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Old 09-03-2012, 08:01 AM   #1
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Location: Central Texas
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Looking Back on First Year with Solera

We just completed our first year of ownership with our 2012 Solera 24S. We are quite pleased. We put 24000 miles on it in 12 months. Overall fuel mileage was about 12.75. This included using the diesel generator 220 hours. No major mechanical problems. We have used Mercedes Benz of Georgetown TX for chassis service and RV Outlet Mall of Georgetown TX (the selling dealer), for warranty and house service. Only a few minor problems such as fit and finish on the trim, premature wear on the dinette upholstery, minor slide-out issues.

We selected the Sprinter chassis because we wanted a vehicle in which we could actually afford to travel. We selected the Solera because of the layout and the price. It has not disappointed us. Nice job, Forest River. Thanks!

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Old 09-03-2012, 08:04 PM   #2
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It's nice to see some positive feedback. Thanks for the report.

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Old 09-04-2012, 07:35 AM   #3
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Great report, and impressive "real world", averaged out fuel mileage figures.

If your diesel genny just uses 1/2 gallon of fuel per hour, your actual fuel mileage would be around 13.5 mpg. If it uses a gallon an hour, your actual fuel mileage would be 14.4 mpg. I need to think about getting a Solera.

Chap , DW Joy, and Fur Baby Sango
2006 Ford F150 Super Cab 4x4
2008 Surveyor 263
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Old 09-04-2012, 08:22 AM   #4
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Thanks for doing the math on the generator burn, mtnguy! I failed to mention one other factor: A portion of these miles included towing either a Honda Fit or a Honda Insight on a two wheel dolly. I did not track how many miles we towed, but I would estimate 10 - 20% of the 24000.
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Old 09-04-2012, 09:27 AM   #5
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Could you expand on the slide out issue. I am down to this model and possibly going with a Class B from Leisure Travel Van. The pricing is aot better for the Solera's and I can live with minor issues, especially the ones I can fix, the Slides are my only major concern.
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Old 09-04-2012, 12:51 PM   #6
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The slide was apparently not properly adjusted when we took delivey of the unit. It was slow, noisy, and it gouged a small hole in the vinyl floor. I PAID the dealer to adjust and lube it. They REFUSED to do it under warranty. As I recall, they charged me $210 for this. The dealer did, however repair the floor under warranty. I suspect these things need a major adjustment after the first few hundred miles as they probably "settle in" during that period.

I think the answer to this issue is to learn how to lubricate and adjust the thing myself. It shouldn't be difficult. The manual that came with the unit does not show the lubrication and adjustment for this particular type of slide. Perhaps at some point, I can obtain info on how to do that.

The slide itself has been otherwise maintenance free. This is my first RV with a slide and I was concerned with noise, wind, etc. That has not been a problem at all. Other than issues with the shower door, the entire coach has been remarkably rattle free and watertight. If I am driving down the road and hear a rattle, odds are it is a loose object in a drawer or cabinet somewhere.
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Old 09-04-2012, 05:13 PM   #7
2012 Solera
Join Date: May 2012
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Check this link for Lippert slideout owner's manuals: Slide-Out Owners Manuals

With regard to the shower door - I recently posted my solution as a response on the Sunseeker section of this forum - adding a short (~4 inch) piece of 1/4 inch diameter garden drip irrigation tubing to the shower door in the latch area with GOOP (one of my favorite adhesives). Has been a perfect solution to date.

About the slideout - the motor mount for my 2012 Solera slideout broke off the frame after about six cycles. Solved by re-welding by a local RV repair shop. See my earlier posts on this issue. Since then, it has been good.

"Also ran" issue - tire valve extenders - "new style" airless extenders - not tied to wheels - whipped around while driveing, "jammed" one tire valve slightly open, deflated tire overnight (twice). Tie them up (wire ties seem to work). Also, tie the wheel covers to the wheels (again, wire ties).

Expect to add DEF (Diesel Exhaust Fluid) at about 4000 miles. I found after re-filling the DEF, I had to wait with the ignition on (all indicator lights lit) but the engine NOT started until the indicators turned off to re-set the DEF indicator.

Finally - see the Magnadyne posts on this forum. Expect some "bugs" - both from Magnadyne and from Forest River's application of the device.
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Old 09-04-2012, 10:26 PM   #8
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Thanks for the info.

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