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Old 10-04-2016, 11:21 AM   #1
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Tiffin warranty work and banging windshield wipers

Picked up my '17 Phaeton, have 2,100 miles on it, have several issues that I need to get fixed.

Dealer I bought it from was "too busy" with winterizing RVs for other customers to fit me in on 'short' (10 day) notice.

I need to have a new microwave and a closet light switch forwarded to the dealer where I'll get the work done. I have an appt in Springfield OR for Nov 1 to get solar panels installed.

So, called ahead to Bretz RV in Billings and was told they're not taking any appointments for "external" warranty work because they're too busy with warranty work for their own customers (i.e. you didn't buy from us so piss off)

I call ahead to Bretz in Missoula, they're willing to make an appt - for the 26th of the month! Missoula could be completely snowed in by then.

So couple of questions:

a) Do all Tiffin dealers suck? I definitely feel like I got dumped and kicked out the door as soon as the money changed hands.

b) Anyone know of any good dealers in the northwest, preferably west of any large mountain passes that might get snowed in soon. I don't mind going north or south a bit, I'd just like to be over all the mountain passes as soon as possible.

c) I've got a *massive* banging noise under the center of the dash/bottom of the windshield when I'm using the windshield wipers and there's a high wind. It literally sounds like someone is hitting it very hard with a framing hammer (no exaggeration, I was afraid the windshield was going to break). I don't feel safe driving it through rain to get to the west coast and it's look like very gray/wet ahead of me. Anyone have any idea what might cause that noise and whether it's user repairable? I have tools but no sheltered place to work, it's 44F out and the wind is howling.
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Old 10-04-2016, 11:35 AM   #2
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I am sorry to hear of your problems. Now days this seams to be the Norm and is just another reason I will never ever buy a new Coach again I did it 3 times and got burned twice. The last time in 2012. If I ever buy another coach it will be at least 2 or 3 years old. No new one for me. My present coach is a 2006, 10 years old and I have no problems with it. bought it used after getting rid of a 2012 that was nothing but problems. Hope you get your problem resolved.
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Old 10-04-2016, 12:48 PM   #3
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Find a well qualified independent RV repair facility and ask them if they would work with Tiffin Motorhomes to perform the needed repairs. Tiffin will allow non-dealer RV repair facilities to perform warranty work and will arrange for direct payment to the facility for the work. If you can find such a facility call Tiffin Service Department (256-356-0261 ext 3824 Don Boyd) to get authorization for them to do the work.




And to answer your question, YES most all RV dealers suck big time when it comes to anything to do with service or parts.
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Old 10-04-2016, 12:52 PM   #4
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You might check under the front and make sure the bolts holding the wiper motor are tight. The motor could be moving around, or one of the arms could be hitting something.

And to your question a) Not ALL Tiffin dealers suck. Our dealer in Fort Worth (Vogt RV) has been outstanding with the two times I had to have some warranty work done. They got us in and out in good order, and the work was first rate.
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Old 10-04-2016, 01:14 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Lt Dan View Post
You might check under the front and make sure the bolts holding the wiper motor are tight. The motor could be moving around, or one of the arms could be hitting something.

And to your question a) Not ALL Tiffin dealers suck. Our dealer in Fort Worth (Vogt RV) has been outstanding with the two times I had to have some warranty work done. They got us in and out in good order, and the work was first rate.
Agree with Vogt Service - Had quick step recall/repair previously and last week had wiper recall completed in 37 minutes!!

However, did purchase RV there.
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Old 10-04-2016, 01:16 PM   #6
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It seems everyone with Tiffins rave about going back to Red Bay, Alabama to have work done. Perhaps you can make a trip south.
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Old 10-04-2016, 02:15 PM   #7
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If in the Springfield, Or area I would check with Cummins in Coburg, Or. They are fantastic and we make a point of going through Eugene area when we head north to Idaho from Arizona in Spring time.
We have had them find a wiring problem that the Winnebago Factory caused and they helped us get the money from Winnebago back because of their error. Various other dealers were unable to find the cause of the problem.
Anyway, I would call them and Tiffin to see if Tiffin would allowed them to do warranty work. You can park there with 50 amp service and water hook up. The Service manager, Mike, has been great to work with. They have a separate building for rv's and do bumper to bumper service, remodeling, etc. and also a Certified Coach Care facility.
There is a dump site at the Camping World that you will pass before going to the Cummins facility.

