A lesson for minimalists: it doesn’t mean keeping nothing at all

2012 Nov Norfolk and Lincs trip (9)
The first thing we do when we park up the ‘van is make a brew

‘It will wear in’, is a phrase Mr BOTRA and I often use in our house and in the campervan for anything from a pair of shoes that pinch to a new bed that just feels strange after the old one.  So when the oven door on our small Smev oven on our new Devon Tempest campervan was stiff to close, although we knew this wasn’t right, we thought it would improve over time.  But it didn’t wear in, instead it got stiffer and more difficult to close until [you guessed it] the door refused to close at all [while we were mid-way through cooking some garlic bread since you ask].

Of course, by this time we were outside the Devon Conversion’s twelve month warranty on their conversion so I sought help.  An internet search revealed that Smev is part of the Dometic group and I emailed them asking if they had any advice on how to loosen up the oven door.  They replied promptly  telling us that the warranty on their products is two-years [luckily for us the ‘van has not yet reached its second birthday] and sent a list of local service partners.  One of these was a mobile service engineer we had used before and I arranged an appointment for a few days later.

I thought the problem was as good as solved but our difficulties were not over.  Dometic, in their wisdom, put the model number required to order a replacement door on the side of the oven, meaning the appliance has to be removed to find this.  Working in a small campervan is challenging and even the experienced engineer couldn’t work out how to remove the oven.  A call to Devon Conversions provided some tips on where the necessary screws were tucked away but still neither the engineer nor I had thin and long enough arms to safely reach the required screws and he left us with the unyielding oven door.

That evening, feeling disheartened I decided to check through the pile of stuff we received with the new ‘van and had ‘filed’ at the bottom of an ottoman we call the ‘Treasure Chest’.  I wasn’t really expecting to find anything useful but incredibly, there I found a small plastic bag with a screw in it and a label with the required model number for the oven.  I was amazed we had even kept this and I am grateful that Devon Conversions had passed it on to us.  I am also relieved that despite being minimalists with little spare storage in the flat we occasionally keep things ‘just in case’.

Once the engineer had the model number Dometic quickly provided a new oven door and the engineer fitted it, at no charge.  We now enjoy its smooth action every time we are camping.