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Old 03-31-2015, 07:12 PM   #1
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Hi - Newbies from South Texas

Hi everyone - OMG my husband and I got crazy and bought a giant first camper. (The Sandpiper 355RE) We are CLUELESS !!! We will be needing your help!! We have taken it out several times - still can't get the hot water on. Now the AC Thermostat wont go to zone 2 - ugh! Help before I back it over a cliff !!!!
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Old 03-31-2015, 07:25 PM   #2
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TommiRulz View Post
Hi everyone - OMG my husband and I got crazy and bought a giant first camper. (The Sandpiper 355RE) We are CLUELESS !!! We will be needing your help!! We have taken it out several times - still can't get the hot water on. Now the AC Thermostat wont go to zone 2 - ugh! Help before I back it over a cliff !!!!

Congratulations on the new Sandpiper and welcome to the forum

With regard to your hot water heater, do you have the by-pass valves set to summer use? On the back on the water heater, where the lines are attached, there should be three valves, one in the blue (cold water in), one in the red (hot water out) and one in a short line that connects the blue and red lines (usually, this short by-pass line is half blue and half red.

For summer use, to get hot water, the valves in the blue (cold) and red (hot) lines need to be open; that is, the oblong handles need to be running parallel to the lines. The valve in the by-pass line needs to be closed; i.e. running ACROSS the by-pass line.

Fill the water heater with water (Open a faucet or two or the "pop-off" (relief) valve on the tank to let the air escape as the water comes in. Turn the heat on (electric or gas) and you should be good to go in a short time. Be sure NOT to turn the electric heater on when there is no water in the tank...it will burn up the heating element pretty quickly.

Hope that helps. Good luck, and again, welcome!
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Old 04-01-2015, 10:31 AM   #3
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Welcome from Wisconsin and congrats on your Sandpiper 355RE. First - don't back it over a cliff. You mentioned this is your first camper so expect a learning curve. Here's a couple pics of the bypass valve positions Capt. Mike mentioned.


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Summer position/normal use



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Winter position/bypass
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Old 04-01-2015, 11:01 AM   #4
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Welcome from Minnesota. You got some good advice above. When you are at a campground don't be afraid to ask a fellow camper most are willing to help. Enjoy you new camper.
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Old 04-01-2015, 11:36 AM   #5
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Welcome from Colorado! Yes, it can, at first, seem overwhelming with a new RV but the more you take it out, the better you'll get!! (We've watched hundreds of RV tip videos on Youtube which really helped!!)
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Old 04-02-2015, 09:40 PM   #6
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Get used to it!

Wow, what a great start! You will find RVers are really good folks for the most part. You will not find an end to the good advice and experience. Your best experience will be to just get out there, do it and get used to it! I know you will have a great time and this forum is the best place for good info. After 40+ years of camping in one form or another, I find there is still a learning curve but you get better as you go.
Good Luck and Happy Trails!!
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Old 04-03-2015, 08:28 AM   #7
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Favorite Parks???

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Wow, what a great start! You will find RVers are really good folks for the most part. You will not find an end to the good advice and experience. Your best experience will be to just get out there, do it and get used to it! I know you will have a great time and this forum is the best place for good info. After 40+ years of camping in one form or another, I find there is still a learning curve but you get better as you go.
Good Luck and Happy Trails!!
Oh THANK YOU !! We are headed out today --- Wish us luck!
I see you are in San Antonio - we are in Corpus. When you get a chance can you tell me about any of your favorite parks/campgrounds. I have found that most places just have really small camp sites. And the campground books are misleading. So I would love to hear from real people about nice places with big lots and trees!
THANKS for your time!! Tommi
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Old 04-04-2015, 04:49 PM   #8
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Favorite Parks

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Oh THANK YOU !! We are headed out today --- Wish us luck!
I see you are in San Antonio - we are in Corpus. When you get a chance can you tell me about any of your favorite parks/campgrounds. I have found that most places just have really small camp sites. And the campground books are misleading. So I would love to hear from real people about nice places with big lots and trees!
THANKS for your time!! Tommi
This is going to be a bit long winded but here goes. We like all the state parks. Good family fun and rates are reasonable. I support the state park system and suggest you do too! It is worthwhile. That said, one of my favorites is Goose Island. I prefer the sites in the woods but the water front is pretty cool too. You might find that Off to keep the skeeters away after dark in the woods can be real helpful.
At the Copano Bay bridge is A Bay View RV Resort. I have reservations at this park July-Oct this summer. Most sites are what I would call oversized and have slabs. Mostly level. Two pools, one adult (was not in service the last time I was there) and one large common pool area. Many full timers but good folks for the most part. Everyone knows everyone else. Many families set up here for the summer, every summer.
Mustang Island State Park puts you on the beach for a great price but is really plain Jane. We have enjoyed it many times and would stay there again.
Pioneer Park is a really fun RV Park if you like the party crowd and are good at dodging golf carts. (In fact, you need to be good at dodging golf carts at just about all rv parks except state parks). Again, good beach access. Two pools along with really clean showers and common areas.
You know, we tend to set up at a park then drive thru all the parks in the area making note of what we like and don't like. If we find one we like, we set up there and start making note of the sites we really like so we know what to ask for if given the opportunity.
As you probably already know, there are a lot of parks in your area. I know you will have a blast exploring them for yourself and will find the ones that suit you best.
One last thing I would say is to book early for the holiday weekends. The parks fill up fast.
Happy Trails! Maybe see you on the road!!
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Old 04-04-2015, 04:58 PM   #9
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Congratulations on the BIG UNIT and welcome to the forums from SW Idaho.
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Old 04-04-2015, 05:18 PM   #10
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Welcome from San Antonio, Tommi! My wife and I pretty much use the State Parks exclusively. Most have big sites and great amenities. Also, the price is right; usually about half of what an RV park charges. Congrats on your purchase and follow the advise from above - ask others. I did and was never turned away or made to feel dumb. That is one of the best ways to learn - and make great new friends.
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