Thursday, February 26, 2015

To Lube Or Not To Lube That Is The Question

Answer: To Lube.  Most RVers lube the hitch and maybe the ball of the pull-a-long with Reese Hitch and Ball Grease
Reese Hitch and Ball Grease

that is what I use.  But is that all there is?  Does lubrication of the RV stop there?  I am afraid not.  Let's see what else needs to be lubed and with what type of lubrication to make RVing fun and safe for you and your family.






Ok we have covered the ball and hitch but what about the tongue jack and shaft for the front foot?  Most of us do not even remember the last time that was lubed do we?  Well you're in luck.  Most of the time no lubrication will be required.  Just clean the part that goes up and down to remove the grime that maybe there and you are good to go.  However if while turning the handle and the crank tightens up you should squirt some White Lithium Grease in the top gear area.
White Lithium Grease

This is good for a quick field repair but for a better fix keep reading.
Yours may differ but you get the idea, right?
 Access to this gear area can be found by a small hole just below the handle on the tube or you may have to remove the handle and lift up the top cover to expose the gear area or in some cases the top cover just above the crank will pop off and allow you to add some grease.  Some of the newer tongue jacks  come with a Zerk fitting that you can use a grease gun to pump grease into the tongue jack.
I'll bet some of you are lucky enough to have one of those 12 volt power tongue jacks that raise and lower the RV with the push of a button.  (I am saving for one of those myself.)  Cleaning of the pipe that goes up and down is fine, but beyond that follow the manufactures instructions for maintenance and if the tube hangs up be sure to take the unit in for service.
 Next comes the stabilizer jacks.  The ones on my KZ Spree are manual crank down so there is a lot to lube.



First clean off the screw, getting the threads good and clean.  Then apply spray white grease to the threads, watch for drips.  Next lube the driver area in the front of the jack with T-9 Lube Spray
T-9 Lube Spray

it is the best spray for outdoor lubrication I have found.  While you have the spray out get all the pivot points on the jack.  You may have to crank the jack up and down a few times to find them all.

Then we have the folding entrance steps.


As each trailer step is a bit different it is best just to tell you to locate the folding points and use your T-9 or spray white grease to lube those points  It is important to not allow the pivot points of the steps to rust or be bent by forcing the steps open.
Be sure to check the door hinges of the RV to be sure that they are smooth operating opening and closing and that the handle and lock operate smoothly.  T-9 here is the best choice.

Every two years or 5000 mile whichever occurs first you should have the wheel bearings checked and repacked with grease.  You don't want the tires to fall off the axles do you?  Anyway, while the Technician is there repacking the wheels have him check the breaks as well.




Until next time.

Why not join the "Weekend RVers" Facebook group? We cover the range from newbie to Fulltimer so stop by.

Campfire Safety

As we all get ready to start camping or have already started.  I am reminded that in many parts of the USA you can not have a campfire do to outdoor burning restrictions caused by the lack of RAIN.  So many of us remember the nights spent by the fire watching the sparks work their way up into the air from the burning logs and hearing the original snap, crackle, and pop. (sorry Kellogg)  Well things have changed that's for sure.  First in many states now you can not bring firewood from one state to another or even from one part of a state to another do to bugs, worms, and what have you.  You must use the firewood that is at the park store or Ranger station.






How far is too far to move firewood? And what is meant by "local" firewood?  When discussing local firewood, I am referring to the closest convenient source of wood that you can find. That might be from down the street, or a state forest in your county. As a general rule of thumb, 50 miles is too far to move firewood, and 10 miles or less is the max firewood should be moved.  In many states there are rules, regulations, and quarantines that clearly state how far is too far. Always acquaint yourself with local rules and regulations when transporting firewood from one jurisdiction to another.  Find out more here Don't Move Firewood .
So you buy some firewood from the Ranger's supply at the park and you can burn it during the time you are in the part but you have to leave what you do not burn behind.  How can you make a camp fire fun and exciting?  Well, S'mores are fun to make S'mores.

When you are done making the S'mores you might want to be amazed by the camp fire northern light show.  Camp Fire Northern Light Show .


Now sit back and enjoy the rest of the evening and watch the light show from your camp fire.

What happens when you can not burn wood but you still want to sit around a campfire.  Well the solution for that is the gas campfire.  Most RV camping areas do not have a problem with the gas campfire even if there is a burn ban because the fire does not give off sparks and with the turn of the gas valve the fire is off.  You can still make those S'mores the kids want and you can still enjoy sitting outside of the RV around the campfire.  See Portable Gas Campfire for what I am talking about.
This portable gas campfire runs off of LP gas either the little 1lb green cylinders (runs for 2hrs) or the 10lb gas tanks.  It runs for hours and the red cover is used for storage and to elevate the gas campfire off the ground.  Also the red cover has the carry handle attached.  With the extra accessory you can even cook on the campfire just like a fire log one.
With any fire outside you need to have a fire extinguisher at the ready just in case.  Not just for grass fires. Fire Gone White/Red Fire Extinguisher - 16 oz 

Fire Gone White/Red Fire Extinguisher - 16 oz






Until next time.