Thursday, June 1, 2023


Ask Dave: Slide room works, then doesn’t, then works, then doesn’t…

Dear Dave,
When extending or retracting my RV’s slides, the power cuts out and the slides stop… then it comes on again. I checked the box and it shows one green light and two red. Is there a way to fix this? Thanks for your help. —Michelle, 2017 Gulf Stream Conquest

Dear Michelle,
From what I can tell from brochures and websites, your Conquest has a rack and pinion slide mechanism, which is most likely Power Gear®. Is that right?

This mechanism has a trail or bar with teeth and a gear that moves it in and out.

According to the Power Gear owner’s manual, the green light blink indicates the start and stop of the code and two red lights mean power failure or battery drop out.

There could be several things that contribute to this issue. However, it comes down to the battery not supplying enough voltage at some point. I know I sound like a broken or scratched record, but are you plugging into shoreline power and making sure the unit is level and stabilized?

Possible issue with rack and pinion mechanism

One of the main issues with the rack and pinion mechanism is the weight of the room actually is transferred to the rams or bars, unlike the Schwintek or Cable systems. So any resistance of the room going in and out adds to the weight and requires more force or power from the motor. If the unit is not level and stable, the chassis or floor will twist and bend the sidewall, which is like a bad drawer in a dresser.

As the room goes in or out, it binds against some point in the sidewall, which forces the motor to work harder. If your battery is sulfated or weak, it will drop out. Having it plugged into shoreline power means you have a constant 13.2 volts being supplied by the converter even if you have battery issues. Having the unit level and stable means there is no additional resistance applied. Check the floor rollers to make sure they are not bent or binding, as well as all surrounding trim.

Use a multimeter

Then use a multimeter at the motor to verify the voltage. If there is adequate voltage at the motor and it stops, then it has to be the motor dropping out due to weak motor windings.

If the voltage drops, then it is either the batteries or wiring going to the motor. Check all your connections and verify that the correct gauge wiring was used for the motor. The wiring gauge in the service manual shows it with a wiring harness that had 18-gauge wiring and 10-gauge coming from the 12-volt source. However, most manufacturers need to add more wiring to reach the motors and it’s not uncommon to see cheaper wire used. It works for a little while, but when the motor gets a little weak, it’s not sufficient enough to run it.

 You might also enjoy this from Dave 

Should we be concerned about full-body RV slides with appliances?

Dear Dave,
Just looking over some of Tony’s RV reviews, it looks like a lot of the travel trailers he looks at have full-body RV slides of mechanicals in them such as refrigerator, sink, oven/stove, etc. How does this affect the slides and mechanical systems? Looking at a review with suspension issues and slides above them, I would think that full slides with mechanicals in them could be a major issue. I’m not looking at these, but what are some of the points to look at before purchase? —Jeffrey, 2016 Gulf Stream 30 ft.

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Dave Solberg is a leading expert in the RV industry and the author of the “RV Handbook.”

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Dave Solberg
Dave Solberg
Dave Solberg is a leading expert in the RV industry and author of the “RV Handbook” as well as the Managing Editor of the RV Repair Club. He has been in the RV Industry since 1983 and conducts over 15 seminars at RV shows throughout the country.


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7 months ago

Behind the batteries in my rig is a terminal connection post where the major 12 volt connections, i.e., slide motor, are made using a circuit interrupter (overcurrent protector) at each connection. My slide would start to come in, then stop. After waiting for approx. 30 seconds for it to cool off it would work again for a bit, then stop. I had to keep doing this until I could fully retract the slides. After replacing this connector I’ve never had another problem.

Last edited 7 months ago by Jim

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