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Old 07-17-2019, 03:26 PM   #1
recycledbread
 
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Default Routine mechanical maintenance - renting T1N campers.

I've got 2 converted T1N sprinters that I'm renting out during the summer months up here in Canada. I know a lot of people will think it's ludicrous to rent out their beloved Sprinters, but the demand is there and I've taken steps to mitigate my risks (adequate insurance, roadside assistance..etc).

I don't have a ton of mechanical know-how, so I'd love to hear your thoughts on what maintenance I should be doing between rentals. So far each rental has been putting on about 1000 kms.

Checks between rental flips:
  • Tire pressure
  • Oil and transmission fluid level
  • Drive belt for any damage or cracking
  • Turbo hoses (what should I be looking for?)
  • Test drive to highway speed (engine lights, odd sounds)

Every 5k-10k kms:
  • Oil change
  • New engine air filter

Every 60k kms:
  • Transmission service

My alternator went on me earlier in this year and I would hate for that to happen to one of my renters. How can I check how much 'life' my alternator has in it?

I'm sure I'm missing some things. What are some other common issues that I might run into?

If anyone is interested, my company is called Curious Campervans..
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Old 07-17-2019, 03:42 PM   #2
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Default Re: Routine mechanical maintenance - renting T1N campers.

I forgot to mention that I also get a mechanic to do a 'piece of mind' checkover at least twice a year to look over the usual (brakes, suspension, ball joints..etc).
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Old 07-17-2019, 05:26 PM   #3
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Default Re: Routine mechanical maintenance - renting T1N campers.

You can pull the alternator and check the brush length on the bench. Its not technically challenging.

Turbo hoses are best replaced on a preventive schedule with rentals. Every 70k miles maybe?

Making sure engine temps are good on a steep slow climb is important. Change the coolant on schedule.

Air filters are usually good for at least 20k miles. Oil changes before 6k miles are way early for any decent oil.
I suggest checking the ECM, TCM, and ESP module for codes regularly. This may reveal an issue before it causes a fault.
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Old 07-22-2019, 09:29 PM   #4
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Default Re: Routine mechanical maintenance - renting T1N campers.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Midwestdrifter View Post
You can pull the alternator and check the brush length on the bench. Its not technically challenging.

Turbo hoses are best replaced on a preventive schedule with rentals. Every 70k miles maybe?

Making sure engine temps are good on a steep slow climb is important. Change the coolant on schedule.

Air filters are usually good for at least 20k miles. Oil changes before 6k miles are way early for any decent oil.
I suggest checking the ECM, TCM, and ESP module for codes regularly. This may reveal an issue before it causes a fault.
Thanks - I've been considering getting a code reader.. sounds like it's a good idea.

I don't know if my Turbo hoses have ever been changed so it's probably best I do this now.
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Old 07-22-2019, 09:36 PM   #5
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Default Re: Routine mechanical maintenance - renting T1N campers.

in regards to the turbo hoses - is this the correct part I'm looking for?

https://europarts-sd.com/hose-interc...e2002-2006.asp
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Old 07-22-2019, 09:47 PM   #6
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Default Re: Routine mechanical maintenance - renting T1N campers.

That is 2 of the three turbo hoses, and should fit all 04-06 models.
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Old 07-23-2019, 12:07 AM   #7
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Default Re: Routine mechanical maintenance - renting T1N campers.

Quote:
Originally Posted by recycledbread View Post
Thanks - I've been considering getting a code reader.. sounds like it's a good idea.
If I were you, I would get a code reader for each of the rental vans and keep the coder reader in the glove box. I would make a basic instruction sheet for the renters or for a non sprinter familiar mechanic(sorry, "technician") to have in case your van ends up needing attention on the road. At the very least, someone will be able to get a basic idea of where to start looking. The Autel AP200 is relatively inexpensive, but then you'd either need a tablet, old cell phone, or an iPod in the van to use as a controller. A better choice for you might be going with a few iCarsoft MBIIs.

I would also buy a couple cheap usb thumb drives. On each drive I would save a copy of the parts manual and service manual that corresponds to your vans(they were different each year). I would also save a copy of the MB to Dodge part number conversion sheet as well as the Dodge to MB part number conversion. Both of those can be found in the T1N Database section of this website. I would then put the corresponding thumb drive in each glove box. Again, at the very least, you're giving someone a head start on how to solve a problem.

