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Old 09-07-2015, 06:25 PM   #1
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2012 Thunderbolt - Water pouring through bedroom elec. outlets

We have a 386x12 XLR - Title says 2011 but its really an early run of the 2012 Thunderbolt, just with different stickers. Bought it new at the dealership Oct. 2011 Anyway...

We had some problems early on that we wrote off to being a new unit:
  • Leak in the roof because they forgot to tighten the sat. dish screws.
  • A couple seals on the inside of the slides weren't there at all: But they sent them to me and I installed them.
  • It didn't have the Winterization package as stated, but they did some stuff to make up for it.
  • We actually tried to pressure them into replacing the rig but just couldn't swing it.
When we moved it from our house in AZ (Dry climate) to our property in Florida, we had 2 tires blow out. Tires less than years old and less than 3000 miles on them. We bought 6 all new tires to be safe.



Its been set up here as a guest place when friends and family visit. We keep the air con. running on it just to keep it dry in this humid climate. I use the garage as a tool shed now and then, store stuff in the underbelly storage and use the underbelly radio etc., so its not like we've totally ignored the rig.



Now that we have some friends arriving at the end of the month we starting going through it to make it ready. As dumb luck would have it I was in the bedroom when it started raining. After just a couple minutes I saw water just POURING IN through the master bedroom headboard wall outlets and light fixtures.



I guess this has been happening over the last couple months of rainy season be we weren't living/sleeping in the rig so we didn't know. All that water has been poolin at the night tables ruining them, mold, ruined carpet, molded the mattress, the bed deck, the wall lights and so on. Everything on that forward bulkhead is ruined. (See attached video)



So here's what I'm asking:
  1. Has this happened to anyone else?
  2. Any guesses where water would be coming in such that its NOT causing wet ceiling or side walls, but its a fountain on the forward bulkhead, which is inside the decorative nose-cone? Looks like coming in through the hole for the electric lines (see 18-22-20.jpg)
  3. Since this rig is clearly past the one-year warranty does this seem like manufacturer defect and/or roof issue? Roof I think is 12 years, right? I'm thinking a leak at the roof where the nose-cone is attached.
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Old 09-08-2015, 05:39 AM   #2
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Wow! Travesty!
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Old 09-08-2015, 04:35 PM   #3
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this is something that is not except-able weather you're past your one yr warranty are not. Maybe FR will take care of it Maybe you'll need to lawyer up . either way this needs to be Fixed . unless customers start demanding quality for the hard earned dollars this stuff will continue . time for a big shake up in the RV industry .
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Old 09-08-2015, 09:14 PM   #4
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My little 29hfs had bubbles in the dicor at the seam where the front cap is attached... which could allow water in if not fixed. Have you been in the roof to take a look? Most don't but it should be inspected every year. I don't know this trailer so I wouldn't have a clue, but I would guess the insulation in the wall has held all the water it can; for it to run out of the outlet covers. Had to be leaking for some time. That much water sounds like the roof is uncovered.
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Old 09-08-2015, 09:25 PM   #5
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I'd be willing to bet the T-Molding on the top of the slide isn't sealed somewhere. Just a guess from where I see the water getting, and since it's not just one spot. Not sure if you have a slide topper, which would somewhat minimize it, and I'm guessing there is no window at the head board, so that's why I guessed T-Molding. Have you looked on top of that slide out? Some use a sealant where the molding joins, most use an Eternabond wannabe tape. On our last rig, the bottom t-molding wasn't sealed at the factory. Leaked from day 1. Didn't notice until slide floor was saturated and ruined. They replaced without question.
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Old 09-09-2015, 03:06 PM   #6
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Originally Posted by northstar1960 View Post
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this is something that is not except-able weather you're past your one yr warranty are not. Maybe FR will take care of it Maybe you'll need to lawyer up . either way this needs to be Fixed . unless customers start demanding quality for the hard earned dollars this stuff will continue . time for a big shake up in the RV industry .
I would agree with you that the RV industry needs to do a better job of policing their products, but the only thing a lawyer will do is take your money to the bank and leave you with a leak to fix.
I would agree with another poster that the seam at the top of the cap is probably leaking, whether it was not sealed properly or it has come loose. Still this should be part of a routine check during the washing of the roof and body to see if everything looks ok. A second air on mine started leaking due to the gasket getting compressed with age, I found this during a normal cleaning, thankfully and it didn't do much damage.
Good luck with fixing the leak.
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Old 09-09-2015, 05:41 PM   #7
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I had the same thought about the seals: That it either had to be at the bedroom air con. unit or the nose-cone. After a day of solid looking I finally found it. Roof seam at the nose cone looked fine - UNTIL - you walked close to it flexing the roof down. The seam and the dicor didn't move but the roof did, revealing a 5" wide gap where the seam wasn't at all sealed to the roof. There's nothing I can prove. Maybe it came from the factory that way... Maybe it happened when the dealership added the bedroom air con. ... maybe it popped during the sub-zero Nebraska winter. We all know their QA is for shite, but there is nothing I can prove on this. Trying to take action against Forest River on this would be a case of throwing good money after bad.

