Thursday, June 1, 2023


Switch doesn’t stop RV’s slideout when retracting

gary-736Dear Gary,
I have a 1998 5th wheel RV with a slideout living room. My problem is that there must be a relay somewhere that is sticking when I attempt to close the slideout. I have talked to numerous RV repair shops, even the factory itself, and no one can help me.

When it is coming in, it does not want to stop when I release the switch. The In-and-Out switch is okay. It has a DeWalt hydraulic pump that operates the slideout. It is one that you can electrically bring the slide in or you can manually pump it in. Could the pump itself have the relay inside of it? Your help will be most appreciated. —J.R.M., USAF Retired

Dear J.R.,

Slideout hydraulic pump assembly. Click to enlarge.

First of all, thank you for your service! Without knowing the brand and model number of your particular slideout drive mechanism, it’s hard to tell with 100% certainty what the problem might be, but it sounds like the hydraulic solenoid valve itself may be sticking. The battery switch solenoid might be mounted right on the pump itself. This was typical back then. It will likely be cylindrical and silver in color as well. It is wired between the coach battery and the pump motor and is activated by the slide switch. Such solenoids have a tendency to stick as they age. 

My recommendation would be to locate the pump and then identify the solenoid. It should be a generic battery type solenoid, so you can get a replacement at your local auto parts or RV store. Just make sure the replacement is made for heavy-duty applications. They are inexpensive, so if you are not adept at bench testing the solenoid itself, I recommend you replace this part first and see if that eliminates your problem.

If this does not fix the problem, then I suspect a hydraulic valve spool or another of the solenoids is sticking. This could be due to dirt stuck in the valve. In this case, you will have to take your coach to an experienced RV service facility to inspect, clean, and/or replace these pump components. It takes specific expertise to perform services on the internals of the pump assembly, unfortunately. 

Read more from Gary Bunzer at the See Gary’s videos about RV repair and maintenance.




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Omer Murray
4 years ago

Hi Gary. We own a pristine 95 Alfa. After we first got it, we were driving on 99 south of Bakersfield when I saw the main slide opening in my mirror. I stopped and closed it and a short time later, it came out again. I disconnected the line at the fuse by the battery. I took it to Alfa and they put in an on-off switch just next to the slide switch.
The problem was that CB signals were setting off some electronic part.

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