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Old 04-07-2006, 09:01 AM   #1
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We recently had heavy duty springs put on our front leveling jacks. Upgraded under warranty.

Starting with the cold weather last november, the front jacks got to where they wouldn't retract all the way. The colder the temps, the worse they got. We would have to manually lower and raise the front jacks a few times and they would eventually retract completely - I guess the movement "warmed them up"? Kind of a pain if you are in a hurry to break camp!

The problem seems to have gotten worse over time - like the springs were getting weaker and weaker or something.

Called HWH, gave them the retraction times (or failure to do so within the time given the temperature). They sent us heavier duty springs to install on the front jacks.

A cursory search on this forum indicates that no other Alpine owner has run into this problem? If our coach is unique in this we wonder if there is perhaps something wrong with the hydraulic fluid lines in our coach.

Audrey
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Old 04-07-2006, 09:01 AM   #2
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We recently had heavy duty springs put on our front leveling jacks. Upgraded under warranty.

Starting with the cold weather last november, the front jacks got to where they wouldn't retract all the way. The colder the temps, the worse they got. We would have to manually lower and raise the front jacks a few times and they would eventually retract completely - I guess the movement "warmed them up"? Kind of a pain if you are in a hurry to break camp!

The problem seems to have gotten worse over time - like the springs were getting weaker and weaker or something.

Called HWH, gave them the retraction times (or failure to do so within the time given the temperature). They sent us heavier duty springs to install on the front jacks.

A cursory search on this forum indicates that no other Alpine owner has run into this problem? If our coach is unique in this we wonder if there is perhaps something wrong with the hydraulic fluid lines in our coach.

Audrey
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Old 04-07-2006, 04:16 PM   #3
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Audrey,

This is not an uncommon problem...at least it has been noticeable on every coach I have had. The springs are not getting weaker, the jack shaft and seals are not moving as smoothly as when new and the temperature probably effects them also. After every time I use the jacks I take a cloth and put a small amount of ATF on it and wipe over the jack shafts. This lubricates the jacks so they operate without binding up on the seals. Has always worked for me. Since you are currently having problems, you might want to jack the coach up as far as possible so the maximum shaft is exposed and wipe them over with the ATF, then let the jacks up. This will help ensure you "clean" the entire shaft. You might also want to use a little more transmission fluid the first time since it is probably very dry. I'd be willing to bet your problem disappears.
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Old 04-07-2006, 07:43 PM   #4
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My DSDP has the same problem. I have an appointment with the dealer to have the heavier springs installed under warranty.
I have stored my MH next to the house, for the last 2 years, on a pad where the passenger front and rear jacks are extended the most. These are now always the slowest ones to retract no matter where I am at.
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Old 04-07-2006, 08:36 PM   #5
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HWH specifically states not to wipe anything at all on the jack shafts. We've checked with them several times.

We have had no problems with the rear jacks at all - they always have retracted quickly.

With the new springs the front jacks now work great.

Audrey
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Old 04-09-2006, 06:43 AM   #6
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Audrey and John,
Several of us with late 05's had a problem with slow retracting jacks but not temperature related they just would not come up completely with out an assist from the operator. The fix we were given by HWH at the DRR in 05 was to extend the jacks and clean the ram and apply a liberal coating of Vaseline and cycle the jacks. Worked like a champ no more slowly stowing jacks.
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Old 04-09-2006, 03:45 PM   #7
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What was the DRR in 05?

Interesting. I wonder why HWH didn't talk to us about about doing any cleaning.

Were all your jacks stowing slowly? It's odd to us that it was only the front two jacks.

Audrey
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Old 04-09-2006, 04:22 PM   #8
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Yes, all 4 jacks were retracting slowly.
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Old 04-21-2008, 10:18 AM   #9
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Help I just had the LF jack go down in the mud when I tryed to retract it pulled the pad off. How do I get it back on?
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Old 04-21-2008, 02:25 PM   #10
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That is an exercise in strength and patience. I had that happen once- the circumstances being my own stupidity. I had to hang the pad on both springs with the pad tilted downward at the front of the shaft. Then I pushed down with a 2 x 4 on each side of the shaft to pry the pad under the bottom of the shaft to where it centered itself. Not easy! On one of the attempts the pad slipped completely under the shaft to behind it!!! Then I really had my hands full. I vaguely recall muscling it back to the front to try again. I finally got it but it was tough. I'm sure HWH will have a simpler suggestion, but I was stuck late on a Friday, of course.

Good luck.
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Old 04-21-2008, 03:05 PM   #11
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Audrey & John: We also had heavier springs put on our jacks and still had a problem with one rear jack that didn't want to come up occasionally. We were told to wipe it down with the same HWH hydraulic fluid that you use to top off the reservoir. We do this about once every 3-4 weeks and have not had a problem ever since. Apparently the tolerance is so tight that the slightest dirt can cause the problem. Also, using the hydraulic fluid will not attract more dirt etc. Hope this helps. Gary & Betsy
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Old 04-21-2008, 03:22 PM   #12
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Audrey & John, We have an 05/34' that HWH gave me the larger/stronger spring based on the retraction speed. I do put mine down from time to time and wipe them with a very thin oil. ATF is okay, except I do not know what is in it. Oil seals are funny things and react different ways to different products. I use hydraulic oil & wipe almost dry. I don't think I would lubricate them with vaseline as I would think that would have a tendency to attract dirt. Beyond that I would leave them alone. If you have an issue beyond that I would contact HWH.
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Old 04-22-2008, 10:40 AM   #13
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Thanks Rick
I don't know why I didn't think of 2X4 I did get it close with a 1&1/4 inch open end wrench but when I tryed to remove the wrench it would pop off. I am waiting for callback from HWH to see what thay say. I will try the 2X4 and wait to here from HWH. Thanks again for your help.Andy
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Old 04-22-2008, 11:26 AM   #14
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Andy- it's going to take two 2 x 4's. One on each side of the shaft. I'm thinking 4-5 feet long each. probably easier with 2 people- one on each board. Mine was passenger side rear so I had easier access through the battery compartment. I don't know how the access is in the front...and I don't want to know!

Again, good luck.
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