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Old 05-06-2013, 08:47 AM   #1
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Question Undercarriage and hot water questions: 2013 Salem Cruise Lite 195BH

This past weekend we took our new trailer out for the first time for a weekend of camping at a local state campground. My family had a great time, and we all agreed this is a huge improvement from tent camping!

I have two questions:

1. Our hot water heater seemed to be leaking a lot. We had to call the rv dealer to figure out how to get the water flowing to it. (access panel had to be removed and we needed to turn on some valves) But when the water heater was on it was gushing water - could the metal rod we screw in not be tight enough or is something else going on?

2. While trying to figure out the hot water issue I noticed that the undercarriage of the trailer is simply lined with a black plastic tarp. This does not seem to be sturdy and there are some holes where pipes, etc. stick out. I am concerned about rodents and insects. Is this normal for the underside of a trailer? Is there maintenance issues we should be aware of? Can we upgrade this to something better?

Thank you so much!
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Old 05-06-2013, 09:07 AM   #2
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Glad to hear you had a great time! Sure is a big difference getting up off the ground isn't it.

1. Where is the water gushing from, the anode rod or pressure relief valve? That anode rod can be tricky to get back in correctly sometimes. Make sure both sets of threads are clean. I put a little teflon tape on the threads up by the nut end, other use a little plumbers putty to help seal it better. Be careful because you don't want to strip the threads!

2. Holes in the underbelly is an open invitation for critters. If the holes are big you can stuff copper wool in them and seal with expanding foam. I use copper wool instead of steel wool because it won't rust. Available at Walmart in the kitchen aisle by the sponges. Smaller holes can be sealed with just the expanding foam. Get under your camper and seal everything.
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Old 05-06-2013, 02:17 PM   #3
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Thank you for your help!

The plumbers tape is an excellent idea, the water is coming out of the anode rod - not the overflow.

I am not sure expandable foam or copper wool would work because the bottom of the trailer is literally covered with a black tarp material - that is very similar to the standard blue tarp one might find at home depot.

I thought at first that this might just be a protective layer for the real bottom, but when looking for the hot water heater I confirmed that there is nothing else between the bottom and this black tarp. It just seems like a recipe for disaster - I would think something stronger would need to be down there.
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Old 07-25-2013, 03:30 PM   #4
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hi
we also have a new 195BH. I noticed the same "underbelly" cloth like material when I pulled the access panel off under the tub. too bad i never think to look at it closer from underneath. certainly not as good as the older plastic cut with a utilility knife and fold back stuff. helps explain the low price i guess. only water leak we had was the fresh water tank drain valve being left open. does yours have the 120v only "bar" fridge or is it a 2 way? another forum member says their dealer let them order a 2 way fridge as an option while our dealer tells us there is no option. the other member is wary now and will have a good look at the installation before signing for it. i think the 2 way fridge have a vented side door instead of the solid door on the outside of the trailer.
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Old 07-26-2013, 08:53 AM   #5
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We had the same fresh water leak the first time out. As of the last trip we didn't have any issues - there were a few issues that were fixed under warranty from the dealer.

We have the "bar" fridge, the access door is not vented. We haven't had any issues with the fridge, except that it is kind of small. On our last trip we camped out with another family, they were in a tent. So we reserved the fridge for food and kept drinks outside in a big "4-day" cooler.

We are happy with our trailer - the memory foam mattress we bought on Amazon increased the comfort level by 100%, the trailer is now more comfy than any hotel
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Old 09-11-2014, 06:31 PM   #6
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I am told that there is a $43 thick plastic type of underlayment that can be installed that will better protect. We had a mouse visit and were quite dismayed to see a hole to the outside world big enough for for a mouse, a cat to chase the mouse and a dog to chase the cat to get in!
I will report back when I get it.
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Old 09-11-2014, 07:18 PM   #7
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Thank you! We still have the same liner, going on a year and a half and haven't had any furry critter problems - yet!
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Old 09-11-2014, 10:40 PM   #8
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Our 221rbxlcriuse lite has the same underbelly material. Yes it looks cheap but so far it is doing the job. We bought it last year and it spent the winter at the edge of the dealer lot beside a field. A perfect spot to find mice looking for winter refuge. I check it often wit no signs of mice attempting to get it. I did go around with a tube of silicon but overall it was well foamed around pipes and wires. We also went west and have towed the trailer for 6000 miles with a lot of wind and rain with no adverse effects on the underbelly.

Hopefully your anode in your water heater is just loose and not cross threaded. As stated they are hard to get started straight and I use Teflon tape generously as well.
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Old 03-26-2015, 12:03 AM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Joe diGesu View Post
I am told that there is a $43 thick plastic type of underlayment that can be installed that will better protect. We had a mouse visit and were quite dismayed to see a hole to the outside world big enough for for a mouse, a cat to chase the mouse and a dog to chase the cat to get in!
I will report back when I get it.

Any word on this $43 better underlayment?
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Old 03-26-2015, 03:43 AM   #10
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under carrige protection

Turns out it is more than 43$, closer to a couple of hundred dollars. I will look into it further when (if?) the snow ever melts.
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