Final Tuneup for the Airstream

We stopped using the Airstream’s gas furnace system several years ago because the electric blower was a real energy hog and drained the battery quite fast.  We installed a catalytic heater to take its place and it works quite well but it is positioned at the front of the rig so the dog is snug on the couch while Mary and I shiver in the rear.  As we found in 2012, the first few nights in Walmart lots can be pretty cold — so I towed the Airstream over to Mekkelsen RV last week for some tuneup work.

All set to motor over for some last minute tuneup items. Truck and Airstream looking ok.

All set to motor over for some last minute tuneup items. Truck and Airstream looking ok.

I got one of the dreaded calls from the service manager two days later.  “The tech got the furnace running but when he turned on, it made a horrible racket, so he turned it right off,” she said. “What do you want to do?”

I thought a mouse might have gotten trapped in the blower — and gave her the go-ahead.  I also had asked to have them check the gas stove oven, which also has been dangerous and then inoperative.  (It took some time for them to find out that parts for the stove are not available so the cooktop is fine but the oven is now a storage area for pots and pans.)

The weather has turned a little wintry with an inch or two of snow and freezing rain/drizzle all day and of course, now the rig is ready.  The forecast does not look good so I drove over yesterday afternoon to pick it up.  The driveway was very slippery, the road slushy, and the main roads just wet.

Our placid Airstream was hanging out with Prowlers, Conquests, Avengers ...

Our placid Airstream was hanging out with Prowlers, Conquests, Avengers …

The trip home was short and easy — the new Ford really tows the rig nicely.  Getting up our road was another story.  Even in four-wheel drive, the truck tires spun in the slush and the tight turn to the steep driveway was interesting.  We have a large ledge in front of the house around which the driveway goes and it is always challenging to make the turn and miss the rocks.  I got around the outcropping and headed back down the driveway, hoping to back up the unit so that we could load from the garage.  No way, Jose!  The tires spun and we went nowhere.  I slowly descended to a point where I could back the trailer on to a spot where were could store it for now.  I managed to keep it from the steep bank on one side, the rock wall behind it, and the ledge.  Here’s the way it ended up.

Yes, that trailer is tipping toward the steep bank. Yes, that is frozen slush and mud on the front. If it doesn't slide forward down the driveway, we are all set.

Yes, that trailer is tipping toward the steep bank. Yes, that is frozen slush and mud on the front. If it doesn’t slide forward down the driveway, we are all set.

This little outing reaffirms our decision to move it next week to Massachusetts where, even if there is snow, the site is level and easy-to-access.  The weather forecast here is for snow and cold until next week so it was good to get this little move done.

 

 

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