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Old 09-11-2020, 09:11 PM   #1
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Another Victim of the Dreaded TriMark RV Door Lock Failure

On a recent trip with our 2018 Forest River Sunseeker 3270 Class C motorhome, we fell victim to the dreaded TriMark door lock failure. We were camped out at a race track for a long weekend when we discovered that we could no longer open the side door of the motorhome from either the inside or outside. Fortunately, since we have a Class C, we were able to get in and out of the rig using the cab doors. For this reason, I did not attempt a repair while at the track because I didnít want to take the chance of opening a can of worms and have a door that would not stay closed on the trip home.

Once we got home, I removed the inner part of the door lock and was able to extract the broken latch pieces from the mechanism. At this point, the side door could be opened, making it much easier to unload everything from the long weekend trip. Also, the door could be secured with the deadbolt, which was still operable, making it safe to drive or park the rig overnight.

I did some internet research and came to find out that we were not the first to experience failure of the die cast zinc (pot metal) latch which, in my opinion as a former mechanical engineer and guy who has repaired his own vehicles for the past 50+ years, is an unsuitable material for this application. However, it probably saved the manufacturer about fifty cents, so it was obviously justified.

Once I realized that a new door lock assembly would be required, I started a web search to find one. I determined that the part was a TriMark 601650 Door Handle (Black). The best price I could find was from Amazon at $93.37 with free Prime shipping. Here is the link: https://www.amazon.com/dp/B00HE7SLF8..._F9axFb6X6QHR3 . The price has gone up to $101.45 at this time, but is probably still a good deal.

When I received the new lock, I first checked the latch with my magnet and fortunately it is made of steel, much stronger that the old part. The installation was straightforward, except for two small tabs on the deadbolt mechanism that had to be removed. I used a cutoff wheel in a Dremel tool for this; I had to go slow because these tabs were also made from a non-ferrous material. After cutting the tabs, I used a cylindrical stone in the Dremel to smooth and round over the edges.

After that, the new lock went in easily and worked much more smoothly than the old one. I also expect it to last much longer. The new lock came with a replacement striker plate, but I did not use it because the old one was fine.

I am including some pictures to help anyone else who has this problem.
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Old 09-11-2020, 09:22 PM   #2
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Something else I get to look forward to. When it happens I might go combination lock.
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Old 09-11-2020, 10:55 PM   #3
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Quote:
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Something else I get to look forward to. When it happens I might go combination lock.

Hold a magnet to the part that breaks. If it sticks you have a steel one, otherwise you have the zinc one.

A rep from TriMark stated that the RV manufacturers requested zinc to save money whereas they usually use steel. TriMark has the steel parts and has been known to provide them for free because they were getting such a bad rap. If you have a non-magnetic one give them a call before it breaks.

Ray
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Old 09-12-2020, 12:06 AM   #4
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Mine broke after about 18 months. Easy fix and I have a spare. Factiry sent them under warranty.
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Old 09-12-2020, 03:30 PM   #5
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Mine broke and I could not get the door open from either side. I damaged the door frame by trying to pry the latch open. But the new one has worked ok so far. Except it looks as though someone tried to pry the door open (me).
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Old 09-12-2020, 04:13 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MarkK10 View Post
I determined that the part was a TriMark 601650 Door Handle (Black). The best price I could find was from Amazon at $93.37 with free Prime shipping. Here is the link: https://www.amazon.com/dp/B00HE7SLF8/ . The price has gone up to $101.45 at this time, but is probably still a good deal.
Just adding 2c worth here. I had a similar door handle go bad in my Keystone Avalanche 5th wheel. I tried one from the local keystone dealer and it was NOT a perfect match. I returned it, examined the markings on my handle and found this one on etrailer.com which was a perfect match. It is working perfectly to this day:



I found my original purchase order for it... from 8/22/29... and it was $34.95 - clicking on the link, etrailer still has the exact same item except it is now $49.95. Can you say i-n-f-l-a-t-i-o-n???
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Old 09-12-2020, 04:19 PM   #7
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Happened to me too after just a couple of years of use.

Everyone slamming the rv door shut doesn't help imho.

