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Saturday, February 17, 2024

Winnebago View Motorhome Repairs and Modifications While On The Road

The other day, we pulled up stakes and went into the town of Jonesboro to run a few errands. We had broken a tiny spring in our latch on the screen door. 

We found out we could order the spring off Amazon, actually a pack of 10 of them. But that's kind of hard to do when you're traveling on the road and you don't know where you're going next. 

We swung by the local RV dealer to see if we could replace either the spring, or the whole latch. They had three different latches but none of them were the exact same design. I think we can function or bend a spring on our own. The latch is fine. It's just the spring that broke. We will see. But we left there empty-handed.

In the meantime, we fashioned a rubber band to help hold the latch up into place. It works good enough for now...

Steve is not one to leave things just half-arsed MacGyver'd, so he will fix it as soon as he has a chance to get another spring. 


Also, while in town the other day, we swung into Home Depot to grab a few narrower profile pipe threaded nuts. We bought this wonderful thermostatic mixing valve for the shower in the motorhome. But the nuts that came with it were a little too thick to give us the proper clearance and the ability to correctly attach the water lines to the back of the faucets.

This thermostatic mixing valve will allow us to take showers without the cold water intruding into the length of the hose during the pause mode. Any of you RV people know that to conserve water, the pause mode is necessary. Basically, you get yourself wet and then pause the shower. Either by little button or a lever on the shower head. While you're busy soaping up your body, the pressure of the cold water is stronger than the pressure of the hot water. That means the entire hose fills up with cold water. When you go to release the pause lever, you get EEEEK ice cold water! Well then you have to waste more cold water until the hot water comes up through the hose again.  Wastes water when you are boondocking. 

Of course then when you hit pause to do conditioner in your hair or soap up the rest of your body or shave, again you are paused. And again you get a blast of ice cold water!!!

Not only that, while the shower head is hanging up in the holder you're getting a drip drip drip of ice cold water on you. The drip drip drip is necessary so the pressure does not build in the lines and it's some kind of safety feature.

Well, to avoid this, many people on our Winnebago View list are installing these European thermostatic mixing valves. It correctly sets your desired temperature at each of the valves on each side and prevents any other water from backing up the hose each time you use the pause lever at the end by the shower head.  It doesn't allow the cold to feed into the hot, or the hot to feed into the cold.

We ordered this one before we left and took it along with us to work on while we are on the road...

Steve brought along all the tools needed to do the swap out while we are on the road.

It's important that this one has the offset pieces of pipe so it can narrow down or widen up to the right diameter spacing between the faucets of the existing fixture. Well, Steve still had to drill out another hole to make it fit. Later we will cover the existing hole with a small cap. In the meantime we have a piece of elastomeric roof patch tape that we put over it. That will keep the water out of it until we get a proper sealed cap.

In this photo below, you will see that Steve tied the water lines that are down in the wall up to the grab bar in the shower. That is so the lines do not drop down behind in the wall and need to be fished up again. Also, he was careful to take out the tiny washers in each of the fittings so they didn't fall down into the wall. Those washers are necessary when screwing the lines onto the back of the new fixture. 

Steve got it all into place and it's functioning perfectly!

The diverter portion with the tub spout will be handy if we ever want to fill up a big scrub bucket of soapy water, fill a 5 gallon blue water jug for drinking or just filling the bigger dog dish that doesn't fit in the tiny bathroom sink. 

Later on we will put a little vinyl hole cover attachment next to the device. It will cover the old hole from the previous set of faucets. 


While we were at Home Depot we also picked up some larger fender washers. The brackets on the cargo trailer holding up our lawn chairs had pulled through because the heads of the bolts were just a little bit too small for the spaces of the holes on the steel bars. 

By putting a fender washer behind each bolt head, they will now hold firmly and not pop up all the way through.

He reassembled all of the hooks back onto the steel bar. Using the picnic table as his workbench was very handy.

