The Perils of Owning a Older Motor Home

As I sit here at my computer looking out the window at the overcast sky and the dreary weather. I can’t help but reflect back on the perils of owning a older Class A Motor Home or RV. I have owed new, used, and many different RV’s in the last 50 years of RVing. My present RV is a Class A 1997 Georgie Boy Pursuit. It is now 18 years old. I acquired it last October when I got rid of my truck and TT and went back to a Class A  Motor Home, which I prefer. I did not want something fancy or expensive because of my age, and besides I like to tinker and work on things to stay busy. I knew when I bought it that It would need some work. Most of the things I am able to do myself. So far I have Replaced all of the tires. Had it serviced and all of the fluids changed. Drained and replaced the brake fluid. Changed the Analog TV for a Modern LCD TV and made a storage compartment to hold DVD’s, VCR Tapes, where the old TV was recessed into the dash. I modified the Jack knife couch by taking the innards out and making more storage. this week I installed a Wheel simulator (Hub Cap) on one of the rear wheels for the one that was lost because Big O tires did not install it right when I got new tires 6 weeks ago. It was lost on our last trip of 1900 miles to Arizona and back.

Half way home we found that the electric step would not retract back in, So I drove the rest of the way home with it sticking out. When I bought the Motor Home, the step would not extend and the dealer fixed it saying that the magnetic door switch was bad. I did not know that they had replaced the door switch with one that was stuck to the door frame with adhesive tape and the magnet was stuck to the door by the same. The original Magnetic switch is imbedded in the door and door jam. I crawled under the motor home and looked at the tangle of wires. What a mess, but none of them were broken, so I started making all of the tests To check the step motor and controller as well as the step power switch. Well the only thing that did not pass was the door switch and possibly the controller. So I got a new door jam switch and installed it with a new door magnet. Nothing worked right. I then jumped to conclusions and said to myself Ah ha the controller must be bad.

I then did a search for parts on the internet. I found out that The new Kit to replace everything except for the frame would not fit anything older that 1999 and that I would have to replace the whole step or else find the parts that I needed.


I decided to replace the whole step with all of the electronics on it. Not much more that buying parts piece meal. after I ordered the new step I found that the switch that the dealer had installed had fallen off of the door and that was the problem to begin with. I decided I wanted a switch like the one in the door jam, so I went to Camping world and got one. I installed it and hooked it up just to see what would happen. Guess what? Everything worked like it should. I thought maybe I can cancel the new step that I ordered. To late the new steps had already been shipped and were due to be delivered the next day. So I removed the old step and set it aside in case I ever needed a frame or a whole step again. The new one came and I installed it. It works perfectly. While at it I straightened out all of the wiring underneath and covered all of the wires with split wire loom sheathing, and tied it all up nice and neat out of the way.

The only consolation is the wiring is now protected, the Motor is a more heavy duty one, the door switch is back to a jam switch instead of a glue on switch that is prone to get broken or come off, and the controller is a newer more modern one. The step should last a long time. The old one was 18 years old after all. Maybe I can sell the old step to someone looking for a original one.



Author: Mel

I am a Retired PC Tech. I love to travel in a Motor Home with my Wife. I am a avid RVer and like to camp and travel. I am a commercial Pilot and hold a Novell Education certificate in Networking configuration and installation. I like to read and like country and western Music.

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