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Old 04-07-2015, 04:52 PM   #1
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Question re lack of slide toppers.

Hi
My wife and I are recently retired and are looking to get a Class A RV. We have no experience with RV's at this point so will have lots of questions.
There is a very nice 34' Triple E Commander 2004 on a Ford chassis for sale that looks tempting but is not close to home. My question is this unit does not have any slide toppers for the two slides. Is this a big deal? I guess I can live with cleaning the top of the slides before retracting them but do the toppers help keep out wind blown rain? What would it cost to add the slide toppers?
Anyone have any other comments about Triple E's?
Thanks for your help. I have learned a lot in the last few months for lurking on these forums.
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Old 04-07-2015, 04:59 PM   #2
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I would rate it as not a big deal.

No slide toppers = cleaning tops of slides before closing, but you can clean them.

Slide toppers = if the high winds are right you need to close the slides to keep them getting damaged. No access to clean the top when dust, dirt and leaves blow in.

They do create shade which keeps the slide roof cooler.



Cost to add will depend upon length.



I don't think I've ever read bad things about Triple E. They were a top insulator in the industry. Just couldn't survive the down turn.
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Old 04-07-2015, 05:03 PM   #3
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Personally, I would not own ANY RV without slide toppers! If you're getting a great deal on the MH, maybe you could figure on installing slide toppers after you buy it! JMHO!
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Old 04-07-2015, 05:04 PM   #4
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Slide-toppers are loved by some, strongly rejected by others. I like them because they greatly reduce debris collecting on the roof of the slide-room, especially during fall when leaves are falling. I once had to climb on the roof to sweep snow off the slide room in order for it to close (before I bought toppers). Virtually all brands only have a 2 yr. warranty, and do not last as long as the main awning material. They are not necessary, just a convenience in my opinion. For instance, Newell motorcoaches do not even have a place to mount them.
They will make noise during strong winds.
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Old 04-07-2015, 05:09 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MSHappyCampers View Post
Personally, I would not own ANY RV without slide toppers! If you're getting a great deal on the MH, maybe you could figure on installing slide toppers after you buy it! JMHO!
I agree but like said, they're a problem in high winds.
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Old 04-07-2015, 05:10 PM   #6
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the pros on our Class A with toppers:
-helps deflect windblown rain off slides
-helps keep leaves and debris from your slides
-no worrying about cleaning tops of slides
-they can be added to practically any rv slide
Cons:
-can catch wind and try to unfurl while driving
-can catch wind and cause noises when parked
-another item for maintenance

I love them because they keep rain from possibly penetrating your interior, and they keep you from having to sweep off the tops after parking under trees - but I also wish I did NOT have them when driving in high winds, or when parked during high winds. I've tried to resolve the later by several means - the best and most recent was to add 'fill' (foam bedding, large towels, etc) in both ends in order to minimize wind entry into the slide topper. It's worked so far : )
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Old 04-07-2015, 05:30 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MSHappyCampers View Post
Personally, I would not own ANY RV without slide toppers! If you're getting a great deal on the MH, maybe you could figure on installing slide toppers after you buy it! JMHO!
Same here, had them on every DP we've owned. Keeps the slide cooler and rain and debris off them.
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Old 04-07-2015, 06:35 PM   #8
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I'm reading this thread with some interest because my slide toppers are completely rotted away. While on the roof last weekend, I cut the remaining shreds of material and they are now flapping in the breeze. If they actually covered the full length of the slide, I would probably install new cloth, but they don't. The width of the topper, in my mind, should be wider than the slide itself, similar to a window awning on the S&B. This extra width would go a long way toward preventing debris and water from accumulating on the slide roof. It seems like an awful waste, to me, to go to all that trouble and expense and not make the darn thing wide enough to provide any more than partial shade. I'll probably remove them and go without.
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Old 04-07-2015, 06:58 PM   #9
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Hi GPont,
Welcome to iRV2. For me, slide toppers are worth having. If there are cabinets at the top of the slide, keeping the sun off the slide top is the main benefit. Without a topper the cabinets can get really warm. You didn't ask, but if I may, remember you are purchasing a truck not a car. Weight is very important. Make sure:
1. GVWR minus UVW = carrying capacity. This is how much in people and stuff one can carry.
2. GCWR minus GVWR = towing capacity of the coach. This tells you how much weight the coach can tow.
2a. Hitch/receiver weight rating = This, combined with #2 tells you how much weight you can tow.

Take a look at how the coach will be used and what you will be carrying and towing. The coaches that can meet your weight needs are okay to consider.
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Old 04-07-2015, 06:59 PM   #10
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Thanks for your replies. Looks like they are not mandatory and we could try without before deciding if we needed them or not.
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Old 04-07-2015, 07:13 PM   #11
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I had a 5th wheel for several years before moving to our current motorhome. The coach, of course has toppers, but the 5'ver did not have any toppers on the slides and aside from an occasional pine needle or small acorn, I never really had a problem with no slide covers. The tight seals pretty much squeegie everything off upon retraction.
I'm glad I have them on my coach, in fact, I just replaced them with new fabric this spring, but I certainly wouldn't let not having toppers deter me from a purchase.
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Old 04-07-2015, 08:24 PM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by GaryKD View Post
Hi GPont,
Welcome to iRV2. For me, slide toppers are worth having. If there are cabinets at the top of the slide, keeping the sun off the slide top is the main benefit. Without a topper the cabinets can get really warm. You didn't ask, but if I may, remember you are purchasing a truck not a car. Weight is very important. Make sure:
1. GVWR minus UVW = carrying capacity. This is how much in people and stuff one can carry.
2. GCWR minus GVWR = towing capacity of the coach. This tells you how much weight the coach can tow.
2a. Hitch/receiver weight rating = This, combined with #2 tells you how much weight you can tow.

Take a look at how the coach will be used and what you will be carrying and towing. The coaches that can meet your weight needs are okay to consider.
Hi Gary

Where do I find the GCWR? Triple E does not list it and I have seldom seen it in anyone's brochures.
They list for model A3509FB:
GVWR = 22000lb
UVW = 18686lb
NCC = 3314lb
They do indicate that the NCC includes the tongue weight of the towed vehicle.

Thanks
Gary
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Old 04-07-2015, 08:24 PM   #13
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Have had both, would rather have them than not but wouldn't be a deal breaker.
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Old 04-08-2015, 06:48 AM   #14
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I'm of a different mind than the majority. Don't have toppers and can't see ever getting them. Been fulltiming for 5yrs., and have needed to clean them off before pulling in the slides only a handful of times, less than people I've seen with toppers bringing in the slides because of strong winds. Just this past winter a coach across from us had their topper torn away while they were gone. I've also seen owners struggling to clean the slide roof under the toppers because of debris that's blown under them. I am also of the mind that having a topper keeps owners from thinking of caulking their slide roofs. But that's just me.
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