Making the "PLUS" in our name even more prominent
Posted on Aug 24, 2020
As we round the curve on 20 years of assisting RVers with their RV maintenance and equipment needs, we have decided to step forward in a direction that will feature more RV assistance and somewhat less dependence upon selling RV Products. That does not mean that we will not be selling products, just that our emphasis will be more focused on providing knowledge learned over our fifty plus years of RVing to those new to the lifestyle. Technical Tips and our Blog will become even more important on our website, the actual sale of products will recede somewhat. The News section of our website we be a great resource for keeping up with what is happening with RV Parts Plus.
You might wonder why would we be taking this direction now? Great question! There have been some changes in the RV landscape that have impacted our decision. First let me cover where have been.
When we went online in 2001 we were considered innovators, even rebels, supposedly bent on ruining the industry. You ask 'What??" believe it or not, in Canada in the early 2000's hardly any company had an internet presence. There were two or three major distributors of RV components that delivered their goods through to Canadian RV dealers. At that time, the Canadian dollar was considerably lower than the US currency. Given the process to put a catalogue together, prices had to be set by August of the year prior to the January when the new catalogue was effective introducing pricing for the year ahead. As with any business, everybody touching the product had to make money, so manufacturers sold products to distributors which in turn sold those products to their dealers, which in turn sold to the RVer needing the product. Since a catalogue was printed well in advance of the beginning of the calendar year, the distributor had to predict (guess) which way the Currency exchange rate was to go and established their prices then printed their catalogue with prices based on that prediction. Online pricing that could be immediately updated as currency variations occurred was not possible. We were dealers for two major Canadian Distributors and we could see the flaws in their pricing system. We challenged the system because we already were direct dealers for some equipment suppliers, buying direct then reselling to the RVer with the pricing being established at the time of purchase and sale. We used the internet to source those RV parts buyers, in addition to our contacts gained at RV Rallies. This allowed our prices to follow the currency variations and since we did not need to keep a buffer (or overpriced inventory), we and the RVer were able to establish a fair price. When the Canadian Currency began to rise, our prices fell, while the printed catalogue price stayed fixed for the year. So RVer's who checked prices at the RV dealer, then with us, generally bought the products from us. When dealers started to complain, we were notified that we were undercutting the 'Bricks and Mortar" RV dealers and within one week of one distributor withdrawing our ability to buy products from them, the second distributor suddenly also withdrew our ability to buy from them as well. No collusion here?
Regardless in hindsight this was a blessing, since we could focus on the products we could buy a sell both in Canada and in the USA. We did not need to carry a lot of inventory and we could offer the RVer some help with the technical aspects of the products they were buying. We routinely present seminars at RV Rallies and often we had a booth where we could meet and assist RVers with their needs. We had time to focus on solving problems that RVers were experiencing and introduced products to the RV marketplace.
Fast forward to the present and you will see that there are items on our website that we no longer stock, and while in some cases we will order, for others we cannot. The Technical Tips (TT) will continue to address items that we know will assist other RVers. Our Blog will focus on items of interest and the News articles will be more timely, and our way of bringing important topics to your attention. You can always email or call us and we'll do our best to address the issue.
We look forward to assist RVers as we connect in this way. Any items we still have in stock we will be selling as before.
Micro Air Easy Start Air Conditioning Controllers
Posted on Aug 13, 2020
We are pleased to have sufficient stock to be able to offer immediate shipment of the Easy Start 364 Air Conditioning Controllers. These amazing devices significantly reduce the start up current of the typical AC compressor such that a generator as small as 2000 watts will start the air conditioner. Without this device installed typically a generator of around 3,000 watts are needed. We have supplied these units to RVers, Boaters and even industrial users such as builders of train locomotives, which use RV air conditioners to cool the Engineer's cab area. They run these AC units on 5,000 watt inverters powered by batteries. This technology makes the starting of a air conditioner's compressor almost a non event with even cool air effortlessly being provided. We also have limited stock of units designed for small 240VAC residential air conditioners. Read Tech Tip #112 for a more detailed explanation of these wonderful, easy to install units.
Towing an Electric Vehicle? Use a Tow Dolly
Posted on Jun 1, 2020
Some RVers are looking at buying or leasing an Electric Vehicle as their daily driving vehicle. If you want to take it with you on a RV vacation, then selecting the right one and deciding how it can be towed become critical elements in any decision. In my Rob's Blog articles over the last year, I've written a number of ground breaking articles to help people with this decision. I've covered vehicle selection, how to tow, setting up a tow dolly and made recommendations about improvements I made to make towing easier. I also give some recommendations about how to easily install lighting on you towed vehicle while it is on a tow dolly.
Taking this a little further, I've given you an idea of what it is like to actually drive an EV and in a future article I'll given you some hints on how to charge your EV when at a campsite. We often refer to this as 'free charging' since you are using the campground system to charge your vehicle while 'camping' at a RV site.
After more than a year of actually towing and using an EV as our primary vehicle and tow vehicle, I'll share some lessons learned. All of this will help those walking this path after me to avoid some of the pitfalls you can potentially run up against.
The ABC's of L.E.D.s is Now Available!
Posted on Jan 3, 2015
We are happy to announce that our latest book has just been published and is now available. This book, The ABCs of L.E.D.s has been published as an E-Book, to allow it to be kept current in this ever-changing RV world. You can read it, downloaded as a PDF file, on almost every reader, computer or smartphone with the proper App. The ABCs of L.E.D.s is written in an easy to understand format. It begins by explaining what L.E.D.s are, why they are becoming popular in RVs, the various light colours available along with many other important features and benefits. Not only is there a great overview of the replacement options, there are many pages devoted to explaining how to make the conversion. Over 40 photos in 70 pages contribute to making this world's first book on the topic a trailblazer. Check out our Blog for the Preview Link and the link to purchase and download it.
Rob's Blog Focuses on Battery & Charging Issues
Posted on Jan 24, 2014
In an attempt to assist RVers who are experiencing "Dead" Batteries or lack of charging of either the Chassis/Starting or Coach/House batteries, Rob has presented in his recent Blog postings an overview of how many motorhome charging and battery systems interact and some of the issues surrounding why they may not function correctly. This explanation covers both the charging of the batteries while driving as well as when parked and plugged into Shore power or using a generator. The explanation is somewhat generic however it will provide a basis for many to better understand and possibly trouble shoot a "dead" battery situation. Some Case Studies are presented that detail the problem and how they were solved with the hope that by reading the Blog you will be able to deal with a similar problem. Let us now if you found this series helpful!