My replacement has lasted almost 10 years and counting I've asked everyone to hold the latch open while closing and then release it to latch. This may help extend its life but it's going to break just a matter of time.
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Old 09-12-2020, 06:10 PM   #8
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Trimark provided a complete replacement under warranty for us as well. It has been over a year and works well although I haven't done the magnet test. That sounds like a good idea.
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Old 09-13-2020, 11:43 AM   #9
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I am on my third TriMark in as many years. Almost identical in appearance to yours, the plastic part that broke each time is not shown in your photos. Each one has lasted a little over a year. Also, I have to put grease on the latch and striker plate each week to make it work smoothly. It seems to me a very shoddy design. Thanks for reminding me to go ahead and get a spare.
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Old 09-13-2020, 03:19 PM   #10
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TriMark zinc plunger issue

Thanks to all that mentioned this issue - it was unknown to us - and we have this same lock with the zinc plunger.
I sent an e-mail to TriMark (see address) requesting a 'steel' replacement. I'll update the forum with their response.


trimarkparts@trimarkcorp.com


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Old 09-13-2020, 08:24 PM   #11
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Thanks to all that mentioned this issue - it was unknown to us - and we have this same lock with the zinc plunger.
I sent an e-mail to TriMark (see address) requesting a 'steel' replacement. I'll update the forum with their response.


trimarkparts@trimarkcorp.com


As for zinc plungers (latch bolt), I've had TT's since the early 70's that have had this kind of latch bolt and no problems at all. No Door Slamming was allowed by anyone using the trailer. Pull or push door closed and then give an extra tug or nugde to make the latch bolt seat. All slamming does is break parts and then the breakage is blamed on the lock.

FWIW, if a door won't close and latch with relative ease then take the time to adjust the fit.
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Old 09-14-2020, 07:33 AM   #12
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Mine lasted 4.5 years. Couldn’t find the exact model number but cross reference to another. Still it won’t fit exactly. The new one wouldn’t fit tight on the door. Easiest solution was to shim with gasket material. It’s ashame there is little quality in an RV.
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Old 09-15-2020, 12:15 PM   #13
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We have an Isata 2020 fw 30 and had similar near disaster. The prong on our deadbolt is lose and vibrated out just enough to keep the door from opening. Fortunately we had a spare set of keys for the Ram in the tow...surprised me we did since we don't use the dead bolt. I am going to hide a deadbolt key on coach someplace.
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Old 10-14-2020, 08:49 PM   #14
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TriMark Came Through with a Free Replacement

UPDATE: I sent an email to TriMark describing my broken door lock and included some pictures of the broken piece. After a follow up email from them to which I replied with the answers to a couple of questions (did my lock have any electronic/electrical parts and where did I want a replacement sent), they sent me a new replacement lock assembly free of charge. The new lock that they sent has the steel latch piece. Kudos to TriMark for recognizing the problem and providing good customer service.
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Old 11-08-2020, 06:35 PM   #15
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Kit to fix handle

I had the same issue 3 times, when a friend told me about a Youtube video of a kit to replace the broken pot metal plunger. I bought 3 of them, and now have two spare handles. I found it by searching for broken Trimark RV door handle.
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Old 03-08-2021, 10:24 PM   #16
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Can you share the place to get the steel parts?
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I had the same issue 3 times, when a friend told me about a Youtube video of a kit to replace the broken pot metal plunger. I bought 3 of them, and now have two spare handles. I found it by searching for broken Trimark RV door handle.
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Old 03-08-2021, 10:38 PM   #17
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On the YouTube video about installing the kit, there is listed a website. Cartcollapse.com I just checked to see what the ws was, and there's a phone number there too. The video was how I found out about it. Most of the youtube videos may have a title about repairing a handle, when all they do is install a new handle. This one actually repairs it.
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Old 03-17-2021, 08:39 AM   #18
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I just had exact experience. 3 year old lock broke. Contacted trimark. Answered a few questions. Got new one in 3 days. Installed yesterday. Now dealing with too-long pins bit fitting in door jam.
Quote:
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UPDATE: I sent an email to TriMark describing my broken door lock and included some pictures of the broken piece. After a follow up email from them to which I replied with the answers to a couple of questions (did my lock have any electronic/electrical parts and where did I want a replacement sent), they sent me a new replacement lock assembly free of charge. The new lock that they sent has the steel latch piece. Kudos to TriMark for recognizing the problem and providing good customer service.
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Old 05-30-2021, 08:10 AM   #19
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Same problem, best solution!

Quote:
Originally Posted by RMHDR View Post
On the YouTube video about installing the kit, there is listed a website. Cartcollapse.com I just checked to see what the ws was, and there's a phone number there too. The video was how I found out about it. Most of the youtube videos may have a title about repairing a handle, when all they do is install a new handle. This one actually repairs it.
After some research I purchased the kit mentioned above and I'm stoked with a complete and permanent fix for $49. The kit includes a steel replacement piece, wrenches you'll need for the fix and a new spring, in case you lose yours like I did.

The website mentioned above is not current, here are links to the Latch Fix website and the video showing how easy the fix is to do.

https://www.latchfix.com



Cheers,

-Grouchy
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Old 07-09-2021, 01:05 PM   #20
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Yes, I too had the non-magnetic pot metal latch break on my 2013 Coachmen Mirada Class A. The broken end was lodged in the door jam and I had to drill a big hole in the latch assemble to finally grab it with tweezers and needle nose pliers to get it out.
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