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Old 07-23-2018, 05:22 PM   #1
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Scathing Reviews of Northwood Trailers

Fellow Northwood Enthusiasts,
I'm just about to purchase a new Northwood Product.
I've narrowed it down to these 3, in order of 1st to 3rd choice
2018 27-5L 5th wheel
2018 25-W
2019 25-Y

I've found several reviews where folks have written very harsh reviews complaining about overall quality of the newer NW product line. Some of the bad reviews were centered around the 27-5L specifically.

So id appreciate some actual owner testimonials on they're satisfaction or dissatisfaction of the NW camper line.

I've owned a 2015 Arctic Fox 1140 wet bath for about 3 years, and sure my unit has had a few very miner problems but no major mechanical issues to date. And the issues I have had only needed some small hand tools and a little common sense on my part to fix. IMHO, I believe that RV ownership requires some mechanical skill and ingenuity to make field repairs yourself.

I've camped in pretty cold night time temps for several weeks without issue and comfort inside the big truck camper was pretty nice with the slide extended.
Hoping I can find folks here will give me some positive feedback about they're NW trailer.

Thanks
Jeff
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Old 07-23-2018, 06:00 PM   #2
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People don't complain if they're satisfied. Some folks take it personally if something isn't up to their standards and try to flame the company they think 'done 'em wrong'. Before signing for any item like a vehicle, check it out, have every system demonstrated for you, get any promises to repair items IN WRITING.
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Old 07-23-2018, 06:56 PM   #3
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Those are nice units. From the reading I've done, their QC has slipped significantly. But I believe they're still built better than most units out there.
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Old 07-24-2018, 09:12 AM   #4
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Most of the poor reviews are not about the same issues as other MFG's. I almost never see delam, slides stopped working, frame cracks, etc,. I see mostly issues with stripped screws, a leaky shower in the 27-5L (well documented with easy fix), blown grease seals (All common to all MFG using the same axles), some with missed labels coaxial's, etc.
Nothing major except the grease seal thing which is across all brands.
If you want to see trailers with issues running the gamut, then go read all the posts on the Grand Design Forum Owners site or any other brand forum for that matter.
IMO it's impossible to guaranty you'll not get an RV with very few issues these days. I think one needs to decipher through the reviews and look at what problems require the RV to be taken back for warranty work because the problem is to complicated for the owner to fix. Most all RV's these days use components from the same suppliers. If the part goes bad then thats on the supplier. If the part is installed wrong then thats on the MFG.
I have a 2013 Fox 235. I've had a few Northwood issues and a few non NW issues. Nothing that would keep me from getting another one. About par for the course. They offer more standard features that fit my needs better than most other brands.
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Old 07-25-2018, 08:47 PM   #5
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We just bought our second Arctic Fox 27-5L in April. Almost all of the problems with the new units are the result of the finish workers either being vastly undertrained, or rushed too much. Either way, some of the reviews you have read are people expecting perfection, when many of the problems can be fixed in less time than the people took to complain.

Some can say that I am trying to justify paying what I did for our 5er, but this is our second one. We drove over 500 miles to get it, and i would have walked out if the overall quality wasn't there. After looking for several years, I only found one that I felt was comparable quality wise in this price range, but the tank sizes and only residential fridge were definite deal breakers with the amount of boondocking and dry camping we do.
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Old 07-25-2018, 09:44 PM   #6
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I agree Jamey T. I'll say it again. When owning an RV, it really helps to have just some basic mechanical skills so you're not inconvenienced with taking the coach back to the dealer for simple warranty issues. Sure it's nice to expect perfection, but is it a reality to expect it. As long as the mechanical items work as expected I'll deal with a stripped out screw or an adjustment to a cabinet door.

BTW, Today I traded my AF Slide-In TC for a 2 year Old, slightly used 25-Y TT. I'm excited to get it home and pack it up, figure out where to put and organize all my things I keep on the unit full time.
I find enjoyment in setting it all up.
And I also acquired a new Tow Vehicle as well. 2018 GMC 2500HD All Terrain.

A getaway is is emanate, Glad I don't have a job to get in the way.
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Old 07-26-2018, 12:59 PM   #7
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4 years ago I bout our 29-5T.

The first thing I did was toss the ST and went LT tires.

