April 18, 2021 – Living in an RV is in some ways no different than living in a house. The four walls, as time passes, need maintenance: whitewashing, fixtures, taps, shutters, locks and so on must be kept in order to always guarantee correct operation. Of course these are different elements, but with the passing years even the “four walls” of a vehicle need attention. Compared to a house, perhaps more. The confined spaces, the necessarily less durable materials and the myriad of details that compose them require a high level of attention. Because there is nothing easier than falling into the trap of “that detail is just a detail, let’s leave it like this“: by dint of details the motorhome degrades and with ten “parts” ruined its economic evaluation collapses.
This is why, in our opinion, when an element gives way, breaks, it is always better to intervene promptly, even if it does not have a fundamental function. In doing so, a certain economic outlay must be budgeted, because all spare parts designed for motorhomes and caravans have considerable costs, but in the end the vehicle will always be at least in presentable condition. Since we have Falkor, 2017, the small interventions have followed one another, with a notable intensification since it became our home.
The list of interventions
Every now and then we think about how much stuff we have changed in these four years and so we have the desire to make a list, which will also help us understand how long a replaced piece can last. We share this list with you, also indicating where we bought the products: if you need something similar, you will know where to find it! Just keep in mind that Magli Caravan, a large dealer in the province of Bologna that has proved to be a precious resource for Hymer spare parts, closed its doors last year. Below is the summary table: so far, we have spent almost €1,400 on spare parts.
The brand and price of the table leg and the price of the awning winch are missing because they were changed in the workshop when we performed other works and we do not know the cost of the single piece, while the most “annoying” expense we have incurred is that relating to hob bushings: those small rubber pads that hold the grids of the cookers in place. The first purchase lasted very little: the rubber flaked off within a few weeks. The second, with unknown brand bushings, is giving us a little more satisfaction, but the fact remains that these tiny items cost a fortune and are often sold in packs of 8: if you need less you will have to pay for them all, if you need 12 because you have three stoves you will have to buy 16. In almost all cases you will spend more than what you would like.
UPDATE: given that some witty on social media pointed out that motorhomes should be used with delicacy and that we, given the list above, would be vandals, we specify that:
- The bathroom skylight, the external electrical socket, the covers for the bike carrier attachments and the Truma chimney guard have been broken due to a hailstorm
- The gasket and the internal frame of the maxi skyroof as well as the wall cover of the Thetford toilet and the freezer door were already broken when we bought the motorhome, as were the internal shelves already rusted
- The toilet cistern was not damaged at the time of replacement, but only old, as were the headlights (already polished once) and therefore we considered it appropriate to renew them
- Fridge burner, burned out light bulbs, awning winch and water pump are “failures” simply attributable to ageand heavy use
- Oh yes, some plastic handles (of the skyroof and of the compartment in the bed) have broken, perhaps because after 15 years the plastic weakens or perhaps because we are vandals…
A never ending story
We started in February 2018 by changing the door handles mounted on the base of the drop-down bed (which leaves a large stowage compartment available when not in use: just remember to empty it before going to sleep!). And – for now – we are done with the replacement of the internal frame with mosquito net of the bathroom door (made with a rigid plastic that we did not like at all: at the first attempt to disassemble for cleaning one of the support hooks broke). But we know that we will not stop there, because between minor damage caused by our carelessness and the inevitable wear and tear on a 15-year-old vehicle we will have to continue to keep Falkor in shape over the next few months.
Here is the list of suppliers we used:
- Boutique del Campeggiatore, Portici (NA), www.boutiquedelcampeggiatore.it
- Brico Camp, Reggio Emilia, www.bricocamp.com
- Brownhills Motorhomes, UK, www.brownhills.co.uk
- Camping Sport Magenta, Magenta (MI), www.campingsportmagenta.it
- Camping Time, Montebonello (FI)
- Camping-Life.it, Travagliato (BS), www.camping-life.it
- Cusmai, Monza, www.cusmai.it
- Eurovacanze, Varallo Pombia (NO), www.euro-vacanze.it
- Grosso Vacanze, Genola (CN), www.grossovacanze.com
- Magli Caravan, Ozzando dell’Emilia (BO), www.maglicaravan.it (CHIUSO)
- MGF Motorhome, Peschiera Borromeo (MI), www.mgfmotorhome.it
- PSM Celada Fasteners, Milano, www.psmcelada.it
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