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The Saga Continues...

Well, come to find out, not just any dealership can work on a 37’ motorhome!!! After several phone calls between the manufacturer and various local autodealerships we finally were told this was a manufacturer’s issue and not the auto dealer. We just wanted it fixed so we could go camping. So off to the repair shop we go. Yep hot air blows all the time. Try driving one of these in 90 degree heat with not only no A/C and blowing heat after getting into a 37' hot oven. Not fun! The nearest dealer is 45 minutes away and it is now in the hot summer months as it took weeks arguing back and forth between the two makers on who had to fix it. Chassis or coach, coach or chassis. That was the magical question that took wayyyy too many phone calls to clear up! Remember, we are new to this and it just shouldn’t be that difficult! The stress is beginning to build! Chet’s nuts roasting on an open fire!!!

Because of some other issues that came up while making the deal the sales manager offered us a GPS system for free! Well for the trouble we had we thought that was really nice of them. Didn’t realize they gave us one that was a cheaper model and it too was defective. Talk about pouring salt in the wound.It actually turned out to be one another customer had returned as it was defective. We don’t think they meant to give us the wrong one but they should have given us the one they promised without having to go over their heads.It only took us about a year to get the right one that was originally promised. Out of sight, out of mind!!

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While we were waiting for the decision on who was going to fix the heater control valve we noticed a few other issues:

#1 - Driver’s Seat Wiring Connector – If you moved the driver’s seat to face the living room for extra seating the wires pulled out and sparked under the cloth cover until it kicked the breaker off! So now let’s check the wiring diagrams because now the seat was set all the way forward and you could not drive it to get it fixed. I found the location of the breaker (under the dash/steering wheel, to the far left) try being 300+ lbs. and fit in there!! I got it reset, moved the seat to where I could drive it and then unplugged it so no sparks would fly while driving it to the repair shop to fix the heat issue.

#2 - Some of the outside compartment doors were very hard to shut, we had to slam them to stay closed while driving.

#3 - The end cap for the sliding door to the rear bath was on the floor when we got the unit home and my wife almost stepped on all of the nails in it. It’s about a 2” by 3” piece of wood and it must have had about 10 – 15 nails in it!!!

#4 - The bottom Drawer under the stove wasbadly warped. Repair order says “noticed drawer coming apart, has nice warp in it. Pull drawer face off and handle pull old nails, reset face upside down so warp was angling inwards”.

#5 - The 1/2 bath door handle was so sharp the husband got cut on the backside – OUCH – real quality control going on here

#6 - Right brake light was out – Repair order says “pulled lens bulb was fine so then pulled the whole light out and found wire connection had pulled out so cut wire got new butt connector and re-wired stuck bulb in, put taillight back in and put lens back on”……did you check it to make sure it was working? When leaving the dealership after this supposedly had been repaired, my wife called me to let me know that my brake light was not working. We turned around and went back immediately. It was quitting time so there were no techs in sight. We ended up fixing it in the parking lot of the repair shop. It didn’t look like the harness had been changed and replacing the bulb fixed it. Seems like if they were changing the harness the first thing they would have noticed was the blown bulb!!

#7 - The hot water tank was leaking down the outside of the coach when I filled it. We put thread tape on it and tightened it to fix it.

So we lost our first summer of camping waiting for the flip flop of who was going to fix the heater issue and then the ensuing additional issues. By then, my Mother-in-law took ill so my wife was unable to go on the trip we had scheduled in October 2018 to take the in-laws of 80 plus years to Texas to see their grandchildren.Hoping to check off another item on my parent’s bucket list, we asked my brother to fill in.

Now mind you, the closest thing I have driven to this size coach is an extra large Uhaul truck. This new experience of driving a couch, looking through a picture window, rattling like a soup kitchen is bad enough, let alone the idea that you have virtually nothing to judge or guide your lanes by. But when I mention this my 87 year old truck driving father says “you got to learn how to use your mirrors son”. And I think to myself, by the time it’s in my mirrors I’ve probably already hit it!!!

