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Old 11-04-2007, 06:13 AM   #1
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I called the local Freightliner service facility and asked about having the M3 service performed since my coach just exceeded 24,000 miles. The service consultant said they had never performed an M3 and could not give me a price. He said most people just perform parts of this service. They offer an oil and filter change with a 35 point inspection/lube for around $350. I have had this service annually since my coach was new. What service did you have performed at 24,000 miles?

I am considering the following service items that are included in the M3 and wonder how necessary they are:

1. Wheel bearing removal, cleaning, repacking
2. Hydralic reservoir filter changing
3. Service air dryer filter
4. Power steering fluid changing
5. Neway suspension fasterner torgue checking
6. Ground cables checking and cleaning
7. Camshaft bracket bushing lubricating

I would appreciate yours comments and opinions on this subject.

John Canfield, I know you recently had the M3 service and would appreciate your comments. Would you have it performed again based on what you received and the price.

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Old 11-04-2007, 06:13 AM   #2
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I called the local Freightliner service facility and asked about having the M3 service performed since my coach just exceeded 24,000 miles. The service consultant said they had never performed an M3 and could not give me a price. He said most people just perform parts of this service. They offer an oil and filter change with a 35 point inspection/lube for around $350. I have had this service annually since my coach was new. What service did you have performed at 24,000 miles?

I am considering the following service items that are included in the M3 and wonder how necessary they are:

1. Wheel bearing removal, cleaning, repacking
2. Hydralic reservoir filter changing
3. Service air dryer filter
4. Power steering fluid changing
5. Neway suspension fasterner torgue checking
6. Ground cables checking and cleaning
7. Camshaft bracket bushing lubricating

I would appreciate yours comments and opinions on this subject.

John Canfield, I know you recently had the M3 service and would appreciate your comments. Would you have it performed again based on what you received and the price.

Rex
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Old 11-04-2007, 07:04 AM   #3
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An M3 service is defined as 24 months/24kmiles. Since most of us don't put the miles on, then one should go by the time line.

Here's what's in a M3:
Change engine oil/filter
Chassis lube
Fuel/H2O separator replace
Secondary Fuel Filter replace
Coolant - check SCA's

Note the above is also the M2 (annual list). Add to the above list for the M3:
Air filter change

If you are at 36 months of service add:
Air Brake dryer filter replacement
Coolant change
Main/Lube Transmission filters (Note: assumes you have TranSynd fluid. Fluid is specified to be changed at 48 months; I would change when doing the filter change).

When I had an M3 done on my prior coach, they also went around and cleaned all the electrical connections, cleaned and regreased the S-cam rollers, and more. I had mine done at Gaffney. Don't know where you're located, but Gaffney really knows what they're doing, and it's well worth the trip if you can make it.
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Old 11-04-2007, 07:15 AM   #4
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Don,

Thanks for the great information.

As I understand it, the coolant is good for 100,000 miles if the SCA's are checked and recharged if necessary. I will call Freightliner tomorrow to verify this.
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Old 11-04-2007, 07:21 AM   #5
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LK23, When you call FL and if you talk to Pat in service, she has a sheet which details all the things they do for an M3. Possibly she could either send it to you or fax it to you.

Good luck and let us know how you make out.
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Old 11-04-2007, 09:49 AM   #6
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<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-title">quote:</div><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-content">Originally posted by LK23:
Don,

Thanks for the great information.

As I understand it, the coolant is good for 100,000 miles if the SCA's are checked and recharged if necessary. I will call Freightliner tomorrow to verify this. </div></BLOCKQUOTE>

When I checked with FL on my coolant, they told me all MH chassis from 2002 and later had an extended life coolant...good for 5 yrs. They said to check SCA's every 6 months.
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Old 11-04-2007, 01:09 PM   #7
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Rex - we have discussed this privately, but I will recap for the forum.

If your Freightliner dealer is not familiar with the M1, M2, M3 schedules, I would not consider doing business with them. Find an Oasis dealer with a good reputation.

