Handy Randy – Volume 432

Those of you who have been following this blog for awhile know that Randy is able to fix most things in the trailer. In fact, he thinks the ability to troubleshoot and fix things should be qualifications for owning an RV.   He gets frustrated when he has to hodgepodge things together if our location limits supplies but he usually gets it done.

On this trip he had to figure out why we had gouges in our brand new floor  The answer was two metal protrusions barely sticking through on our kitchen slide-out.   We’ll get the planks replaced after we are sure it is no longer an issue when we take another trip later this summer.

The next Handy Randy project was figuring out what was going on with our SplendideWasher Dryer Combo.  We had poor drying, flashing light sequences, and even obnoxious noises when it wasn’t in use! We resorted to turning the electricity off at the breaker box.

We’d never had this much drama with the unit before but we had seen poor drying and lesser light sequences. I did the intensive cleaning procedure that had always worked before without good result. Randy repeated it when he found a modified version online.  Again, no change.

While living on the road, having that washer-dryer in the trailer was required as far as I was concerned.  But now that we are part timers,  I was already thinking about whether we would replace it at a cost of around $1500. Given 2020, it may not be possible to get one.  Like everything in an RV, the machines are much more expensive than home units.

Handy Randy kept digging around thinking he might get by with just replacing the electronics.  He finally found someone describing a solidified lint mass way down in the bowels of the machine that caused similar symptoms. 

So,  he took the dang thing out of the closet (after removing the closet door) and took it apart.

Sure enough, he found this disgusting mat of lint the size of a dead rat.  No wonder the machine was acting crazy.  We have no answer as to why this bizarre behavior wasn’t demonstrated when we last time used the trailer but was now. Perhaps being idle for awhile allowed that lint to settle and solidify.


Even though he was able to fix the combo unit this time, it was enough work that he didn’t want to do it again.   He believed a contributing factor to the problem was restricted air flow at the vent because of the placement of the original hole.

Way back in 2015 we had the washer-dryer combo installed at a Good Sam Rally.  At that time Randy had been uncertain about cutting holes in the side of the trailer without knowing for sure what he was doing.

Unfortunately that hole was about eight inches off the optimal venting site requiring this adaption. It worked, mostly, but lint build up has always been an issue.

Randy decided to cut a new hole to vent more directly.  He was glad to find the needed parts in this small New Mexico town.

All done! The left vent is capped and no longer functional. The one on the right is open and works great! The washer-dryer combo and I are happy again. It was another successful Handy Randy repair! Well done husband!

When the work was done we visited the Mineral Museum at New Mexico Tech in Socorro.  We were impressed with the breadth and depth of their displays focusing not only on New Mexico and Western minerals and gems but it also included specimens from around the world.

Minerals and gem stones is not a world we live in, but we were impressed.  If you do live in that world, you’d probably love it!

We routed through Socorro to go to the Very Large Array, about an hour west.  Unfortunately it was still COVID closed and we only saw the array from the road.  Another time….

We had one final stop in New Mexico –  but just for lunch and pie.  Pie Town had been on our “to do” list for years but we just hadn’t been through on Highway 60.

After COVID, It felt so very strange to be in a small cafe with other people, especially when lots of people came in to purchase pies.   Pie Town has some history as the restaurant has been operating since 1927.

New Mexico burgers (with chilis of course) were very good and we left with small Key Lime and Southern Peach pies.   We won’t go out of our way but if we find ourselves on Highway 60 again, we’d stop for pie, just like everyone else.

After almost six weeks on the road, we came back into Arizona.  We had a great trip but were very ready to be home.  Along the way Randy came to the understanding that he really didn’t want to go full time again.

We had one more stop that was important to me.  Randy would have been happy to skip it but it turned out to be a big deal. It will be a little while before I write about it because some things need to settle out, but a big thing is coming in the next blog.

About Serene

Former full time RVers, transitioned to homeowners and travelers. We've still got a map to finish! Home is the Phoenix area desert and a small cabin in the White Mountains of Arizona.
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9 Responses to Handy Randy – Volume 432

  1. It is a good thing to know that “pie” in the south really does mean pie. Up north, it usually means pizza. We have been disappointed a few times during our Maine travels.
    Can’t wait for the next blog!

  2. Having a handy husband is wonderful!

  3. Mark McClelland says:

    Now that gives a new meaning to the term “Lint Trap”. Glad you got it all figured out. I remember putting screws into the side of our new RV to mount a window shade. I was nervous enough, but I can’t imagine cutting an 4″ hole!!

    • Serene says:

      Randy here: Mark, yes I was very disappointed in 2015 when the two young technicians didn’t listen to me when I said please measure before cutting a hole in my RV so that the vent hose can come out of the washer/dryer and go straight to the outside with no kinks. Well they didn’t, even with me standing there. When they left, they had smashed the vent hose almost flat to get it to go along the side of the unit, turn into the back and try to connect to the dryer outlet in the back. Their attachment last about 1 day. I was really mad. I had to search everywhere for an adapter small enough to fit the space, but it still restricted air flow and kept clogging with lent. I have hated it for the last six years, so I just decided to fix it right once and for all. Heck, what is another 4″ hole on the side of your RV anyway? 🙂

  4. Jim kazakoff says:

    My nephew refers to having “the handy gene”- some people have it, many do not. Having worked with Randy, I know he has it- in fact he may have the pedigree handy gene. Enjoy following your travels.

    • Serene says:

      Randy here: Thanks Jim. That is high praise from you, who I know does quality work on all your projects.

      We are glad you enjoy the blog. Serene works hard to make them educational and also fun. Good thing this is a blog rather than a video since there would be too much editing and bleeping out inappropriate statements as I work on these repairs/project. 🙂

  5. Jack Smith says:

    Randy, my youngest son is building out an ambulance into a go anywhere, do anything RV. It’s a 4×4 built on an F-450 chassis. I am enjoying watching and sometimes helping with his project. When you’re in Boise, I could arrange a tour.

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