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Old 11-09-2009, 12:34 PM   #15
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We bought it just last year, 2008, and previously it had been bought from Lazy Days in Florida. Not sure which plant built it. But, it would seem that this has been going on for a very long time to have so much damage. We pulled some of the wall paper back behind one of the sofas and not only was the plywood soaking wet but it was separating into thin paperlike layers. And I hate to say this because it is so disgusting....but there were thousands of very tiny white bugs under the paper and all inside the plywood. They ran away from the light when we turned on the flashlight.

Locally, we went to an rv dealer to see about fixing the damage (prior to taking it to Phoenix) and they had an identical 2003 Fleetwood revolution in being fixed. It had the same exact leaking and de-lam problem except for one thing....the insurance company was paying the $50,000 repair bill to replace the entire wall on it because the owner had sort of lucked out. Something had fallen on the passenger side of his coach (same side both he and us have the de-lam problem on) damaging it. But, the rv dealer said they have had a few 2003 Fleetwood Revolutions in for the same de-lamm problem on the passenger side. We are going to try talking to Fleetwood one more time...re at least covering some of the cost. This is a huge problem and a huge expense.

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Old 11-09-2009, 12:58 PM   #16
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While our experience is now ancient history, this thread has a familier ring to it.

Our first motor home (not our first RV) was a 1991 Fleetwood Southwind that we purchased new. In just over a year we noticed delanimation on one side of the rig. We immediately contacted Fleetwood. They wanted us to drive it to the factory, in Indiana, not at all convenient for us, so they could inspect it. If they decided it was not our fault (the rig was only on it's second season!), they'd replace the entire side. If they decided it was our fault, for lack of maintenance, it would cost us 7k to repair. With dealers all over the place, why did we need to take it to Indiana for the inspection? To keep this short, we spent a couple frustrating years trying to get Fleetwood to commit to something, all to no avail. We traded it after that and I promised Fleetwood that was my first, and last purchase of any of their products. Here we are three new RV purchases later, and so far we've kept our promise. When the time comes to upgrade to our 'retirement rig', they will not be considered. There are a few companies out there that have much better customer service reputations, Tiffin for one. We currently own an Allegro Open Road and when the time comes, in a couple more years, will be looking at a Phaeton or Allegro Bus, depending on the budget.

As an aside; a dealer we'd done a lot of business with back then explained that the technology was new, and they found that they were not allowing the adhesive to properly set up before mating the components, traping the solvents between layers. When parked in the hot sun, those solvents turned to gas and expanded, causing the separation/delamination. Presumably the technology in both manufacturing and adhesives has improved in the last 18 years.

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Old 11-10-2009, 07:46 AM   #17
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Fleetwood had a similar problem back in the late 80s. We had a '89 Pace Arrow that the walls started to delaminate due to water intrusion and/or bad glue on the fiberglass (which was a "known" problem for 89 - 91 models) shortly afer the warranty expired. Fleetwood's answer to us was that they could make us an appointment during the winter (which is their slow time) in Indiana to have the wall replaced at our expense (as I recall, over $20,000 at the time). We have owned Tiffin motorhomes ever since!
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Old 11-10-2009, 06:20 PM   #18
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I have the same problem with my 96 Southwind, the previous owner kept it in Florida, so the rubber roof is deteriorating where it rolls over at the edges, I used the roll sealant that was mentioned in a previous post, and it worked great. But know it's leaking again, the entire length of the coach, could not see any other place that it could be leaking from, but noticed the A/C covers were getting cracked from the sun exposure. Since it's getting colder, and I don't need the A/C, I covered both with small tarps, the leaking has stopped! So I would check the A/C units for the leak, it will run the entire length of the coach, but not show up under the units themselves.
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Old 11-15-2009, 06:51 PM   #19
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I have seen a few motorhomes now including a lot of different brands. Many leak issues are a result of poor factory installation practices, then poor attempts at covering the problem with caulk (a short term fix period IMHO). Sad to say, but the coach owner needs to step up and do his own fixing. A lot cheaper !! also IMHO.