Freightliner has four maintenance intervals:

IM - Initial Maintenance
M1
M2
M3 - 24 months/24K miles

I don't remember the interval/mileage for M1/2, but it is in your Freightliner manual (white pages.)

Don't forget the maintenance intervals are time or mileage. Even if you haven't put the miles on the chassis, oil should still be changed at least on an annual basis. One can argue that some maintenance items might be unnecessary if a coach isn't driven very much, but I'm not smart enough to decide what part of the recommended maintenance should be ignored.

M3 is a very comprehensive and includes a new air filter, new hydraulic filter (it lives in the hydraulic fluid reservoir), and about 50 other things are inspected/adjusted/greased/cleaned.

We had our engine and gen serviced (oil/filter), the M3 maintenance performed, they did the recall on the hydraulic fluid cooler, replaced a weeping hydraulic fluid reservoir, and changed our serpentine engine belt.

We had to pay for the M3 maintenance, the serpentine belt, the oil changes; the other things were warranty. Our total bill was ~$1,600.

The entire job took about 20 man-hours. We had two techs for eight hours on day one, and one tech for 1/2 a day on day two.

It is a wonderful feeling knowing that we are taking good care of our mega-buck house on wheels
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Old 11-04-2007, 02:15 PM   #8
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John,

I live in Denver, CO and Transwest is the only Freightliner RV service center in this area as far as I know. They do a lot of Freightliner RV service. I was surprised at their response that they have never performed a M3.

Unfortunately, I cannot afford to drive to Gaffney for this service.

I either ask them to do their first M3 or I elect what is important to have performed.
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Old 11-04-2007, 04:19 PM   #9
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Rex - both of your Freightliner dealers in Denver are listed as Oasis dealers. Maybe try the other one and ask them about Freightliner Custom Chassis maintenance schedule.
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Old 11-04-2007, 06:43 PM   #10
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John,

Both are the same company, Transwest. They built a new facility north of Denver in Frederick, CO. This new facility specializes in RVs and truck trailers. This is where I intend to take my coach and also where they have never performed a M3 service. It is a nice facility and they have taken good care of me when I only needed oil changes. Evidently, no one has asked for a M3 until now. Seems strange since they do a lot of RV business.
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Old 11-04-2007, 07:50 PM   #11
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I guess we're getting ready for the M3 on ours as it is about two years old, but only 11,000 miles. We use Transwest in Frederick as well (nice facility) and I will call Matt or Tom Monday to ask about the M3.
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Old 11-05-2007, 04:09 AM   #12
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Rex and Knut - our tech had a printout from Freightliner's dealers web site which detailed every work item that was to to performed. There is no mystery as to what exactly the M3 consists of. I would insist they find the document before they do any work and you will at least know they have the list.
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Old 11-05-2007, 05:34 AM   #13
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Get a list of what an M3 covers, print it out and take it to your dealer. We used this for a dealer that also was an Oasis dealer but not familiar with an M3. We also asked them to call Pat in Gaffney for info on cost etc. They were willing to do so and to charge accordingly. Since each shop has different rates the prices will vary.

We now carry copies of each service list so we can give it to the servicing dealer. Also be sure and post your service visit. That helps us all.
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Old 11-05-2007, 05:39 AM   #14
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Oh one of the things Mike told us at Camp Freightliner is to ask if the M3 etc are sold in packages since having the work done ala carte is far more expensive. Pat in Gaffney is a help with this.

Also post your service outcome at www.rvservicereviews.com
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Old 11-05-2007, 09:55 AM   #15
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<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-title">quote:</div><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-content">Originally posted by Savannah:
Get a list of what an M3 covers, print it out and take it to your dealer. We used this for a dealer that also was an Oasis dealer but not familiar with an M3. We also asked them to call Pat in Gaffney for info on cost etc. They were willing to do so and to charge accordingly. Since each shop has different rates the prices will vary.

We now carry copies of each service list so we can give it to the servicing dealer. Also be sure and post your service visit. That helps us all. </div></BLOCKQUOTE>A most excellent idea!

