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Friday, November 23, 2012

RV Maintenance Tip–A New Thing To Check

RVs are big (BIG) machines with all kinds of components to keep an eye on and maintain.  Sometimes little things turn up that can cause a catastrophe if they fail, and you know how that Murphy guys likes to exploit those little things.

I found something new and have added it to my maintenance list.  I found it quite by accident.

As you know we currently are GAFHing in Corey and Amanda’s driveway.  It is plenty big for the Journey to fit, but sometimes a little extra room for cars is a good thing.  I removed my Roadmaster tow bar to make about 3 1/2 more feet of room behind the Journey.


I put the tow bar under the Journey and went  to screw my locking pin back in so I wouldn’t lose it (we’re still looking for the new filter for our vacuum cleaner that has disappeared somewhere inside the Journey we bought weeks ago).


I noticed a little rust on the pin so I took a closer look and found this:


You can see wear marks on the pin.  Now the pin is a case hardened, very strong piece of metal, able to withstand enormous pressure and stresses.  What I don’t know is how deep into the pin’s metal the hardening is.  Potentially it could crack and break off, letting the tow bar slide out while attached to the Element toad.  It’s not a good thing to have your toad pass you on the highway…

Actually, we have an Air Force 1 toad braking system so if that happened, the car would come to a stop.  But who needs that hassle?

The pin doesn’t cost much, something like $10-12 at Walmart or $14 at Camping World.  I’ll be replacing that pin soon, depending which store has one in stock.  In fact, I’ll pick up a spare and hope I can find it when I need it. :cO

The wear pattern on the pin made me take a close look at the tow hitch.  The hole on the tow hitch doesn’t show any real wear, I inserted the pin the other way and there was minimal wear. 


While I was at it, I took a good look at all the hitch mounting bolts, too. 


They all checked out good.  One less thing for Mr. Murphy to exploit. :c)

I think I’ll inspect the pin twice a year and maybe even replace it annually.  Just because.

Thanks for visiting and feel free to leave a comment.



  1. Because we love Ruby, we have a tow dolly but I'm filing this for future reference. Looks like an important piece of maintenance to keep an eye on.

  2. Good catch on the pin, Paul. A few bucks extra on maintenance is well worth the headache and cost of a major failure.

    It's important for us RV'ers to try and foil Mr. Murphy's plans at every opportunity.

  3. I'm wondering if you don't have a bad pin. The pin I'm using is many years old with a lot of towing miles on it and it shows almost no wear at all.


  4. You might want to just use the old one as a spare. I have an album on my Ipad called Household. I take a photo of any spare parts at the location it's stored. Then if I can't find it, I can always find the photo.

    Unfortunately, most of the spare stuff I've bought was purchased before the Ipad.

  5. Good idea. Don't want the car cutting loose on the highway!

  6. Better safe than sorry. This is being pinned to our Motorhome Maintenance board on Pinterest.

  7. Oh boy! One more thing from your blog to sent to Rick to check out :) Good thing you removed it to be kind to someone and give them more space :)

  8. Oh boy is right! You're always coming up with something else we need to worry about.

  9. every time someone posts updates and tips like this my first thing to Rick is do you check this , do you check that? lol thanks for the tips...

  10. Ugh! Another thing I need to check? Uf-dah!

  11. It's never ending - this RV maintenance stuff.

  12. butterbean carpenterNovember 24, 2012 at 5:41 PM

    Howdy Chief,

    I'd check to see if the pins at Wallworld & Camping World weren't 'made in China' ones, like almost everything else in those stores is!!! If the Chinese can kill us by 'dropping our 'toads', poisoning our medicines & foodstuffs, they won't have to fight us, right!! They don't want 'us', just our land!!!