Feb, 2002


Subscriber count: Last issue: 4157 This issue: 4564!
Welcome new Subscribers!

Inside this issue:

- A Shocking Problem
- Reader Submitted Tip Thanks Larry!
- Let's Organize By Peggi McDonald

Joke of the Day:
Classified Ad Section:

A Shocking problem

A reader writes ...

I've just noticed something on my new-to-me '88 Lance camper: when plugged
in to shore power, if I touch something metal on the camper while being
grounded outside the camper, I get shocked (feels like holding a hot 110v
wire and ground, only a little less of a shock). Everything electrical
that I've tried works on the camper. I'm no electrical wizard, but do own a
multi-meter, anybody have advice where to start looking for the leak?

Answer ...

You can purchase a 110 volt circuit tester for under ten dollars at a
hardware store or electrical supply store.

The device plugs into an electrical outlet and has three lights on it
to tell you if there is a problem and where the problem is. Everyone
should have one of these to test every campground shore power outlet
BEFORE hooking up the coach to the power source.

This is a dangerous situation and must be corrected before any further
use of the camper.

Reader follow-up ...

Thanks so much for the info and the warning (we just unwittingly used the
camper this weekend!). I will disconnect the battery when I get home and
pick up a tester on the way home to start checking with. The only thing
electrical-wise I had done to this point was to put a new deep cycle
battery in. I did try switching outlets and going with/without an
extension cord. It sounds like I should start with the source circuit (as in maybe
there's power in the ground wire already...)? Thanks again....

Follow up to my post last night: There's nothing wrong with the Lance;
I picked up a $7 tester at Home Depot and plugged it into my garage outlet
and found that the outlet has the hot and common wire swapped. Once I
found a good outlet and plugged the Lance into it, the shocking was gone.

Editors Note:
Take that $7 tester with you and test every campsite hookup. You never
know who changed the last receptacle and if they did it right!


Reader Submitted Tip ...

Older Shur-Flo Pumps

"Here's one that you are probably aware of but, if not, I thought I'd pass
it along. If your pump continues to run after the tap is turned off, it
can mean two things: you have a leak in your waterline or there's a problem
with the pump. Before replacing the pump, see if it's an old Shurflo. The older
models have a sticker on the side which you can peel off to reveal a small
screw. Get an Allen wrench and with the pump on, taps closed, turn the
screw slowly counter-clockwise until the pump shuts off. You could have just
saved yourself the cost of a new pump."



Let's Organize by Peggi McDonald

Summers coming; its time to reorganize and off-load 'stuff' to ready
your RV for travel. If you haven't used an item in the past year you
obviously don't need it. Driving an overloaded RV reduces handling
ability and dangerously stresses tires, brakes, axles and everything
else on your unit.

The list of tips I have discussed in previous articles could go on
and on, but the following are a few updated finds.

* Using the Internet on the move is becoming extremely important to
many RVers. In the past we connected to either a 3-watt Analog bag
phone or a landline phone, both plug into our laptop computer. (NOTE:
These days I am using a dual access PC Card by Ositech
manufactured in Guelph, Ontario, Canada. It is the only such PCMCIA
card that connects to BOTH Analog and Digital data service and it is
compatible with a special cord to Nokia and Motorola phones---I can pick
up email anywhere there is cell service).

* I then connect to the printer, my scanner and of course to AC power.
I felt like I was living in a maze of wires until I discovered
'ponytail' (hairdo) holders, the type where a ball is attached to one
end of an elastic loop and a second bead is on the other end of an
elastic loop. When you wind the elastic around the cord and intertwine
the beads, all cords instantly become organized. We use these elastic
holders to keep many things together such as our extra hangers, my hair
dryer, curling iron, mixer cord and much more.

* When packing your cupboards be sure there is no free space between
items. Instead of lining the complete cupboard with 'Scootgard' to stop
things from slipping, we cut and place a 6" square under each pile of
dishes or other items. This way if the bottom item sticks to the
Scootgard when you pick it up, the entire shelf doesn't become

* Controlling files and necessary papers also create a problem. Yes
this is more of a hassle if you're fulltiming but even on an extended
vacation organizing things can be a challenge. Not every RV has room
for a file cabinet. One solution that works for us is to put files into
top loading plastic page protectors to store in hard-sided binders. The
binders fit in most long 'over the couch' cupboards but they can also be
stacked on the floor beside the bed.

* We recently added 'under a shelf metal baskets' to our overhead
cabinets to store papers/directories. When placed on their side, they
provide a perfect spot to keep writing paper, campground directories,
reference books, the binders plus lots more. Everything can stay in an
upright position next to each other within the baskets. I separated
these baskets by three small plastic coated metal shelves that nest in
the upside down position. This arrangement provides many 'slots' to
organize everyday information so it stays exactly where we put it.

