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Old 07-30-2019, 07:45 PM   #1
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FR3 squeaks & thud

FR3 Owners, has anyone experienced squeaks in their coach around the drivers side window. It sounds like a squeak in a wood floor. Another noise is just below and behind the drivers seat. It is a thud type of noise, usually heard when applying the brakes. Just interested in comments from other owners. Anyone with ideas on how to locate and silence these noises?

Thanks
Gary
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Old 07-30-2019, 09:03 PM   #2
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I have a squeak that originates from the bunk latch above the driver’s seat. Got it tightened and it held for a while that has started back. Something about the latch system that makes it difficult to silence.
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Old 07-30-2019, 10:13 PM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Gary Heeb View Post
FR3 Owners, has anyone experienced squeaks in their coach around the drivers side window. It sounds like a squeak in a wood floor. Another noise is just below and behind the drivers seat. It is a thud type of noise, usually heard when applying the brakes. Just interested in comments from other owners. Anyone with ideas on how to locate and silence these noises?



Thanks

Gary


Try tightening the 3 wood screws that are in the track of the front shade on each side of the windshield. Eliminated all of my window squeaking. Canít help you with the thud (yet).
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Old 07-31-2019, 02:20 AM   #4
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Quality control, or lack of, seems to exist on most FR3s.

These models were built to be price leaders, at first launch. Have you seen the prices lately?

Our first edition 2014 was not immune to squeaks, rattles, hurricane force sounds, and complete un-operation of more than one system.

Hated our FR3 after its maiden trip from California to Maine and back that I was fantasizing about how quickly I could unload the jalopy onto some other poor soul.

Yet, 5 years later we still own and have come to terms on how to address the most egregious flaws while accepting others as just part of the design.

2014 had a dash that would bounce up and down at the center console 2 inches in either the up or down direction. Holy hell was that son of a gunderson loud loud loud over any road imperfection larger than a strand of hair. Only solution for the DS25 was to shove dead trees (wood) under the cross brace holding the dash radio up.

The engine cover had the fit precision of a North Korean made sledgehammer. I used incense to test airflow around the sealing edges and got a face full of patchouli driving from the blast of superheated air directly off the exhaust manifolds. The road noise that accompanied the blowtorch hot air was louder than a leaf blower with the muffler removed.

The rear sway bar was held on by bolts just 3/8 inch too long, they almost immediately loosened and departed this world - never to be seen again. This then allowed for significant thumping, grinding, popping depending if you were driving straight - right - left.

Finding the sway bar ends jackhammering their way through any solid surface they touched was concern plenty, and called for further inspection of the F53 chassis.

You know those artfully bent hydraulic brake lines from the master cylinders to the disk calipers? They are carefully routed inside the chassis ďCĒ channel, in a perfect world inhabited by anal retentive engineering types. Good luck on me, all the mounting clips holding the brake lines had been pulled out or smashed. All the brake lines looked like someone took a crowbar to them along the entire chassis length to give them at least 6 inches of space out from the center of the chassis ďCĒ channel.

Ford refused to repair or replace the damage during the 3/36 factory warranty. Since the bent lines were not leaking they found no reason for repair due to system performance. The loose brake lines left hanging down still flap around in the wind when driven at any speed above walking.

Yeah, pretty much anything that could be making noise is.
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Old 07-31-2019, 12:48 PM   #5
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I don't have any "squeaks" that I can hear.... I do have an extremely noisy dash or something around the dash area that I haven't been able to eliminate.
I thought it might be the front grill... not it
I thought it could be the front window shade chattering in it's track... not it
I thought it could be the upper bunk.... not it...
I thought it might be the passenger side sliding tray table... not it
I still can't figure it out.
but thankfully no squeak...
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Old 07-31-2019, 01:16 PM   #6
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The top of my dash had come loose about 5 years ago. However that factory attached it from inside the engine compartment didnít hold and it was making plenty of noise. I drive two wood screws through it from the top and concealed with screw caps. Solid as a rock since and very quiet.Click image for larger version

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Old 07-31-2019, 04:14 PM   #7
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Gary, noise could very well be coming from dash behind radio. Remove the whole black panel that holds radio and rocker switches etc., (six or eight screws). Then try lifting dash assembly up and down to see if it moves and makes noise. Look inside and up and you will probably see a 2x4 piece of wood that supports the dash and the dash is likely no longer glued to the 2x4. Incredible huh?. I ended up refitting the whole thing and eliminated a lot of weird thumps and bangs. Noise does transfer so it may be part of your problem.

I also pushed some bat insulation all around the heater box. Open up grill and look to passenger side you will see where you can stuff insulation to the side of box and on top, being careful not to disturb temperature sensor. This will eliminate a lot of wind noise from passenger seat. Think I may have found a number of spots in engine compartment to stuff insulation in.

I was getting some terrible banging noises when going over bumps and when coach was swaying. Noise was coming from under floor boards directly under the seats. I tightened the sway bar links ( over torqued for sure) and fixed that.

As already mentioned the bunk may squeak where they latch, have someone push up or down on bunk when traveling, this is a chronic FR3 problem.

