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Old 05-01-2012, 07:40 PM   #1
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Angry Bent frame

We just purchased a brand new 34' 2012 Forest River Encounter. It was obvious to us that there was a lot of shuffling of feet throughout the rv. The porcelain floor was very scuffed. No big deal. We were so excited to drive our unit off of the dealer's lot. We used the rv one time to visit my daughter who lives about 200 miles away from us. We watched the television in our bedroom and noticed everyone was purple!! No problem. The said they would repair it. New tv... Before taking this rv back we decided to do a thorough walk through to see if it needed anything else. We ended up with a list of 30 things!! Little by little, the dealership was having each issue addressed and repaired. My husband asked them to check the leveling system because the jacks looked crooked when extended. Sure enough.. there was an issue. Their head mechanic told us the frame was bowed on both sides, maybe, because the brackets holding the jacks are mounted incorrectly...thus causing the frame to bow (bend). Forest River said they could remove the 'perch' (bracket) and reweld them to the frame at another location on the frame. This problem exists in the FRONT jacks and REAR jacks. But more severe in the front. No one wants to claim responsibility for this problem. However, Forest River, said they will fix it to correct the problem. Sounds wonderful doesn't it?? NOT! Had it been ANYTHING but a bent frame... no big deal. But, we bought a brand new motorhome, that is flawed! Not just ANY flaw but the FRAME is bent!! We asked for a new unit that is comparable to this one and Forest River refuses and so does the dealer. Can anyone relate??? *sighs What a let down. We are going to Phoenix, AZ next month ( from Baltimore, MD) and now we have no motorhome!! This was supposed to be exciting and has turned into nothing short of a nightmare!
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Old 05-01-2012, 08:09 PM   #2
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From your post I would assume you are in Maryland. My suggestion would be to find out what the lemon law is in your state. When someone sells you a vehicle that would not even be able to pass inspection, then there is some extreme liability with both Forest River and the dealer. I would suggest that you pursue this nicely and if you get nowhere then I would consider the legal aspects.
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Old 05-01-2012, 08:27 PM   #3
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Yes ... from Maryland. We were told by the dealer that the "Lemon Law" does not apply to rv's. We have been dealing with this issue for nearly a month with no acceptable results. We just want to be put in another unit that is not "broken" (flawed). The dealer is now calling Forest River and is having (supposedly) an independent party take a look at the frame to see if it is bent. Now the dealer is telling us that the frame is NOT bent!! He also said this is common. I am thinking.. "WHAT'S COMMON?" lol!
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Old 05-01-2012, 08:35 PM   #4
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Originally Posted by vgoodman08 View Post
We just purchased a brand new 34' 2012 Forest River Encounter. It was obvious to us that there was a lot of shuffling of feet throughout the rv. The porcelain floor was very scuffed. No big deal. We were so excited to drive our unit off of the dealer's lot. We used the rv one time to visit my daughter who lives about 200 miles away from us. We watched the television in our bedroom and noticed everyone was purple!! No problem. The said they would repair it. New tv... Before taking this rv back we decided to do a thorough walk through to see if it needed anything else. We ended up with a list of 30 things!! Little by little, the dealership was having each issue addressed and repaired. My husband asked them to check the leveling system because the jacks looked crooked when extended. Sure enough.. there was an issue. Their head mechanic told us the frame was bowed on both sides, maybe, because the brackets holding the jacks are mounted incorrectly...thus causing the frame to bow (bend). Forest River said they could remove the 'perch' (bracket) and reweld them to the frame at another location on the frame. This problem exists in the FRONT jacks and REAR jacks. But more severe in the front. No one wants to claim responsibility for this problem. However, Forest River, said they will fix it to correct the problem. Sounds wonderful doesn't it?? NOT! Had it been ANYTHING but a bent frame... no big deal. But, we bought a brand new motorhome, that is flawed! Not just ANY flaw but the FRAME is bent!! We asked for a new unit that is comparable to this one and Forest River refuses and so does the dealer. Can anyone relate??? *sighs What a let down. We are going to Phoenix, AZ next month ( from Baltimore, MD) and now we have no motorhome!! This was supposed to be exciting and has turned into nothing short of a nightmare!
I would suggest you have it inspected (under warranty) by the chassis Mfg. I assume here its a Coachmen Endeavor which means it could be a Ford or Workhouse. These folks repair frames after accidents, its no big deal. But if it is bad you'll have much more of a case. Guessing its repairable.
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Old 05-01-2012, 08:36 PM   #5
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I really do not see how the leveling jacks would bend the frame of the motorhome.
What the "head" mechanic at the dealership probably meant was that the local area where the leveling jacks were mounted was bent, maybe the frame flange, which is not that big a deal. If the jacks are mounted properly, there should be no further issue.
Why not take it to a real frame shop and get them to have a look? RV dealerships are staffed by some of the dumbest people on earth.
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Old 05-01-2012, 08:41 PM   #6
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wnytaxman,

I am no lawyer, but I don't think most Lemon Laws apply to RVs.
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Old 05-01-2012, 08:45 PM   #7
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Crocus,

I hope you weren't meaning that just for Canada. I think a blanket statement like that could cover all of North America.
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Old 05-01-2012, 09:28 PM   #8
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wnytaxman,

I am no lawyer, but I don't think most Lemon Laws apply to RVs.
Herk, you could be right on that. However, the rig would have had to be inspected by either the dealer or a reputable inspection station. I believe, and remember I'm a bean counter not a mechanic, that the rig could not pass inspection with a bent frame. I think that a vehicle with a bent frame would tend to not track right and tend to go down the road somewhat sideways.
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Old 05-01-2012, 09:58 PM   #9
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Talk to the D.O.T. Warranties or lemon laws don't take away the responsibility of a manufacturer of anything with a VIN to be safe for the use it was made for,if the frame is bent it's highly likely that it is no longer safe to be driven on the highways.Or just tell them you are taking it in for an inspection, that alone may make them take the correct action.
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Old 05-01-2012, 10:11 PM   #10
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... if the frame is bent it's highly likely that it is no longer safe to be driven on the highways...
Would have to see pictures to make a statement like that or I would take it to a frame/alignment shop and have it inspected by a frame expert. If it is just a bent flange, that can be straightened very easily.
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