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Old 02-16-2018, 10:42 AM   #1
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2 questions about Dealer repair of new couples coach

Hello All and thanks for your opinions and time in advance. I have a new 2018 200MBLE that is in the dealer shop after our initial shakedown trip. Man has this thing had a long list of issues already but that is another story.

Two questions. One, my enclosed under belly has what looks to be a few cuts/slices in it close to where some of the pipes for the (perhaps) holding tanks are. The cuts appear to be made with a box cutter, are about 6-8 inches long, and arenít large enough to even put a finger through. The dealer says all of the RVís have these very random looking cuts and that they are access holes in case they need to check things out. Is this possible? Two, during our last trip, I noticed tons of water leaking out near these cuts on our last morning. During our trip, we didnít notice any leaks, but it did rain very hard the night before. The dealer says that there are no leaks and that the water likely ran down from the roof and drained through the trim on the bottom/front of the trailer and entered the enclosed under belly. The dealer says this is normal and that itís no big deal. Iím thinking this is strange. Thoughts? Gallons of water inside my enclosed underbelly canít be a good thing no?

Thanks again for your assistance. I hope I donít sound like I am saying that they dealer is bad. Not the case...yet. They are are fine. I just want to be sure as some of what they are saying, if true, makes me wonder. I have a few more questions, but Iíll start with these two more important ones.
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Old 02-16-2018, 10:52 AM   #2
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The cuts in the under belly are normal and can be covered/closed with a good grade of "duct tape". Water running out of my under belly is unacceptable!!!! Something IS NOT RIGHT. If it had continued when there's no rain, it would sound like a leak in your water system/tanks to me. If it only happens when it rains, I can't see how that much water gets into the under belly during a rain. If it is, there's a serious leak somewhere that needs to be fixed.
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Old 02-16-2018, 11:08 AM   #3
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Water running out of my under belly is unacceptable!!!! Something IS NOT RIGHT..
Agreed. I'd want it inspected.
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Old 02-16-2018, 11:22 AM   #4
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I should add that the dealer has it now for over a month. They are waiting for some parts from FR from a few other issues.

The dealer says that they inspected for leaks and found none and that it hasn’t happened since. I asked if they removed the underbelly and they said no. They said they filled the water tanks up, inspected for leaks, ran the systems, and it isn’t leaking. I tend to agree that it was likely the rain because we were out for five days and nothing leaked. The timing with the rain also lines up. It did rain very hard all night. I also inspected and looked closely every day as it was a shakedown trip. That said, I think that water should not enter the underbelly after rain. That is completely crazy. I don’t care how hard it is raining.
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Old 02-16-2018, 11:39 AM   #5
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While I don't want to suggest your dealer cut those access holes in the Coroplast, I suspect they did. And while it is acceptable to use something like a box cutter to gain access, not EVERY unit comes this way as they've suggested.

None of mine ever came with a single cut, let alone several. Usually for access they make three cuts of a square box or rectangle, leaving the front part of the 'square' (towards the front of the unit) intact as a hinge. As mentioned, they can be sealed with a good duct tape or a bead of silicone.

As for the water coming from the belly area, the only way I've ever seen even a drip come from my underbelly was after I ran hours and hours in a pouring rain storm. I suspect the water entered near the wheel areas with the constant road spray. Even then it was only drips, not gallons.

I think I'd be looking for better answers.
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Old 02-16-2018, 11:40 AM   #6
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You are correct---the water when it's raining SHOULD NOT be getting into the under belly. A couple of years from now, if this leak is not found, the dealer AND FR will not be 'around" when it's time to repair a spongy floor or wall telling you it's now your responsibility!
As a backup plan, do the "ole" squirt it with a hose everywhere that it could leak and see if the belly fills up. Do it slowly, 1 area at a time or you won't know which section you hosed is actually leaking. If the dealer says it's the lower front cap, I'd start there!
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Old 02-16-2018, 11:43 AM   #7
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I should add that the dealer has it now for over a month. They are waiting for some parts from FR from a few other issues.
They likely aren't... they're waiting to place a group of parts or for the parts to be thrown into a camper they've ordered.
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Old 02-16-2018, 01:44 PM   #8
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We have a 2017 Surveyor 200 MBLE and love it. We have had no water in our underbelly nor cuts in the underbelly. We have had no issues what so ever ( so far). I think your dealer is full of it. No new unit should have cuts in the underbelly or fill up with random water. Just saying....