Suggest you keep a close eye on sway bar brackets and bushings front and rear. I will take a small ball peen hammer and tap all bolts and nuts everywhere, easy to tell if they are loose by the noise they make.

If you are getting a noise when you brake I would have a mechanic pull the wheel and take a close look at the calipers etc., not uncommon for the retaining bolts to come loose or break.

Good luck with your problems, when we first started out my wife spent a lot of time out of her seat trying to isolate noises. My next step will be to get some Dynamat and place inside of dog house and I think it may help to place Dynamat around air filter housing and wherever I can.
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Old 07-31-2019, 04:54 PM   #8
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Originally Posted by cariboo camper View Post
Gary, noise could very well be coming from dash behind radio. Remove the whole black panel that holds radio and rocker switches etc., (six or eight screws). Then try lifting dash assembly up and down to see if it moves and makes noise. Look inside and up and you will probably see a 2x4 piece of wood that supports the dash and the dash is likely no longer glued to the 2x4. Incredible huh?. I ended up refitting the whole thing and eliminated a lot of weird thumps and bangs. Noise does transfer so it may be part of your problem.

I also pushed some bat insulation all around the heater box. Open up grill and look to passenger side you will see where you can stuff insulation to the side of box and on top, being careful not to disturb temperature sensor. This will eliminate a lot of wind noise from passenger seat. Think I may have found a number of spots in engine compartment to stuff insulation in.

I was getting some terrible banging noises when going over bumps and when coach was swaying. Noise was coming from under floor boards directly under the seats. I tightened the sway bar links ( over torqued for sure) and fixed that.

As already mentioned the bunk may squeak where they latch, have someone push up or down on bunk when traveling, this is a chronic FR3 problem.

Suggest you keep a close eye on sway bar brackets and bushings front and rear. I will take a small ball peen hammer and tap all bolts and nuts everywhere, easy to tell if they are loose by the noise they make.

If you are getting a noise when you brake I would have a mechanic pull the wheel and take a close look at the calipers etc., not uncommon for the retaining bolts to come loose or break.

Good luck with your problems, when we first started out my wife spent a lot of time out of her seat trying to isolate noises. My next step will be to get some Dynamat and place inside of dog house and I think it may help to place Dynamat around air filter housing and wherever I can.


Yes Cariboo you definitely should get the Dynamat. Dynamat 11905 Hoodliner 32" x 54" x 3/4" Thick Self-Adhesive Sound Deadener https://www.amazon.com/dp/B00069QLVC..._STGqDbMCR63BK

I have a 2015 30 and did the interior of dog house. I was surprised to find the exact same product already in place, but I went ahead and stuck the new Dynamat right on top of the existing. So now I have 1 1/2Ē of Dynamat in place. There was enough to stick it to some areas that the factory didnít cover with about 1 sq ft left over. I Travel over I-5 grapevine a lot so I know about engine noise. The additional application reduced the noise and heat coming from the dog house tremendously.
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Old 07-31-2019, 09:38 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by twojump36 View Post
I don't have any "squeaks" that I can hear.... I do have an extremely noisy dash or something around the dash area that I haven't been able to eliminate.
I thought it might be the front grill... not it
I thought it could be the front window shade chattering in it's track... not it
I thought it could be the upper bunk.... not it...
I thought it might be the passenger side sliding tray table... not it
I still can't figure it out.
but thankfully no squeak...
Check out my post, could be your problem, actually an easy fix.
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Old 07-31-2019, 09:53 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Gary Heeb View Post
FR3 Owners, has anyone experienced squeaks in their coach around the drivers side window. It sounds like a squeak in a wood floor. Another noise is just below and behind the drivers seat. It is a thud type of noise, usually heard when applying the brakes. Just interested in comments from other owners. Anyone with ideas on how to locate and silence these noises?

Thanks
Gary
Got to thinking, another bad squeak can develop from the coach door hinges, just lube them a bit and also the bottom panel of the screen door can rattle like crazy. A few screws in the right place will fix that.

If I ever fix all the noise in our FR3 I will probably fall asleep while driving, just kidding!
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Old 08-04-2019, 07:54 AM   #11
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Noise

