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Comments for Readers’ tales of woe about the quality of their RVs

  • I found out the hard way that new doesn’t always mean better. I purchased a new Ford F150 and it was a total lemon, lost $5000 to get rid of it. This taught me a lesson when it came time to purchase our 5th wheel. We have been going to the RV shows for the last few years and I always noticed and pointed out to my wife the way the new models are built. If you open a cupboard door and look underneath or in the garage area’s of a unit and the wires or pipes are not strapped down properly and it looks like a birds nest that’s a good indication of how it was built. So we went on a mission to find an older unit that had been cared for and had solid bones, good roof (hadn’t leaked) frame in good condition. We bought a 1993 Gulfstream for $2900 bucks. We have spent $5000 on it and totally updated the interior, replaced the water heater, furnace, brakes, and tires. Installed solar and a battery bank system (1500 watt pure sine wave inverter) and will be keeping this unit going forward. I can’t justify spending $60000 and up for a new unit unit that is thrown together especially considering I would have to borrow the money for such a rig. My older rig doesn’t have slideouts and some of the fancy electronic stuff but we only sleep in the unit and watch some TV on a cold night.

  • I believe the two best Class Cs going are Phoenix Cruisers, made in Elkhart, IN., and Lazydaze made in Montclair, CA. I’ve had NO problems with either of them. They are both well made and drive well.

    • My wife and I toured the Phoenix Cruiser factory last year and were quite impressed with what we saw. The place was clean and well organized, unlike some of the larger factories in the area. We saw units in various stages of completion which revealed very good workmanship and quality materials. Most of their workers have been with the company for years and seem to be dedicated to making a quality product. Their prices are reasonable for the quality level too.

      In addition to Phoenix Cruiser and Lazydaze, I would add Coachhouse and possibly Nexus to the list of good Cs available now. I read recently that Nexus will be “test camping” every unit that comes off the line, something that other manufacturers should be doing.

  • Wow – this is not encouraging! I take delivery of my Leisure Travel Van in February, but I hope I am not deluding myself that this is a quality-built unit from quality workers. Their videos look good, at any rate – I’ll let the community know when I pick it up!

    • Please do comment because we’ve been looking hard and a Leisure Travel is high up on our list of possibles.

      As David Albright commented, we get the impression that Canadian builders make a better quality product with a bit more thought given to durability.

  • After researching RVs for their availability of “cold weather packages” I was steered necessarily to Canadian built units since few US models offer them, and those that do are seriously lacking. In doing so, I found that they actually listen to their customers and build real QUALITY products. My next purchase, new or used, will be of a Canadian designed and built RV!

  • Have had 3 airstreams and have to say the quality on all 3 have been excellent. Most recent is a 2016 25 foot. The dealers and airstream customer service have been excellent. Something must be said for 80 year old technology. Hope Thore leaves them alone.

    • We purchased a 2017 19′ Airstream Travel Trailer and, so far, everything is in working order. There were a few minor cosmetic issues that the dealer took care of but other than that we are enjoying traveling about with her. Airstream’s reputation was the main reason why we decided on this brand…it was worth saving a bit more for a bit longer. Like you, Tom, we hope Thor doesn’t do any drastic changes or “improvements” and just leave well enough alone.

  • Our Mountain Are is a 1997. We have had her for 14 years being the third owner. Yes she is an old girl, but we have kept her up to date with many additions, repairs as needed and new paint etc. She is everything we need. Yes she doesn’t have all the bells and whistles that the new ones have, BUT she is well made, sturdy and can take a beating. (which I have mistakenly proven time and again with my out of the way shortcuts and back roads). We have looked at new coaches but just cannot find anything that compares to the quality we have in our old girl. They don’t make em like that anymore has never been a truer statement.

  • I enjoy reading this publication. I have an RV albeit a very small one. A 17′ Casita travel trailer. I understand the issues with quality control and just want to compliment the folks at Casita. I toured the shop where all the units are made. I saw 1st hand the quality control. I am sure that there are both good and poor manufacturing practices in the RV industry as a whole. I am glad that I found a good one.

