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Old 06-24-2017, 10:21 PM   #1
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Model: Freedom Elite
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Moving On

We bought our Freedom Elite 29FE on March 31 and already tired of the numerous problems, lack of quality, and dealing with Camping World. Traded today for a 30' Winnebago Aspect. No comparison in the quality. Yes, it cost us to get out from underneath it but not as bad of a hit as I expected.
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Old 06-24-2017, 11:30 PM   #2
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Glad you are happy with the new coach! Hope it continues to be a pleasant expeience.
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Old 06-25-2017, 12:10 AM   #3
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Congrats on your purchase. I assume it is a new one. I sincerely hope you don't have issues and problems with another new unit.
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Old 06-25-2017, 11:26 AM   #4
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Congrats on the new coach. I hope it lives up to your expectations. We looked at Winnebagos when we bought our 28Z. Very nice unit.
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Old 06-25-2017, 11:53 AM   #5
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It's a shame you had so many unresolved problems, don't blame you for trading. Hope your next experience is trouble free, wish you the best!
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Old 06-30-2017, 03:45 PM   #6
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Congratulations on your new coach! We looked hard at the Travato, but it didn't have the storage we wanted, in our out.

If you ever pass through Iowa, plan to stop for a tour of the Winnebago factory in Forest City. It's not far off I-35. Here's a video:
https://youtu.be/gZDkHZjtZYs
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Old 06-30-2017, 04:19 PM   #7
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Model: 2017 SynergyTT24Ming Blue
State: Indiana
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Angry Sorry your leaving I may be right behind you.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Shawbird View Post
We bought our Freedom Elite 29FE on March 31 and already tired of the numerous problems, lack of quality, and dealing with Camping World. Traded today for a 30' Winnebago Aspect. No comparison in the quality. Yes, it cost us to get out from underneath it but not as bad of a hit as I expected.
Almost home from our first two week trip in this new 2017 Thor Synergy. I feel stupid for having paid so much to get so little quality. Here's my first trip problem list.
Air bag light on
In dash radio extremely poor reception
Coach radio extremely bad reception
Coach blue ray only plays standard DVDs
Screen door rattles enough to drive you nuts
Passenger seat belt locks up on shoulder preventing movement
Wood panels on both sides of slide out sofa fell off
Roof leaked, skylight leaked real bad
Rooftop AC and interior 120v quit (needs power transfer switch replaced)
LP regulator quit in first week (replaced on the road)
Two cargo latches malfunctioning
Wipers fail to contact/clean windshield correctly
Bath door screws fell out
Bath shelf/ 4-5 screws fell out
Toilet lid won't stay in open position/lid drops on its own
Coach door misaligned? See daylight at bottom corner, handle hard to operate at times.

We won't be home until this evening so the list might get bigger. Nearest Thor dealer is 2 1/2 hours away. I'm very disappointed I will now have to waste my time getting all this fixed after spending this kind of money to buy what I thought was a quality product. One vacation equals a trip to the dealer/or mfg to get stuff corrected. Not sure I want to keep this coach now. 3 days of Gulf of Mexico rain running through the roof and skylight soaking into the roof and cabinetry wood is surely going to be an issue later after the warranty is over.

Not happy
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Old 07-01-2017, 02:02 AM   #8
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With respect, these seem like relatively minor issues -quite a few of them to be sure - but all pretty simple to fix or adjust. I have found that it's typically easier and less frustrating to fix things like this myself. And once they're taken care of you'll probably get many years of happy service. Good luck.
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Old 07-01-2017, 01:06 PM   #9
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Originally Posted by Pete'sMH View Post
With respect, these seem like relatively minor issues -quite a few of them to be sure - but all pretty simple to fix or adjust. I have found that it's typically easier and less frustrating to fix things like this myself. And once they're taken care of you'll probably get many years of happy service. Good luck.
Sure I get that Pete. But I also get that being in South Texas during 105 degree weather without propane, rooftop AC or 120v to run a fan because quality is terrible is not a "minor issue". My wife thinks I'm a total idiot now for paying $100,000 to drive her to "Misery South Padre Island" during weather hell week! It was or first trip in this brand new coach and it was memorable. We will now never forget how miserable it was. Nothing like wet, sweaty people in a stifling box.

Stupid me. I expected more for $100,000...............
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Old 07-01-2017, 01:42 PM   #10
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Certainly many minor issues - but have to say a couple of those are MAJOR - and we really should be able to expect better...

Having just had a car deemed a 'total loss' by a roof leak with far less than 3 days of rain - the skylight leak would concern me the most as far as what the water got into...

Shouldn't have a power transfer switch and an LP regulator fail on first trip... and no A/C in the deep south this time of year is more than an inconvenience.. especially with pets/kids on board.

Everyone will find loose screws and things like that... but I think we should expect less than the length and depth of a list like this...

