Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)
  1. RVHaulers’-Specific
  2. Customizations
  3. People and Family
  4. Driving and Travelling
  5. Technical/Mechanical
  6. Economical Solution
  7. Maintenance

1. RVHaulers’-Specific FAQ

Q. Do you have trucks In Stock right now?
Yes! We have road-ready RVHaulers in stock for you to check out. Click here to see what trucks are available for purchase right now.

Q. Can I come in for a test drive?

Contact us to make an appointment to come and test drive an RVHauler today.

Q. How to I get this RV Hauler registered in Ontario?

Registering an RVHauler in Ontario as a motorhome.

Special thanks to our customers Ralf and Laurie who provided the hints and links!

Background:

You will want to register your new vehicle as a Class C Motorhome in Ontario.  Here are the definitions as per the Ontario government website:

http://www.mto.gov.on.ca/english/dandv/vehicle/motor-homes-faq.shtml

Ralf made a trip to their office to ensure he had a clear picture, and was told verbatim what was on the link.  The lady behind the counter did it from memory, so Ralf feels “It can’t be all so rare!”

To qualify as a motorhome, the class 8 conversion must have 4 of 7 items on-board as per the following website:

http://www.mto.gov.on.ca/english/pubs/recreational-vehicles/index.shtml

The list of items includes:  Cooking facilities, a refrigerator or an ice box, a self-contained toilet, a heating or air conditioning system, an independent electrical power supply or an independent gas supply or a potable water supply system with faucet and sink.

Step 1 – before you pickup your truck from RVHaulers – get a bill of sale from us.  Forward that bill of sale to your insurance company and get insurance in place.

Ralf contacted State Farm Insurance, and learned that they have an internal page on their company website (available to agents only) that specifically addresses insuring class 8 conversions.

Step 2 – Send a copy of your insurance to RVHaulers.  We will get a temporary transportation permit in place for your drive home.  No plate is required at this time.

Step 3 – Book your flight and hotel (if arriving late in the day).  If staying overnight, we recommend the BEST WESTERN PREMIER Freeport Inn & Suites.  This is a brand-new hotel VERY close to the airport.  When you fly in, there is a short shuttle (<5 mins).   The hotel has very nice breakfast included.

If you book on their website, it is $119 plus tax for a king size bed.  If you have a CAA membership the rate is $112.  There are some cheaper hotels (around $100), but they are over 25 mins away, and don’t have free breakfast.

Step 4 – We will pick you up from either the airport, or the hotel.

Step 5 – Please plan on spending a few hours with us to get your oriented to your new RVHauler.  We will review all the operating instructions, maintenance, and go for a test drive.  We will have the Hauler ready with a new mattress, new pillows, and new bedding.  We will outfit you with your favourite snacks, drinks, and directions to the nearest Walmart / Superstore if there is anything else you want to pickup.

Step 6 – Enjoy your drive home!

Step 7 – Have an out-of-province inspection completed at a mechanics shop of your choosing.  We will have already completed an Alberta Commercial Vehicle Inspection Process (CVIP), and ensured your vehicle will meet all Ontario out-of-province inspection guidelines.

Step 8 – Get your plates.

Ralf reports: “They didn’t even ask to see the truck…  I told them ‘It’s a motorhome now’ and that’s how they filed it.”

Ralf recommends:  “It helps to have everything labeled ‘motorhome’.  Referring to the safety and insurance documents.”

Q: What inspections and overall condition do you provide with your RVHaulers?

A: All our trucks go through a detailed inspection and maintenance process. Overall, we won’t let a truck leave that isn’t treated as if we were going to keep it for our own use. We perform a top to bottom inspection, and replace fluids and filters. We try to make our vehicles ready to go hundreds of thousands of kilometres more! Please contact us for a inspection check-list and report on our for-sale vehicles.

Q: You say these vehicles have superior braking? What is different than my pickup truck?

A: The air brake systems on these trucks have superior and larger shoes and braking power. Coupling this with engine brakes, and having some weight associated with the truck – you finally have the upper hand. The RVHauler gives you stopping power – the trailer brakes are no longer your saving grace.

Q. Do you take trade-ins?

Yes.

Q. Is financing available?

Yes. We have the facilities to provide pre-approved financing.

Q. Where do you get your used trucks from?

We have relationships with fleet managers in Western Canada. When their trucks approach the end of their warranty period (800,000kms or 500,000 miles), they make the best units available to us. They like selling us their trucks, because we are taking them out of competition on the highway. They provide us with complete maintenance histories, and we know that they have been maintained to very high standards.

Q: Why do I only need a standard driver’s License and air brake ticket to drive?

A: A single rear-axle results in a two axle truck. No different than a pickup, hence a standard class 5 license is all that is required. Since these trucks use air brakes, you need to take a one-day air brakes class – often call a ‘Q’ Certification. Most motor home drivers require this same course.

Q. Will you convert a truck I locate myself?

Yes, if you already have a highway tractor you want converted, and need someone experienced to complete the work, we will help.