Good luck and enjoy.
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Old 02-16-2018, 01:52 PM   #9
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Never had cuts on the coroplast material unless they were from a repair or factory placed access panel as described above.

My guess is someone was hunting for the source of a leak.

Can easily be repaired but I would want to know how they got there in the first place. Definitely not normal in the 5 I have owned.
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Old 02-16-2018, 02:57 PM   #10
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Originally Posted by RSchleder View Post
You are correct---the water when it's raining SHOULD NOT be getting into the under belly. A couple of years from now, if this leak is not found, the dealer AND FR will not be 'around" when it's time to repair a spongy floor or wall telling you it's now your responsibility!
As a backup plan, do the "ole" squirt it with a hose everywhere that it could leak and see if the belly fills up. Do it slowly, 1 area at a time or you won't know which section you hosed is actually leaking. If the dealer says it's the lower front cap, I'd start there!
It is important to remember that when you are using a hose to find a leak, you should start running the water on the lower part of the camper until you are sure the leak is not there and then move up higher. If you start at the top, you will not know if it is leaking there or lower down the side. Good luck to you,
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Old 02-16-2018, 03:25 PM   #11
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I have not seen RVs come from the factory with cuts in the Coroplast. Usually they are cut to either drain water in the underbelly or to inspect plumbing to locate a leak. They can be easily sealed with Etrnabond, but I would want to know why they were put there in the first place.
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Old 02-16-2018, 03:47 PM   #12
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Leaking new RV.

3 campers with enclosed underbelly, no such cuts. If it's leaking from the front cap they need to fix it now not a month later. This whole thing is unacceptable, dealer and Forest River need to take care of it immediately or replace you camper. If you don't get action now contact Action line at trailer life I would bet they will get right on it as this hurts the company name and the dealers.

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Old 02-16-2018, 09:05 PM   #13
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x2 on the hose test starting at the bottom of the unit, in small sections, and then after going around the trailer, repeat small sections at a time. If you feel that the dealer has correctly determined it is from the front cap, I would start there.
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Old 02-17-2018, 08:41 AM   #14
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If your underbelly has insulation ,itís now soaked and will take forever to dry out if the dealer has like TT ,look at the under belly. It sounds like the slits were cut to let the water out ! But why? Where is it coming from?
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Old 02-18-2018, 11:11 AM   #15
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Thanks everyone. Here’s a bit more specifics and maybe a few more questions.

The cuts in the underbelly were there before I bought it. I saw them because I did a four hour inspection of the RV before I drove it off the lot a few months ago. During that inspection I found about 15 things wrong that they needed to address. They addressed everything for the most part, except some trim pieces they said they would need to order and replace after our shakedown trip. I then took the TT on a shakedown trip and found another dozen issues. The last day of out trip, it rained really hard at night while the TT was parked, in the morning while hooking up, I noticed the water draining from the underbelly. We then returned home and took the TT back to the dealership. At this point, that was over a month ago.

Fast forward to a few days back, I call to ask what’s up with my TT and the dealer goes over the list. They say they are are still waiting for parts from Forest River. I say fine, I’m in no rush, what about the leak. They say it isn’t happening anymore so it’s all good, the cuts are on all of their TT’s, and that the leak may have been from the rain. That’s when I started asking questions here because that answer seemed very bizarre. I call them back the next day after speaking to a Forest River warrantty rep and you guys and tell them that Forest River says that the cuts and the leak need to be addressed and shouldn’t be there. They say they will have a look at the front cap area and seem to be annoyed by me wanting that. Also, some of the things they said they repaired with Forest River’s approval, as well as trim pieces they said they ordered, aren’t on Forest River’s list when I spoke to the FR rep.

