In this video, I review six mistakes made during this snowbird trip that required repairs or almost did. We are pretty careful and experienced RVers, but things occasionally go wrong even after 12 years of traveling and living in our fifth-wheel trailer.
1) Damaged the Shower Skylight
I had my Starlink Internet Satellite Dish sitting on the RV roof with a heavy chain weighing it down. A powerful desert storm blew it off the roof, damaging my shower stall skylight. The winds kicked up during the night while we were sleeping.
The next morning I found the dish laying face down on the ground. A piece of the plastic skylight was broken out. I temporarily patched it with Eternabond roof tape until I could get a new one. Amazingly, after falling over 12 feet to the ground, the dish was undamaged and still works!
2) Almost Burst the Sewer Tote
A few weeks ago, we left Death Valley, located below sea level, and traveled up in elevation to over 3000 feet. That afternoon I glanced out the window and saw my 36-gallon sewer tote looked distorted. Corners were bent in, and the front was bulged out.
It turns out I had forgotten to leave a small opening for air to escape, and the combination of the elevation change and heat from the sun caused the internal air to expand. Luckily when I released the trapped air, the sewer tote slowly returned to its normal shape, and no damage was done.
3) Leaking 30lb Propane Cylinder
A similar thing happened to one of my 30lb propane cylinders as the sewer tote. I had it filled at 2500 feet on a cold morning, and by the time I returned to a lower elevation that afternoon, the cylinder was leaking propane.
It turns out it was caused by the propane attendant overfilling it to 8.4 gallons versus the normal 7.3 gallons. The pressure relief valve had activated and was venting propane, so I left it away from the RV and let it do its thing. That night after it cooled down, the venting stopped, and after I had used some LP gas from the tank, it returned to normal operation.
4) Bent Storage Compartment Floor
I installed some JT Strong Arm Stabilizer Bars a few years ago onto the fifth-wheel trailer’s landing jacks. They help stabilize the movement inside the RV, particularly in strong winds. During a stormy period in the desert this winter, I had locked down the four arms on the front landing jacks.
When we departed the campsite, I backed the truck towards the trailer for a hookup, and Anne decided to help by lifting the trailer nose. Unfortunately, she wasn’t aware that the stabilizer bars were locked in place and ended up bending the front storage compartment’s metal floor. Luckily with the aid of a 20-ton bottle jack, I reversed the bend without damage.
5) Damage Trailer Tire
While accessing a desert boondocking campsite, we had to drive over some rough roads with areas of sharp jagged rocks. Once we arrived at our camp, I inspected all the tires and found one of the trailer tires had a decent-sized gouge out of its tread. Trailer tires are made from a softer rubber than regular vehicle tires, making them more prone to damage.
The fix was easy since I found the issue before it became a blowout. I removed the wheel, took it to a local tire shop, and swapped it for a brand-new one.
6) Shower Almost Flooded RV
Last fall, I replaced some old squeaky shower faucets in our RV bathroom. I replaced them with attractive-looking brushed nickel with long quarter-turn handles. one drawback of the handles is they are easier to turn on. During some rough travel, the shower head came loose, and as it fell, it hit a handle opening the faucet.
We noticed the next time we used the water pump and heard the water running in the shower stall. If this had happened when the water pump was accidentally left on may have had a potential flood on our hands. We have added a new task to our depart checklist to prevent the issue from happening again. Turn off a small valve installed between the faucets and the shower head.
Related Posts & Videos
- Eternabond Tape Videos
- Roof Recoating
- Sewer Tote Videos
- Shower Faucet Installation
- Endurance Tire Review
- Stabilizer Bar Installation
- Starlink Videos
- Propane Tank Information
RV Products Mentioned
- RV Skylight
- Eternabond Tape
- Alpha Systems Roof Products
- JT Strongarm Stabilizer Bars
- Camco Sewer Tote
- Endurance Trailer Tire
- Shower Faucets
- Shower Cut-Off Valve
- 20 Ton Bottle Jack