Kathy, Dan, Gavin, and Marie headed home this past Sunday. We had a great time with Kathy & Dan in Sacramento on the 4th. The fireworks that evening were brash, loud, and big fun. Gavin went through missing mommy the first evening, but was find thereafter. I made pizza dough and cooked up a Hawaiian, a pepperoni, and a veggie pizza for the crew. Cleary I could have doubled the dough recipe. The pizzas disappeared quickly.
We took “Li’l Beast” to Sacramento as a dust off before our fall trip to Montana. Surprisingly, I forgot to disconnect the chassis battery the last time I parked the RV and the battery was dead. The battery boost switch let me start and drive to Sacramento using the double camper batteries to start.
I had a funny experience in Sacramento. Typically I do repairs myself and changing out a battery is no big deal. I drove to a parts shop, checked out replacement batteries from a catalog, then popped the hood. Mercedes did not put the Sprinter battery under the hood and I could not locate the battery or the manual. Finally after calling Ellen to ask if she remembered where we put the manual, I found it right where we usually put it: inside the black Winnebago folder. Great. The battery is located in a compartment under the driver’s feet.
Typical of German engineering, three screws remove a plastic retainer that holds the carpeting down. Under the carpet sits a cover held down with four screws. Sitting under the cover is a battery with one lead to ground and a bunch of cables connected in a jumper box connected to the battery. OK, Sure. I’m not messing with that I thought.
Next I called a local Mercedes dealer and spoke with a repair scheduler, a woman who was most helpful. She said I could make an appointment and might be able to get in today or I could have a mobile truck come out and replace the battery. The mobile service is at no additional charge. I’d just be charged for the battery! No Kidding. I arranged to have a technician meet me at Dan & Kathy’s to replace the battery.
Well the fellow who came out tried to resuscitate the battery, failed, and said he had not brought along a replacement battery. He also said I’d get a repair tech out more quickly if I called in for service rather than having him make the call. Strange, but Ok. I made what was now my third call into Mercedes. The same woman answered and arranged to have a second fellow come out with a battery. Twenty minutes later, I had a new German made battery installed. The RV/Battery was out of warranty, though the price was less than a battery would have been at that parts company I first visited. I had the joy of re-installing the battery cover, the carpet, and the retaining fascia.
How times have changed. I suppose so many people cannot change a tire or replace a battery that these have become routine for mobile repair. Next time I’ll remember to make a service call FIRST!