Hi I have only had my fr3 a short time. 2019 30 Ds.
When I first picked it up it was a noise bucket. Now itís not so bad.
The first thing I did was secure the front grill. The next was to add a baffle to the heater as the wind was allowed to blow straight through it. Then I foamed around the windows as there is just a cavity there. Removal of the inside screws on the window plate will uncover that. Next I lowered the seat by two inches. Then I insulated above the front window by accessing the false panels from each side of the pull down bed. I was carefull not to loosen any wires. I also painted all under the coach with rubberized paint and did the under dash from inside the bonnet. I also insulated the pipes from the heater to the dash in put. I still have not insulated the doghouse but the coach is quite nice and we can listen to music and talk quite comfortably at this point. The pillow supplied I put between the roof and the bed and that stopped the rattle of the bed. Hope this helps.
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Old 08-04-2019, 10:26 AM   #12
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Originally Posted by Iankerr View Post
Hi I have only had my fr3 a short time. 2019 30 Ds.
When I first picked it up it was a noise bucket. Now itís not so bad.
The first thing I did was secure the front grill. The next was to add a baffle to the heater as the wind was allowed to blow straight through it. Then I foamed around the windows as there is just a cavity there. Removal of the inside screws on the window plate will uncover that. Next I lowered the seat by two inches. Then I insulated above the front window by accessing the false panels from each side of the pull down bed. I was carefull not to loosen any wires. I also painted all under the coach with rubberized paint and did the under dash from inside the bonnet. I also insulated the pipes from the heater to the dash in put. I still have not insulated the doghouse but the coach is quite nice and we can listen to music and talk quite comfortably at this point. The pillow supplied I put between the roof and the bed and that stopped the rattle of the bed. Hope this helps.
Thanks for the additional tips. I am going to get right on them. Not sure what you mean by adding a baffle to the heater, do you mean the heater core on the passenger side that can be accessed by opening the grill? My heater core is enclosed already or maybe you are referring to something else? Would appreciate some clarification.
Thanks
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Old 08-06-2019, 07:58 AM   #13
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The heater is located on the passenger side on the grill side of the fire wall. I noticed that the wind is allowed direct access to the intake. Most cars there is a pipe that brings air into the heater from a specific location. My unit just has a hole weíre air goes in. I installed a redirection baffle so the air does not have direct access. Honestly it was one of the easiest fix and got rid of a constant wind noise.
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Old 08-06-2019, 08:03 AM   #14
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Pic

I have now replaced it but this was the original test in a shopping store parking lot on our maiden voyage. Good Sam is amazing
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Old 08-06-2019, 04:10 PM   #15
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Heater box air intake modification is in the “Top 5” of noise reduction modifications with the highest cost/benefit ratio.

Once the leaky doghouse cover, dash support, engine grill, and heater box noises were addressed I stopped my efforts to further reduce noise due to costs involved in re-sealing the windshield and silencing the sliding window air leaks at the driver and passenger side windows.

Interior noise levels went from atrocious to moderately noisy, well within the ability of a good noise cancelling headphone to create a serenely quiet cockpit worthy of continued use.

Business opportunity for a sharp audio guy to market active noise cancellation using the sound system already installed for radio/music/entertainment.

Marketing noise reduction to the “seasoned citizens” wealthy enough to buy an FR3 is like selling ice to penguins - it’s a solution to a problem older adults don’t have due to naturally occurring hearing loss from age!
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Old 08-07-2019, 07:17 AM   #16
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Easy

The windows are easy there is a 1/2Ē cavity between the window and the wall. Just pull the inside screws the plate removes and foam it. The windshield noise is more the fibreglass food portion above the front window. I pulled the small blocks from each side of the storage bins on each side of the overhead bed and chinked it with insulation. Screwed the caps back on. Not the best fix because of the wires but a small reduction just the same. The windows worked great.
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Old 08-08-2019, 12:16 PM   #17
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I just turn up the radio. If I donít, I use the Lordís name in vain far too much. California freeways beat up my FR3. Those excessive gas taxes for infrastructure are hard at work.
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Old 08-09-2019, 08:09 PM   #18
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California

Wow California
Try Ontario Canada our taxes are nuts. The snow and heating our homes is costly. The taxes we pay for our medical system is out of this word. We donít ave sun all year only a small part of our year is warm.
But we are Canadian that n itís self is huge. I only wish I put up with a Californian winter.
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Old 08-11-2019, 12:08 AM   #19
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Yes Cariboo you definitely should get the Dynamat. Dynamat 11905 Hoodliner 32" x 54" x 3/4" Thick Self-Adhesive Sound Deadener https://www.amazon.com/dp/B00069QLVC..._STGqDbMCR63BK

I have a 2015 30 and did the interior of dog house. I was surprised to find the exact same product already in place, but I went ahead and stuck the new Dynamat right on top of the existing. So now I have 1 1/2Ē of Dynamat in place. There was enough to stick it to some areas that the factory didnít cover with about 1 sq ft left over. I Travel over I-5 grapevine a lot so I know about engine noise. The additional application reduced the noise and heat coming from the dog house tremendously.
"Larry" - The last time I had the dog house cover off I noticed a few areas where I thought the existing Dynamat was touching the engine. Did you have the same situation? I'm concerned that adding the additional thickness might be a fire or rubbing issue. Thanks in advance. By the way, being from Pasadena I know all too well of the noise created while traveling the Grapevine.
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Old 08-11-2019, 11:28 AM   #20
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"Larry" - The last time I had the dog house cover off I noticed a few areas where I thought the existing Dynamat was touching the engine. Did you have the same situation? I'm concerned that adding the additional thickness might be a fire or rubbing issue. Thanks in advance. By the way, being from Pasadena I know all too well of the noise created while traveling the Grapevine.


Yes I noticed there was very small area in the middle that showed rubbing but no scorching. I know it deflects 97% of the heat, but I donít know the actual maximum temperature resistance. Since it is specifically manufactured to be used under the hood, Iím not really worried about it. Iím glad to see we have some other grapevine road warriors.
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