That’s the basic timeline. I’m planning on going down there to speak with the tech and possibly the owner in person because I am sick of speaking with the guy who is relating the info from the tech and I have only spoken to him twice now. He just wanted to get me off the phone and trusts me like I have no idea what I am talking about. I’m doing my best to be patient and nice because this is the closest FR dealer for many miles. They have to fix it but they seem reluctant to want to do it properly because this is gonna take some man hours. I also don’t trust them because they have lied a few times now.

Now my question is, if water did enter at the molding on the front and into the under belly, what is down there that could be damaged? What should I look for and what needs to be addressed exactly? In other words, where could the water also be going to do damage in addition to the underbelly area?
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Old 02-18-2018, 11:28 PM   #16
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I should add that the dealer has it now for over a month. They are waiting for some parts from FR from a few other issues.

The dealer says that they inspected for leaks and found none and that it hasnít happened since. I asked if they removed the underbelly and they said no. They said they filled the water tanks up, inspected for leaks, ran the systems, and it isnít leaking. I tend to agree that it was likely the rain because we were out for five days and nothing leaked. The timing with the rain also lines up. It did rain very hard all night. I also inspected and looked closely every day as it was a shakedown trip. That said, I think that water should not enter the underbelly after rain. That is completely crazy. I donít care how hard it is raining.
You are 100% right. They need to fix it.
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Old 02-19-2018, 10:32 AM   #17
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Now my question is, if water did enter at the molding on the front and into the under belly, what is down there that could be damaged? What should I look for and what needs to be addressed exactly? In other words, where could the water also be going to do damage in addition to the underbelly area?
Depending on how and where the water is coming from there could be nothing hurt or there could be several things involved. If it's coming in through the lights, etc., it could just be running down the inside the cap and into the plastic underbelly and that isn't hurting anything (except maybe some insulation in the underbelly which is easily replaced). If it's leaking at the seam between the cap and top/walls then it could migrate into the sidewalls and/or floor and could be causing water damage to either/both. A good inspection will need to be made to determine where it's coming from and how much, if any, damage has been done.
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Old 03-29-2018, 04:17 PM   #18
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Update. Dealer and FR went back and forth for months deciding who should pay for the repair after I kindly requested a full refund, a new TT, or 100% proof that there is no water damage which would require removing, inspecting, and then replacing the underbelly. FR eventually agreed to ship a new underbelly. The dealer (who canít seem to get much right) will be doing the work when the underbelly comes in 456894 weeks from now. 🤪

Weíll see how this goes. I honestly donít trust the dealer to do this huge job requiring several days of work and tons of little parts and peices to be removed and replaced. They canít even remember to screw things back in when they finish working on them. I plan on taking a ton of pictures and video of what the underbelly and everything attached to it looks like before I have the work done. Good times.

Thanks again for the input.
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Old 03-29-2018, 04:24 PM   #19
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Forgive me if I missed it but was the leak ever fixed?
Replacing the underbelly is futile if the leak still allows water in there.
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Old 03-29-2018, 04:48 PM   #20
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Thanks for asking. They believe the leak is coming from a space between the black diamond plating on the front and the coroplast underbelly. It looks like some messy welding has left a “bump” that doesn’t allow the underbelly to lay flat against the bottom of the TT where it meets the diamond plating. A water leak test determined that when the water/rain runs down the front cap, it eventually enters this small space mentioned above and pools in the underbelly. They found no other leaks. This seems plausible to me.

They plan on removing, inspecting for water damage, cleaning the welding up, replacing the new underbelly, and then sealing the front again.
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