Thursday, March 17, 2016

Serpentine belts are so overrated!

We left Lakeside RV park just after Gary and Jo left on Wednesday, I think. The days are a blur. We didn't get but eight miles down the road when all hell broke loose. Alarms started going on and lots of red lights on the dash monitor. . . . I HATE RED LIGHTS!

Buzzers in my ears and red lights on the dash. I look down and the message was clear. . . CHECK INFO CENTER. So I scan my eyes to the left and the info center reads "high engine temp 222 degrees." Whoa! Not redlining yet, but getting close. I backed her off and eased over to the side putting my four-way flashers on. We were within one mile of the next exit which we could actually see. We got pulled off about 18 inches off the traffic lane. We could not get the wheels off the road because this county on I-12 due north of New Orleans was under a flood emergency by FEMA and the ground was saturated. Terry got on the phone to the road service who said they would call back with info on a wrecker. As we pondered our plight, we came to the conclusion that it was not "all hell" that broke loose, but likely the serpentine belt that broke. I guess Phaeton Place thought she could run without one, but we convinced her otherwise. In eleven years of fulltiming, we have enjoyed 10 trouble-free years; so we have nothing to complain about. It still is an eerie feeling to see this out your front window though.

Within a half hour, the Louisiana State Police were knocking on our door asking what the problem was. We explained what we thought and that we had just learned our road service had called a wrecker which would be dispatched within an hour. He asked us to call back and ask which wrecker service, because Officer Cook said he could get it dispatched quicker! Whoo hoo! As it was, the wrecker had already left to find us. The officer stayed behind us with his lights flashing and did a good job of getting traffic moved into the other lane. Thank you Officer Cook and the Louisiana State Police. Just a sidenote here: If you see a vehicle on the side of the road, slow down or move over. The wind impact from passing cars, RV's, trucks, etc., is horrendous and you are passing within INCHES of the vehicle. Slow down or move over and keep everyone alive!

It took over an hour for the tow driver to get our driveline unhook so we could be towed. But he knew what he was doing and checked and double-checked everything. He said he got that from his dad who was an airline pilot. Safety first! Great job John and great tow service from American Coachworks in Denham Springs, Louisiana.

We were towed to Big Wheel truck center and backed directly into a bay. The mechanics worked till closing that day and then finished up the next day. They did a good job for us, but there were some "problems" along the way. Fortunately, Terry is very smart about mechanics and knows all the intricacies of our coach. What he may not know, he knows the people to call, so we did just end up with the belt changed and not a lot of other stuff that was suggested. He did have them change the air cleaner because it was time and they had to take it off for access.

They had us all ready to go on Thursday afternoon at 3:30. We drove and drove it seems. We actually made it to Milton, Florida for the night. We had planned to stop at a state park on Mobile Bay, but it was raining again and they were expecting a lot of rain. We decided we didn't want to stay there in the rain and not be able to enjoy any sightseeing, so we just kept going. Better days ahead!

Till next time. . .


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