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Old 06-08-2016, 09:00 PM   #1
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Leveling Jacks Stuck - Family Vacation Stalled

Hi Folks:

I had posted a few times about our cross country trip. We were supposed to leave today (at the latest). But, we have had a series of challenges. As we were in final preparations, I realized the leveling jacks would not all retract. Especially the driver front jack. I posted before that these were leaking. We took it to Frost RV Service in Tucson and paid $700 for a wash, wax, and safety check. They also checked a few other things I asked for, including the jacks. Service guy said the jacks should be replaced, but were OK to use as long as I checked the fluid and topped it off. These is Kwikee Level Best 3000 system.

Today, as i was doing my walk around, I noticed the front drivers side jack was nearly all the way down. I tried to retract them, but to no avail. In fact, that jack went up a bit, then went down and even pushed the chassis up a bit. Did this every time. I found the jumper and removed the panel - jumped as instruction manual states. Both front jacks retracted, but rear jacks are still down.

Really frustrated, wife and kids ready to go. $7000 of repairs have been done (including new tires) since we bought this rig.

Any help to allow us to get going would be GREATLY appreciated.
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Old 06-08-2016, 09:05 PM   #2
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Guess u looked in manual? If not search online for one and see what says
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Old 06-08-2016, 09:10 PM   #3
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Guess u looked in manual? If not search online for one and see what says
Absolutely, read it 10x, both the operation one and the service one.... no luck so far to figure this out.
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Old 06-08-2016, 09:14 PM   #4
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Sounds like you tried the procedure on pg 7 of this manual and the rear jacks wouldn't retract?

You might call and ask, sometimes you can manually retract by directly wiring the appropriate solenoid valve and get it to move up. If you do get them retracted, I'd leave them up and level using blocks or ramps until the system can be serviced.
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Old 06-08-2016, 09:19 PM   #5
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Originally Posted by BFlinn181 View Post
Sounds like you tried the procedure on pg 7 of this manual and the rear jacks wouldn't retract?

You might call and ask, sometimes you can manually retract by directly wiring the appropriate solenoid valve and get it to move up. If you do get them retracted, I'd leave them up and level using blocks or ramps until the system can be serviced.
Yes, exactly what I tried. I am going to try again. You cannot run the pump too long or it will burn out. On last try, the started to go up, then went back down while the pump was still running...
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Old 06-09-2016, 07:28 AM   #6
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Yes, exactly what I tried. I am going to try again. You cannot run the pump too long or it will burn out. On last try, the started to go up, then went back down while the pump was still running...
You could loosen one of the hydraulic lines and manually force the jacks up, tighten the line, then somehow use a back up to make sure the jacks don't bleed down (ratchet strap?). I have HWH system and they have this type of workaround built into the system (HWH uses huge springs to retract and there are bypass valves you can turn by hand to allow springs to pull the jacks up).

A good service truck tech could do this for you if you are uncomfortable doing it yourself (not an RV service truck, construction equipment service truck).
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Old 06-09-2016, 07:56 AM   #7
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Quote:
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Yes, exactly what I tried. I am going to try again. You cannot run the pump too long or it will burn out. On last try, the started to go up, then went back down while the pump was still running...
Most likely you have a bad shuttle valve. Call Chuck at Stuart's Service @ 800-826-6267. He knows more about HWH systems than HWH knows. He is an authorized HWH dealer and has any part you need.

Another good information/trouble shooting source is AZPete 602-549-3638.

Be careful about overheating the solenoid valves. They are expensive!!
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Old 06-09-2016, 08:10 AM   #8
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If they are hydraulic open the shutt,e valves l lift jack with a 2x4 or other implement, close valves. If jack goes down again on its own it has a leak internallyl and needs to be tied in the up position until repair facility.
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Old 06-09-2016, 09:53 AM   #9
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Just to clarify I have an HWH system the OP with the problem has a Kwikee system. I'm not sure if the Kwikee system has the valves that can be manually opened (thus my suggestion to just crack a hydraulic line).
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Old 06-09-2016, 10:17 AM   #10
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I don't have your system, but looked at the manuals.
They use hydraulic pressure to BOTH extend/Retract the jacks because you have the Kick-down type of jack.

If you can get them up, strap them in place and disconnect the pump to allow you to go on your trip.

It sounds like there is a directional valve which controls the up/down and that may be stuck. If the pump runs, any of the directional valves can make a jack move, even if you are trying to operate a different valve.

Since the system is broke, if it were me, I would just loosen the fittings on the jacks, and use a 2x4 or hydraulic jack to push them back up and then strap them. Tighten the fittings and go on your trip.

Regards,

Dan
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Old 06-09-2016, 10:54 AM   #11
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What dmurdock and dpinvidic said! Let us know how you made out?!
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Old 06-09-2016, 06:56 PM   #12
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UPDATE

Thanks everyone, and I did call AZPete, he was very nice but did not know the Kwikee system. Did give me some advice.

In the end, I opened up the hydraulic lines at the tops of the cylinders that would not retract. Between a crow bar and a small jack, I was able to get them up - though with a big mess.

NEED advice. I am thinking now to get some small chains from Lowes and just chain them in place until we get to the east coast. Bummer as I am worried about the slide-outs and leveling, but what else can I do? I could top up the fluid and try them again, BUT, if they don't retract - i am back to a massive mess.

What do you experienced RV'ers recommend???

Thanks!
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Old 06-09-2016, 07:05 PM   #13
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Chain em up...put slides out - measure drop on whatever side drops then you know how many boards to park on to be level.
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Old 06-10-2016, 07:56 AM   #14
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I would NOT use chain.
use the ratchet straps. Since you need to run the pump to extend the slides, i am concerned that a faulty valve may cause a jack to extend. Having a chain could cause more damage....unless it was a very light chain.

How many jacks are acting funny, strange to have multiple directional valves fail at the same time unless there is gunk in the system.

Dan
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