We have hauled it approx 25K miles. We have had to replace the kitchen faucets.

The one think I notice with AF is that once bought, they tend to stay wit the brand... I think it is geared to the long / full time crowd..

The downside is that they are heavy. In this century, heavy equates to quality because all the stuff that goes inside is basically the same weigh regardless of brand so where is the company saving weight. They don't seem to have a lot of bling which suits us..

I have a friend that has a rig longer than mine but under half the weight..

Oh, and it doesn't have a lipert frame..
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Old 07-27-2018, 08:59 AM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by wantajustrid View Post
I agree Jamey T. I'll say it again. When owning an RV, it really helps to have just some basic mechanical skills so you're not inconvenienced with taking the coach back to the dealer for simple warranty issues. Sure it's nice to expect perfection, but is it a reality to expect it. As long as the mechanical items work as expected I'll deal with a stripped out screw or an adjustment to a cabinet door.

BTW, Today I traded my AF Slide-In TC for a 2 year Old, slightly used 25-Y TT. I'm excited to get it home and pack it up, figure out where to put and organize all my things I keep on the unit full time.
I find enjoyment in setting it all up.
And I also acquired a new Tow Vehicle as well. 2018 GMC 2500HD All Terrain.
Quote:
Originally Posted by wantajustrid View Post
A getaway is is emanate, Glad I don't have a job to get in the way.
Congrats on the new to you TT. Nice layout. Same as our FM 235. At least with a 2 year old TT all the bugs are worked out and the early depreciation is used up. Happy camping.
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Old 07-29-2018, 02:17 PM   #9
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I canít belive what I am reading...justifying itís ok to have poor workmanship. Wow. If you bought a new car and the mirror fell off or a screw in the door panel is stripped and and the door panel fell off you folks would be livid calling it a POS.
Or the radio knobs where missed labeled...or the window down button was actually the up button...but hey if itís trailer itís ok I can fix it.

So why do you accept poor quality for any trailer especially for the the price you pay with your hard earned money...or get a loan for 10 or 20 years and the trailer lasts 5 years.

Would you buy a new boat,motorcycle and say oh I am handy I can fix it if anything goes wrong.

We as customer just enable and accept this poor quality...there will be no change unless customers says not good enough.

Why would you pay full price for a new product when isnít perfect or 99%.

Say no to poor quality,..itís your money.


We as RV owners are so dumb to accept this crap!! Yup... I accept I am to blame as well.

By the way...a trailer is a trailer is a trailer...and as someone said to me...we own the best trailer in a crappy neighbourhood

Coops
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Old 07-29-2018, 04:12 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Lac View Post
I canít belive what I am reading...justifying itís ok to have poor workmanship. Wow. If you bought a new car and the mirror fell off or a screw in the door panel is stripped and and the door panel fell off you folks would be livid calling it a POS.
Or the radio knobs where missed labeled...or the window down button was actually the up button...but hey if itís trailer itís ok I can fix it.

So why do you accept poor quality for any trailer especially for the the price you pay with your hard earned money...or get a loan for 10 or 20 years and the trailer lasts 5 years.

Would you buy a new boat,motorcycle and say oh I am handy I can fix it if anything goes wrong.

We as customer just enable and accept this poor quality...there will be no change unless customers says not good enough.

Why would you pay full price for a new product when isnít perfect or 99%.

Say no to poor quality,..itís your money.


We as RV owners are so dumb to accept this crap!! Yup... I accept I am to blame as well.

By the way...a trailer is a trailer is a trailer...and as someone said to me...we own the best trailer in a crappy neighbourhood

Coops

That has been the argument for years. But it is what the public wants. Quality trailer companies have gone under (remember Glendale) because people do not want quality.. they want bling and a 5er that can be pulled with a 1/2 ton.


Sofas, TVs, Fridges, stoves etc in most rigs weigh the same. So if you have a "lite" trailer, where do you think the weight saving is coming from ?


Problem could be solved very quickly.. all people have to do is stop buying for 6~12 months..


No, not all trailers are the same and if you think that, you need to get out more. Do you want to buy from a company that has many, many different brands that compete against each other or a low volume, quality maker.


Look at the brands that folks continue to buy from.. and how many used models are on the market.


