What Broke This Trip . . .

As is usual with a rig like ours, that I say is old enough to vote, things break. Some related to the trip, some not. it’s a work in progress

The one you already know about is the problem with our Onan diesel generator. To recap, our genset worked perfectly on our first day’s travel from Santa Fe to Breaux Bridge, LA. But then only ran for 10 minutes the next morning before it quit.

We’d had it fully serviced by RV Mobile Lube a month or so before, changing out all filters and fluids, and it’s always worked without a lot of problems.

I spent a lot of my free time on our trip trying to get it going again, but with no luck. It also didn’t help that that due to the 4th of July holiday in the middle of week, I had a lot of trouble getting helpt from my Onan Tech Support guys So once we get settled in, I’ll get back on it.

Of course I already mentioned my backup plan. Since a new controller/inverter board goes for about $1500.00 and a new QD 7500 runs between $9 &  $10,000, I might just replace it with a Predator 8750 generator from Harbor Freight.

Predator 8750

And it’s only $599.

And as it turns out, one of our blog readers, Davy Boggs, of the Boggs Family Ministries, has one that he got for a non-RV purpose. He said the Harbor Freight guy told him to start it up and run it for about 4 days. If it survives, it’ll probably last a long time. If it dies, bring it back and get another one. He said they ran theirs hard for 10 days and never looked back. So another mark in the plus column.

Of course I haven’t given up on the Onan yet.

The other breakdown wasn’t really trip-related, but could have happened without any traveling. A few days ago the drive belt on our Splendide Washer/Dryer either broke or came off the pulley. I won’t know which until I get the unit out and check it. I’m pretty sure it’s the belt since I can heard the motor running, but no drum movement.

When I Googled the belt, I found a bunch of ‘used’ ones on eBay in the $40 – $45 range. So I began to think that this was another part that is no longer available from Splendide. This is what happened with the drain pump on our unit died a few years ago. Luckily I was able to find one from another brand of washer and made it work. And it has worked with no problems for several years now.

But just in case, I put in a call to Westland Sales to see what they had. As it turns out they have both possible belts, one 1262mm in length and the other one 1270mm. And even better, a new one is only $43, the same as the used ones on eBay.

The only  way to tell which one I need is to pull it out and check. Even if it only came off the pulley, I’ll probably replace it anyway. The old one is 19 years old, and probably brittle and stretched. Better to replace it now and not have to do it again for another 19 years.

Finally, a couple of days into our trip I noticed an oil sheen on our toad. At first I thought it was due to the fact that my slobber can had fallen off under the engine, so I installed another one. But that didn’t really help.

So crawling back under the rig, I looked to see if I could find where the leak was. My first thought that it might be around the oil filter or the drain plug,  both of which were changed out recently by RV Mobile Lube. But it was all dry in that area.

In fact the leakage appeared to be around the general area of the slobber tube, but even above it, not below. And I was losing enough oil to show up on the dipstick.

I think my next step will be to spray down the area with Awesome/Dawn and then wash it off. Then I’ll wait a week or so to see what drips out. Otherwise I’ll have to run the engine for a while and see what happens.

I’ll keep you updated.

Thought for the Day:

Perfect is the enemy of good.   “Better a diamond with a flaw than a pebble without.” – Confucius



5 Responses to What Broke This Trip . . .

  1. Robert Friedel says:

    I heard that our Splendide washer and dryer combo, ours is in a 1997 American Dream, were throw-away models. Just wondering where did you find the replacement water pump, ours just went out? Love reading your blog with all it’s handyman material.

    • gregwhite says:


      I don’t know about them being ‘throwaway models’. Back then they only made one model, the Splendide 2000, like we have.

      And so far I’ve replaced the door latch interlock, the drain pump, the dryer fan motor, and a couple of thermal fuses. Not a bad total for our 11 years.

      Working on it’s not hard. It’s getting out and in the cabinet that takes time. Sometimes more time than the actual repair.

      Thanks for reading our blog. We appreciate the comment.


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