I hope you can get everything fixed to your satisfaction and begin to enjoy the coach... Hopefully it will be something you can laugh about years from now.
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Old 07-01-2017, 04:14 PM   #11
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Bill, I feel bad for all your problems. But even though you paid $100,000 for that brand new RV you have to keep your expectations realistic. There is the "way it should be" and then there "is the way it is" when it comes to the RV industry. Your coach probably actually cost about $45,000 to make, so start by basing your expectations on that. Remember, you didn't buy a $100,000 automobile, you bought an RV.

Your List:
Air bag light on (Back to Dealer)
In dash radio extremely poor reception (Back to Dealer)
Coach radio extremely bad reception (Back to Dealer)
Coach blue ray only plays standard DVDs (Probably a setting)
Screen door rattles enough to drive you nuts (Fix myself, probably simple adjust)
Passenger seat belt locks up on shoulder preventing movement (adjustment)
Wood panels on both sides of slide out sofa fell off Fix myself)
Roof leaked, skylight leaked real bad (Fix myself)
Rooftop AC and interior 120v quit (needs power transfer switch replaced)(Dealer)
LP regulator quit in first week (replaced on the road)
Two cargo latches malfunctioning (fix myself)
Wipers fail to contact/clean windshield correctly (fix myself)
Bath door screws fell out (fix myself)
Bath shelf/ 4-5 screws fell out (fix myself)
Toilet lid won't stay in open position/lid drops on its own (adjust or replace myself)
Coach door misaligned? See daylight at bottom corner, handle hard to operate at times.(adjust myself)

I will be the first one to admit that generally speaking the RV industry lacks quality control. But you have to remember that we drive these things down some pretty rough highways and shake the crap out of them while doing it. Things will move, flex, and come apart. If you plan on traveling in an RV across country then you need some tools and willingness to make simple repairs and adjustments on the go. If you expect dealers and RV shops to take care of everything then you will be very disappointed because there just isn't that good of a support system out there.

I spend 30 minutes or so every day after traveling just looking different things over. I look under my coach and inspect the roof every week or 10 days looking for problems before they start. To me it is no different than being a professional over the road truck driver, you constantly check your equipment and make adjustments when needed.

You have a nice new good looking coach. Get the issues taken care of and relax. The grass isn't always greener on the other side. My BIL had issues with his first $130,000 gas coach so they went out and dropped $350,000 for the big DP. They are happy with it now that it is 3 years old but it spent more time at the dealer in the first year than with them on trips.
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Old 07-01-2017, 04:48 PM   #12
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Thanks Joe. This is what we and you call FUBAR when all these issues happen on the first trip out of the driveway. They will all get fixed no doubt. Doesn't mean I cant rage in here so I don't kill someone elsewhere! Retired businessman, teacher, army so I'm no snowflake and know how to fix things some people never heard of. Point is we shouldn't have to. America has learned to pay more for less and ignore pride and quality in workmanship. At least in the RV industry. Food for thought.
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Old 07-01-2017, 05:06 PM   #13
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Thanks Joe. This is what we and you call FUBAR when all these issues happen on the first trip out of the driveway. They will all get fixed no doubt. Doesn't mean I cant rage in here so I don't kill someone elsewhere! Retired businessman, teacher, army so I'm no snowflake and know how to fix things some people never heard of. Point is we shouldn't have to. America has learned to pay more for less and ignore pride and quality in workmanship. At least in the RV industry. Food for thought.
My sisters and BIL have probably spent the equivalent of 3-6 months at Red Bay having issues fixed on their Tiffen over the last five years. It's WAY out of warranty, but still being covered, because they were all serious manufacturing fubars.

My Cousin has a VERY expensive Renegade Ikon and it was delivered with numerous problems that had to be fixed.

From what I can tell, all the entry level/budget coaches (Thor, Forest River, Winnebago -- not too many that aren't owned by these three now) typically have problems ranging from small to large. But, the so called "higher end" coaches more times than not also have minor, and not to uncommon, major issues, coming out of the factories as well.

Even though I wasn't totally crazy about the floor plans, I had read so much great stuff about Phoenix Cruiser in terms of quality that I came really close to pulling the trigger on a 2551/2552 twin bed model. Before doing so, I joined their forum to ask some questions about customizing, and low and behold, I can customers with similar problems to what we read about on Thor coaches. Maybe not quite as bad, as I think overall their slow, build one at a time (sort of) approach leads to better quality, but fact is they have leaking slides, manufacturing mistakes covered up with wood colored tape, electrical problems, workers that didn't read the build sheet and installed wrong options or wrong locations, etc.

Therefore, while I will probably be irritated when my new coach arrives and there are issues, I am going into this with my eyes open and know that if my coach doesn't have a bunch of problems, I will be the exception, not the rule.

