Friday, July 1, 2022

MENU

Installing Safe T Plus and KONI shocks. Is it worth it?

Today we had Safe T Plus Steering Control and KONI shocks installed on our 40’ Tiffin Phaeton motorhome. Is it worth it? The jury is still out, but so far we haven’t bottomed out on the potholes, and my husband didn’t feel the sway when the semis passed. He felt more comfortable around curvy narrow roads and driving in light winds with gusts of 12-17 mph. It was an unusual driving day, though, with such slight wind, so I’m not sure yet about improvement when driving in heavy winds.

The Safe T Plus factory in Tallapoosa, Georgia

We took our 2017 40′ Class A RV to the factory in Tallapoosa, Georgia. There is no extra charge for installation and we wanted to go somewhere where they are really familiar with the equipment and the Safe T Plus and KONI shock installation process. They are certainly familiar! We were with a group of six class A’s and three class C’s lined up to have various Safe T Plus items installed.

Safe T Plus Bay. Photo credit: Nanci Dixon

Staying overnight in the lot

We read so many positive reviews on Facebook groups and RV forums from people that had the equipment installed that we decided if it reduced the blowing in the wind effect we would try it. We have had appointments for the last two years but COVID got in the way. Today was the day! They have a large lot for dry camping the night before and the night after the appointment, if needed. It is actually quite pretty there with lots of grass and tall trees edging the lot. Safe T Plus sends the gate code along with the Wi-Fi code if staying overnight. I thought we were at an RV park with the regularity of the trains passing by (right by) across a narrow street. I like the trains and the train whistles—my husband, not so much. (More on that here.)

Safe T Plus and KONI shock install

They are really busy—one RV pulls out of a bay and another goes in. Our appointment was for 12:30 p.m. and they were right on time. I can only guess that they stagger their lunch times because I saw no break in work.

My husband pulled up to the door and they told us they would take it from there. Although I was dying to take photos, we were escorted to the very nice client lounge complete with a basket of treats.

Installing Safe T Plus

Safe T Plus steering control

The Safe T Plus helps keep the steering centered, bringing the RV back to center around curves, helps stabilize in crosswinds, and most importantly aids in case of a front tire blowout. It is shock-based and goes between the axle and steering linkage.

It helps reduce the effects of:

  • Steering play
  • Side winds
  • Passing semis
  • Over-steering
  • Driver fatigue
  • Front tire blowout

KONI shocks

KONI shocks are designed to cushion and dampen road bumps and give a smoother ride than the factory-installed ones. I was a bit skeptical, but we have been bottoming out on some major potholes and some really bad side road dips.

KONI shocks. Photo credit: Nani Dixon

Motion Control Units

They suggested Motion Control Units be installed too. We decided not to at this point. MCUs are installed on the air lines of RVs with air rides. They are designed to reduce sway and roll by slowing down the inflation and deflation of the airbags. Our neighbor at the RV park had them installed and said it made a huge difference, particularly going into driveways and dips. Maybe some other time.

After install

The installation took about an hour-and-a-half, and soon they called us for the 20-mile test drive. They have a planned route with areas to stop, pull over and adjust. A technician rides along and directs speed and type of turns and direction. After a momentary test with hands off the steering wheel, he told my husband to pull over. The tech got out and adjusted the Safe T Plus on the spot. Two stops and it was perfect—no pull left or right.

Is it worth it?

Is it worth it? That depends. Will it help in some of the most awful spring winds we have been experiencing? If the answer is yes, it will be “why didn’t we do this years ago?!” If no, then at least the passing semis aren’t pushing us and it’ll be easier when taking curves. Also, as the navigator and passenger, I already enjoy the smoother, less-bumpy ride.

500-mile check-in with 35 to 40 mph wind gusts. For us, the Safe T Plus made a huge difference. The high winds were not a battle yesterday. Will follow up after our next thousand miles!

For more information check out their website.

##RVT1053

Comments

Subscribe
Notify of

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

5 Comments
Newest
Oldest
Inline Feedbacks
View all comments
Ray Digby
1 month ago

If you are have steering issues with any vehicle , the first thing to do is have a full and proper alignment check by someone who knows about the type of vehicle you have . Motor homes have solid beam axles that are a completely different system than nearly any of the vehicles we normally drive. Motor home chassis come from the truck manufacturer as a bare chassis and the manufacturer has no idea how it is going to be loaded or weight balanced once it leaves the factory. Final steering alignment set up is the responsibility of the RV manufacturer, but I’m sure that most of them don’t perform an after build steering alignment. A solid beam axle should have 7 degrees of caster set into it in order for the steering to self center properly. I recently did a check on a motor home that had only 2 degrees of castor , and it was a nightmare to drive. $40 for a pair of 5 degree wedges set between the spring and axle and a couple of hours labor totally solved all the steering issues.

Roger C
1 month ago

Just had the SafeTPlus and Koni shocks added to our Holiday Rambler Vesta (class C) on our return trip north (Florida to Michigan). My wife and I agree there is much improvement over the the stock suspension on a Ford E450 chassis. In my opinion greater control, less getting pushed around by semis, and much less driver fatigue. We experienced great customer service at their shop.

DPHooper
1 month ago

We’ve done all three on our 2019 Renegade Verona. As you said, all worth every penny.
You didn’t mention front end alignment before SafeTPlus. If needed, definitely worth having done before.

MevetS
1 month ago

I think you’ll find the MCU’s worth the cost. Especially on uneven road, or campground road, surfaces. They are not very expensive, compared to the modifications you’ve already had done.

We did all 3 on our 2017 Tiffin Breeze, it was a major improvement. Went from driving 2 handed to the ability to drive with one hand. But then, the Breeze is low to the ground.

Pat
1 month ago

We too had a Safety Plus installed on our rig by the folks at Safe T Plus factory in Tallapoosa, Georgia. We have a Jayco Alante 26X Class A Motorhome. Our experience with the staff there was outstanding and we had the exact same experience as outlined in your article. The Safety Plus made a tremendous improvement in the handling of our rig and we highly recommend this product. We later went back to the factory and had front and rear Sumo Shocks installed. We are very happy that we did, as they have helped reduce the severity of side to side rock and the smoothness of our ride.

Sign up for our newsletter

Every Saturday and Sunday morning. Serving RVers for more than 20 years.