Q. How long does it take to do a conversion?

We have road-ready RVHaulers in stock.
If you have your own truck you want converted, or if we can source a unique model for you, the usual conversion requires 4-6 weeks. If you want significant customizations such as rear equipment decks, garages, or lifts the conversion time can be longer. Often, the extended build time is due to the wait-times for special parts.

2. Customizations FAQ

Q: Can I get a stick shift?

A: Yes! Traditional truck drivers, and purists appreciate the control you have when choosing your own gears. The vast majority of snowbirds, people unfamiliar with clutching, and recreational drivers want the auto shifting RVHaulers. We can source, and prepare a 13 speed stick or 18 speed stick RVHauler for those interested.

Q: Tell us more about the onboard electronics.

A: All units are equipped with great-sounding stereos ready with MP3 player inputs, and are satellite radio ready. The stereos are also fed from the optional on-board computer, satellite navigation (for driving instructions) and multi-screen DVD player.

Q. Do you do customizations to already converted trucks?

Yes, if you already have an RVHauler, and need repairs, parts, maintenance, or upgrades, we will do that for you.

Q: What can I do with the rear deck space behind the cab?

A: There are many options for outfitting your truck depending on your intended use. We have clients who like to leave their trucks as is – with hitches only. Others want to have tool storage boxes incorporated front and rear of the rear axles. Some clients want a deck capable of carrying their golf cart, quads, or
Harleys. We have seen some trucks carrying boats, and smart cars on the deck. Don’t forget you can also tow bumper-pull trailers with your RVHauler, leaving the deck fully available for your toys.

Q. Do we build units for hauling horse trailers?

We will create a custom deck behind the sleeper for hauling hay, and place a air ride hitch for your gooseneck trailer.

Q: Why Volvo?

A: Most people appreciate the aerodynamic performance, roomy cab, and reliable engine and transmission combinations. They are also easier to convert to a single rear axle.

Q. How much weight can I carry on the rear of the RVHauler?
Most single rear axles are designed to carry 20,000 lbs of weight. Depending on the wheelbase of the RVHauler, hitch placement, and axle position our capacity number can vary. One example: after placing a deck, tool drom box, tools, filling fuel tanks, connecting a trailer with a 4000lb pin weight, and loading a smart car weighing 2300 lbs, we would have approximately 3000lbs of remaining capacity.

3. People and Family FAQ

Q: How easy are they to drive?

A: When you sit in an RVHauler, you are in familiar territory. Steering wheel, gas pedal and brake pedal look and feel the same as you are used to. Buttons and controls are no different than expected. When you start rolling with the trailer on, the difference is apparent. These trucks behave like there is a small (or no) trailer behind you! You accelerate well, you brake and steer under control. You are relaxed! The seats are wonderful, it is quiet inside, and you are getting great mileage. The wife WILL DRIVE THIS TRUCK.

Q: How can you seat 5 people?

Most of our customers choose to have the lower bunk removed, and two capains chairs and seat belts installed. Take the kids or grandchildren safely and comfortably with you. Don’t forget to keep them entertained with the DVD player options and on-board computer.  See our video section for a discussion on seating options and limitations.

Q: How high are the steps to gain access to the Cab?

A: These class 8 HDT trucks are not the easiest to gain access to. Those people with bad knees or hips find it a challenge to use the two steps up to the cab. Volvo class 8 trucks have well placed grab handles on each side of the door opening to help get up to the 3 foot cab floor height.

Q: My spouse is concerned with the size of a larger truck. What is the difference?

A: Come drive one of our toter trucks. Once you realize and “feel” how in control you are when driving one of these puller trucks, the decision is made. No more white-knuckling down hills, or trying to get your rig stopped in time. These HDT trucks turn tighter circles than their MDT and pickup counterparts. The visibility when on the road is wonderful!

Q: What hard facts are there to support the decision to move away from a pickup?

A: If you put a large 5th wheel trailer behind even the largest one ton dually pickup trucks, you are approaching or surpassing their maximum towing capacities. When facing a road situation requiring a quick response in steering or braking, and you factor in slick road conditions, driver reaction times, there is a risk that a safe outcome may not be achievable. There is an excellent resource detailing these limits at www.dmbruss.com.

4. Driving and Travelling FAQ

Q: Why do I only need a standard driver’s Licence and air brake ticket to drive?

A: A single rear-axle results in a two axle truck. No different than a pickup, hence a standard class 5 license is all that is required. Since these trucks use air brakes, you need to take a one-day air brakes class – often call a ‘Q’ Certification. Most motor home drivers require this same course.

Q: Do I have to stop at weigh scales?

A: I have in-writing statements from Alberta Transportation and BC Transportation stating that weigh scale stops are not required for non-commercial recreational vehicles. Other provinces and states have differing requirements.
There are many discussion examples at escapees.com on this topic. When travelling across Canada and the USA, don’t  stop.

 

Q. Tell me more about registration and insurance.

Please note – I shouldn’t be considered an expert on registration – it is so hard to keep track of what is going on in each province and all the states!

