The 1-minute Roadside Airstream Inspection

Last weekend we were happily towing our Airstream through the Tohono O’odham Nation in southern Arizona. We stopped for fuel and I did my usual quick inspection of the Airstream while I waited for the fuel to pump. It occurred to me that I’ve done that exact inspection hundreds of times—and it has saved me from disaster more than once.

Good habits are like that; you just do them automatically and painlessly, and eventually they pay off. There’s no cost to a quick look-over of the Airstream and truck and it only takes a moment. For that small investment you might catch something that could really cost you later, like a blown tire or a dragging belly pan. Why doesn’t everyone do it?

I describe this procedure in my book “The (Nearly) Complete Guide to Airstream Maintenance” on pages 27-28. If you’ve got a copy, maybe take a moment to re-read that section and commit to yourself that from now on you’ll always take a minute whenever you stop, to check on things that might need attention.

You should also teach your co-pilot about things to look for. I took a moment to talk to Tothie about it, and walked her though my process. Now we’ve got four eyes on the job.

We shot a quick video about the process. Check it out below!

Comments

  1. Don says

    Look up, too! Those awning latches have a way of working loose, and it’s easy to leave a vent open or a batwing antenna up (or have your DIY signal booster, exterior temp sensor, etc. left in place).

  2. Thomas Schuett says

    Good tips! Thanks. One more. If you are in the Los Angeles, Albuquerque or Chicago area, be sure to check to see if you still have wheels and tires.

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