* Necessity is the mother of invention. Our medicine cabinet on this
coach is a corner unit so the small plastic cutlery trays I find so
valuable to hold prescription bottles etc, don't fit very well. I
recently cut Plexiglas strips by 2&#frac12;"-3" high and long enough to reach
side to side on the front of each shelf. Tape it to the shelf at the
bottom if necessary. Voila now when I open the medicine cabinet after a
trip everything doesn't land in the toilet.

* Finally someone has devised an effective solution to organize shoe
storage. RV Dealers now sell shoe racks that connect to the bed frame
much like a bed skirt.

* Couch covers, at least on the seat portion have always been a pain to
keep straight, but they are so necessary to control dust and dirt on
RV's overworked furniture. We recently discovered that knit style
bedspreads and new style chenille or wool throws stay exactly where you
put them.

* RV mattresses are slightly smaller than those in a home; sometimes
regular-size sheets don't fit real well. Anchoring the corners of
fitted sheets with elastic 'garters' (available from bedding
departments) keep most bedding in place. Adding a non-skid quality
eggshell mattress 'pad' under a padded mattress 'cover' also deters the
sheets from slipping.

* When your RV looks like 'home' you won't miss your other home. To
hang pictures and treasures on the walls we use a decorative style brass
hooks with two nails on the back available from home hardware/home d&#eacute;cor
type stores. These hooks are not only strong, they leave very small
marks if removed, however they look so good we left ours in place when
we trade-up.

* To stop wall hangings from swinging side to side when your RV is in
motion, add a small 'blob' of putty style window caulking to each lower
corner. This putty also stops decorative items placed on tabletops or
counters from moving during motion.

* Rubber backed rugs will stain vinyl and wood floors. Using washable
polyester felt 'under-pad' designed to stop rugs from slipping works
more effectively.

* If the needle portion of heavy duty Velcro tape is glued to several
areas on the underside of rugs it will prevent them from 'walking' when
these rugs are placed on top of carpeting.

* Cleaning the slats of blinds has become easier with the use of the
new commercial static dusting cloths. Vacuuming the blinds also works
well. Simply close the blinds and vacuum one side, then reverse the
slats to do the other.

* Displaying club decals are an important part of RVing but they leave
a mark on painted surfaces if you try to remove them. An alternate
solution we used on our last coach was to display them on a piece of
Plexiglas attached to the back ladder with plastic ties. Plexiglas can
also be secured anywhere with double back tape or several heavy-duty
screw-on suction cups.

* Extra water hoses are a necessity, the collapsible type that winds
around a holder is not only handy it saves mega space.

* John has sewer hoses in several lengths from 5 feet to 20
feet --- connecting ends have been added to each hose. No matter how far
we are away from the sewer John simply clicks the pieces together as

* You will need several dog-bone style electrical adapters in a variety
of amperage from 50-30; 30-15; 15-30 and 30-50. A 10 gauge 30 amp
electric cord extension is required

Discovering the ins and outs of packing is mainly trial and error. When
you learn to eliminate what you don't need, your RV will love you for

If you have tips to share please send them to me at
peggiandjohn@rvliving.net. John and I are RV Lifestyle Consultants who
understand the ins and outs of RVing. My book SPIRIT OF THE OPEN ROAD
TWO (featured on http://www.rverscorner.com) overflow with timeless
how-to tips for all RVers. Be sure to log onto www.rvliving.net for
mega lifestyle information for the International RVer.

Peggi and John McDonald, RV Lifestyle Consultants
Author of Spirit of the Open Road and e-books
RV Living: Facts, Tips, Hints and More---Vol I and II
Check out www.rvliving.net for these FREE downloads!


Joke(s) of the Day:

"I just hope it's not Alzheimer's," confessed the gentleman to his doctor.

"Maybe there's some kind of memory medicine you can give me. See, I'm
getting terribly forgetful; I lose track of where I'm going or what I'm
supposed to do when I get there. What should I do?" he asked glumly.

"Pay me in advance," the doctor promptly suggested.

When a physician remarked on a new patient's extraordinarily ruddy
complexion, he said, "High blood pressure, Doc. It comes from my family."

"Your mother's side or your father's?" the doctor asked.

"Neither," he replied. "It's from my wife's family."

"Oh, come now," I said. "How could your wife's family give you high blood

He sighed. "You oughta meet 'em sometime, Doc!"



Les Doll - RV Technician
My advice is free and worth only what you gain from it!

The RVers Corner - http://www.rverscorner.com/