Not sure I would put a long term loan on a rig.. what is it.. about 3 years before the rig is worth 50% of what you paid for it unless it is a tier one brand ?
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Old 07-29-2018, 05:42 PM   #11
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We have a 2013 27-5L and we are very happy with the unit except for two things which I blame Northwood for, front cap fade and electric dump valves. Since you are looking at newer models you won't have to worry about either as Northwood has eliminated both problems on newer units, 2015 and up. There was a problem with some of the lighting in the living room area but Northwood authorized a local RV repair shop to fix it under warranty saving us a round trip drive of 150 miles to the dealer we purchased it from. We've owned this 5ver for five and a half years now and I am very satisfied with the quality overall. Northwood has made a lot of improvements and upgrades to this trailer since we originally purchased ours and we are now back in the shopping mode again for a new trailer. Northwood is in the top five we are considering again.
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Old 07-30-2018, 01:34 AM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by grassy View Post
That has been the argument for years. But it is what the public wants. Quality trailer companies have gone under (remember Glendale) because people do not want quality.. they want bling and a 5er that can be pulled with a 1/2 ton.


Sofas, TVs, Fridges, stoves etc in most rigs weigh the same. So if you have a "lite" trailer, where do you think the weight saving is coming from ?


Problem could be solved very quickly.. all people have to do is stop buying for 6~12 months..


No, not all trailers are the same and if you think that, you need to get out more. Do you want to buy from a company that has many, many different brands that compete against each other or a low volume, quality maker.


Look at the brands that folks continue to buy from.. and how many used models are on the market.


Not sure I would put a long term loan on a rig.. what is it.. about 3 years before the rig is worth 50% of what you paid for it unless it is a tier one brand ?
The ďtrailer is a trailer is a trailerĒ comment came from an RV extended Insurance warranty adjuster. He has dealt with more trailer issues than both us will see in a life time...and as far as he is concerned all trailers are the same...have the same problems and issues...some more than others.

I am confused by your comment I need to get out more...I own a trailer manufactured by Outdoors RV Manufacturing that is owned by Northwood. As you know Northwood makes Artic Fox and other Northwood trailers.
My trailerís frame is built from the same company as your Arctic Fox and it might fit your trailer ..the fridge is the same. The stove and oven is the same,the stereo is the same, the tires and wheels are the same,the front jack is the same, some of the windows are the same. The AC is the same...and unfortunately the quality is the same...but I would like to think my build is a wee bit better lolo
Most of the senior management in the ORV factory are from Northwood.

I have toured both factories...the building process is the same.

So I think I get out more than most.

I totally agree with what you say regarding people need to stop buying...and people donít want quality...

I would like to think we both like quality....thatís why we bought the trailer we did.

As I said we own the best trailers in a crappy neighborhood.

Good comments

Travel safely

Coops

PS Glendale was a great Canadian RV Manufacturer.

This is a quote from Canadian Press Jan 20,2010

ďHigh gasoline prices, a rising loonie and the lingering effects of recession have taken a toll on GTA recreational vehicle manufacturer Glendale International, forcing the company into bankruptcyĒ
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Old 07-31-2018, 07:04 AM   #13
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Could you post the "scathing" reviews? I'd like to see them.

Regarding quality and accepting "less than perfect" workmanship... sometimes it's as simple as "it's more trouble than it's worth". Fit and finish repairs are a non warranty "return" issue for me on just about anything, unless of course the cost of such repairs is significant. Those kind of issues generally could be or should be worked out before you accept delivery... IMO.

I'm talking about a screw here or there, crooked door, trim loose... those kinda things, a punch out list.

I own boats, 4 wheelers, motorcycles, cars, travel trailers. and trucks. I understand about buyer beware but I also understand sometimes it's just easier to just suck it up. Subjective for sure, because of different skill levels.

That's my story and I'm sticking to it.
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Old 07-31-2018, 09:11 AM   #14
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I owned my 12 Ram 2500 CTD for as long as I own my FM 5th wheel. I had way more repairs on the Ram than the FM. Spend some time reading brand forums of all things made. Most all have problems. If I based all my buying on the premise that what I'm buying is going to need work or will fail me at some point and it's junk and I should not buy it, then I would not buy anything ever. You take your chances with everything these days.
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