While heading to Buffalo and hitting a few bumps all the dash warning lights and alarms for the hydraulic jacks going DOWN went off!! Stuck between a tractor trailer on one side and two cars on the other, I tried not to panic and figure out if I would still be able to steer as they went down? As I slowed down very carefully, I noticed that they were not actually going down? The hand brake was not pushed down so it was likely the levelling jacks were unable to go down.

Please note this video was taken by my brother on the way back home from Texas. I was not this relaxed the first few times it happened!!!

After brief heart failure (lol) I found that the next BUMP I hit was causing the problem! Now I think to myself is it a short in the wiring? I was unable to find the problem at the time and made some calls to dealers on the way for info as it was more of an annoyance at this point! But it was still scary each time we hit a bump! The cause - the hydraulic oil level was low enough to turn the warnings all on! It never should have happened IF the tech had checked the hydraulic oil level on his PDI properly!!

The coach was then winterized and put away. So now we are going to escape the winter and head south at the beginning of March 2019 and the trouble started with the windshield. We discovered the crack when we were pulling out of our drive way in central New York and it was down approximately 8 – 12 inches from the top of the windshield. It as well out of the wiping area at that time. We noticed each morning when we were breaking camp that the crack was going further down the windshield after using the jacks.

We were concerned about the safety of further traveling so we called the manufacturer’s customer service line and spoke with a rep and he advised us to go to the nearest dealership which was in South Carolina.

The service tech came out and took pictures of it and we thought he had called the manufacturer and forwarded the pictures he took. While he was waiting for a response from the manufacturer twoservice techs came out and took a look at it for us. Nothing was mentioned about a stone chip when any of them looked at it. Everyone was convinced that it was a stress crack. Both techs advised that we would be OK to make the trip back to New York and get it fixed when we returned home. We left the dealership believing the service tech had forwarded the pictures to the manufacturer. I spoke with the dealership a few days later and the service tech was no longer employed there and his tablet with the pictures could not be unlocked. How convenient!!!

We also found out while traveling back north with the temperatures dropping that the furnace did not work. After several attempts we thought we were doing something wrong or possibly we didn’t know how to use it!!

After going through the great owner’s manual provided by the manufacturer we got no farther so we called a dealership to walk us through the operation to make sure we were doing it correctly. It was determined that it simply did NOT WORK and the coach would have to go in for repairs again!

The fireplace was just enough to keep some heat in the coach, but when we decided it would be a smart idea to check the smoke alarms because of the use of the fireplace we found out that none of the smoke alarms were working and had never been checked when we took delivery. One had no batteries in it and the other one had never been activated!! Awesome job on the PDI man!

So PDI guy…GREAT JOB!!! You didn’t check the hydraulic oil to the levelling jacks, you didn’t check to see that the furnace worked, you didn’t check the smoke detectors, you didn’t check that the windows open &close properly….oh wait a minute…we haven’t gotten to that part yet! Back up the ship. So here goes…remember the part about going to Texas with the 80 year old parents and just as an aside….MOM can’t hear so good. Well, there was a window issue that we were unaware of. Seems the glass didn’t fit the track so rather than bother anyone to close the window she tried to slam it shut while we were in the middle of traffic in Indianapolis. I thought I had run over a motorcycle…Ka Boom. Come to find out the glass was too small for the frame.

After our trip south, we called to get the coach in for repairs. We were advised in early April that they couldn’t even get the coach in until mid-May to begin the work and would not allow us to drop off the coach. They did offer for us to bring it up and start repairs on the windshield, however, we would need to go back and get the coach and then bring it back for the remainder of the repair work. The windshield was cracked from the top to the bottom and is ticketable in New York state. We only wanted to drive the coach once and leave it for all of the repairs that were needed.

