Since taking to the road, I am encountering not unanticipated repairs. Buying a used Airstream and not knowing what the hell I am looking at, you have to expect to do maintenance.
A couple of years ago, I began searching for an Airstream on EBay and all the RV website classifieds. I knew roughly what I was looking for – under 22 feet, and less than 5,000 Gross Towing Weight (GTW).
I found Scout on EBay in August 2016 in Katy, TX. The seller had lost his oil industry job. Houston, TX where the economy is in the tank (so to speak) because gas prices are CHEAP! Great for those of us who drive, not so great for Oil Companies, and their employees. I am not crying for Oil Companies. Love under $2 a gallon gas prices, especially when towing an Airstream and driving a V8 Jeep Cherokee – a real gas guzzler.
When I first laid eyes on Scout she was in a driveway, with air and all systems running. Not that I knew what to look for. My advice to others:
- Check the water heater. Is the water hot?
- Look for rust, especially on the stabilizers.
- Electronics? Check the battery, and turn everything on to see if there is a drain on electrical systems.
- Water pressure. Turn on all the water faucets.
It didn’t really matter, I was in love. I don’t believe I made a bad deal. She is a 2008, not old, but not young. She spent the last several years in a storage yard, with occasional escapes for weekend trips.
Second, Airstreams are unique, so very few dealers. Not all RVs are created equal. RVs are like big box stores, they are everywhere. Airstreams are iconic.
Third, maintenance is key. Scout did not come with maintenance history. So after a month on the road:
- Both faucets fell apart.
- No hot water.
- Radio and speakers have a serious buzz.
I pride myself on plumbing and electrical. So I was determined to replace the faucets. Except, a faucet in an RV is unlike a house. It is very cramped — really cramped!
First purchase a make-up mirror at Bed Bath and Beyond.
So I can see behind the tiny sink, and do everything backwards. I should have been a Dentist.
So many, many trips to Ace Hardware (too many to count), shopping on Amazon, and incredible frustration. What I was sure I could do in a day… Took over a month.
My BBF Michelle likes to remind me that every time I say “it is only going to take an hour, really means six hours”. I hate Michelle, because she knows me — all too well.
I got the faucets installed after a month without water, and doing dishes in the community bathrooms. Where hot water abounds.
The stabilizer jacks, at least the 2 rear have been replaced. By the Airstream (Lazydays) dealer in Tucson, AZ, and a new battery – it was over 10-years-old.
I am in Palm Springs, CA, and staying in a “real” RV Resort. Scout has water – not hot. Electricity with a 50 plug-in and a new battery. Cable, sewer and lots of nice landscaping. I recommend Two Springs RV Resort, at 14200 N. Indian Road, N. Palm Springs, CA 92258. A “Resort” that is a real “Resort”, by anyone’s standards.
Hot water heater is next on my list of repairs. The journey continues.
Yes, I am having the time of my life.