Wednesday, December 15, 2010

Snow Related Issues

First, I want to welcome our newest Followers!
Jo Beth and Catherine
Thanks for joining the Roadrunner Chronicles!  (If they have a blog, I have linked it to their name.)


Over the past week we have had really cold weather (last night it was down to 20 degrees) and some snow.  The cold weather affected our heater (among other things).  Our front a/c heater unit on top went out.  Heat pumps are not the way to go in cold weather.  So we are using a lot of propane for the heater and hot water.  

On Saturday we called around and decided that on Monday we were going to fill up with propane.  Uh--it was snowing pretty good on Monday.  We decided to pack up and go get the propane tank filled anyway.

This is one thing I have feared and avoided for 18 months:  Driving in the snow.  The whole idea freaks me out a bit.

We packed up and headed out.  It took us about 30 minutes to unhook everything and put everything away.
I found out the snow we were dealing with wasn't all that bad.  It was like driving in rain and I kept the speed down.  My issue isn't really the snow, it is my fear is ice of black ice.  The thought of skidding and sliding around in my one and only home does not appeal to me.

I think it is more about learning to drive these big RVs for the first time.  The main thing about getting confidence is thinking about the right things.  ~ Like where I want to put the left wheel as I go down the road.  Or watching my mirrors and going slowly through tight places.  Not thinking about what could happen or oncoming traffic or who knows what else...

As I said, I took it fairly slow and we waited until about 1030 AM to get going, so it was warming up a bit.  It was probably about 35 or 36 degrees by that time.  (This is Virginia Beach?)
Since I called earlier, our guy was waiting for us and jumped right on it.  He made the hookup and filled us up in about 15 minutes.
Then it was back to the campground.  I wanted to avoid the noon time traffic and it worked out fine.
We got back to the campground, eased the Roadrunner back into our spot, hooked up the electrical and had lunch.

That was interesting!.... all these months and now we can say we have driven in snow.  Instead of dreading the thought, now I know we can do it if we have to.   (But I know this is not real snow, like what they are going through in Canada near Marg and Bill's, or in Buffalo, NY near Jon and Barb's.)    But that is fine with me -- I have no intention of ever needing to drive in the real snow, an inch or a light dusting is enough for me.

Later that day, we decided to see if we could do something about our a/c heat pump unit.  We found Meyer's RV Service which is a mobile service.  He came to our campsite yesterday.
 Tanner jumped on top of the Roadrunner and took the cover off our Coleman unit.  He found a burned up capacitor that needed replacing.  Aside from the 30 degree weather, it was a pretty easy job.
James asked about our Norcold refrigerator and we discovered we missed the recall on it in October.
He called the company, set us up and got registered, then replaced a component on the back side of the refrigerator.
They blew a fuse while working on it and after a couple of phone calls to Tiffin, we found out where it was located.  He replaced the automatic reset unit and we have that issue solved.  It took them about 2 1/2 hours to replace the capacitor in the heating unit, replace the recall item in the refrigerator (and fix the slow leak they found) and to replace the fuse.  James and his son Tanner at Meyer's Service do great work and charged me $183 which I thought was reasonable considering them came to me and it was hassle free.  I recommend them!

It has been an interesting time the last few days, but we have added to our RV full-time adventures with some cold weather experience.

Thanks for joining us today on the Roadrunner Chronicles!  I hope you are warm were you are and enjoying the holiday season!


  1. Snow! Quick, head south! Glad the drive wasn't too bad, but I'm sure it was a little stressful though.

    We had to replace the start capacitor of our a/c unit this summer. Took two weeks to find the part, but Roger was able to install it himself. Sounds like you had good service and a fair bill as well. It is so great to be able to have mobile service. We've been happy with all the mobile repair guys we've needed. Cheaper and better than Camping World - we avoid them if at all possible.

  2. Now you have to wash a dirty MH. That's one of the bad things about driving in rain or snowy conditions...everything gets so dang dirty!

    Glad you had a safe trip! Stay warm.


  3. way to conquer your fear!!!..see it wasnt so bad!!

  4. Do they not bring propane to you in Virginia either? We thought we may be running low on our propane while we are at the Christmas tree lot due to us using our heater more often so we called around and found out that in the state of California, they do not pump propane at your location. We got spoiled in most other states where we just call them and they come to us and fill our tank.

    Wondering how many states offer this service and how many do not, and the reasons behind it? Maybe a little research and an idea for an interesting blog.

  5. Glad your snow drive worked out fine. I drive a regular car and don't much like driving in it so I can't imagine how you must feel. Thanks for a lovely blog, I've been enjoying reading some of your past posts.

  6. Interesting and informative blog today, Randy, great job of posting all the blow by blow pictures. That RV repair bill sure was reasonable for both the time they spent and the work they did. It always amazes me how a mobile repair guy is usually so much cheaper than taking our rigs in to an RV dealer!!

    The trick to driving in snow is to pretend there is an 'empty eggshell' between your foot and the gas pedal!

  7. This propane thing is interesting to say the least. Last year we were in a park here in Mesa about 6 miles West of the park we are in now. Both are in Mesa, Az. In the old park, they would not deliver propane to your rig, citing fire laws. But here in Valle del Oro, we have the propane truck that roams the park in the mornings, just waiting for you to step out and flag him down. He drags a hose to your tank and fills you up on the spot. Same town, same fire department. Who knows?

  8. We don't use much propane thanks to our electric "fireplace" heater in the living area,and one little one in the bedroom..Very rarely it is so cold in the AM that we kick on the furnace..those 2 electric ones do the trick for our size fiver.
    That snow made me feel cold all over...I hope we never have to drive in it!!

  9. Congratulations on driving your rig in the snow, Randy. Although, some of us northern folks might have to look twice to see snow there. But it IS cold, for sure, and black ice can be way worse than snow. I loved reading about all your repairs and seeing the photos.

  10. Sorry you are having technical difficulties and snow...but aside from that, I think you must be having an amazing adventure!!!

  11. We can certainly can relate to your fear of driving in the snow. After our first day of as full timers we woke up the next morning to snow. Yikes! We were initiated almost immediately to snow, ice, and fog and driving in the mountains. It was scary but John did really well. Pushing through your fears and doing OK can be a real confidence booster. Happy Trails!

  12. Glad your drive in the snow went well. I don't envy anyone having to drive a motorhome in snow. It wouldn't be fun. That being said, we may have our turn in late March when we hope to go visit our daughter and husband for the birth of our grandson. We are keeping our fingers crossed that the weather will be good.

    Sounds like your repairs went well and hassle free and the price does seem reasonable.

    Hope the weather improves for you.

    Kevin and Ruth