Friday, October 7, 2022


RV Horror Story of the Week, Issue 895

Here is this week’s Horror Story as posted on our Facebook group RV Horror Stories. As the group grows (there are now more than 13,000 members), so do the reports of defective RVs, and about RVs so messed up they can’t be fixed, or the owners must wait months on end (and then often need to wait again) for repairs.

This was posted by a member named Bob (last name withheld but you will see it on the group page). We edited it slightly for brevity and clarity. He wrote:

We went to Kroubetz RV in Minnesota and walked through a brand new Grand Design 379 FL. We worked a deal and bought it. We didn’t have a truck to pull it so we paid the dealer to deliver it to our home.

We were excited and bought just about everything you could buy at Camping World to outfit our new dream camper! But things started going badly quickly. I had purchased a new Progressive EMS system and it need to be installed behind a wall in the basement. When I removed the wall I was shocked to see water damage and mold! My first thought was the basement door had leaked.

I immediately called Grand Design. They were sorry and told us not to worry a bit and they would make everything good for us 100 percent. They told us the damage was not a dealer fixable thing. They told us to use the camper for the summer and they would pick it up and fix it. They would make everything perfect. We trusted them.

They picked up the camper. After awhile I got a call. The water damage came from a leaking slide that needed to be replaced as well as the driver’s side long wall. We were devastated as well as mad. Grand Design wanted nothing to do with us getting a different camper. But we didn’t want a rebuilt camper.

Many not-so-nice conversations later they promised us they would fly us out, and our camper would be as new/perfect per our inspection. We reluctantly said okay.

A GOOD TIME PASSED and I was getting nervous. I called a couple times and our contract guy was out. The lady I talked with after some smooth talking said she would snap some pictures of my camper so we could see the progress. We later felt bad she got into big trouble for taking the pictures.

Bob’s new RV is torn open to make repairs for defects.

We got the pictures and had a heart attack! They had lied/not told us what was going on. They replaced both long walls, three slides, floors, some carpet, etc. Our entire brand new camper had been ripped apart! We got ahold of Brad Smith and demanded a new replacement camper.

They wanted nothing to do with that and kept offering us stupid piddly items to make us shut up — new tires, backup camera, restart warranty. We were at their mercy.

The call came and they said it’s going to be delivered. I reminded them they had told us they would first fly us to inspect it. They acted like that conversation never happened.

They delivered our camper. It took me 30 seconds to find water damage and mold! I showed the delivery guy, and video taped the entire thing. I refused delivery and the camper returned to Grand Design. We were beyond livid. They apologized and offered more BS. We didn’t want this camper back. We were stuck!

Grand Design fixed it again and returned it to us. They had fixed it to look good.

The driver then left. It was now sitting in my driveway. We plugged it in and opened up the slides to get a good look at the repairs. To our surprise none of the electrical in the living room or the bedroom worked! We checked all the normal things. No power. We called Grand Design again and were told these things can be repaired by our dealership.

WE WERE BEYOND LIVID. So, the camper goes to the dealership and they can’t figure out the electrical problem. They hire it out and find that Grand Design put a screw right through the wires in the roof. They fixed it and a handful of other things on our list.

We picked it up (bought a truck) and towed it to our seasonal site as is this weekend! I opened it up and water was streaming out a seam on the front cap where there should be no water! And the damn lights in the dining area didn’t work! I am so sick of this pile of junk camper that I’m stuck with for $70,000! I have a lot of pictures and videos. We tried to record Grand Design’s conversations but they have programs to not let that happen.

We realize there are two sides to every story. We invite a representative from Grand Design to comment on this report by emailing

P.S. from editor: Spellchecker didn’t like the spelling of “Kroubetz.” Its only suggestion as the “correct” spelling was, no kidding, “Trouble.”

Join RV Horror Stories to see more reports like this from “wronged” RVers.


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2 years ago

The thing about used is that they all smell bad inside, either musty or you can tell what they cooked all that time. We looked a dozens of used A’s. They all stunk.
We bought new. Wasn’t that bad, warranty-wise, I fixed the few problems.
We’ve used our rig plenty, keep it under cover, keep DriZair’s inside when not using it, still smells decent inside!

Steve S
2 years ago

The owners should have contacted a Lemon Law lawyer after the first “repair” from GD. Ridiculous for the owners to go through this.

2 years ago

A college booth at a recent RV show was recruiting for the RV Repair and Maintenance Technician Diploma, and I thought if you have a kid interested in a trade this is the ticket to riches. They are in extremely short supply, there is no competition (which is why they can roger us when we finally get that service appointment) and we have to put up with it. Camping World charged me to inspect our rig to find a leak, only to let me drive off and flood everything at the next stop miles away. We’re all in the wrong business!!! 🤣🤣❤🇨🇦🌲

John Robinson
2 years ago

one thing we learned about RVs. Never and I mean never buy a new unit. Let somebody else take the hit and fix all the problems that come with it.

3 years ago

Wow! Thank you so much for this report. I have been shopping for months for a new RV and was just about to hit the button on a Grand Design. They’re off my list now. As a matter of fact, I won’t even be going back to the dealer that suggested them! Bad form.

Tammy Brantley
3 years ago

I definitely won’t be buying from them! No way! Scumbags!

Tommy Molnar
3 years ago

For a while, I was thinking Grand Design was a step up from the others, but now, maybe not so much.

3 years ago

Maybe buyers need to start showing up at the dealers with their own “buyers” contract for the dealer to sign. Set your terms for how the dealer is to work on your rig. If everybody did this the dealers have no choice but to accept or else stop selling RV’s. If dealers can’t sell RV’s then manufacturers can’t sell them either.

Tommy Molnar
3 years ago
Reply to  TP

I kinda like this idea. But I’d be surprised if a dealer would sign ANYTHING!

3 years ago
Reply to  Tommy Molnar

I’m sure at first they wouldn’t. But if buyers start walking out the door, it could become the new normal.

3 years ago

Somewhat off-axis, but I’m curious about the “programs to keep from recording.” I know how to mess with phone trees, but it’s hard to defeat a basic tape recorder.

Mark B
3 years ago

This sucks. GD made efforts to repair, but a massive rebuild is not a new RV. The first build had quality checks and parts were assembled/sealed in a specific order.

GD is owned by Winnebago. Bug them and sully their name to get resolution.

If a perfect world, the rebuild would involve custom, detailed craftsmanship. Reality: it was probably rushed through because it takes workers away from profitable work.

3 recommendations to others:
1) Buy used (after thorough inspection). Far less money and many fails are fixed
2) Document all RV warranty repair, photos, and get commitments in writing
3) Immediately use forums, TV news and YouTube to publicize your plight and progress.

3 years ago
Reply to  Mark B

I would be afraid to buy used because you easily could end up with this lemon or others that are in the same boat.

3 years ago

I’m so sorry this happened to you. We had purchased a luxury DRV Mobile Suites RV, had many problems, fixed the majority of them, and then got out of it. We were lucky, having only lost about $10,000. Yes, I say lucky because many people lose a lot more. We then had Sundowner, known for their amazing horse trailers, build us a custom cargo trailer. Just a bare trailer. We then insulated it and built our own double-decker RV. The basement stores our kayaks and personal goods and the upper level is our living quarters. Since we built it out ourselves, everything works! We love it!

don wagner
3 years ago
Reply to  19KC69

19KCC69 have any pic’s?