Sunday is just around the corner and we’re scratching the itch to get rolling down that "long, lonesome highway" (apologies to Then Came Bronson).
I had some routine maintenance checks and tasks that I got out of the way. The first one was the biggie, lubricating the exhaust brake. It is also one of my least favorite, but on a diesel pusher, it is a twice a year requirement.
The reason it is my least favorite task is because of its location, under the bed in the bedroom. First off, I have to fight with the removable top step, believe me, it is quite a fight. Winnebago designed it to be a tight fit and they got it right. (Just ignore the blue stains, that’s Tide detergent from my broken bottle. We’re going to steam clean all the carpets when we get to Branson).
Off with the step and then the underneath engine hatch and the engine is exposed. Due to poor light conditions, I apologize in advance for the next couple of crummy photos.
Here’s where it gets fun, I had to stick my head and arm down into the hole and reach way forward to get to the exhaust brake. ( My bonnie bride stood over me to help pull me back out when I was done). The exhaust brake is the little round thing point up at a 45 degree angle towards the tip of the triangle shaped mount. It is actually an electrically operated solenoid and the linkage and sliding piston are what require the lubricant.
You have to use a special lubricant, it has to stand up to extreme heat. Normal oils will just burn off. It is available at Camping World and many Freightliner dealers for about $10 .
On the back it has instructions about the lubrication points. Sorry again for a lousy photo, at least my thumb is out of the way. :cO
It only takes a couple of seconds to squirt the lube on the lubrication points. It took longer for Marti to help pull me out of the access hole.
After buttoning up the hatch and fighting with the *#)%^@! step, I moved on to two more pleasant tasks. The first one required use of my ladder.
This task applies only to Winnebagos with slide locks, no other brand has these (lucky dogs!).
It is cleaning out the slide lock drain holes.
All it takes is a pipe cleaner to run into the hole and ensure it is clean of any dust and dirt that might wash down into the slide lock mechanism that some @%*$(&^#! Winnebago engineer put on top of the slides. Failure to keep these drains clean can cause water to collect and then leak down into the cabinets directly under the slide locks.
Last item was a check of the tire pressure on all the tires, for me I run 110 psi.
I know many folks have tire pressure monitoring systems, my mind is still not made up on purchasing one. Along with the very high cost of a system to cover both the Journey and the Element toad, I’ve read where many owners have had leaks of the sensors on the wheel, dead sensor batteries and false readings. On our budget, I’m not sure if I want to go ahead with a system at this time when I could use the same amount of money to purchase a good mattress.
Decisions, decisions. I think I'll sleep on it. ;c)
Tomorrow’s tasks are checking all the fluids and topping off as necessary. I firmly believe a penny’s worth of maintenance is worth many dollars towards a breakdown cure.
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