In no time he was fastening them back up inside of the cargo trailer where they belong. These are so convenient to hang our lawn chairs on each of the side walls, and the chairs are strapped securely at the bottom edges so they don't fall down on our bikes. 

A couple of the neighboring guys wandered on by to chit chat with Steve when he had his cargo trailer open. We have now dubbed it as "Steve's Garage"!!! 

The last thing we picked up at Home Depot were some extra little nuts for our lawn chairs. A couple have already fallen off so Steve bought some of the nylon locking nuts, or what are called aircraft nuts. These are just some cheap lawn chairs from Dunham's sports, but we like them because they fold up very flat and take up less space in our cargo areas. So by adding these new nuts, we will give the chairs a longer life. 


This little device is handy!!!  Sometimes when an RV is parked a little bit off level, the bathroom door will swing one way or swing the other. By Murphy's law, it probably always swings the way you don't want it to!

I know we could always just leave the door shut tight and clicked with the latch into the frame. 

With this extreme cold weather, we like to leave the bathroom door open so it doesn't get too cold in there. But if the door is swinging out into the walkway, it's always in the way as we are trying to pass back and forth.

We saw this hint from someone else, it is a locking doorstop that can be set in any position to keep the door in one spot. It's spring loaded that you can push the top plunger down with the tip of your toe, and then a little side lever you can touch with the toe to release it. No bending over.

Steve had to reinforce it a little bit with a piece of stock metal to extend it down just far enough. These hollow core doors really don't have a lot of strength. So if you buy one, be careful where you mount it. 


Now, just in case you think Steve gets to have all the fun doing ALL of the repairs and modifications, you may be wrong. I get to do them too!

A month ago, before leaving, I had decided that we needed a better shower curtain in our motorhome. I ordered this nice waterproof fabric pleated one. It was about 5 inches too long, so before we left home I carefully cut it off and zigzagged the edge. It frays very easily, so it needs to be zigzagged almost immediately after cutting.

Once we got the new shower curtain hung into place, I decided I wanted to get some clips or little tab catches down each side to keep the shower curtain snug to the shower stall. This would prevent any extra water from spraying over into the rest of the bathroom or damaging the wood or the flooring or the wallpaper.

The only problem was, inside of each clip are two little molded on plastic bumps. I'm sure these are to help snugly fit a thin plastic shower curtain. But the one I ordered was a thicker waterproof fabric one. Hmmmmmm what to do?

I took a serrated steak knife and very carefully sawed away at each little set of bumps in each of the 10 clips. 

It worked! And I didn't cut myself either. Now there was enough space in the clip to hold the fabric shower curtain. 

And there it is!
(The streak of color is a reflection 
from off the mirror)

It got rather chilly here overnight in Jonesboro Arkansas. It was down to 29° this morning. We have heaters on our holding tanks, and we never leave our water hose out. We fill the freshwater tank with the hose, and put the hose away. We have a supplemental electric space heater besides the propane furnace. We also pull in the living room slide for less area to heat, and less drafts or air leakage. It was really windy last night!!

And to top it off, we have an electric mattress pad on our bed. Comfy cozy!

We are staying here until the middle of the week, and from there we will meander maybe a little further south. The temperatures are supposed to be up in the '70s again, which is just the way we like it.

I told Steve that all that I'm asking for out of this entire vacation is to find nice quiet places in the woods, with tall trees, a beautiful view over water, and grass on the ground for the dogs. I think we are staying away from gravel or cactus or goat head spurs and the desert this time. I just want to relax and enjoy the nice weather without snow.

That's not a lot to ask for, is it?


  1. Just like your houses, you are personalizing your ne RV. Great Job!
    Be Safe and Enjoy the adventure.

    It's about time.

  2. These (small) modifications are part of what connects you to your rig, at least that's the way it was with our mods to both the sailboat and the 5th wheel. I'm with you on how you want to relax with water & tall trees - the desert certainly has it's challenges & drama.


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