[QUOTE=dphaynes;3281214]Picked up my '17 Phaeton, have 2,100 miles on it, have several issues that I need to get fixed.

Dealer I bought it from was "too busy" with winterizing RVs for other customers to fit me in on 'short' (10 day) notice.

I need to have a new microwave and a closet light switch forwarded to the dealer where I'll get the work done. I have an appt in Springfield OR for Nov 1 to get solar panels installed..........................
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Old 10-04-2016, 02:46 PM   #8
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you might try byoung rv in the portland metro area. i have never used them but a friend likes them. B Young RV | Motorhome and RV Dealership | Fifth Wheels, Travel Trailers, Toy Haulers For Sale | Oregon Dealer | RV Sales near Vancouver WA
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Old 10-04-2016, 03:06 PM   #9
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Any Tiffin dealer that won't service a new Phaeton that they sold you needs to be identified by name in these forums and reported to Tiffin. Otherwise you're just blowing off steam........
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Old 10-05-2016, 05:05 PM   #10
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Any Tiffin dealer that won't service a new Phaeton that they sold you needs to be identified by name in these forums and reported to Tiffin. Otherwise you're just blowing off steam........
The dealer who sold it was 500 miles behind me at the time I discovered the windshield wiper problems, and I need to get to the west coast before I get snowed in on the mountain passes between here and there. I suspect the dealer probably would have (with grumbling and a great show of self-sacrifice) made time for me, but I wasn't going to backtrack 500 miles. Nor should I have to.

I'm annoyed that my dealer couldn't schedule a post-shakedown follow-up appointment even 10 days ahead of time when I picked up the coach, and it's infuriating that "it's busy season for winterizing other customers RVs" was the stated reason why they couldn't make time for me, however they did squeeze me in and try (unsuccessfully) to troubleshoot the gauge lights that randomly turn off as I'm driving down the road. A for effort, but I've still clearly got major wiring problems with the coach, so a 0 for solutions that help me.

I wrote an email to Tiffin this morning explaining in detail the problems I'm having, I'm still waiting for a response from them.

The problem got even more annoying - twice - yesterday when the intermittent function of the wipers became erratic. Sometimes the wipers would make two wipes and then pause, sometimes they just stopped wiping and I'd have to hit the switch again to make them go. Sometimes they'd park at the top of their stroke instead of the bottom. Eventually the intermittent button simply stopped working and only the hi/lo switch worked. Even then sometimes the wipers would park themselves vertically.

Then to piss me off even more, when I finally arrived last night in Billings, I hadn't used the wipers since somewhere in Wyoming. They'd been off for at least 2 to 2.5 hours. When I turned the ignition switch off, the wipers spontaneously turned themselves on. With the key in the off position. I tried hitting the cancel button, turning the ignition back on and hitting cancel, hitting the hi/lo button, hitting the intermittent button, and at one point I even removed the key from the ignition and the wipers just kept on running. After roughly a minute they stopped running on their own, I have no idea why.

To make it more fun, with towed unit disconnected, master 12V switched off, broken microwave oven unplugged, basically everything in the coach shut off, I let it sit overnight (after driving it all day and non-stop 2.5 hours from Buffalo WY to Billings, MT, so batteries were well charged) and this morning I got a low battery warning on the Freightliner computer. I've seen them several times in the last 2 weeks and I assumed it was me doing something wrong, but this time I'm certain there should have been no power drain. Tonight I'm going to have to use the battery disconnect switch and _hope_ that it functions as intended.

There's something very wrong electrically, and it seems like a grounding issue given the bizarre symptoms potentially in 3 different systems. I still haven't had a chance to troubleshoot what caused both the 120V outlets and USB ports in the pop-up tower next to the dining table to lose power a week ago.

I've definitely received more organized delivery and care and better service/responsiveness on all the new cars and new motorcycles I've purchased over the last 30 years, and all but one of those cost less than 1/10th of my Phaeton. Even the service I get from Honda dealers when I have a problem with my 10 year old CRV is miles ahead of what I've seen from Tiffin dealers so far.

I'm very loyal to dealers who treat me well, my Honda has over 100,000 miles on it and every single service, oil change and tire change has been performed by the dealer I bought it from. They're prompt, professional and they usually get things right on the first try. I used to ride 350 to 400 miles round trip to take my motorcycles to the BMW dealership where I purchased them, and I made that trip every 6,000 miles for 12 years (over 110,000 miles between two bikes) They were very professional and if I was ever in a bind, I knew for a fact I could count on them to go out of their way to help me out when things went pear shaped. They did it several times, not because I ever had to ask or demand, but just because they don't leave anyone stranded regardless of where they bought their bikes.

