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Old 08-27-2013, 09:16 AM   #1
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Hydraulic & air leveling why?

Our , new to us, coach has both. Just wondering why and when would I use the hydraulic. Thanks in advance for any suggestions.

Safe travels all
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Old 08-27-2013, 09:54 AM   #2
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Not sure what you mean, by "Air Leveling", but hydraulic leveling is what I and a lot of others use. A lot of RV'ers might use electrically operated jacks to level. When I park, first I "dump my air bags" (which have nothing to do with the leveling process) and then activate my hydraulicaly operated jacks, to level the coach. Then, I extend my slides. Be sure to check your operating manual, to see what is recommended for leveling.
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Old 08-27-2013, 09:59 AM   #3
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not knowing the make of coach..not that would make a difference....but if you had a slow air leak and where there for a week,say, it could possibly leak down and lose the leveling...I try to use it for a stay for one or two nights...or if the ground is very wet....anything longer I will use the hyd jacks.....2 weeks ago in NH and went to level and buried a back jack all the way in the ground, so used the air leveling for 5 days...Chuck
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Old 08-27-2013, 10:04 AM   #4
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Originally Posted by FLYING BUTCH View Post
Our , new to us, coach has both. Just wondering why and when would I use the hydraulic. Thanks in advance for any suggestions.

Safe travels all
Well Sir,
As has been stated, it would be nice to know what make, model, year, type, engine, etc. of motor home you have. Some folks here might have the same coach and, possibly the same leveling system(s). I personally have never heard of a coach having both air and hydraulic leveling systems. I suppose that doesn't mean they never made it, it just means, I've not heard of it.

But, a tad more info might be helpful. And, just what kind/make/model number of hydraulic leveling system (i.e. HWH, model #......) that too would help.
Scott
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Old 08-27-2013, 12:29 PM   #5
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Wink

I had ACTIVE AIR added by HWH a few years back and that gave me both automatic and manual hydraulic leveling and automatic and manual air leveling. I use the air leveling when I am just going to stay for a day or 2 and the hydraulic if I am staying longer. It is also nice to be able to level when overnighting at a truck stop, walmart or rest area using my air leveling. My system also allows me to adjust my ride hight on the road.
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Old 08-27-2013, 01:05 PM   #6
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...I personally have never heard of a coach having both air and hydraulic leveling systems. I suppose that doesn't mean they never made it, it just means, I've not heard of it...
Scott

Don't ask me why, but a number of the high end coaches come with both air and hydraulic leveling systems.
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Old 08-27-2013, 02:07 PM   #7
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As Cat320 said, it's pretty common on higher-end coaches with an active air suspension system to have both. Our Hadley air suspension has a self-leveling mode (SLS button on the control panel), and we have HWH hydraulic jacks as well. We basically only use the HWH jacks, but we have friends with an Essex with the same systems that almost exclusively use the Hadley. The air suspension is a little faster to set up, and you don't get the annoying "jacks down" alarm if you turn the ignition on. We find the hydraulic jacks give a firmer feel to the floor than the air does.

Coaches without an air suspension would only have electric or hydraulic jacks.

Prevost based motorhomes (and Newell also, I think) don't have any jacks. They only have the air leveling system. But I've been in parked Prevost and Newell units, and didn't notice any more movement in them than I do in our KGDB when it's on the jacks.
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Old 08-28-2013, 12:29 AM   #8
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Don't ask me why, but a number of the high end coaches come with both air and hydraulic leveling systems.
Well Gang,
Learn something every day. Now I know. Thanks for the info.
Scott
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Old 08-28-2013, 05:37 AM   #9
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I've worked on a few MCI conversions that had the HWH 680 series air leveling - the slides also had articulated interior floors and automatic air seals around the perimeter of the rooms that inflated/deflated when you operated them. Neat system.. I would prefer the air leveling over the mechanical conventional levelers - far fewer things to go wrong, obviously a LOT less weight too.
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Old 08-28-2013, 03:10 PM   #10
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Hydraulic leveling usually can achieve level over a greater distance/angle than air leveling. Air leveling uses the coach air suspension to level and the "travel" is limited. Works fine where each corner of the rig is more-or-less level to begin with, but on a site that has one end or corner substantially different than the other, hydraulic may be needed. The hydraulic system has rams that extend much further and can accommodate a much greater difference in height.
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Old 08-29-2013, 08:29 AM   #11
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Level ers

Thanks for info guys. Just odd that she has both, but I now can see that I may need the hydraulic sometime.

Safe travels all
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Old 08-29-2013, 09:32 PM   #12
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Our 05 dynasty came with the "air leveling" (we really like it) and the hydraulic leveling was also an option to add to the air leveling. I personally have not had any of the problems that Gary mentioned regarding un-level sites but I am sure he is correct in that the actual distance achieved with the hydraulic leveling is greater. Air leveling means anywhere on any type of surface with no jack pads and no jacks to hang up. When we get on site, I put out the slides and hit the auto level button. Almost instant leveling. Really like it and have had zero problems (knock on the wood).
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Old 08-30-2013, 07:30 AM   #13
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Our coach doesn't have the air leveling feature, just the normal Freightliner ride height controls. When we don't have our hyd. jacks down, there's a lot of movement within the coach when somebody is moving around, or steps in and out of the door? I don't know what's causing this, be it the airbags flexing or tire sidewall flex, but the solid link to the ground provided with the hyd. jacks (after lowering/deflating the airbags) all but eliminates this movement/wiggle.

All that said, I don't get how an air leveling system could hold a coach steady to the point it wouldn't 'wiggle' when somebody was walking through it? That, to me, justifies the existence of the the hyd. jacks in addition to the air leveling system? -Al
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Old 08-30-2013, 11:30 AM   #14
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Air leveling is used on the road.. Hydraulic when you are parked..

now Why?

Well on the road some motion of the motor home is normal, you expect it and it does not bother you. Air being a gas can be compressed so in theory if your Significant other were to get up and cross to the other side of the motor home the rig would lean slightly in that direction till the compressor adjusts the pressures in the air bags.

Plus the engine driven compresser is working and thus can provide for said adjustment.

Page 2

Now when parked.. You want the floor of the motor home to be both level and as movable as a concrete slab.

Hydraulic fluid can not be compressed. So as you move around the motor home it's not rocking and rolling.

So, if you leave the air bags inflated when parked (instead of using the jacks) you need a sign for your door.

"If the Rig's a-rockin', Don't come Knockin'"
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