Thanks to everyone who responded to my last post with comments and advice. Right now the fridge is acting normal which is not perfect. But we should be able to live with that until we head back east. Just to be on the safe side, I have 30 bottles of frozen water in the freezer and a cooler on standby in the RV basement. Our windshield repair has been postponed until we get to South Dakota. Although there are lots of nice folks here in Wisconsin, according to Safelite there is no one nearby with facilities to replace our windshield. Something to look forward to, I guess 🙂
Working in Wisconsin
Here in Wisconsin, we plan to spend almost 2 weeks getting the RV spic and span for Oshkosh. No, we are not hoping to win “Best Motorhome in the Airshow.” We have a special guest staying with us during the show and we want him to be very comfortable. Award winning and much beloved aviator, N. Clement will fly to the show and spend the week with us. Rumor has it that our couch is “better than the ground.” If a thunderstorm passes through, we can almost certainly keep him dryer inside the RV than he will be under his airplane wing.
Late Saturday afternoon, I am reading a book on my IPad while sitting across from Storm in the RV. Suddenly our washer/dryer combo which had been peacefully washing clothes all day, goes ballistic. Next, I hear the electrical switch box thunk loudly indicating that the house current switched off. In the spirit of being a helpful spouse, I offer to go outside and check the breaker at the pedestal. Our neighbor’s loudly humming air conditioners tell me that we are the only ones without power. Our breaker is not tripped, but I reset it anyway and head inside to report to Storm.
Wacky Washer Ruins Afternoon
The power switches back on and I turn on the dryer which immediately begins acting like a demon from the depths of purgatory. The lights flicker insanely and the machine emits a deep growling noise that fills me with fear. Why? Because I know how much a new combo costs and I am terrified of dealing with that expense. Frantically, I turn off the dryer and breathlessly rush back up front. The current thunks off again and I am at the end of my troubleshooting wits. I tell Storm what I experienced so far and he responds with what I suspect is the first diagnostic question husbands learn in spouse school. Staring me in the eyes he demands, “What have you done?”
Contrary to what Storm and possibly other husbands believe, I am not part of a diabolical conspiracy designed to deprive him of a peaceful afternoon. In fact, for the most part I am on his side. Sure I occasionally accidentally rip off the shower door while pulling in the slide, but Storm has his fair share of RV mishaps too. I have programmed our Ipads to control our AV equipment, but I never (on purpose) utilize my IPad skills to invoke pandemonium in our RV. With no reason to feel guilty, I answer as I believe any wife would with the innocent exclamation, “nothing!!!!!”
The Real Guilty Part(y)
I would never have linked the hair raising behavior of our dryer to the surge protector, but Storm almost immediately makes that connection. After just a few minutes, he figures out that he can by-pass our built-in surge protector by turning a key on the protector itself. Our power returns when Storm by-passes the Surge Guard. Now the dryer quietly tumbles the clothes with no apparent evil intent (although I still suspect it goes out of its way to wrinkle my shirts when it feels I overfilled it). Storm believes our power to be OK temporarily as we have been hooked to this pedestal for almost a week. With the root of the problem established, we must now hurry to replace this vital piece of equipment. Without a working surge protector our vulnerable appliances are at risk.
The RV Surge Protector Solution
Because our fun begins so late on Saturday, we are unable to order a new protector until Monday. We order the Progressive EMS HW50C with the help of the WONDERFUL folks here at Country Roads RV Park in Lake Delton, WI. They not only get us a great price, but also have our new protector delivered to us the next day. We consider purchasing a Surge Guard model comparable to the one that was originally installed in our coach. We find that the Progressive model offers these advantages over the Surge Guard:
- Lifetime Warranty vs. one year warranty for Surge Guard
- 24/7 technical support (Surge Guard is only available 5 days per week during regular business hours)
- Remote display on Progressive unit makes troubleshooting problems easier (although since we have no TV in this park, I find Storm staring at the SP display endlessly)
- Progressive guards can be repaired and tech support is available to assist with that. Surge Guard units must be replaced – no parts are available.
Back to Cleaning
Once our current is restored, I continue with my cleaning projects. After a couple years on the road, I need to clean our pleated windshield drapes. I debate dry cleaning them, but the backing has in places worn to the point that on a sunny day pinpricks of light come through. A local cleaner here looks at them and warns me that they probably won’t survive the dry cleaning process. She recommends that I just wash the drapes in a large, commercial washer (obviously NOT the one in my coach). Since everyone on the internet seems to agree with this choice, I give it a try with only one side of the curtain set.
After a liberal application of spot remover, I wash then dry the drapes on the air, no heat dryer setting. I take them home while they are still a little damp and rehang them in the coach to completely dry. After a day or so, I take them down and iron the pleats back in. They look great and they survive this treatment well. My drapes are over 15 years old so if yours are younger, they may fare even better.
After reading my last two posts, please don’t think we are sad about our recent challenges – they are all just part of the RV Fun Life! If I do get frustrated, I just remind myself of the bad day this person that we passed on I-90 heading here was having and I get over it!