Thursday, April 12, 2012


9AM - MsTioga bought a toilet!
This morning MsTioga bought herself a toilet. Our present toilet is 22 years old, and is in sorry shape. The lid hinge still works. But one of the two seat hinges is broken. The flapper valve leaks, and will not hold water. And there is something going wrong with the flapper valve's internal parts. They just do not feel right anymore. When flushing, we can feel something wrong. Not a smooth action like before.

So, MsTioga ordered a new toilet online from PPL Motor Homes. Other stuff was ordered too. We will tell you all about this stuff as we receive it down here in Mexico.

Yes! We are now able to order things in the USA and have them shipped to us in Mexico!

We have a United States address at a freight forwarder. When we order something, the "Ship to" address has our name with the freight forwarder's street address.

The forwarder is "Bongo International". I know what you are thinking. Could a company with a name of Bongo be for real? Well, so far they seem like a good organization. But the proof is in the pudding. We'll see how these first USA to Mexico shipments go!

1PM - Not as easy as all that!
Many readers have suggested lately, that maybe the TiogaRV Team should have a toad [tow car]. A little car that MsTioga would tow around and may be used to explore.  However, there are many things to consider when making the decision to get a toad.

One of the major items to consider is the additional length added to MsTioga's 27 feet. That increase would be a minimum 15 feet, which would mean that I would then be driving a 42 foot vehicle.

Another thing to consider is, that when using a toad to go exploring, MsTioga would be left behind. A secure place would have to be found for MsTioga. We could not just "go off", leaving MsTioga on the street someplace and subject to vandalism.

And then there is the consideration of having MsTioga [our home], everywhere we go. For example, yesterday we decided to Nite Camp here in the City of Querétaro. If we had driven a toad from Tequis to Querétaro, we would not have had that alternative.

Of course we would no have had that "scrape" that MsTioga got when she went up a very narrow street on our way to the appointmet with Felipe [The Fixer].

Lots to consider when thinking about a toad [tow car]. As with many other things, "It is not as easy as all that!"
Can you guess where MsTioga is right now?

7PM - The Dropped Grey Water Tank Adventure!
It is amazing to us on the TiogaRV Team, how many times bad things happen to us that turn out to be lucky breaks.

Remember yesterday's "MsTioga scrape?". We were led up a very narrow street by following Señor Garmin Nuvi's GPS directions. At the time we all thought, "Well! Jorge did it again! He smashed up MsTioga."

But that scrape turned out to be a very lucky break! How could that be? We want to start at the end of the story, so that you may understand where all of this is going.

Grey Water Tank - The beginning
Many months ago,  we began smelling MsTioga's grey water. This had never happened before. We did not know what to make of that smell.

We tried many things to stop that odor. Such as cleaning MsTioga's drain lines with various products. Remember the Sodium Bicarbonate and White Vinegar story? We tried chlorine bleach. The only thing that seemed to work was to keep the grey water tank empty. But sometimes the smell came even when the tank was empty! Wow!

We came to the conclusion that MsTioga's grey water taken had broken. The broken tank idea was one of the main reasons we had planned a trip back to the United States. To have the tank removed by an RV mechanic, and inspected.

What we did not know until today, was that two of the three metal straps that support MsTioga's grey water tank had broken! Only one single strap remained. And that strap was under tremendous pressure when the grey water tank was filled.

Clearance light gets knocked off
The first thing that happened that led us to know about the dropped tank was when the clearance light got knocked off when MsTioga scraped against something on that narrow street in Querétaro. Later that day we went to AutoZone and picked up a replacement clearance light.

Yesterday evening while we were at the Azteca Parador RV Park, that new clearance light was installed. That was when I noticed that there were many open holes on the inside wall, behind that clearance light. Apparently thru the years while installing many clearance lights, I had drilled a bunch of holes which remained open in the inside wall.

I noticed that the old screws that secured the knocked of clearance light were rusty. And concluded that water coming thru these open holes was the culprit. I made a not to buy silicone caulk to fill those holes.

Silicone caulking leads to the dropped tank
After caulking up the open holes on MsTioga left bottom wall, it occurred to me to check the right wall. There were several open holes there too. And I caulked them closed.

After the caulking was done, I looked around underneath MsTioga and saw some rusty places on the flat suspension springs. Bringing out Must For Rust, I went after those oxidized areas.

That was when I noticed the strange discoloration on MsTioga's grey water tank!

The tank was not level
As I sat there underneath MsTioga looking at the grey water tank, it appeared that the tank was not level. I was able to look over the top of the tank, which I never could do before. And that is when I saw the hanging shower drain pipe!

Getting a flashlight in order to see the pipe better, it was clear that something was terribly wrong. The end of the shower drain was at least three inches away from its mating pipe on the tank. I looked around to the front of the tank at its support straps. Only one support strap remained intact. The other two straps were broken!

Note: I am going to eat supper now. It is 8pm, and I'm hungry. Return in a little while with the rest of the story!

PS: I caved after supper. Looks like tomorrow morning to finish story!