In a recent RV.net forum post, one of our resident generator gurus, Gunny357, brought up a helpful tip I had been wanting to make for a long time.
One of my favorite points to ‘hammer home’ is that an RV is a vehicle, but it is also a home on wheels, whether it’s the smallest pop up or the largest diesel pusher. Think about calling and asking for help or service on an appliance or system in your house. Would you call up and say “I have a 1995 3 bedroom 3 bath tudor style house, and my furnace isn’t working.”?
An RV uses appliances from a wide range of manufacturers, and has a wide range of options and extras, so knowing makes and model numbers for each appliance goes a long way towards cutting down the time spent getting help. This is where a little time spent at home organizing things will pay off with a much easier service or repair experience.
Each appliance maker is constantly making changes and improvements in their products- these changes often change basic parts and functions of these products, plus systems are increasingly being integrated in to each other- you might have an Atwood furnace controlled by a Coleman thermostat, or a Coleman air conditioner controlled by an Atwood thermostat…
If you are the first owner of a rig, you might have a “build sheet” which includes all of the appliances and model numbers, but if you don’t, take the time to start an “RV Folder” with manuals and lists of all of the systems. These would include:
- air conditioner/heat pump (2 model numbers- both the roof top unit and the inside “control” unit
- water heater
- refrigerator (for Dometic, write down the product number as well)
- awning(s) (for A&E, separate awning/roller tube and hardware part numbers).
- water pump
This list is, of course, just a starting point- your rig may have many more options (built in vacuum, satllite system, sound system etc.)
Knowing these things when asking for help or parts will go a long way towards getting the right solution quickly!