Saturday, April 1, 2023


Air horn blows when wipers, lights and more are engaged. What the heck?

In this column, we summarize some of your emails and comments regarding RV service centers and repairs (we asked you to submit your stories here). We’ll tell you all: the best, the good, the bad and the ugly. At the end of this article, you’ll find a place to submit your own comments. I encourage you to do so.

Keep in mind, we typically only present one side of the story in most of these. Also, any remarks about service centers and mobile techs mentioned are the opinions of our readers and not necessarily 

Here’s what you had to say:

Hold them accountable

Dave L. wants manufacturers and dealers to be held accountable. He explains, “It is a wonder that anyone does business with some of these companies. It is too bad that RV builders and dealers aren’t held accountable like auto dealers.

“I worked for a Chevrolet dealer for 35 years and if we had done some of these things that the dealer does, we would have been in deep trouble. I have heard of some having their franchise revoked.

“The RV industry needs to be held to the same accountability.”

It’s been great!

Terry K.’s RV has fewer issues than his friend’s newer RV! They say, “We bought a used 2004 Winnebago Journey, 39 ft. long Class A in 2016 with 70K miles on it. Other than a few issues one expects with an RV that old, it’s been great. In fact, I’ve had far less trouble than my friends who have purchased new coaches! Despite a few repairs and an appliance replacement, we’re happy with it.”

No complaints at all

Daryl M. has had very few problems with his unit: “We are owners of a 2009 Jayco Greyhawk. So far we’ve only had to replace the forward vent and had Camping World in Fountain do it. No complaints at all. The rest of the maintenance I do myself. YouTube videos have been my greatest resource.

“The first problem was my 4kw Cummins generator would run 10 minutes and then quit. Turned out to be a fuel pump and carburetor problem due to shellac. Found parts on Amazon and replaced them myself.

“One of those YouTube videos said the oil level might be too high. Sure enough, there is a level sensor so I never fill the level too far over half on the dipstick. Jayco furnished me with electrical schematics just for the asking, too!”

Dealer independent and not obligated to fix

Bob H. was surprised that a Forest River dealer didn’t have to fix his truck camper. Here’s what happened: “I bought a new truck camper in Ohio. I live in PA and it was about eight hours away. It was a 2020 Palomino Backpack HS-8801 owned by Forest River. I found about eight things that needed to be fixed under warranty. The Forest River dealer in Erie, PA, would not warranty it. I called the Forest River warranty department and they told me their dealers are independent. I’m glad I was not on the road and needed help under warranty.”

Happy with Call of the Wild RV Center

Kathleen D. has been very happy with the service she’s received: “I have been extremely happy with the service at Call of the Wild RV Center in Oxford, Maine. They are reasonable in pricing, efficient and accommodating. I would highly recommend them to anyone.”

Turned on the windshield wipers and the air horn blew!

Mike D. was really happy with their wonderful dealer but not so much with the coach. Yikes… “We had picked up our 2013 Thor Tuscany 45′. It had been delayed due to issues being discovered whilst it was being prepared. The dealer The Hitch House in Ontario, Canada, couldn’t have been more helpful.

“We had become full-time RVers. The Hitch House allowed us to store furniture in one of their outbuildings. Because of the delay, they allowed us to stay at their beautiful dealership. But this is just the beginning!

“With only 30,000 miles we really didn’t expect any major issues. However, I wisely did purchase an extended warranty. So we headed off to the Florida Keys. On our way down things took a turn… for the worst. We attempted to engage the windshield wipers, but the air horn blew. Tried the cruise control and the air horn blew, tried to flash the lights… well, you have it figured out.

The saga continues

“Although it worked fine when we left, Freightliner has something called ‘clockwork’ behind the steering wheel. The Hitch House recommended we find a Freightliner dealer.

“The first dealership said to call back in a few weeks. At the second dealership, Freightliner of Harrisburg, we spoke to Brock. He said, ‘We’re super busy but come by. We’ll have a look.’ Off to Harrisburg. During the few hours it took to get there, we noticed an unhappy noise coming from our 450hp Cummins.

“When we arrived, Brock greeted us warmly. After hearing the engine he said we had an exhaust manifold leak. Now I’m going to fast forward over the next five weeks that we spent at the gorgeous Indigo Hotel with our French Bulldogs (yes, two). The warranty company second-guessed every decision and labored over every dime. We’d have been out in half the time if the warranty company had been more efficient.

“We had the engine pulled out and replaced everything except the block… yes, everything.

“Bottom line: The warranty company is barely helpful. The Hitch House in Ontario was extraordinarily helpful, even contributing to our bill.

“Sure, you’ll get lots of horror stories, but there are wonderful dealerships that really care.”

Haven’t had a single problem… not one!

Terrence H. is a happy camper! “I have a 2018 Arctic Fox 29-5T fifth wheel. I have hauled it over 12,000 miles thus far and haven’t had a single problem. No, not one. I’m very happy with the quality of this RV.

“It is heavy, which in my opinion is a good thing and one of the reasons this brand is more reliable than most. But it isn’t eye candy, the colors aren’t modern. This manufacturer only makes a few models and they have been making the same models for years and years. Maybe that is why they build them correctly.

“Looking forward to many more years of travel with our fifth wheel and exploring this beautiful country.”

Happy with the response from Forest River

Lloyd M. had a number of issues but Forest River took responsibility. He writes, “We bought a new Forest River Cedar Creek Cottage in 2012. It was delivered to Arizona and had a two-year warranty. We had numerous issues over the first two years but my Forest River warranty rep took care of all of them. Parts were shipped to us or I was authorized to have a mobile RV tech make repairs, pay for it myself, and submit the bill, which they paid. We were happy with the response to our warranty issues by Forest River.

“We are snowbirds and reside in a city that has many mobile RV techs. Most are knowledgeable but sometimes it may take days for them to attend. We have not taken our RV to a service center. We have been able to get parts but prices are very high. I am able to perform most repairs myself and only require the parts, but the repair process is continuous! We have another RV (2005) at home that we use in the summer. It was well-built and we refuse to upgrade due to the many issues with new ones!”

Editor’s note

Note from If hiring a mobile tech, a small or mega service center, make sure that they are experienced in the issue and have insurance in case something goes wrong. Also, check their warranty policy on the work they perform. Check reviews too and read between the lines—if the review sounds way too good to be true it might be. Compare with several reviews and not just the ones on their website.

Questions for you about RV service

Over the next few weeks, we’ll share stories of your RV service experiences. We want to know:

  • Have you had good luck with great service or not so much?
  • Did you get good service from knowledgeable technicians?
  • Are you waiting to get into a service center or have a mobile tech come out?
  • What has been the average time to get an appointment?
  • Has your RV been in a service center for a while?
  • Are you able to get any mobile techs to come out?
  • Are the service centers able to get parts?
  • When you do get the repairs done, is the price reasonable?

Please fill out the form below and tell us what your experiences have been like. It can be a horror story, an opinion about what’s going on, a positive experience, or anything else related to the topic. We want to know the great, the good, the bad, and the ugly!

Check back next week for more on RV service centers. See you then.

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Last Week’s RV Service Centers and Repairs Report

  • Service center takes RV on joy ride; owners not joyful



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