All of you who know me, know that RV Nana would not leave home without my Coach-net Roadside Assistance membership card in my wallet. Yes, there are many really good roadside assistance plans on the market, but this one is, in my opinion, the best for the RV owner. At PPL Motor Homes we have been selling the Coach-net Roadside Assistance plan for years and have heard some great stories from our customers. In addition, many of us have the coverage ourselves and have experienced, first hand, how good it is.
True Story…I’ve had Coach-net coverage for years and, fortunately, never had a need to use it. Until….Driving back from my grandson’s basketball game in Dallas with my precious cargo on board (daughter and grandson) when we suddenly heard a loud noise coming from the right rear tire. I knew exactly what happened: We had a blowout. We were about 20 miles north of Huntsville on IH 45, which many Texans know as not being a highly populated area and devoid of convenient places to stop except the random rest stop every 100 miles. YIKES! We pulled as far off the side of the road as we possibly could and I called Coach-net. As you can imagine, this flat tire situation was not on our trip itinerary. It was just getting dark and we really wanted to get home safely (we were still 2.5 hours away).
When the call connected, the Coach-net representative immediately asked if we were safe and confirmed where we were located. She contacted a local towing service who called me back within a couple of minutes to let me know a driver was in route. Another call, about 5 minutes later, came from the driver giving me a 5 minute ETA. Before we knew it, he pulled up behind us, got out, identified himself and urged me to drive slowly about another 150 yards and turn in at the roadside park. I was shocked and told him I would ruin my rim if I did that. He assured me that our safety was far more important than that rim and they would pay for it if it was damaged. I still appreciate his concern for our safety to this day! Anyway, he followed me into the parking lot, changed the tire and got us back on the road in less than 10 minutes. He warned me about driving 50 mph, or less on the “donut” spare and to take it easy. We got home safely about an hour and a half later and, much to my surprise, my phone rang. The call was from Coach-net making sure we had arrived home safely. They have certainly earned RV Nana’s business!!!
They really care about their customers… and it shows.
Following our flat tire adventure, I received the following tire safety information from Coach-net in my email and wanted to share that with all of you. Remember, Tires are often the most needed and most neglected parts of our vehicles. I hope the following information will help you travel safely.
Coach-Net offers the following tire maintenance fundamentals for all motorists, particularly drivers of RVs and other heavy-duty vehicles:
Check your tires’ air pressure – Check the air pressure every two weeks, or at least once a month and before any major trip. Look for over- or under-inflation. Proper tire inflation is essential for safe and efficient vehicle operation. Vehicles with properly inflated tires experience optimum ride and handling characteristics, shorter braking distances, longer tire life and improved fuel economy.
Inspect your tires’ tread – Inspect your tires for abnormal wear or damage. Look for fraying, scalloping, cupping or any kind of uneven wear, and take it as a life-saving warning sign. Inspect tires for uneven wear patterns on the tread, cracks, foreign objects or other signs of wear or trauma. Remove bits of glass and other foreign objects wedged in the tread, and be sure there are no leaks after removing any debris.
Rotate, align and balance your tires – Regularly rotating your RV’s tires will help you achieve more uniform wear. A bad jolt from hitting a curb or pothole can throw your front end out of alignment and damage your tires. Have an RV dealer check the alignment periodically to ensure that your vehicle is properly aligned.
Don’t overload your vehicle – Overweight RVs lead to axle problems, accelerated suspension wear and failure, and tire failure. Be aware of the recommended size and load range of your tires and whether they are suitable for your weight needs. If you are unsure, check your owner’s manual or tire information placard. Aim for even weight distribution throughout your RV. If for some reason that’s not possible, tires on the same axle should still be inflated to the same pressure.
Invest in tire covers – Over time, the sun’s heat rots your tires, creating cracks; tire covers are a great way to protect this damage from happening. During long pit stops, throw on the covers to give the tires a break and use them on your RV during the off season.
Keep track of your tires’ age – RV tires age out before they wear out in most cases. Once a tire reaches five to seven years of age, they should be inspected by a tire professional annually for signs that they’re failing. The industry generally agrees that after 10 years, especially when the tires are heavily loaded, they should be replaced regardless of wear.
“Eighty-three percent of U.S. motorists do not properly check tire pressure, and each year, there are nearly 11,000 tire-related crashes nationwide resulting in nearly 200 fatalities,” he added. “Now is a good time for RV owners and other vehicle drivers to perform checks on their vehicle’s tires, including the spare, and to get into the habit of taking five minutes every month to repeat those checks.
There you have it folks. I don’t have to tell you that you have a lot riding on your tires. They are the only physical connection between you and the road. Apart from the large amount of money you have invested in your motorhome, travel trailer or fifth-wheel, safety for you and your family while driving begins where the rubber meets the road. It only makes sense that you have a way to get out of an unexpected jam while RVing and that’s exactly what Coach-net provides. Even further, Coach-net membership extends to all family members of your household for your cars, trucks and even rental cars. Even if you are riding with a friend and are in need of roadside assistance, they will come to your aid. Seriously, a great value!!!
….trust me, there is no better teacher than experience.
If you have any questions, about Coach-net and who they can better protect your assets on the road, just give Sharon here at PPL Motor Homes a call at1-800-755-4775 EXT. 126 and she can explain all of the details.