I'd have driven to Wausau every year for annual services but the vibe I got from people there was that I was just a nuisance and that they're far too busy with "important work" to ever want or need my custom.

I wonder if Tiffin doesn't reimburse their dealers adequately for warranty work. That could explain why they seem uninterested in doing it.

Anyway, I'll find a good independent shop somewhere for coach/aqua hot/generator annuals and service work. At this point I don't even care if I have to pay for the repairs out of pocket, I just want to be able to get to Oregon ahead of the snow and to be able to trust that the coach isn't going to have an electrical fire or seriously malfunction and strand me somewhere on a highway in the middle of nowhere.

That's not the kind of crap I should have to worry about with a quarter million dollar coach :(
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Old 10-05-2016, 05:09 PM   #11
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It seems everyone with Tiffins rave about going back to Red Bay, Alabama to have work done. Perhaps you can make a trip south.
I've got an appointment Nov 1 to have solar panels installed in Oregon, and those folks are almost impossible to get an appointment with. Sigh.

That and traveling 1,700 miles to Red Bay in a coach that may be at risk of an electrical fire and that may or may not have functional windshield wipers during the drive just doesn't seem appealing.

That plus the food in AL is pretty... uh...el-barfo grande
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Old 10-05-2016, 05:14 PM   #12
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Find a well qualified independent RV repair facility and ask them if they would work with Tiffin Motorhomes to perform the needed repairs. Tiffin will allow non-dealer RV repair facilities to perform warranty work and will arrange for direct payment to the facility for the work. If you can find such a facility call Tiffin Service Department (256-356-0261 ext 3824 Don Boyd) to get authorization for them to do the work.




And to answer your question, YES most all RV dealers suck big time when it comes to anything to do with service or parts.
Thanks much for the info! I emailed Tiffin service at 9am with a detailed description of the problems with the coach, still haven't heard anything yet. I think I will go the independent shop route as I really, really dislike paying vendors who make it clear they're not interested in my business in the first place.

Even if I have to pay out of pocket, my #1 priority is getting the problems fixed so that I know it isn't going to melt down a wiring harness or catch fire or self-destruct while I'm driving down a rainy highway.
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Old 10-05-2016, 05:22 PM   #13
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[QUOTE=Jerry J;3281440]If in the Springfield, Or area I would check with Cummins in Coburg, Or. They are fantastic and we make a point of going through Eugene area when we head north to Idaho from Arizona in Spring time.
We have had them find a wiring problem that the Winnebago Factory caused and they helped us get the money from Winnebago back because of their error. Various other dealers were unable to find the cause of the problem.
Anyway, I would call them and Tiffin to see if Tiffin would allowed them to do warranty work. You can park there with 50 amp service and water hook up. The Service manager, Mike, has been great to work with. They have a separate building for rv's and do bumper to bumper service, remodeling, etc. and also a Certified Coach Care facility.
There is a dump site at the Camping World that you will pass before going to the Cummins facility.

Quote:
Originally Posted by dphaynes View Post
Picked up my '17 Phaeton, have 2,100 miles on it, have several issues that I need to get fixed.

Dealer I bought it from was "too busy" with winterizing RVs for other customers to fit me in on 'short' (10 day) notice.

I need to have a new microwave and a closet light switch forwarded to the dealer where I'll get the work done. I have an appt in Springfield OR for Nov 1 to get solar panels installed..........................
Excellent! Thanks for the info! I definitely will contact them as I know how hard electrical problems can be to solve, having done it myself on submarines. It sounds like they have exactly the sort of experience I'm looking for.

Thanks again!
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Old 10-05-2016, 07:29 PM   #14
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I understand your coach is on a Freightliner Chassis, if so there is a possibility that your wiper problem is not a Tiffin problem but a Freightliner problem. While Tiffin installed the wiper motor, mechanism, and blades Freightliner provided the switch, wiring, and controller. If you have a new Multiplexing RV that the wipers will not park, there is a SEAR 2016-048 to update the parameters in the Bulk Head Module (BHM). You might want to ask your local Freightliner shop to contact FCCC to see if SEAR 2016-048 applies to your issue.

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