Back to Venice and Sarasota for repairs to Serenity

Our electrical problems, if anything, were getting worse.  What had been occasional losses to the 50 amp were now consistent, the automatic steps no longer worked even with a bit of carefully timed physical assistance, and the 12 volt system in general was inoperative without shore power, and even with power a number of things did not work.  Having exhausted my limited knowledge, perhaps even making things worse with my efforts, it was time to bite the bullet and let the pros deal with it.  After a bit of research I found a decently reviewed shop in south Sarasota that could get us in on short notice.

So we regretfully said goodbye to Sanibel and headed north, dropping Serenity off at Campbell RV with a list of half a dozen things to address.  Bill and Gloria took us in for a couple of days while we waited for what we hoped would be a quick and affordable set of fixes possibly covered in part by our Easy Care extended warranty.  In the meantime, we ate like kings at the Bayba’s, combining Gloria’s Puerto Rican cuisine with Bill’s notable culinary skills.  We had a great feast when Bobbi and Steve, Bill’s daughter and son-in-law, joined us for dinner.

Aside from that it was thrift shop hunting time at Venice and Nokomis’ many stores.  On the third morning I drove up to Sarasota, picked up Serenity, hooked up and took the rig down to Oscar Sherer State Park in Osprey before rejoining Rosemarie at the Bayba’s for Bill’s excellent grilled sausage pizza.

As for Serenity: huge improvements.  The 12 Volt problem was a popped circuit under a control panel shield that I did not know existed.  Once that was reset, the 50 amp problem also went away.  I suspect the 12 volt system has some role in controlling the transfer switch or something.  They found a ground in the automatic steps, repaired a broken awning bracket, rewound the awning retraction spring (when I replaced the rear awning arm, I had been unable to wind it to the full appropriate tension,) and unstuck my water filter.  I had a bit of excitement when I went across the road to hook up and drive away: no one mentioned that they are in the habit of disconnecting both the start and house batteries using the two switches near the stairs, so I thought everything was dead and broken until they sorted me out.

So the good news was that they fixed a lot of stuff and it didn’t take them much labor time or require any significant parts to do so.  The bad news is that without a component failure, the Easy Care policy covers nothing at all, so we had to cover the full, nearly $500 bill.  Lastly: by the time I got to Oscar Scherer whatever they had adjusted on the steps failed again, and we currently have to ghetto up the stair area and use a cooler as a step in order to not have a two foot drop.

A one day stay at Oscar Scherer is not nearly enough to enjoy it, particularly when you arrive late and want to get on the road the next day at a decent hour.  One new thing we learned while there though is that the row of sites that back up directly onto the South Creek are “no pets allowed “spots; I think its because of liability issues related to how much alligators enjoy playing “hide and seek in my mouth” with small dogs and cats, but I’m not certain.  So unless you plan on working around this in some way, pet owners will need to avoid sites 68-98.

3 thoughts on “Back to Venice and Sarasota for repairs to Serenity

  1. Pingback: 24 Months Fulltiming: December 2016 Report | Shell On Wheels

  2. Pingback: 2016 in Review (Two Years Fulltiming) | Shell On Wheels

  3. Pingback: Our Nine Final Days of Geo Tracker Repair Drama (Plus Lake Manatee, Oscar Scherer, MacDill AFB, and a Cracker Barrel) | Shell On Wheels

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