Regarding insurance: In advance of purchasing the RVHauler, have your existing insurance company look up on their pricing system a Volvo Model 670 VNL64T, year 2005. The insurance companies have computer systems in which they have to look up that model. If their system doesn’t insure larger trucks, they won’t have this in their system, and you will have to locate an alternate insurance company. These RVHaulers are becoming more prevalent, and insuring them no longer seems to be much of an issue. The net result is, you can get a “binder” insurance sent to you before you pickup the vehicle, and many times you can also get the registration and plate before you come pick it up.

Q: How usable are these trucks for day-trips, daily use and shopping trips?

A: These trucks are about one foot longer than the standard dually trucks on the market today. To their advantage, they turn sharper. You still need to park at the back of the parking lot with the other one-ton trucks. Use the storage doors directly behind the driver and passenger door to load your groceries into the truck.

Q: How noisy are these trucks?

A: These trucks have an interior noise level (at highway speeds) the same or better than one ton pickups. You get to use your normal “inside voice” to carry on a conversation. Double seals on the doors, insulated floors and walls create a very quiet interior.

Q: How fast can these trucks go?

A: This depends on the ultimate gear ratio of your chosen RV Hauler. At a minimum, all our trucks are capable of 120 km/hr (74mph) while still maintaining an RPM in the “sweet spot” (ie. not over-revving). Please drive carefully.

5. Mechanical/Technical FAQ

Q: Why a single rear axle?

A: A single rear axle provides better turning radius, better mileage with less wheels needing horsepower, less parts to wear out such as brakes, air lines, air bags, and you get higher resale value as an RVHauler. That extra axle isn’t required for weight carrying capacity, and it only adds weight to the truck and reduces fuel mileage.

Q: How easy is it to connect and disconnect our trailer?

A: All our trucks have the option of a rear-view camera placed in front of the hitch-point. Watch your progress on the driver’s monitor while backing up.

Q: You say these vehicles have superior braking? What is different than my pickup truck?

A: The air brake systems on these trucks have superior and larger shoes and braking power. Coupling this with engine brakes, and having some weight associated with the truck – you finally have the upper hand. The RV Hauler gives you stopping power – the trailer brakes are no longer your saving grace.

Q: Reliability

A: These highway tractors, sometimes called Heavy Duty Trucks (HDTs) or Class 8 Highway Tractors are designed to go millions of kilometres in their life. The usual warranty on most RVHaulers is 800,000 kilometres! Compare that to the warranty you get on sport trucks or 350 450 550 trucks, and you can see these trucks are made to last a long while.

6. Economical Solution FAQ

Q: How can you get 10-12 Miles Per Gallon?

A: These RVHaulers, (sometimes called RV Pullers, or RV Toters) are designed to carry tens of thousands of pounds of payload. Pulling even the largest 5th wheel trailers behind these class 8 rv trucks hardly make them work. They are idling most of the time. The taller cab creates a more aerodynamic air flow over your trailer adding to the efficiency.

Q: What range and fuel capacity do these trucks have?

A: Most RVHaulers have a minimum of 150 imperial gallons on-board. At 12 MPG, this equates to 3000 miles or 4800 kilometres of range.

Q: Cold Weather Starting

A: All our Canadian trucks are equipped with block heaters for cold weather starting. Additionally, some trucks are equipped with engine warmers. These devices run off the on-board diesel, and can warm up a truck close to operating temperature very quickly. At -20 deg C ambient temperature, you can pre-warm your truck in as little as 30 minutes. These devices use only half a liter of fuel per hour!

7. Maintenance FAQ

Q: How do maintenance costs compare to other trucks?

A: You need to change the oil and lube the chassis. Many owners choose to have the oil tested (about a $20 expense) to determine when the oil needs changing. As the trucks are not working very hard, owners find they can go longer periods of time with only filter changes, before oil changes are needed.

Q. More about RVHaulers maintenance costs.

These trucks require oil changes and filter changes as do all other vehicles. The volume of oil required for an oil change is approximately 2 pails (35 litres or 9 gallons) depending on the engine. There are three oil filters. The air filter is very large and expensive compared to smaller trucks. However, the time between changes is significantly longer. Most drivers prefer to take oil samples, and send them away for analysis. As a result, the interval between required oil and filter changes is far greater than with conventional pickup trucks. The net cost of maintenance is comparable to the costs associated with a pickup. Note that most RVHaulers do require greasing (a 15-minute job). We think that every owner should be familiar with the underside of their RVHauler. Doing the grease-job yourself gets you in a position where you see the workings of your truck, and perhaps see issues developing.

Q: Where to I get repairs and maintenance performed?

A: Cummins and Volvo engines are very common on the road, and on construction sites. These engines are found in all types of highway tractors, and in many heavy equipment machines (graders, dozers, excavators etc.) It is easy to find qualified shops with Cummins and Volvo experienced mechanics and parts all across North America. We recommend owners can do most maintenance themselveson their rv toter trucks. No special knowledge is required to change oil and air filters.

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