Monday, October 12, 2015

Trials And Tribulations Of The Guppy

Before leaving I was able to fix a couple of things. I replaced the black water holding tank because the old one melted on our way home last Spring. I also changed the filter in the transmission. The transmission was leaking and I figured it was the pan gasket. A new gasket comes with the filter and the kit was only 8 bucks. Besides at 75K I figured it was due for a filter change. The old filter wasn't bad, a little bit of stuff in the screen, but not enough to be a problem. I straightened out the pan and flattened out the bolt holes, that fixed the leak. It had leaked over 3 quarts of fluid while parked over the summer. There were other things I wanted to do, but finances and time were an issue.

While we were on the road we lost one of the roof vent covers. We were cruising on the interstate and I noticed it looked like the roof vent was open looking at the shadow of The Guppy. The Old Lady got up and tried to close it. The mechanism was closed but the cover was up. After a while it left the vehicle. As it wasn't raining, I figured it would be all right until we got to The Kid's place and I could get another vent cover from a RV dealer. When we got to The Kid's place it was raining, so I covered the opening with some plastic and got a new cover the next day.

I wanted to replace the charger that runs the 12v lights and stuff and charges the RV battery, but that was one of the things that got put on hold. Sometime after we get home I'll replace the charger. It puts out too high a voltage (about 17v) and won't shut down or go into float mode. It is burning out the lights and in order to play the radio I installed last year, we have to turn on a couple of lights. If I kill the AC power, the radio plays fine without any lights on or anything else drawing 12v power.

Last week when the propane tank ran dry the water heater was on and it would ignite and run for only a short time and stop. Then it would cycle and burn again for less than a minute. I checked the tank and the guage was above the halfway mark, but when I tried to light a burner on the stove, there was no gas. I hooked up a 20lb tank and tried the water heater again with the same results. I kept trying the water heater several times over the next few days and finally it is working again. The only thing I can think of is there is some water in propane and maybe some got into the nozzle on the water heater burner and it took numerous times of lighting the burner before it was gone. For awhile I thought we'd have to replace the control valve for the water heater.

Gas mileage still sucks. I'm going to replace the fuel filter before we head home and see if that'll help. I took the K&N air filter (it's the same size) from my pickup and put it in The Guppy thinking that might improve the mileage, but it didn't help, still sucks.


  1. Your gas mileage will always suck, it is just the nature of that engine and gear ratio.

  2. propane problems scare me. I mentioned before that we had an older Class C parked next to us in Alaska explode because of a gas leak: The woman had to be medivacked out (the husband was gone at the time.) It blew out our window and dented our door - destroyed their RV.
    the Ol'Buzzard

  3. Ol'Buzzard, whenever the S.O. starts messing with anything connected to the propane, I feel a strong desire to go for a walk. We've been using propane for so many things for so many years I figure he knows what he's doing. . . but I still want to step away until he puts the tools down.

  4. I don't recall if the Guppy is fuel injected or has a carb, if it has a carb it can be tweaked a bit but ya won't gain a lot from it, one mile per gallon at best.

    "It had leaked over 3 quarts of fluid while parked over the summer."

    When they sit a lot the torque converter often drains down (the check valve leaks some) and over fills the pan area.

  5. BBC, it's fuel injected. The pan didn't leak after I changed the gasket, but now after being parked for a couple weeks and the weather being cooler it is now leaking again. Before it was in one spot, now it's most of the way around. Don't want to tighten the bolts as the gasket (neoprene) is already pushed out a little. I'm going to get some trans stop leak and see if that will swell the gasket.

  6. I will advise against using stop leak for a pan gasket, better to just snug the bolts a bit, not real tight, just a bit. Or remove the pan and toss the gasket and just use some high temp silicone. If the shift shaft seal (actually two seals there) is leaking it is just above the pan and can make it seem like the pan gasket is leaking.

    Fuel injected hey? Keep high pressures in the tires and drive slow is about the best you can do. But sometimes a better grade of gas helps, if the price isn't too much higher.


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