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Old 11-16-2009, 03:03 PM   #20
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I became aware of delamination on RVs when I had a '96 Pace Arrow by reading about others having the problem. I got Eternabond tape and ran it around the seams of the roof at the sides, front and rear. There was never a leak on that MH while I owned it. While it is too late for the OP he could do that on the other parts that are not leaking. I also had to snug the AC bolts every year to keep the AC from leaking. The Newmar that I have now has an entirely different wall construction and delam is not a problem. Good Luck on the repairs. I have read where some people have gone to Mexico for lower cost paint jobs and were happy with the work. Would that work for your wall repair?
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Old 11-20-2009, 09:04 PM   #21
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This is a terrible situation. I feel really bad for the owners. I've always thought that RV roofs were a terrible design. Having grown up with buses, we never had this problem with them --- even old ones.

RV roofs seem to be totally dependant upon the integrity of sealants that are exposed to the elements. Consequently, they need to be reapplied periodically, as stated in the owners manual. Also, there are many things mounted on the roofs that rely on sealants as well. They appear to me as a system designed to fail far too early for the RV's potential life span.

Some manufacturers are better than others, but none of them are as good as they could be. Just a guess, but roofs manufactured like bus roofs would probably add $5k - $10K to the cost, plus the extra weight, which might also require a heavier chassis to accomodate the weight (and possibly sidewalls built differently to carry the roof weight too). I know there are cost tradeoffs on all designs, but I still believe RV roof and sidewall construction is not adequate for its intended purpose.

The old GMC motorhomes built in the 70's are a classic example of better engineered roof and sidewall construction. They still had leaks from things mounted on the roof, but their design minimized resulting damage to structural elements. Many of them are still on the road today and enjoyed by their loyal followers.
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Old 11-22-2009, 09:17 AM   #22
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Southwind Storm Side Walls

Our experience with Fleetwood was good considering the problems that we had with our 1998 Storm.
We purchased the Storm new in 1998 at a mfg. RV show in CA. On our first trip it rained all weekend and water leaked all over the dash and front drapes. The warranty repair shop informed us that the roof had uncalked joints and that he had to recalk the entire roof. After that there were no more visible leaks.
About eight months later the right rear side wall started to bubble along the belt line (the seam just above the storage compartments). This is a long story so I will simply say that over the next 3 years I drove the coach to Riverside CA twice so Fleetwood could replace all of the sidewalls. The last time it was there for two months. Fleetwood did all of the repairs under warranty and were very nice to us. They told us that the repairs would have cost us over cost $40,000. We paid $50,000 for the coach!
This should not have happened, the coach was poorly built and the quality control at the factory was horrible. That said, I will say that Fleetwood did a great job at Riverside, we never had another issue and sold the coach in Jan. 2009.
I would not give up on Fleetwood's denial of repair on your coach. Be the "squeaky wheel", send pictures, write letters, contact consumer action line help, do what ever it takes to get attention from someone at Fleetwood that has the power to fix your problem. You have an uphill battle to fight especially since Fleetwood has gone through financial ruin and now is under new ownership, but why not try? They should be very concerned about their reputation if they plan to stay in business. If I were thinking about buying another Fleetwood product and read about wet sidewalls etc. and no help from Fleetwood, I would buy something else which is exactly what we did.
Good luck to you.
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Old 11-22-2009, 03:09 PM   #23
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We have had three Fleetwoods. A 37 foot Southwind, a 34 foot Expedition and now a 32 foot Tioga. The only leak has been a crack in a skylite over the bath in the Tioga. The first thing I do when I enter is look at the ceiling all around the inside of the unit. It was out of warranty, but Fleetwood and Lazy Days fixed it for free. The construction of all three was very good. I hope my luck holds. Marvh

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