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Old 03-17-2017, 11:36 AM   #1
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Warning-2016 AND NEWER DUTCH STAR DOOR LOCK PROBLEM

I have a 2016 DSDP 4369 and had the problem of being locked out of our coach when we returned yesterday.
The handle on the outside moved freely without opening the door. A call to Newmar Emergency Service did not result in any solutions. What we found after cutting our way through the bedroom slide window with a hack saw and destroying the trim was that the screws on the door had loosened ever so slightly allowing the lock mechanism to move about 1/8 inch to the side disabling the release mechanism. Not a great design to begin with but the screws should have had a thread locking compound on them.
I don't know if anyone has thought about gaining entry if the door lock fails but it is a real problem that would have been made simple with a dead bolt and handle on the emergency door. Instead it took about 2 hours to get the rear window apart with a hack saw and resulting in having to order a new window assembly. Spencer at Newmar was very good as usual and got the manufacturer of the door to buy a new window with Newmar paying for the labor amd the $292 lock smith bill being my punishment but all in all a better outcome than I expected. Gorilla Tape on the rear bedroom slide window and we're good to go for now.
Has anyone else experienced the same issue? CHECK THE SCREWS ON YOUR DOOR LOCK AND MAKE SURE THEY ARE TIGHT!!!
I'm not sure about other models but the same door is probably used on other coaches.
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Old 03-17-2017, 11:45 AM   #2
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Sorry that happened to you, but good advice. I just checked ours, probably the same handle/lock assembly, and it's tight and solid. Are yours held with torx screws?
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Old 03-17-2017, 12:02 PM   #3
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With a little engineering couldn't you install a deadbolt and handle on the outside of the emergency door? Would be something to run past the coach mfg.
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Old 03-17-2017, 12:06 PM   #4
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Sorry that happened to you, but good advice. I just checked ours, probably the same handle/lock assembly, and it's tight and solid. Are yours held with torx screws?
Star drive screws, yes. The manufacturer said some were not fastened with a thread lock.
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Old 03-17-2017, 12:07 PM   #5
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With a little engineering couldn't you install a deadbolt and handle on the outside of the emergency door? Would be something to run past the coach mfg.
I have suggested that and it has been discussed at Newmar.
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Old 03-17-2017, 06:09 PM   #6
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I worried about something like this happening on my Mountain Aire also
What I did was to install a secondary power window switch for the driver's side power window in the electrical cabinet directly in front of the driver's side front wheel. It's hooked to 12v power directly - doesn't need the ignition switch to be "on".
That way if I can't get in the front door I just need to unlock the front left side storage door and roll the drivers side window down and climb into the coach that way
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Old 03-17-2017, 06:44 PM   #7
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I worried about something like this happening on my Mountain Aire also
What I did was to install a secondary power window switch for the driver's side power window in the electrical cabinet directly in front of the driver's side front wheel. It's hooked to 12v power directly - doesn't need the ignition switch to be "on".
That way if I can't get in the front door I just need to unlock the front left side storage door and roll the drivers side window down and climb into the coach that way
I would be interested in how you wired this.
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Old 03-17-2017, 06:53 PM   #8
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And that is why we leave a large window on the passenger side of our coach unlocked. I don't trust the pot metal door latch assemblies many of us have and I also want firefighters or other potential rescuers to be able to get into the coach to rescue our dogs if we are not there.
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Old 03-17-2017, 06:57 PM   #9
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No way with the new window design. The bedroom window was the cheapest option. I am buying a power hacksaw for the next time 😔
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Old 03-17-2017, 09:59 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Beach Aire View Post
I worried about something like this happening on my Mountain Aire also
What I did was to install a secondary power window switch for the driver's side power window in the electrical cabinet directly in front of the driver's side front wheel. It's hooked to 12v power directly - doesn't need the ignition switch to be "on".
That way if I can't get in the front door I just need to unlock the front left side storage door and roll the drivers side window down and climb into the coach that way
Now that is a great idea! Thanks for sharing.
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Old 03-17-2017, 10:51 PM   #11
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This isn't a surprise to Newmar or Spencer. I just had the same thing happen on my 2017 London Aire. I never did discover the cause but it could've been loose screws. If this happens to anyone else, call Newmar service before you break glass or do damage to your coach. They were very helpful and have a procedure that will only damage the door handle mechanism, which will be replaced anyway. I think it best that I don't post that procedure on an open forum.
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Old 03-17-2017, 11:00 PM   #12
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This isn't a surprise to Newmar or Spencer. I just had the same thing happen on my 2017 London Aire. I never did discover the cause but it could've been loose screws. If this happens to anyone else, call Newmar service before you break glass or do damage to your coach. They were very helpful and have a procedure that will only damage the door handle mechanism, which will be replaced anyway. I think it best that I don't post that procedure on an open forum.
Jeff
Spencer told me about your problem the next day. This happened at 6PM and the emergency guys did not know. We had to get in to our dog.
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Old 03-17-2017, 11:12 PM   #13
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Yes, you clearly had no choice. Mine happened on a Friday afternoon as they were leaving. I politely waited until Monday am. when I told them if they didn't come up with a solution quick that I would, and mine might not be to their liking. To their credit, Spencer over nighted a new handle mechanism and provided a workable solution. I like the power window switch idea. This experience did give me some comfort while staying in the coach out on the road. They are darned hard to get into!
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Old 03-17-2017, 11:24 PM   #14
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Quote:
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Yes, you clearly had no choice. Mine happened on a Friday afternoon as they were leaving. I politely waited until Monday am. when I told them if they didn't come up with a solution quick that I would, and mine might not be to their liking. To their credit, Spencer over nighted a new handle mechanism and provided a workable solution. I like the power window switch idea. This experience did give me some comfort while staying in the coach out on the road. They are darned hard to get into!
You're not kidding. We were cutting and bending for two hours. After disassembling the lock I saw what the problem was and solution. I have a wifi unit in the coach with temperature monitor and cameras that can notify me of a break in and send me pictures. We basically do it for our dog but it's inexpensive and works well.
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