Air Bags and Leveling

Discussion in 'Beginning RVing' started by atamians, Aug 3, 2008.

  1. atamians

    atamians New Member

    Hi all ~

    I've been reading posts for the past couple of weeks and we finally took the plunge. Just picked up an 86 Beaver DP. I've been through the manuals and still don't quite get the Airbag Suspension, Anti-Rock System and how all that plays into the leveling jacks. Here is what I think I understand followed by my questions, which may or may not make sense depending on how well I think I know the system.

    When I start the MH, the Air Bags in the suspension fill automatically once the pressure comes up. I can fill the Anti-Rock from 30 to 100 psi depending on my preferences. There is a switch on the dash to release the air pressure in both tanks. The tanks bleed down over the course of several hours if the MH is not running.

    1. Do you commonly release the pressure in the suspension?

    2. Do you release the pressure when leveling?

    3. Is it normal for the suspension system to bleed down?

    4. What would be a good starting point for the Anti-Rock system?

    Any advice would sure be great.

  2. Pillaz

    Pillaz Senior Member

    RE: Air Bags and Leveling

    I will give you the best advise I can. I personally don't bleed all of the presasure out of the air ride. the important thing is that they maintain preasure while you are driving. Even air preasure from right to left is important. The higher the preausre the stiffer the ride. A soft ride will make the RV roll and pitch more and can be dangerouse. It also makes the driver "saw" back and forth on the steering wheel. A very stiff ride ( high Preasure) will make you feel every bump in the road.
    Thus you should adjust the preasure to your prefference for comfort and safety I adjust it based on the load I am carrying in the RV. The ambinet temperature outside and hieght above sea level. If you drive through high mountains U need to lower preasure so that you don't damage the bags. Some airrides will blead a little. Usually if you hit big bumps. They are designed to keep you from damaging the bags. The air ride has little to do with the leveling system. Which I assume are hydrolic jacks. I don't bleed them when leveling but check your manual on your system.
    Where to start? On an 86 I would suspect that the springs have weakend over time and you may need to run higher preasure in your airbags to maintain stability. If the springs have been replaced and are newer they will required less airpreasure. Test drive it play with air preasure and find out what works for you.
    I hope this answered your questions.
    Chris Welcome to the forums and have a great time with your motorhome.
    Hopefully you will get more responses from people more familier with your particular MH.
  3. larryccf1

    larryccf1 New Member

    RE: Air Bags and Leveling

    don't know about your system, but the new air bag suspensions do have leveling sensors
    and depending on the quality of the suspension, will level it from side to side as well as front to rear orientation
  4. Guest

    Guest Guest

    RE: Air Bags and Leveling

    well first off most automatic leveling systems ,, purge the air bags for leveling ,, but if u have manual levelers ,, then yes let all the air out ,, u'll be on the jacks ,, and not on the air bags ,, as for the anti rock control ,, it is used for sway in cross winds ,, i have one similar to u'r on my class A ,, i set mine at 30 psi ,, good ride ,, but when i get cross winds or in alot of semi truck traffic ,, i add more air ,, till the coach can take the wind or passing trucks ,, i have been up to 60psi ,, in Oklahoma and Texas ,, with 20 mph cross winds ,, and once in MB ,, with a very good thunder storm ,, i was up to 90 psi on the roll control ,, IMO ,, try diff. settings till u like the feel of the rv going down the road ....
    OK yes the air sytems do leak down some ,, but how much does u'rs leak down ,, if it goes all the way flat ,, u got a major leak somewhere ,, but get more info to us on this ,, we can help more ,, with more info :approve: :approve: :approve: :approve: ;) :) :)
  5. atamians

    atamians New Member

    Re: Air Bags and Leveling

    Well a couple of weekends crawling around under it and playing with all the switches, writing to different suppliers and reading forums has really helped. Thank you for the replies and feedback. This is the best forum I've found.

    The air bags leak down much slower than I first thought. When the leveling jacks are activated they automatically bleed the air bags. I had only one jack down to level the frame but as the other bags deflated, the problem looked worse than it was. I'm gonna guess all four jacks should be down for leveling.

    The Anti-Rock system is nothing more than a couple of air shocks mounted outside the air bags at a slight angle. As I tried to fill them, I could not get them to hold any air. Again crawling around underneath I found that one of the lower mounting plates had broken off and both shocks had been removed. I contacted Monaco's technical support and they really didn't have much information on the original system other than it was optional and was made by T3's RV Parts.

    My biggest problem is getting used to driving a vehicle this large. I have years of towing experience, but that doesn't come close. Overall it seems pretty stable, maybe a bit loose, but it is an 86. I think the anti-rock will help, just not sure if T3 is the way to go or should I look at other vendors. I can get a new bracket welded on. I've only put about 150 miles on it so far but we are headed out for a 500 mile trip this week and we're pulling a boat. We'll see how it goes.

    Thanks again, Chris

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