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Old 06-22-2022, 12:51 PM   #1
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HWH Cascading Steps 2017 Essex

I purchased this coach preowned in September of 2021. I have been having problems with the HWH hydraulic cascading steps ever since. Today as I was investigating I found what appears to be a connection cut for the curb feeler. The wiring is in the first bay passenger side behind the bay fridge. I think previous owner cut this to bypass the sensors but that may have caused other problems. Any thoughts?
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Old 06-22-2022, 01:45 PM   #2
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The HWH steps require frequent repair. I have a 2017 LADP with same steps. Newmar accomplished the HWH bypass modification, I replaced the curb and shin feelers, and I replaced the upper rear support arm due to cracking. They are certainly temperamental. Most people that cut the sensor wiring cut the wires under the steps, not in the bay. What exactly are your problems?
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Old 06-22-2022, 04:16 PM   #3
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We have a 18 LA since new and have found the HWH 3 step also has been a lot of work the last 3 years. Have had to replace the front and bottom sensors twice at 160$ each time. The step brackets on the top two steps on the left side as you are going up the steps have cracked at the guide plates. Have welded them and now have added braces over them to keep them from cracking. Have adjusted how we get in to the coach by stepping in the middle of the step to spread the weight across the complete step not just the left side as you go up and down the steps. Nice the have the 3 steps when going up and down but not without problems.
One reminder to all 3 step coach owners is when going to fuel stops to check for curbs and especially round curbs because the sensor won't always shut off the step when it hits and this can cause a twisted frame which isn't something you want to fix.
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Old 06-22-2022, 08:46 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ewlee View Post
The HWH steps require frequent repair. I have a 2017 LADP with same steps. Newmar accomplished the HWH bypass modification, I replaced the curb and shin feelers, and I replaced the upper rear support arm due to cracking. They are certainly temperamental. Most people that cut the sensor wiring cut the wires under the steps, not in the bay. What exactly are your problems?


The first issue was a broken or lost E lock on one of the arms. That caused the other arms to bend and the steps were basically going in crooked. I replaced all the bent broken parts. The curb feeler on the bottom was damaged. I have the part but have not replaced it yet because I actually cut the sensor strip off past the damaged part, reattached it and it worked until the other day. That is when I found the cut wire in the bay.
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Old 06-22-2022, 10:34 PM   #5
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A couple weeks ago some with the Newmar 3 step entry was in Canada and the unit needed a number of parts. HWH nor Newmar had them and ended up purchasing the complete unit for 10K from Newmar.
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Old 07-05-2022, 06:38 PM   #6
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Wow this is interesting I just removed the left slide arm to repair a crack. Looks like a common issue. Trying to figure out if have room for a small additional piece for more support.
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Old 07-05-2022, 07:21 PM   #7
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Yes you add a support aluminum piece 1 1/2 inches wide and 6 to 7 inches long on the middle step which is the one that has twice before cracked and broke. I used 15 or 18 rivets as you can see from the photo. The step has never felt so secure when stepping on it since new. For our LA this is the answer to cracking steps and damaged steps. Do try to step more in the middle of steps so as not to put more stress on the left side of steps as you look going into coach. No problems on other side but have done numerous repairs starting as early as 18 months after purchasing it.
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Old 07-06-2022, 05:53 AM   #8
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Tom did you do these repairs with steps still on coach or drop steps out, also that additional piece or brace is riveted on to the outside correct. Thanks for the help and picture.
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Old 07-06-2022, 12:06 PM   #9
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Yes was able to put brace on with step still attached to the coach. Yes the brace is on the outside of the step bracket. Also used J/B weld under brace before starting the rivets in. Want to put brace as close to the end of the bracket because that is were the stress is the highest and the crack starts there. Right now only have brace on the middle step bracket. Do check to make sure your guides are attached well too. Removed the two guides I could get to with step attached to LA and again used J/B weld and new rivets to hold them in place better.
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Old 07-07-2022, 05:03 AM   #10
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Tom,
Where did you get your step covers and how did you attach them?? They look very good!
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Old 07-07-2022, 06:36 AM   #11
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Tom, are you going to the Newmar rally? If so I would like to take a look at your work on the step.
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Old 07-07-2022, 08:12 AM   #12
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Or don't do what I just did. Put the step out, turned them off then level the coach.

The spot I was in was not level, (rear lower than the front) and I did not realize there was a big rock under the steps. So when the front air bags deflated to level, the lower step hit the rock (and being that I had turned the steps off) they did not retract and it bent 3 of the connecting guide rods on the left.

That was a fun project not to mention a $225.00 mistake. Thankfully that is all it did.
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Old 07-07-2022, 12:47 PM   #13
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So to go along with my post above, upon further inspection I discovered one of the tracks are cracked like so many others have had it happen.

Of course it would be the upper track that is tucked up inside the step cassette. Has anyone had any luck repairing a crack in this location without pulling the whole step assembly out.
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Old 07-07-2022, 01:59 PM   #14
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So to go along with my post above, upon further inspection I discovered one of the tracks are cracked like so many others have had it happen.

Of course it would be the upper track that is tucked up inside the step cassette. Has anyone had any luck repairing a crack in this location without pulling the whole step assembly out.
Yes, I replaced that same guide track without pulling out the entire step assembly, almost but not all the way out.
1) Remove power from the steps with them out.
2) Remove the two door stops and the bottom cover pan

3) Disconnect the control rods from the steps
4) I believe there are 3 or 4 bolts holding each the fwd and aft ends. Remove all of the bolts. The step assembly will drop slightly enough to slide the rail out the end.
5) Slide in the new rail or the repaired rail.
6) Install the bolts removed above
7) Reconnect the control arms
8) reconnect power
As you can tell the only thing I did not remove was the 2 hydraulic rams, the magnetic switches, and any wiring. When I had everything back together I did not have to do any rigging or adjustment.
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