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Old 07-31-2020, 09:49 PM   #1
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Join Date: Jul 2020
Location: Ontario
Posts: 1
Default Proud new owner!

Hello all,

Today I picked up a 1989 Dodge 250 Roadtrek.

My fiancé and I have been looking for quite sometime and finally found something that fit our budget and doesn't look like it needs too too much work.

Neither one of us have any RV experience but we are avid campers- so hopefully this transition to sleeping on wheels goes smoothly!

If anyone can recommend any links, videos, etc that would be awesome.

We need to teach/refresh ourselves with:

Black/Grey/Fresh water tanks- general maintenance, how to do our own inspection for faults or failures, precautions/care/cleaning

We have Progressive Dynamics Inc 7200 Series Electrical Control Centre. We have no idea about electronics or what exactly this thing even does. Apparently it stores and converts power.

We are also considering getting rid of the propane cooking appliances and replacing it with a high quality camping stove (Jet boil Genesis). Has anyone removed the built in appliance and replaced it with a camp stove? Personal experiences on pro/cons would be great!

In short- We are very excited to join the community of caravaners, schoolies, van life, etc. and any info thrown at us to help educate us on our new Roadtrek is appreciated!


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Old 08-01-2020, 12:07 AM   #2
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Join Date: Jul 2018
Location: Texas
Posts: 2,636

Welcome to the forum Giovanni!

You're braver than I am taking on a 31yr. old vehicle, much less an rv. But, those older models rv's are pretty basic (simple if you will) and the Dodge chassis seem to go forever with regular service.

I certainly understand your desire to start with something affordable (hard to do in this Seller's market we're in right now. Do expect some issues as I had many with my first class b that was only 5 yrs. old. But if you are handy and do the work yourself, that makes costs reasonable. Plus you become intimately familiar with your rig which inspires confidence to that whatever new problem may come along.

Do some driveway camping and try out all systems. That will let you know if anything needs attention. Feel free to post questions here.

Good luck, and keep us informed.
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Old 08-01-2020, 12:22 AM   #3
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Join Date: Nov 2014
Location: PHX, AZ
Posts: 2,649

Hey Congrats,

plenty of roadtreks around- they were built in Kitchener. The original company is gone. roadtreks have those 3 windows up top- so you can find your tribe, know who to wave at

you are not going to miss waking at 4 am and having to unzip the sleeping bag and then the tent when it's cold out- having the "can" right there is great.
and it's great to not have to stop on a long run just to use the head.

we, as a rule, don't use the toilet for solids or paper- this does simplify maintenance- but many do.

tanks: find somewhere to dump!
campgrounds or some provincial or state parks may have- I can access the sewer clean out at home in my yard and can dump there.
Gloves on(!)- attach hose at van, poke other end at the hole- secure with a rock ( often nearby) or foot.

the black tank is dumped first by pulling handle
then the grey to help flush any solids out of your hose

I will usually dump a couple of gallons of water through the black tank to rinse it ( or my wife will)

once hose is rinsed, close both valves and pack the hose- I put mine in a plastic bin which fits under neath storage- less handling- others have a tube or similar storage area

get it really clean as best you can...then inspect for any drips or leaks- the valves are easily replaced and the job is nicer if clean.
fill all your tanks and watch for leaks.

I sanitize my fresh water tank with dichlor, 2 tablespoons agitate by driving and run this through all your lines.

if you have black tank odor ( esp when driving with windows open) a Lippert 360 on the vent may help

the toilet flapper valve needs to have some water in the bowl to keep the seal in good shape- if the water leaks past the best to smear some plumber's grease on the flapper and seat

the toilet is easily maintained if you need to change some seals

we also don;t use the indoor shower ( many do)- we find we are either in the boonies and use the outdoor shower, or in a campground

try the onboard propane system- if it has been kept in good shape the propane will run your burners as well as furnace and hot water.
( many truck stops have propane as do UHaul stores)

we often carry a cassette feu which we might use outdoors of the picnic table

practice in the driveway- how to do all the systems work- easier at home than in the woods

get the "house" battery load tested to ensure it's health

figure out what you need to carry, what you don;t need- storage is tight!

youtube has lots of great instructional videos

when you have RV problems look to this forum, when you have dodge problems check a dodge forum

cheers, Mike
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Old 08-01-2020, 03:18 PM   #4
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Join Date: Nov 2014
Location: PHX, AZ
Posts: 2,649

also CHECK all the alarms


carbon monoxide*

gas/propane leak

some of these expire over time and need to be replaced


* a guy I work for was affected by CO as was his family- very very lucky that someone woke and got everybody up and moving- called ambulance
the rented RV did not have a working CO monitor
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