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Old 06-09-2017, 01:20 PM   #1
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Brand: Thor Motor Coach
State: South Carolina
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THOR #6691
Thor leaning problem

I am stuck in the middle of Thor and Ford pointing fingers at each other!!
We have a brand new never used 2017 Thor 26HE Freedom Elite that leans to the left. Thor told me that Ford would be the one to correct the problem that the chassis spring in most likely the problem. Ford dealer said they cannot find anything wrong with the leaf springs and that Thor just put to much "stuff" on that side when they built it. Our RV has been sitting at Camping world for two months!!!! We bought the unit on March 4, 2017, the first month was learning and outfitting. (sheets towels, etc) We have never used the RV.

I am at the point of using South Carolina "Lemon law" and get a lawyer.

Has anyone else had a leaning problem with their RV, or know of any?

Take care

JP Charleston sc
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Old 06-09-2017, 01:52 PM   #2
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My 2017 Freedom Elite 26HE is the same as yours and it also leans to the left. It's noticeable even when it's parked and empty. It's noticeably more pronounced when the slide is out and I'd expect it's even more so when there are two people sleeping in the slide. Sometimes I put an extra leveling block on the left side while I'm setting up but usually I ignore it. I've noticed that many RVs do this and I've decided that the left side is just heavier than the right side (it has the slide, the kitchen, the generator, the propane tank and the fresh water tank on that side) and I think it's just one of the quirks of the thing. No big deal.
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Old 06-09-2017, 02:23 PM   #3
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Have you tried quantifying the issue, either by weighing the RV at all four corners, or perhaps measuring clearance from rear bumper to ground to see if there is a large difference between right and left? I've seen pictures that appear to show some lean -- but hard to say how much.

Personally, I'd expect getting weight distribution close to even should be part of any design. That's a basic requirement even amateurs worry about.
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Old 06-09-2017, 02:31 PM   #4
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I don't want to sound critical or condescending here BUT did you not look at this RV from all angles prior to purchase? I would have walked around looking at every angle for levelness and sag, its just part of looking things over. I look even at cars to see if the wheels are straight and not bowed out or in, even on new cars.
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Old 06-09-2017, 04:09 PM   #5
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If I were you , which of course I am not , I would take the rv to a good truck spring shop . I would get their opinion on what the problem is and what it would cost to correct it.
It is not uncommon for vehicles to lean and in a leaf sprung vehicle I have corrected it by disassembling the leaf spring on the low side and adding leafs to correct and level the vehicle.

I understand that the vehicle is new and it shouldn't be up to you pay for a fix but if it can be corrected for a reasonable cost I would just do that.
For me aggravation and wasted time has a dollar value ..
Lawyers cost big money and the time involved to settle a suit like this would eat a hole in my stomach .

If you want to place blame it would most likely belong to Thor , especially if other folks are experiencing the same problem with the same model rv.
Thor was the one that distributed the weight on the Ford chassis and it appears that they did it improperly.

Get your springs modified and enjoy your rv. Again that's just my opinion.
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Old 06-09-2017, 04:29 PM   #6
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What about a set of those Sumo Springs I keep hearing about, would they correct the problem?
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Old 06-09-2017, 05:34 PM   #7
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First I would unload all your supplies and then weigh the MH at each corner. If it is indeed heaver on the left side in significant numbers, I would lean on Thor. If not, Ford may say they can't find anything wrong with their springs, but if the right and left spring will not equally support equal weight, they have a problem, which becomes more difficult for them to deny, when confronted with actual numbers. Also be sure when you measure, you are measuring the Ford frame height, not the MH structure that Thor built. As a last resort, you can always take it to a good frame shop and have them level it with booster springs, or whatever they recommend. Though you will bear the cost, that would be the least stressful process.
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Old 06-10-2017, 01:28 AM   #8
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Interesting this message is posted...I am taking delivery of a 2018 ACE 29.3 next month.....today I spoke with a local shop re installing a safe t plus and getting an alignment...spontaneously the fellow recommended atbtime of delivery i look to 'see if the unit is leaning left'...this puzzeled me....he further said this has been fairly recent issue....hmmm..
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Old 06-10-2017, 02:06 AM   #9
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My 2017 Four Winds 26B leans to the driver and even more once the slide goes out. The slide, generator, fresh water, and gray water are all driver while the black tank, fridge, and clothes closet are passenger. We store heavier items like pop and water beneath the couch to offset the fresh water tank and load heavier items in closet and drawers and lighten items in the pantry.

Our long term solution will be the same as our past solutions. Air lift 5000 bags with onboard air and dual gauges/zones to manage left vs right.
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Old 06-10-2017, 02:46 AM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by airforceret View Post
My 2017 Four Winds 26B leans to the driver and even more once the slide goes out. The slide, generator, fresh water, and gray water are all driver while the black tank, fridge, and clothes closet are passenger. We store heavier items like pop and water beneath the couch to offset the fresh water tank and load heavier items in closet and drawers and lighten items in the pantry.

Our long term solution will be the same as our past solutions. Air lift 5000 bags with onboard air and dual gauges/zones to manage left vs right.
That sounds like a good fix and you can "tune " the bags to suit your load
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Old 06-10-2017, 03:25 AM   #11
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Originally Posted by jtroop View Post
What about a set of those Sumo Springs I keep hearing about, would they correct the problem?
Sumo Springs, air bags, adding extra leaf springs, or re-arching leaf springs on one side may correct the leaning problem, but may not address the underlying issue.

