you want done in Yuma. Tires, front A/C etc. It’s not too much out of the way.

    • contessa says:

      Thanks for this Dave. Too late now but we will add it to our repair areas. Fortunately we have had some good info on who to deal with here

  10. Dave Davis says:

    I just had another thought. We were up in Canada in September. Started to loose coolant. Upper radiator hose that would only leak out while running.
    I found it by refilling reservoir, letting it run, and it came out. A small leak reared its ugly head.
    I know my reservoir holds a gallon, my total capacity around 10 gallons. I guess time will tell.

Leave a Reply