  • We bought a 2010 Travel Lite model 960 Truck Camper as the travel trailers we owned turned out to terrible workmanship so being we had a Chev.2500 Long Bed why not try a Truck we toured the factory in Paris, Indiana and was convinced of a well built camper as it was mainly a family owned company so we thought we had hit the jackpot..After the rear steel [optional} bumper came loose on one end we surveyed the problem and found that the rear overhang of 18″ was totally unprotected from water off the roadways thus serious rot in only 3 years. No help to fix or reimburse from the factory so over $1,000. later by a private carpenter repairman we felt it was time to say goodbye with integrity to a new owner..We never looked under the rear knowing it would be protected but out of sight out of mind..So beware of Travel Lite truck my advice.

  • We are one of those buyers! Tiffin, which we had heard was the Cadillac of motor homes is anything but: we have had 2 slide issues due to faulty or broken slide mechanisms, the first problem just 6 months after acquiring same! Warranty doesn’t cover that we are informed ? Say what? This year we drove 7000 miles without our kitchen slide because the motor failed as well as our failed cruise control! Say what ? Quality sucks and I’m going to write a letter saying so return receipt to Red Bay Alabama and Mr. Bob Tiffin-!
    Maintenance issues wouldn’t be so bad if these things broke after 5-6 years of use we believe and I once worked for Ford and an auto parts store so I know a little about what I speak. Is it due to buying stuff off shore or the employee they hire? We’ve made no less than 1200 miles at our expense and our last encounter took 60 days and I had to make an appointment 3 weeks in advance of bringing our RV to their shop in Pensacola ? WTF?
    Little stuff such as sinks not caulked, faulty roof vent and that was within the first 3 months ? O, by the way; 2 weeks after taking delivery I took it back to the Tiffin dealer in Pensacola for the firewall to be caulked for holes? The driver’s side window was extremely slow so I assumed it was the nature of the beast – I recently had a trustworthy mechanic say ‘the window is slow’; I subsequently had this Tiffin dealer fix some assuming it was covered by warranty ? Wrong and that repair cost $135 and the seal, which has been loose since purchase was also glued for another $100-? All in all, our last visit for warranty work cost us $1880 American-! That’s BS-!

  • FYI all readers : we have tried to operate our motor home safely and do routine maintenance- the manual for our 2015 Tiffin Allegro shows ‘no’ alternate procedure for retracting slides in the event one fails to close! This Tiffin Allegro has no Mechanial crank mechanism as older motor homes such as our 2003 National Seabreeze

  • After reading all of these comments (and so many more from earlier stories) and the report from the deliverer, I thanked my wife that last year we bought our 2001 CrossRoads All American from the original and only owners. From what I’ve read, our CrossRoads was built with extremely high quality materials and workmanship before Thor bought the company.

  • Seems the writers of some of the poor quality RV stories have made an effort to hide the names of those poor quality RV’s. You need to NAME NAMES!! How else do you expect to bring pressure to bear?

    • Stephen, If a reader identifies the year and make/model of their RV we will almost always include that in their comment and/or letter to the editor.

  • We bought a new Class C 2011 Coachman Freelander 21 qb on a chevy chasis 6 years ago. We have put over 60,000 miles on it. It has been a WONDERFUL RV!!!! The ONLY thing that had to be replaced was a $30.00 fan vent motor !!! WE LOVE OUR COACHMAN !!!

  • I have a 2017 Forest River 34QS, it was supposed to be our dream RV, not a night mare! In the 10 months we’ve owned it 4 of those months we couldn’t use it for one reason or another. Including 4 trips to the dealer to fix, replace or repair over 25 issues. Waiting for the dealer (DDRV) to get an appointment & then waiting for the work to get done, none of them in a reasonable time. NOT to forget all those KOOL items listed in their fancy brochure, that weren’t in our motor home (12 of them), their excuse was in the fine print of that they can change what they said without telling you, how sad. My dealer said that the FOREST RIVER BERKSHIRE was their best seller, didn’t tell me it was a great resource of warranty work & money for them!
    Disgusted with my dream Motor Home

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