After speaking with a manufacturer’s customer service rep they asked us to contact some local glass places and he would be willing to pay with the corporate charge card to get the windshield fixed. After numerous calls, any local glass places didn’t have the capacity for our sized coach. They said taking it to a motorhome repair shop was our best bet.

We sent certified letters to the manufacturer and the selling dealer in early April 2019 outlining all of the issues we were having and our dissatisfaction with the way things were being handled and the quality of the motorhome. We had plans to go camping for Memorial Day weekend. Didn’t happen!!!

The manufacturer sent a rep to our home shortly thereafter to look the coach over and it was at that point that the stone chip was discovered in the windshield. We mentioned pursuing the lemon law and asked for a copy of his report. He advised there was no need for a report as none of our issues would fall under this law.

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Here is a list of all or most of the issues (can’t remember them all) we have had with this coach and some of them have been in for repair multiple times for the same issue:

#7 – Water leak under the kitchen sink – water everywhere!! The water line was never secured at the factory. They found water coming out of the shark bite fitting due to the angle and changed the water filter so the line didn’t bend.

#8 - The furnace does not work – faulty control board right from the factory or did the PDI guy miss it. Not sure which came first the chicken or the egg!!!

#9 -- The driver’s seat wires are (still) too short and spark onto the cloth and foam under the seat until it trips the breaker. Possible fire hazard you think?? The first time they fixed it they simply put the wires back together again so that when they pulled out the second time and I again asked them to lengthen the wires they unclasped the connector from the seat to give it more stretch and they still have not lengthened the wires. My only hope is they don’t get the wires caught in the seat as it swivels.

#10 - Toilet seat in 1/2 bath fell off.

#11 - The drawer face of the couch has a rip/tear in the leather where the frame piece rubs on it as you open and close it. By the time the one side was fixed the other side started to do the same thing. Poor design we think!

#12 - The window over the couch, the sliding window glass is too small on the upper corner causing the glass to hit and dent the metal frame as you try to close it. Repaired by removing and replacing the whole window assembly.

#13 - The seals around the passengers sliding window are dry rotted and some are just hanging out. The note on the repair order says “attempted reinstall seals but the frame is dented in a few spots which pushes seal back out” – Factory work!!!

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#14 - The radio / media player flashes all the different settings each time you turn the motor home off to gas it up. You have to reset your choice of views (the back-up camera is always my choice as I drive!) This was operator error come to find out. OK, so we are new to this! It was in demo mode!

#15 - The floor tile between the full bath toilet and shower is buckled up and coming off. possible water leak near base of toilet? Only took 3 tries to have it repaired to our satisfaction.

#16 - The throttle kick down is possibly out of adjustment as the down shift RPMs go to 4k on a slight hill on cruise. I can control it better manually by feathering the throttle carefully but would like to use the cruise on long trips.

#17 - The oil dipstick is coated with Black Burnt Crust of oil part way down the stick. I have been told that this is normal on this brand because of where the dipstick passes along the hot exhaust manifold! For this reason, I have used Mobile One 5w20 on my last oil change in hopes that it would help with the burnt smell and appearance.

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#18 - The paint is peeling along the edge of the entry door. Two tries to fix this!!!

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#19 - The paint is crusting up and rusting along the seal for the exterior furnace cover. Really….it’s a brand new coach!

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#20 – Windshield wiper blades needed to be adjusted as they do not clear the driver’s side. Great factory job!!

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#21 – There are two pieces of missing floor moldings in the ½ bath. Factory quality control!!

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#22 – the trim on the dashboard is popping off in a few places

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#23 – the passenger seat belt has several twists in it. Should not pass inspection that way!! Quality control?

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#24 – a piece of molding fell off at the top of the cabinet next to the sliding door in the bedroom

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#25–the rear sliding door for the bedroom was way out of alignment – fixed twice. Factory quality control?

