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Old 04-02-2014, 08:00 PM   #1
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Warranty Repair, Why Such a Headache

If you have read some of my posts you know that we had a bad experience with the dealer we purchase our coach from. There are only two dealers close to our home. One is the one we purchased it from, which his about 2 hours away. The other is 25 minutes away and refuses to do warranty work. Something to do with, "you didn't buy it from us".

I feel like warranty work is full of BS. What if we bought the coach in OH, but live in another state? I just don't get it. I would have thought that if they are a FR certified dealer, that they should honor any warranty work.

Really confused!
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Old 04-02-2014, 09:56 PM   #2
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I went through this when I bought ours... there was a thread somewhere on here. I bought ours in Iowa, live in WI, and couldn't get it serviced in IL. I ended up driving it all the way back to a dealer that FR has a good relationship with. Talk about a PITA! Someone referenced the FR literature about purchase / support locally.
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Old 04-02-2014, 10:21 PM   #3
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From an old post I made in the Sunseeker section (post #24 in this thread: Sunseeker Owners ??) :

I believe your experience with the dealer is pretty typical. I ended up getting pre-approval from FR to take to a local RV repair shop, and submit the bill to them.

My experience with the local (non-dealership) shop was completely different. They quickly addressed my problem - did the repairs within 3 days - and I haven't had any future problems with that issue. Similar experience with a tire valve issue - had fixed locally and reimbursed by FR.
These shops are both within 20 miles of where I store the RV. My dealer - closest FR Solera dealer to the Bay Area - is 70+ miles away.
I believe there is a BIG problem today with RV warranty work. The dealers need to start focusing on customer experience. They need to start being measured on and rewarded for same day repair turnaround, and on full repair solution in one visit - customer brings the RV in and gets it repaired while he/she waits. This can be accomplished by pre-ordering parts, scheduling tech time coincident with customer appointment time, and good factory training of techs. BELIEVE the customer - ask for pictures if uncertain of what the customer is saying - and PREPARE for the service call! With consolidation in the industry, dealers are fewer - and are often quite inconvenient to the customer. Minimize the impact on the customer!
Personally, I had zero benefit of buying from my local dealer vs a (cheaper) internet dealer. I believe, from this forum and from conversations with others at various RV parks, my experience is "typical". I understand there are some "good" dealers out there - but...
I will recommend to anyone who asks that they go the internet dealer route.
Note to FR - your dealership network is on borrrowed time. If you want it to continue to exist - establish appropriate customer service metrics for them, with rewards or penalties, measure those metrics, and enforce. Also, support them - with expedited parts, parts shipped ahead, etc.

I recommend you check on local, non-dealership affiliated RV repair shops in your area and, if under warranty, ask FR to pre-approve the work.
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Old 04-02-2014, 10:36 PM   #4
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Warranty Repair, Why Such a Headache

I live in Oklahoma, bought my XL from a Texas dealer, local oklahoma FR dealer told me straight up that the owner takes care of the customers that buy from them first! ( I understand that's usually how the industry works, but to be told that on the phone by the service advisor? I was blown away! ) Dave's RV in Claremore,Ok will never get a penny of my money for anything! I take my XL to another NON FR dealer and they have taken great care of my Rv needs! Warranty work and all!! This action by these dealers is a total dis service to the FR customers!
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Old 04-02-2014, 11:55 PM   #5
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Umm, being a Forest River authorized dealer they can't refuse warranty repair no matter where you bought the unit. I'm sure FR would like to know that one of their dealers isn't taking care of their customers.

I'd make them put it in writing that they're refusing repair, then I'd draft a very official letter to FR, namely warning them that you're going to run this by legal council for their opinion.

Bet that gets things moving.
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Old 04-03-2014, 12:57 AM   #6
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Some of the members here have contacted FR directly and were given names of shops that would do warranty and/or repair work.
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Old 04-03-2014, 02:22 AM   #7
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I guess I have been lucky so far. My 2013 351 has had very few issues (so far). I bought from RV Direct and picked up my unit in Des Moines. I went in to my local Camping World and introduced myself to the service manager. I explained to him that not only was he making money on warranty work, but would get all my other work as well. So far so good. I bring it in and they fix it in a very timely matter. I know they are a big nationwide network and not just your local dealer, but if there is a store nearby, give them a shout.
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Old 04-03-2014, 03:16 AM   #8
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yes this is the way they do things if you didn't buy from them, what we did was buy our 378ts in 2012 from grass valley California and drove home and we had 3 items to fix and camping world fixed them in Troutdale Oregon no problem. hope this helps. Pete
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Old 04-03-2014, 03:36 AM   #9
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unlike the Auto industry, RV dealers have no obligation to do warranty work on units that they didn't sell, even if they are an "authorized" dealer of that brand.

many make the mistake of comparing the two industries, which is a big mistake and will only make you frustrated.

RV manufacturers can only ask their "authorized" dealers to do warranty work on units they didn't sell, but they can't force them nor will they.
RV dealers will change brands at the drop of a hat and manufacturers know that if they push it too much, the RV dealer will drop them and start selling a competitor's brand.
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Old 04-03-2014, 05:21 AM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SKnight View Post
Umm, being a Forest River authorized dealer they can't refuse warranty repair no matter where you bought the unit. I'm sure FR would like to know that one of their dealers isn't taking care of their customers.

I'd make them put it in writing that they're refusing repair, then I'd draft a very official letter to FR, namely warning them that you're going to run this by legal council for their opinion.

Bet that gets things moving.
FR knows all about it and its not illegal, not even your selling dealer has to do warranty work, your warranty remedies are completely on FR, if a dealer chooses to work on your RV greta, but if not you can take it to Indiana and have it repaired at the FR service center. went through it when my dealer refused to fix my 1st FR 5th wheel, called FR and was told no dealer has to do warranty work if they choose not to.
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