If leaning is caused by overloading on driver side, then these "fixes" don't solve the problem, they address the symptom.

Getting corner weights has to come first in my opinion. If chassis loads are within ratings, then options are many.

Note I'm not saying chassis is overloaded, just that it needs to be ruled out.
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Old 06-10-2017, 11:33 AM   #12
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What type of shop typically can do corner weighing?.....an alignment shop or?
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Old 06-10-2017, 01:06 PM   #13
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Originally Posted by David1912 View Post
What type of shop typically can do corner weighing?.....an alignment shop or?
I have mine done whenever attending a rally (FMCA or Escapees) that offer the service during the rally.

RV Safety has a center in central Florida that operates year round.

Weighing Schedule
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Old 06-14-2017, 05:45 PM   #14
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So I stopped at the truck service center that did my alignment (without the MH) today - they seem competent to me - to ask about the leaning. He looked up my alignment service work - which included corner weights - and found that the left side of my 26HE is about 550 lbs heavier than the right side. He said that certainly is enough to cause some lean but it's probably really only an aesthetic issue causing no actual problems. He also said he probably can fix it by adding a leaf or helper spring to the left side and that the cost would be under $300. The weight issue certainly seems like a function of the floor plan (which we really like and is what sold us on this model). In the 26HE the slide, the kitchen, the dinette, the generator, the propane, the fresh water and almost all of the inside and outside storage are on the left side. Since the lean is slightly greater with the slide extended and no doubt is greater still with DW and me sleeping in it AND since we always sleep with our heads towards the outside we probably are sleeping somewhat heads down. That's probably not ideal but it hasn't really bothered us so far. At this point I don't think I'm going to have it "fixed" but I'll probably be more attentive to using one more leveling block on that side. My storage lot is not far from the truck place though so I'll probably run it by for an actual quote.
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Old 06-14-2017, 06:05 PM   #15
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Good plan , adjusting the spring to suit the load will work just fine.

if it was a race car and not a motorhome that might not be the proper repair but for a motorhome it will be perfect.
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Old 06-14-2017, 06:16 PM   #16
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Model: Challenger 37TB
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So we've owned our Challenger for 26 months and 32,000 miles. Our coach leans to the passenger side by about 1" and was noticed about 2 months into our ownership. Lean hasn't gotten any worse and better still our coach handles very well at highway and in town driving. I was initially concerned and thought about the same types of fixes listed above. And would have untaken the fixes had handling been an issue. I guess when you have a washer/dryer, 100 gallon water tank (most times we carry 25 gals when on the road) and lp tank on 1 side - it's probably gonna lean.
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Old 06-14-2017, 06:18 PM   #17
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Sounds like a plan. I would go that way too, I believe having them fix it, will help preserve your sanity. I'm pricing levelers for ours, why they don't come with them is beyond me, but I have pretty well decided to have them installed. Obviously wont effect level while driving, but while parked and camped it will.
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Old 06-14-2017, 06:37 PM   #18
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Pete'sMH View Post
So I stopped at the truck service center that did my alignment (without the MH) today - they seem competent to me - to ask about the leaning. He looked up my alignment service work - which included corner weights - and found that the left side of my 26HE is about 550 lbs heavier than the right side. He said that certainly is enough to cause some lean but it's probably really only an aesthetic issue causing no actual problems. He also said he probably can fix it by adding a leaf or helper spring to the left side and that the cost would be under $300. The weight issue certainly seems like a function of the floor plan (which we really like and is what sold us on this model). In the 26HE the slide, the kitchen, the dinette, the generator, the propane, the fresh water and almost all of the inside and outside storage are on the left side. Since the lean is slightly greater with the slide extended and no doubt is greater still with DW and me sleeping in it AND since we always sleep with our heads towards the outside we probably are sleeping somewhat heads down. That's probably not ideal but it hasn't really bothered us so far. At this point I don't think I'm going to have it "fixed" but I'll probably be more attentive to using one more leveling block on that side. My storage lot is not far from the truck place though so I'll probably run it by for an actual quote.
If he didn't give you a copy already, you may want to ask for one of the corner weights. It'll allow you to check against chassis ratings, plus also help you set the correct tire pressures.
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Old 06-14-2017, 09:18 PM   #19
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Model: Four Winds 26B
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Although a single spring change will fix the leaning I intend to put that money towards a good set of airbags and gauges to dial in each side independent of one another. This way I can manage windy weather as well or if I change my loading practices I'm not limited to a single spring change. I've already made some changes in my 26B loading to help offset the weight using the under couch storage space and outside storage beneath the couch (outside), and putting lighter items in the big storage beneath the slide.
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Old 06-15-2017, 01:47 AM   #20
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Originally Posted by Chance View Post
If he didn't give you a copy already, you may want to ask for one of the corner weights. It'll allow you to check against chassis ratings, plus also help you set the correct tire pressures.


Yes, I got it when it was aligned but left it in the machine at the storage lot and didn't remember. I do recall that even loaded for camping (full fuel but empty fresh and holding tanks) I have over 1500 lbs of load capacity left to use. I checked the Michelin inflation tables and was able to lower my tire pressures by a couple of pounds. Not much though. Really like my MH!
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