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Old 07-07-2014, 08:59 AM   #1
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'14 Encounter front fenders cracking

Anyone out there with an Encounter have any problems with the front fenders not holding up? Just got back from our first long trip (4000 miles) and about halfway through the journey the fenders started to crack. Bought a roll of duct tape to try and prevent further cracking, but it continued to get worse. If you look closely at the pictures you can see that portions of the plastic where cracked appear to be very very thin. Maybe a manufacturing flaw? What do you think?
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Old 07-08-2014, 08:25 PM   #2
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Sorry to hear of the problem, I am sure it is upsetting especially on a brand new coach.

No such damage on our coach. Ours is a 2011 and we are in our 4th season with it. We have about 8500 miles on the odometer.

However...I will share what I found regarding the fenders all around, not just the front. The support metal behind the fender that gives it rigidity was loose and in a couple of areas missing screws or not attached at all. I found this the beginning of the 2nd year when I bumped a fender and was surprised at how much it moved. I tested the panels all around the coach and had to find screws and/or tighten up the supports to keep the fenders from flapping in the wind which they would do. No problems since.

You might have had a similar situation and not tightening up the fiberglass supports, it shook loose and eventually cracked in places. the panels are large and without support would tend to vibrate if not secured. The scenario lends itself to a single trip of 4000 miles and I'm guessing you would not have been examining the coach that closely while on a trip. Just a thought.

I do think Coachman would respond since your rig is less than a year old. You've contacted them or the dealer?
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Old 07-08-2014, 08:52 PM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Roll View Post
Sorry to hear of the problem, I am sure it is upsetting especially on a brand new coach.

No such damage on our coach. Ours is a 2011 and we are in our 4th season with it. We have about 8500 miles on the odometer.

However...I will share what I found regarding the fenders all around, not just the front. The support metal behind the fender that gives it rigidity was loose and in a couple of areas missing screws or not attached at all. I found this the beginning of the 2nd year when I bumped a fender and was surprised at how much it moved. I tested the panels all around the coach and had to find screws and/or tighten up the supports to keep the fenders from flapping in the wind which they would do. No problems since.

You might have had a similar situation and not tightening up the fiberglass supports, it shook loose and eventually cracked in places. the panels are large and without support would tend to vibrate if not secured. The scenario lends itself to a single trip of 4000 miles and I'm guessing you would not have been examining the coach that closely while on a trip. Just a thought.

I do think Coachman would respond since your rig is less than a year old. You've contacted them or the dealer?
Agree with Roll, looks like it came apart screw by screw
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Old 07-09-2014, 10:00 AM   #4
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Thanks for the reply's fellas. The screws are intact, I believe that the plastic is way to thin and the brackets where mounted in a way that applied a lot of pressure to a specific few points on the fender. We drove quite a few miles in gusty winds and that may have been just enough to cause the cracks at the high pressure points. That said, I did get a response from coachmen............

"I am very sorry that you are experiencing issues with your fenders! That is not something we like to hear at all. There are several factors that could play a role in this occurrence. For instance, the brackets engineered for the fenders could have come loose during transit, they could have been poorly positioned, the brackets could have bent/ broke, etc. This does not occur very often, but once and a while it does. To correct this, new fenders will need to be reinstalled and painted in one of the service locations provided. From there, the service location will install the newer form of brackets, we now use, for the fenders. Once again, I am very sorry that you and your family are experiencing this issue. We will do whatever it takes on our end to get this resolved for you. "

The fact that they have "new" brackets means that they had problem with the old ones. I need to start checking service bulletins and have things repaired or upgraded before they break.


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Old 07-09-2014, 07:42 PM   #5
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Great reply, they have stepped to the plate! Don't assume they knew about it, a lawyer would suggest they "may" have known about it, carries the same weight.


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Old 07-21-2014, 09:51 PM   #6
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My fender has cracked in the same spot as your first photo on the left! I have had the coach about 11 months. Also just got back from beautiful Lake George New York and the cabin light under the front windshield was filled with water, but the cabinet above was dry? Any help?


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Old 06-14-2015, 08:45 AM   #7
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My 2013 Encounter 36BH has exactly the same problem. We just noticed it last week driving back to Tennessee from Colorado. The right side fender is doing the same as yours. All of the mounting screws are tight. Of course I'm about 4 months out of warranty. Has Coachmen taken care of the problem for you?
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Old 06-14-2015, 10:21 AM   #8
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Coachman did replace the fenders for me. The RV was still under warranty though. Since it is a known problem, I would think that they should replace yours as well even if you are out of warranty. You should give it a shot.
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Old 06-14-2015, 10:36 AM   #9
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My dealer did repair the area under warranty last year with a fiberglass repair! So far so good as of now, it has not cracked since. I don't believe they said there was a recall on this. So I'm not sure if it happens again it will be covered. Hope this helps . Jerkyboy
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Old 06-19-2015, 08:36 AM   #10
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I have the same problem on my 2015 37LS. Found the passenger side front fender cracked on the bottom. We have about 6500 miles on the coach. We purchased the coach in Jan of this year. Our dealer is handling the problem under warranty with Coachmen. The plastic on the bottom of the fender does look a little thin to me. However the bracket on the right side is mounted differently than the left so I am thing that may be part of the problem. Holiday World of Willis has been great in taking care of the problems that we have had in getting the bugs worked out in a new coach.
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