October 2, 2001

TT #26 Exhaust Manifold Leaks, Tires Aging & Dating, Intellitec Info

By: Rob Lowe

Technical Tips #26 


Exhaust Leaks

One of our members called during Spring Break to ask about replacing an exhaust manifold, and cylinder head on their engine. Apparently they had driven their Bounder with a minor exhaust leak and over time the force of hot exhaust acted much like a cutting torch. It not only eroded the manifold, but also the engine cylinder head. Unfortunately there was little they could do except replace parts, at great expense. One of our members came to the rescue with nearly new exhaust manifolds that he had removed when upgrading to the Banks system, however the head was purchased at the dealer. This reminded me that some of us are technically inclined and we often take for granted that all Bounder owners are aware of these minor problems and what they can lead to. 
Not so! Sometimes we feel awkward mentioning to another member, that problems could be brewing, others feel that the problem is none of their business. In the interest of everyone involved, I would suggest that it is better to mention something you may notice, in the event that the owner may not have. Both of you will be better for assisting each other.


Many of our Bounders are approaching six to eight years old. This is the time to begin replacing new tires. My reminder came in two parts over a period of six months. An inner dual blew-out last summer and the other inner dual blew out on our way to Florida this spring. The tires were both running at maximum pressure, and appeared to be in good shape. However Michelin manufactured them in late 1993. As we keep reminding ourselves: Motorhome tires do not wear out, they die of old age. TIRES ON A MOTORHOME SHOULD BE REPLACED WHEN THEY ARE SIX TO SEVEN YEARS OLD, REGARDLESS OF TREAD WEAR OR MILEAGE. I am now on borrowed time and should be looking for new tires this year.

Articles in the Bounder Beacon by Dave Kletter will help you maintain and properly date your tires. Michelin molds the date in the sidewall by the DOT number. The three-digit code sets out the week of manufacturer (1 to 52) and the year of manufacturer. Thus 363 would mean that the tire was manufactured in the 36th week of 1993. Why not take the time to inspect your tires and find the build date on each of your tires. The date may be on the inside since the tire can be mounted either side out. A further reminder, do not use any Armorall or any protectant on the tires. You will immediately void the warranty, and you will hasten the deterioration process resulting in stiffening of the sidewall and cracking around the rim. Michelin reminds us to wash them with clean water and if necessary small amounts of dish washing liquid soap. Keep them covered when parked and you will extend the life of the tire.

Intellitec Electrical Information:

Many of our Bounders have underhood electrical panels, electrical transfer systems and Heating-Air conditioning controllers manufactured by Intellitec. This Illinois based company has a website that includes service manuals with excellent trouble shooting guides in Adobe pdf format. The website is www.intellitecsve.com. Check it out, you might find that downloading a manual now may save trouble and expense down the road.


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