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drzcharlie

Service Intervals - Some Questions

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My wife and I have been RV'ing since the late 80's. We have had two Class C's and a TT. We just purchased a Class A coach (well, we pick it up next week) and I have some questions about service intervals.

 

Our "new to us" rig is a 2005 Newmar Northern Star with a 350 HP and 6 speed Allison Transmission.

 

I already have done research as to what components are required to do the servicing and have the part numbers for them. I do intend to have it done at Speedco or a similar service provider. I also know that I am better off ordering oil filter, air filter, fuel filters and if needed air dryer and bringing them with me to insure that the provider has all of the parts they need to complete the task.

 

So, my real questions are:

 

1. How long between service intervals should I run this engine and I know the type of oil will dictate length between servicing?

 

2. Do I use dino oil or full synthetic?

 

3. Depending on choice of oil typs what are the intervals for oil change using each of these oils?

 

4. Since I have little knowledge other than an oil analysis that indicates that the PO serviced the engine regularly, should I start with a full service including chassis lube and then switch to factory recommendations after that (whatever they are, haven't found that info yet)?

 

Thanks for any advice you might care to share.

Edited by drzcharlie

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I also have a Northern Star. I change the oil once per year with regular oil (non-synthetic). Since the recommendation is to change the oil once per year, you might as well save money and not use synthetic.

 

What other maintenance has been done? What records are available? There is a whole lot more to do than change the oil. I have created a spreadsheet with every maintenance item and frequency. I also have the recommended maintenance items electronically. If you send me a private message with your email address, I will email both to you.

 

I would recommend you attend Camp Freightliner if you can. It is a great class and you will get a lot of great information about your coach.

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O also should have told you that there are many maintenance items that Speedo will not do. For example, they do not replace the filter on the air dryer, which is an important item.

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I also set up a spreadsheet to keep track of service intervals, actually used the format from our owner's manuals. You do have all of the manuals, right? If now, get them and set down and read them.

 

We do our annual maintenance each spring before leaving the Phoenix area because we have found a service center that we like. It isn't just the oil and filters, but you need to think about fuel filters (we have two on ours), the cooling system, the transmission, the differential, the air filter, (yes, dryer too), the wheels checked, the hoses and belts, batteries (our facility inspects each of the big cables in the battery bay and replaces as necessary), and the fittings, etc. When you find someone who is thorough, reasonable (well as reasonable as it can be for DP service) and easy to work with, go back to them again and again.

 

Barb

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O also should have told you that there are many maintenance items that Speedo will not do. For example, they do not replace the filter on the air dryer, which is an important item.

How do you like your NS? There are not a lot for sale at any one time. I am assuming that either they are a very popular coach or they are a rare coach. We sure like ours. We take our first real trip during Thanksgiving week. Then we are off for a month in Florida in December. I am really looking forward to it.

 

Any do's or don'ts for the this coach and this neophyte?

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Keep in mind, no matter what type oil you use, you should not exceed/extend the oil change interval-

Read Synthetic Lubricants-aren't by a long-time escapee member.

Engine and transmission filters, and generator filters are carried by Speedco for Cummins products. You do want to carry spare fuel filters onboard in case you must replace them on the road. I buy new fuel filters from Speedco to replace my spares, then have them use the spares when they service the MH.

Edited by RayIN

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Just a quick comment..... when a dealer offers "semi-synthetic" oil, which is a mix of regular and synthetic, ask them what the ratio is. Most of the time they will say something like 30%, or 50%. Ask them if they are sure. MOST will not know for sure. In actuality, by law, there is NO MINIMUM amount of synthetic only a maximum of 30%. So, a dealer could add ONE DROP of synthetic and sell it, legally, as semi. Go full synthetic or full regular and save the money.

 

Jeff and Diane

HouselessNotHomeless

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For the Allison transmission, I contacted one of the Allison service shops and followed their suggestions. On my T1000 trans they suggested I install a deep oil pan to hold an additional 4 quarts which will keep the oil cooler and less cycled. They also suggested Transyd synthetic oil to be used and with heavy towing it needs to be changed every 50k miles. Another thing was to change the internal filter at 50k and the external spin on filter every 10k miles. I have 300k+ on my Chevy and still running strong.

Any full synthetic oil will run 15-20 degrees cooler due to reduced friction in the motor/trans/diff which means one thing, less wear!!

Greg

Edited by gjhunter01

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My answer would be, 'it depends'! It depends on how you use your RV. Are you going to sit for extended periods or are you going be driving every day?

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Just a quick comment..... when a dealer offers "semi-synthetic" oil, which is a mix of regular and synthetic, ask them what the ratio is. Most of the time they will say something like 30%, or 50%. Ask them if they are sure. MOST will not know for sure. In actuality, by law, there is NO MINIMUM amount of synthetic only a maximum of 30%. So, a dealer could add ONE DROP of synthetic and sell it, legally, as semi. Go full synthetic or full regular and save the money.

 

Jeff and Diane

HouselessNotHomeless

Interesting information. One escapee member, "RV", researched and wrote a very informative article on the subject.

Synthetic Lubricants- aren't

He did have it posted here, but changes in platforms lost his article in the changeovers.

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