Freightliner in Tolleson had a package price for M3.
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Old 11-05-2007, 01:17 PM   #16
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I just dropped off the rig at Transwest in Frederick and they are going to do what they call a B service. That includes oil and filters (oil/fuel), 55 point inspection, road simulator test and chassis lube.

Also, they claim we need a coolant flush and replacement every two year regardless of long-life coolant or not. Are they just blowing smoke or should we have the coolant replaced?

The rig is 2 years old come December and was built in April 2005.

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Old 11-05-2007, 01:28 PM   #17
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Knut, you are due for an M3 service (24 mos/24k miles). There is much more to an M3 other than oil change. Read up on this post for details.

My understanding is that FL does not put extended life coolant in their chassis', and the coolant should be changed at 36 months.

CAT uses extended life coolant, but the coolant is installed by the chassis builder, not the engine builder (Note: I see you have a Cummins, but the point remains). You can always call 1-800-FTL-HELP, give them the last 6 digits of your VIN, and they will specifically tell you what you have in there for coolant, and when it should be changed. While you're at it, ask them to send you an M3 service list, and (as presented in prior posts) tell your FL dealer this is what you want done.

Better yet go to Gaffney and have it done there.
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Old 11-05-2007, 01:45 PM   #18
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When everything else fails I guess I should read the manual. First off it seems as there are four Maintenance Operation Sets according to my Freightliner manual (March 2004):

Initial Maintenance (IM) - first 6,000 miles
Maintenance 1 (M1) - every 6,000 miles
Maintenance 2 (M2) - every 12,000 miles
Maintenance 3 (M3) - every 24,000 miles

The M2 is pretty comprehensive (34 items) and there aren't that many additional items to the M3:

- Engine Support Fasteners Checking
- Wheel Bearing Removal, Cleaning, Repacking etc.
- Wheel Nut Checking
- Power Steering Reservoir Fluid Changing
- Fuel Tank Mounts and Fuel Line Checking
- Hydraulic Reservoir Filter Changing (metal reservoir only)

Also, my manual states: "Beginning with model year 2002 RV chassis, the coolant replacement interval is increased to 100,000 miles or 60 months. You must check and, if necessary, recharge the SCA levels and freeze point every 25,000 miles or 6 months."

I downloaded these from Freightliner and put them up on one of our servers this afternoon:

M2 Maintenance Form
M3 Maintenance Form

They are a bit different than my Maintenance Manual that came with our Journey, but similiar.

I just talked to Transwest again and our service writer did not recommend waiting five years between coolant changes since motorhomes sit for longer periods of time than most trucks and the coolant gets acidic and blah blah blah. Input?

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Old 11-05-2007, 02:32 PM   #19
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<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-title">quote:</div><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-content">Originally posted by boulderado:
--snip-- Also, they claim we need a coolant flush and replacement every two year regardless of long-life coolant or not. Are they just blowing smoke or should we have the coolant replaced?--snip-- </div></BLOCKQUOTE>It's so smoky I can't even see them If the Freightliner maintenance schedule doesn't call for that, tell them to go pound sand. If there is any doubt, call Pat in Gaffney.

Our Jeep dealer keeps at us every time we take it there for service that our transfer case (or was it the differential?) should have a fluid change. According to our manual and our driving scenario, it clearly doesn't need to be done. That doesn't stop them from asking every time, though.

It REALLY bugs me when dealerships keep trying to dig a little deeper into your wallet when it is clearly not necessary. I don't have much respect for those who grub around and try to pad the bill with unnecessary items.
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Old 11-05-2007, 04:16 PM   #20
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John is right -- if your manual doesn't call for the service, then tell them to 'take a hike'. Especially at the low miles we usually put on our coaches.

Relative to the coolant, if the SCA's are checked and managed, then I see no reason to replace it before what FL recommends. For myself, I will go back and research the coolant replacement interval, as my manual states 36 months. Will let everyone know what I find out.

Remember that the coolant is added at FL, not the engine manufacturer, which can add some confusion on this point (refer to above posts).

My final source on all these issues is to call FL.
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