I know there are better ways of dealing with it, but for now with it raining every day I needed to act fast. I have applied multiple treatments of spray Flex-Seal until it is vastly over protected and sealed. Its rained two days in a row and not a drop has come in.
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Old 09-09-2015, 06:00 PM   #8
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Originally Posted by tlhintoq View Post
I had the same thought about the seals: That it either had to be at the bedroom air con. unit or the nose-cone. After a day of solid looking I finally found it. Roof seam at the nose cone looked fine - UNTIL - you walked close to it flexing the roof down. The seam and the dicor didn't move but the roof did, revealing a 5" wide gap where the seam wasn't at all sealed to the roof. There's nothing I can prove. Maybe it came from the factory that way... Maybe it happened when the dealership added the bedroom air con. ... maybe it popped during the sub-zero Nebraska winter. We all know their QA is for shite, but there is nothing I can prove on this. Trying to take action against Forest River on this would be a case of throwing good money after bad.

I know there are better ways of dealing with it, but for now with it raining every day I needed to act fast. I have applied multiple treatments of spray Flex-Seal until it is vastly over protected and sealed. Its rained two days in a row and not a drop has come in.
Glad you found it but my heart goes out to you for the trouble. 5" wide gap... WOW!

I also hope there isn't severe damage under the roofing.

After reading this I remembered that when I was coming back from central Florida a month ago a 5th wheel going the other way on US301 and the rubber roof was loose at the cap and billowing and flapping in the wind. I would guess 3 or 4 feet had to have been pulled back at that point. If I had not been towing, I would have tried to chance him down... that and if he wasn't going above 70mph, which he seemed to be.
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Old 09-09-2015, 06:30 PM   #9
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People need to maintain there rv,These rigs do not maintain themselves ,People need to walk there roofs at least once a month these rv travel down the road at 70+ mph bouncing around ,twisting,running over curbs,rubbing tree branches .All the chaulking needs to be checked regularly especially between the front cap and body.There is a lot of movement at this area.I would blame myself if this happened to me but that's just me.Im sorry you are having this problem but it is a maintance issue,I think you need a couple tubes of dicor not a lawyer.
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Old 09-09-2015, 06:49 PM   #10
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First off its "their RV" not "there RV". As I said, this rig hasn't been traveling for the last 12 months: Its now a stationary guest cabin on my property. Before that it only had 1500 miles total on it and had only been in two parks for a period of 1 year each. So to say this rig has gone through a lot of road time just isn't accurate. I don't appreciate saying I don't maintain my rig. And if you're rubbing tree branches you should learn the size of your rig better. I've never taken any of my rigs anyplace where I rubbed anything. I power-wash it monthly starting at the roof working my way around and down to the ground, do all the awnings with anti-mildew, then wax the entire thing. The generator gets run every month. Even sitting empty the A/C and all the appliances are used regularly including the fuel tank and dispenser. Its two solid long full days every month. As part of that wash & wax process I examine all of it. As I said, the seam in question looked perfectly fine UNTIL you walked right up to it so that your weight flexed the roof at that very point - a point where if you're not careful you'll fall right off the edge. If a person has to physically put hands on each and every square inch, each and every month, then that too points to a real quality problem. The time it would take to perform that level of inspection every month would leave no time to actually enjoy the rig or your travels. Routine and regular inspections are part of owning an RV, but that have to be just that 'routine' and 'regular' and not 'constant' and 'what is the damage this time'.
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