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Old 02-07-2009, 09:58 AM   #1
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Travel and warrenties

While I was at the Dealers yesterday taking care of the fridg recall and hitch work I ask some question about an issue that a new nember posted. Conmoto was concern about warrenty issues while traveling. Well little did I know the warrenty issues on RV's are not handled like auto's. If you buy a GM in your home town and it needs warrenty work while traveling then it can be handled at any GM dealership at no cost to you and that's the way it should be. Caution ask question first: If you have a local dealer like Rockwood and you decide not to buy from them and you go 100 miles out to buy them same make ask your local dealer if they well stand behind any warrenty issues, that's because THEY DON'T HAVE TO, you will have to take it back where you bought it. Now here comes the reasons: A dealer can decide not to carry or stop selling a certain manufactures RV's, or a manufacture can pull there line of RV's from the dealer for what ever reason at any time, so there are no ties between the manufactures and the dealers. The service departments at the dealers loose money on most warrenty work because Rockwood as an example only pays the service department to change out parts and it is a set time frame, the manufactures do not pay for trouble shooting and to get to the part that needs to be changed out and then put your camper back together again. So my dealer fells that if you buy from them they will stand behind the warrenty, but if you buy from another dealer and past them up for the RV sale then you will pay and I am told that most service dealers fell the same way because they can. Be carefull with RV wholesalers, People have to travel some distance to pick up there new campers, you may have to take it back to them for warrenty. There was a letter sent out to my dealer a while ago from Rockwood saying that they did not have to cover any warrenty work on any unit that was bought from any RV wholesalers or on line RV perches. I know that some dealers are flexable and may want to help you but be carefull, they have the right to refuse warrenty work.
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Old 02-07-2009, 06:47 PM   #2
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I've ran into that a couple of times and, though I don't like it, I understand why it's that way. It would be nice to be able to take the RV to the closest dealer for warranty service even if we had to pay for the service and have the mfg reimburse us.
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Old 02-08-2009, 12:07 AM   #3
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I can't be 100% sure but I think this practice is in violation of Federal law. I just don't think anyone has pushed it. The same issue had come up in the past with Harley Davidson dealers too but I think they got their collective wee wees slapped for it. The "reasons" they are giving you are hoaky and a rouse in my eyes. They just want to strong arm us into paying their prices instead of being competitive.

Simply put, lets say that I bought my RV in Washington from my local dealer then my job relocated me to Florida am I SOL!?! NO. The factory has the ability to tell a dealer you will fix this RV as an agent of ours. If not then they can drop that dealership. If you are traveling then you should still be reimbursed for repairs. You may have to pay up front but I don't think they can refuse. The only stipulation may be if they require a reservation and in the case of a local RV dealer (not Forest River) here that is going to be doing work on my awning under warranty they are 3 weeks out on that. They may not just drop everything to help you if you are from out of town.

I think it is a matter of people just bowing down to them and not making a fuss. If a local dealer refused me simply because I didn't buy my rig from them you can be sure I would be contacting the factory warranty team, and the state attorney general. Remember that warranty work is like free money to a dealer and in an economy like this for them to be turning away customers is stupid. Not to mention a dealer doing this is sure never to get any of my business in the future, they just still can't get past the old "car dealer of the 70s" mentality.

However from my point of view, I don't trust my local Forest River dealer they are a bunch of worthless monkeys and I wouldn't let them near my rig. As the warranty on an RV is only 1 year and that goes by really fast I know that I will at some point be fixing things myself. The few items we have had go wrong with our new Georgetown I have been able to fix myself and Forest River has been great about sending me out the parts to do it.
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Old 02-08-2009, 09:35 PM   #4
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these dealer threats come up all the time. we talked to FR before driving 1500 miles to Chicago to buy our Roo. it was cheaper and closer than RVW.
FR said that if a local Roo dealer refused to work on it, they would help find a local RV dealer who would. if they couldn't find one, we could take it to a independent shop and they would reimburse us.
so in the past 2 years, we have had our warranty work done by non-Roo dealers and non-FR dealers. even had an independent shop do some work that we were reimbursed within 2 weeks of submitting the paperwork.

i would have preferred to buy local. but asking me to pay over $4k on a trailer, with a MSRP of only $20k, for that privilege was asking too much. paying $1k more would have been worth buying local.
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Old 02-08-2009, 10:26 PM   #5
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Thanks for checking out the warranty info. I still must believe that if you are on the road and have trouble that is covered under warranty, that FR would either direct you to a FR dealers service dept or cover the repairs needed. Am I wrong?
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Old 02-09-2009, 12:03 AM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by conmoto View Post
Thanks for checking out the warranty info. I still must believe that if you are on the road and have trouble that is covered under warranty, that FR would either direct you to a FR dealers service dept or cover the repairs needed. Am I wrong?
I think you are safe in assuming this. Long and short of it is this: Fix what you can yourself. If you can't and it is something major and can't get a FR dealer to fix your problem then FR themselves should reimburse you after the fact, just be sure to check with them first and get authorization before you get something fixed.

Keep in mind if your microwave fails it won't be the RV dealer that will fix it but an independent Amana dealer (or whatever make it is). This did happen to us and the local Amana dealer sent out a repairman to our house and he fixed the microwave right there on the spot, FR had nothing to do with it. If it is a component, ie microwave, awning, batteries, refrigerator, water heater, etc. all these items are covered by their independent manufacturers and finding a repair shop that can fix them isn't hard. The only things FR is responsible for is item concerning the actual building of the rig such as a door not aligned right, drawer not closing, plumbing, electrical, etc.
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Old 02-09-2009, 12:45 PM   #7
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Although I have herad of these practices i have not encountered them. We purchase our '09 in Michigan and we live in Western NY about 700 miles away. We have had warranty issues and were treated very well by our local camping world until they closed. Now I am desling with another local dealer that seems to be willing to follow through.
I was told by one dealer that they would do the work, we could pay them and then get reimbursed by FR. We declined that offer.

Get to know the warranty person at the factory and they can direct you to good dealers in the area.
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Old 02-27-2009, 01:52 PM   #8
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The dealer I bought my unit from dropped me like a hot potato after he got my money. They would not stand behind the warranty and if they did, the repairs were done cheaply and with extended time. I called Forest River and talked to them, they told me I can take the unit anywhere I wanted as long as I approve it through them first. It didn't matter what state I was in or where I was going, if I needed repairs they would have it fixed. I have never had to pay up front BUT!!! The dealer I use has said that Forest River is slow to pay the bill. My unit is 4 years old and is at the factory as I type , having repairs done under the original 1 year warranty. That's what I call standing behind their product.
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