I'd also put together a box of parts that are know to fail and cause larger issues. Million Mile Sprinter sells a basic kit, I would add a few items to it. Fuel and oil filters, a kit of the basic fuses needed, various sensors, etc.

I'd also probably buy or put together a tool kit for each van that has the basics. Each of my vans have a 140 piece set from Amazon that I purchased on the recommendation of MMS. They're no longer available on Amazon, but this is the one https://www.aliexpress.com/item/DEKO...865891838.html

All of the things I've recommended I carry in each of my vans, at all times, and for good reason. At 13+ years old, it's a matter of when. Especially if you don't know the full history of the van, which unfortunately is the case for most of us.

Edited to add--looking again at your original post I realize this does not answer your question. Still, I would take these precautions.
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Last edited by RJV; 07-23-2019 at 12:11 AM.
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Old 07-23-2019, 02:16 AM   #8
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Default Re: Routine mechanical maintenance - renting T1N campers.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Midwestdrifter View Post
That is 2 of the three turbo hoses, and should fit all 04-06 models.
Is this the third one I'm missing?

https://europarts-sd.com/hose-airinduction2004-2006.asp
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Old 07-23-2019, 03:06 AM   #9
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Default Re: Routine mechanical maintenance - renting T1N campers.

Quote:
Originally Posted by RJV View Post
If I were you, I would get a code reader for each of the rental vans and keep the coder reader in the glove box. I would make a basic instruction sheet for the renters or for a non sprinter familiar mechanic(sorry, "technician") to have in case your van ends up needing attention on the road. At the very least, someone will be able to get a basic idea of where to start looking. The Autel AP200 is relatively inexpensive, but then you'd either need a tablet, old cell phone, or an iPod in the van to use as a controller. A better choice for you might be going with a few iCarsoft MBIIs.

I would also buy a couple cheap usb thumb drives. On each drive I would save a copy of the parts manual and service manual that corresponds to your vans(they were different each year). I would also save a copy of the MB to Dodge part number conversion sheet as well as the Dodge to MB part number conversion. Both of those can be found in the T1N Database section of this website. I would then put the corresponding thumb drive in each glove box. Again, at the very least, you're giving someone a head start on how to solve a problem.

I'd also put together a box of parts that are know to fail and cause larger issues. Million Mile Sprinter sells a basic kit, I would add a few items to it. Fuel and oil filters, a kit of the basic fuses needed, various sensors, etc.

I'd also probably buy or put together a tool kit for each van that has the basics. Each of my vans have a 140 piece set from Amazon that I purchased on the recommendation of MMS. They're no longer available on Amazon, but this is the one https://www.aliexpress.com/item/DEKO...865891838.html

All of the things I've recommended I carry in each of my vans, at all times, and for good reason. At 13+ years old, it's a matter of when. Especially if you don't know the full history of the van, which unfortunately is the case for most of us.

Edited to add--looking again at your original post I realize this does not answer your question. Still, I would take these precautions.
Thanks and great advice. I just ordered an AP200 to try out.

Going to save the service/parts/owners manuals on thumb drives. One of my vans is a 2000 Mercedes Sprinter that was brought over from Germany. I don't see any of the specific manuals for that van in this database..

The emergency and tool kits are a great suggestion as well. I will look into buying those.
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Old 07-23-2019, 04:06 AM   #10
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Default Re: Routine mechanical maintenance - renting T1N campers.

The 2000 and the 2003 (for which there is a manual) are fairly close... unless yours has a different engine (than the OM612) and transmission (than the 5-speed automatic NAG1).

This is the zipped "kit" of 2003 manuals: http://www.diysprinter.co.uk/referen...terManuals.zip

In Europe there was a 3rd party -printed service manual for a wide range of Sprinters.

Periodically someone posts to this group a service manual for an older bunch of Sprinters (i think), but i can't find it at the moment.

--dick
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((as always: this post may go through a couple of post-posting edits... so maybe give it ten minutes before commenting))

Last edited by autostaretx; 07-23-2019 at 04:09 AM.
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