#26 – water pump switches were inoperable while trying to winterize the coach

#27 – driver’s seat cover replacement due to repair shop error

#28 – The furnace didn’t work – the explanation was above but we are just short of 30 items so we numbered it!!!! The furnace did not work after packing all day in the snow and wind on on Jan. 9th so we spent 7 hours at the dealership on Thursday getting it fixed.

During one of the trips back to the repair shop to pick up the coach in August, they are demonstrating what a great job they did with the repairs so let’s open the living room slide…..ooops, they forgot to put the driver’s seat all the way forward so now the seat has a big scuff mark in it!!! Please order a new one and let us know when it’s in and we will bring it back. We get the coach back home and discover a crap job was done on the back bathroom floor tiles so another call/email is made. We then get a call that the wrong color driver’s seat cover came in and they will re-order the correct color. So when we take it back they can replace the driver’s seat cover and re-do the floor tiles.

OK, we get a call that the correct seat cover came in and they have extra tiles so we take the coach in again to have these repairs done. We get a call the repairs are done so off we go to get our coach. They show us the repairs…..well I still see the big scuff mark in the drivers seat so it’s not done and was never replaced like we were told!!

So I asked why it wasn’t replaced and the response went something like this “you wouldn’t want to replace the seat cover as it’s hard to make it look like the original factory and it wouldn’t look right as you can’t get the wrinkles out”…..oh my….we responded to this……”Yes WE DO WANT IT REPLACED and we want it done correctly. So then off to the back bathroom to check the tiles…..are you kidding me…..if you can lift the tiles with your fingernail then they aren’t stuck down correctly…….at this point we walked out of the coach, into the repair shop and told them to keep it…….”We are not taking it until you FIX it the way it should be fixed”…..and probably a few other choice words! The coach comes back to us mid to late September…..

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We had been told on a previous visit that they fixed/replaced the water pump switch when they were fixing the bathroom tiles. We never had an issue with the water pump and had never reported it as an issue. Now we start to winterize the coach in October 2019 and find out that there is an issue with the water pump. It works like a 3 way switch wired wrong!!! Off to the repair shop we go again in the middle of trying to winterize the rig. Repair order says “diagnose water pump quirk”. They had to have a factory tech come to look at the issue. We never knew there was an issue with the water pump until they “fixed” it!

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Please keep in mind that we haven’t made any reservations to go camping as we didn’t know when the coach would really be fixed and didn’t want to incur the cancellation fees to cancel reservations.

We are not normally complainers but our patience has worn really thin at this point. We were expecting a great product based on the manufacturer’s reputation, but we find that the coach never should have rolled off the line with a lot of these issues. And the repair shop not doing their job correctly the first go round has left an awful taste in our mouths.

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As you can see, we are very dissatisfied with the quality of this motorhome, the workmanship is sub-par and it’s not what we had anticipated buying. Our anticipation of enjoying this coach for years to come has diminished greatly!

The screw that is supposed to attach the vent cover to the frame tab
(on the left) is angled away from the frame tab, missing it entirely.

We have been camping in the unit twice and have watched our coach depreciate at an alarming rate!!!

So there went the summer of 2018 and again in 2019!! And, of course, we were told repeatedly “The coach is usable”. Sure it is…..when will you have it fixed and will you screw anything else up while fixing it??? Or is there something else that the factory/dealership/repair shop didn’t do that we just haven’t found yet…….stay tuned as we are heading south shortly! We have never left our driveway without something breaking!

When you see the coach with the lemon on it going down the road, please leave a comment on our blog. We would love to hear from you.

Update 12/2019 - 1/2020

#29 The canopy over the entry door was stuck and would not open.
#30 The door stop at the back bathroom fell off again.
#31 The drivers front slide is gouging the floor tiles below the dining room seating area.
#32 The rear air conditioning won't cool the rear bedroom. Keeps putting it to 70 degrees and can't cool the bedroom off for sleeping at night even on cool nights!!