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Old 07-19-2016, 12:06 PM   #1
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28DS - LCI levelers questions...

Two trips in the books for our new '15 28DS. Wanted to ask the forum a couple questions.

First, at both sites, the sites weren't level, but weren't horrible either. I parked so the front of the coach was pointing downhill, and used extra 2x8 squares under both front feet. Even doing this the front wheels still were taken off the ground by the jacks, although neither front jack went to full stroke. This worries me slightly although I understand these jacks spec out at 7000 lbs each. I've been doing manual levels each time as I prefer to have that level of control over the system.

What do other people here on the forum do in a situation like this? Ramp up the front wheels to get the coach as near to level as possible (and using 2x8 block stacks?) before working the hydraulics? If so - what sort of ramps? Homemade 2x8 ramps? Any advice for various situations would be appreciated - I definitely don't want to damage the jacks/frame over the long haul.

While on the subject - what if the coach is just 1 or 2 degrees off - other than making the coach stable, why not just leave it as is and not use the levelers at all?

Jeff
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Old 07-19-2016, 12:31 PM   #2
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Leveling

Hi Jeff,
Manual leveling is good to get in the ballpark. I've found that blocking up the LCI rams causing the tires to come off the ground is not good. I've started using some nice plastic ramps on the low side tires stabilizes the unit much better. The rams on the LCI levelers are too spindly to take the rig waving around totally off the ground, not good for the seals.
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Old 07-19-2016, 01:15 PM   #3
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I think I'll order two packs of these:

https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B0...?ie=UTF8&psc=1

...and ramp up the 'low' side with them to get closer to level manually before working the hydraulics.

Jeff
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Old 07-22-2016, 05:24 PM   #4
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We have a 2014 30DS and depending on the site the front wheels might be off the ground. I have checked and the coach is level. I have not read anything saying that wheels off the ground is a bad thing. We have stayed 7 to 14 days at a location with the wheels off the ground with no problem.


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Old 07-23-2016, 01:30 PM   #5
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This is written in the owners manual for the leveling jacks.

DANGER

Never lift all the wheels off the ground to level the coach. Lifting all wheels off the ground may result in damage to the vehicle and/or cause serious personal injury or death.
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Old 07-23-2016, 03:54 PM   #6
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I have never had all wheels off the ground. It is either the front or the rear to level the coach. It depends on the site. If all four are off the ground, something would be wrong with the controller board.


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Old 07-25-2016, 09:29 PM   #7
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28DS - LCI levelers questions...

I carry four home made jack foot base blocks that are 6x6x6. I Use these fat jack pads to ensure the stroke is not extended too much as I read somewhere you can actually power the jack shaft out too much and get it stuck.

I originally manual leveled using the panel and a long bubble level. Since re calibrating from the panel on level ground (as described in the manual) I've been using "auto" and it works dead on.

I also carry an assortment of 2x6 and 1 inch boards I used from my travel trailer days. (These boards and blocks admittedly take up storage space and add weight but I feel better having them). When I find my fronts are off the ground after auto level I stack the boards under the tires as far as I can get them, then go to manual and raise the fronts and slip the 1 inch board in. Retract and re auto. Usually the level landing spot ends up not hanging the tires from the suspension. Because the tires are on the boards. I suspect this also keeps some tension off the lift seals.

This procedure adds a step in both set up and breakdown as I usually don't drive off the boards. For break down I manually raise, remove boards, lower, and then pull the fat jack stand blocks that have orange straps on them to remind me they are under there.

Those who have read my posts about these lifts before know I'm crazy conservative about the lift system! And it's my personal preference to "overkill" baby the system. This method is NOT offered as a regiment that I think everyone should perform its just what I do to stabilize the coach and keep it from hanging.

PS. The next MH I buy I will look for a product with a more robust lift design, one for example that has spring assist returns and thicker shaft and better OD hydro lines.
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Old 09-03-2016, 05:53 AM   #8
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Hi where did you find the info to recalibrate the jacks
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Old 09-03-2016, 06:05 AM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by colourful64 View Post
Hi where did you find the info to recalibrate the jacks
I'm lost which system you looking for to calibrate? I have the level up and I can post that if you want, but each system is different.
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Old 09-03-2016, 08:29 AM   #10
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The DW did not care that the basement was level as the trailer was delivered. She wanted the stove level for cooking. So I made the trailer level the stove and I re-zeroed the system. She is happy and auto level works perfectly at every site.

The units are designed for the frame to be supported at the axels and landing gear. That is the minimum warping situation. The four rear jacks are close but not at the axels, so there will be a difference in how the frame is loaded with the jacks extended. If you lift the wheels off the ground, the frame stress shifts and you add the weight of the running gear to the weight on the jacks. Of course, the jacks are way over designed (14K for each landing gear jack, 8K for each rear jack) even for my 16K trailer, so they can handle the weight. The frame may or may not get damaged, but you are inverting some of the stress directions (compression to tension) that may cause the damage. In general, I think modern trailer design can handle that. When hydraulic leveling was new and the systems were added as aftermarket, I think that is where the lifting warnings came from. Lawyers will always add their paragraphs to manuals. Some time ago, I collected Lippert's warnings about their system. They make for deadly reading. It sounds like we should not be using the system at all.
  • Failure to act in accordance with the following may result in serious personal injury or death.
  • The use of the Level-Up system to support the unit for any reason other than which it is intended is prohibited by Lippert’s limited warranty. The Lippert leveling system is designed as a “leveling” system only and should not be used to provide service for any reason under the coach such as changing tires or servicing the leveling system.
  • Lippert Components, Inc. recommends that a trained professional be employed to change the tire on the unit. Any attempts to change tires or perform other service while unit is supported by the Level-Up system could result in damage to the 5th wheel and/or cause serious injury or death.
  • When operating in any mode and under all conditions, ALWAYS check to see if the jacks are fully retracted before starting to travel.
  • Be sure to park the unit on solid, level ground.
  • Clear all jack landing locations of debris and obstructions. Locations should also be free of depressions.
  • When parking the unit on extremely soft surfaces, utilize load distribution pads under each jack.
  • People and pets should be clear of unit while operating the leveling system.
  • Be sure to keep hands and other body parts clear of fluid leaks. Oil leaks in the Lippert leveling system may be under high pressure and can cause serious skin penetrating injuries.
  • Never lift the unit completely off the ground. Lifting the unit so the wheels are not touching ground will create an unstable and unsafe condition.
  • Your coach should be supported at both front and rear axles with jack stands before working underneath. Failure to do so may result in personal injury or death.
  • Read and understand operator's manual before using. Do not use jacks for tire removal or under vehicle service. (Touchpad)
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