So, with that said, I'm not planning an epic journey out of the gate, but instead, a series of small shake down cruises (a weekend at a state part 45 minutes away so I can just head home if things go south), a trip up to MI to get Bigfoot levelers installed, etc. My focus in the early months will be about finding and fixing or having fixed issues, so that hopefully in 3-6 months (or next spring), I can really enjoy the coach.
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Old 07-01-2017, 05:07 PM   #14
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If it were me the dealer would get 1 shot to fix EVERYTHING to MY satisfaction in a timely manner (no more than 1 week) or they could send it back to the factory to be repaired. We took ours to the factory service center for all my long list initial warranty repairs & it took them from 7am to 2pm to fix or replace the entire list plus some items I hadn't found yet. Most dealers will park it out back & IF they EVER bother to answer the phone you'll get "we're waiting on parts or factory approval" & 6 months later you'll find they didn't fix 1/2 of the items & messed up more items trying to fix the little stuff. I agree with the guys to fix what you can, but those guys at the factory throwing these things together & getting by with it day after day should have their a## kicked all the way out door & black balled from ever working assembly anywhere.
Whatever happened to good ole American pride in workmanship???
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Old 07-01-2017, 05:14 PM   #15
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Originally Posted by Travelin' Texans View Post
If it were me the dealer would get 1 shot to fix EVERYTHING to MY satisfaction in a timely manner (no more than 1 week) or they could send it back to the factory to be repaired. Mine was at the factory for all my long list initial warranty repairs & it took them from 7am to 2pm to fix or replace the entire list plus some items I hadn't found yet.
Did you bring it to factory or did dealer do it for you?

I've discussed with wife the major issues with quality of dealer work that compounds the lack of QC and attention to detail at these RV factories, and that we might just opt to go up to Thor service center, because I have read almost universal praise of them.
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Old 07-01-2017, 05:20 PM   #16
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Did you bring it to factory or did dealer do it for you?

I've discussed with wife the major issues with quality of dealer work that compounds the lack of QC and attention to detail at these RV factories, and that we might just opt to go up to Thor service center, because I have read almost universal praise of them.
We were going to the rally & just used the opportunity to use the Crossroads service center. I don't know about Thors, but it would have to be better than 95% of most dealerships. It would definitely be worth a phone call.
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Old 07-01-2017, 06:26 PM   #17
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Originally Posted by DogLovers View Post
Thanks Joe. This is what we and you call FUBAR when all these issues happen on the first trip out of the driveway. They will all get fixed no doubt. Doesn't mean I cant rage in here so I don't kill someone elsewhere! Retired businessman, teacher, army so I'm no snowflake and know how to fix things some people never heard of. Point is we shouldn't have to. America has learned to pay more for less and ignore pride and quality in workmanship. At least in the RV industry. Food for thought.
There is much truth in both of your points. If you wait till they make quality motorhomes the way manufacturers should, you'll end up on sidelines waiting forever for them to improve or get it right. I know.

The flip side is that as long as enough people are willing to buy crappy quality, and fix things themselves, manufacturers don't have an incentive to improve. Buyers are essentially empowering manufacturers to build inferior products while they turn record profits.

Demand is too high right now to force much change in my opinion. Manufacturers and dealers are calling the shots.
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Old 07-01-2017, 08:45 PM   #18
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Originally Posted by Travelin' Texans View Post
If it were me the dealer would get 1 shot to fix EVERYTHING to MY satisfaction in a timely manner (no more than 1 week) or they could send it back to the factory to be repaired. We took ours to the factory service center for all my long list initial warranty repairs & it took them from 7am to 2pm to fix or replace the entire list plus some items I hadn't found yet. Most dealers will park it out back & IF they EVER bother to answer the phone you'll get "we're waiting on parts or factory approval" & 6 months later you'll find they didn't fix 1/2 of the items & messed up more items trying to fix the little stuff. I agree with the guys to fix what you can, but those guys at the factory throwing these things together & getting by with it day after day should have their a## kicked all the way out door & black balled from ever working assembly anywhere.
Whatever happened to good ole American pride in workmanship???
I called Thor from the road about "no AC or 120V power and leaking roof not to mention the other issues two days ago. Get this. They told me, "If you would like to make an appointment we can get you in here in September". You don't want to know what I told the guy on the phone. :-)
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Old 07-01-2017, 08:55 PM   #19
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I called Thor from the road about "no AC or 120V power and leaking roof not to mention the other issues two days ago. Get this. They told me, "If you would like to make an appointment we can get you in here in September". You don't want to know what I told the guy on the phone. :-)
Based on what I've read, that's about right, 2-3 months for the Thor service center.
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Old 07-01-2017, 09:57 PM   #20
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And this time of year most dealers are similarly backed up. It's not good or right but there it is. We took three short (weekend) local trips to work out the bugs before our first "real" trip. I probably have about a full work day in repairs and adjustments and have not had to go back to the dealer yet. It shouldn't be this way but it IS satisfying to fix things and I've learned a lot about my coach.
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