Does Fleetwood RV come with slide out problems?
Yes, it does – just like every other ‘Class A’ RV manufacturer including Coachman, Forest River, Liberty Coach, Jayco, etc.
In this article, I’ll share some of the common problems you’ll likely experience with your new or used Fleetwood RV slide out, and how to quickly fix them.
If you feel a little pessimistic about your knowledge on opening and closing RV slide outs, read this article.
What are RV Slide outs?
RV slides outs are the extension that is present at the sides of the vehicle. These extensions can be slid in or out according to the needs.
You most probably purchased a new RV or are on the verge of renting one for that long-awaited trip to the countryside or that coveted road trip around the world — it’s important to understand the problems associated with RV slide outs, which are not peculiar to Fleetwood RVs at all.
The battle for spacious rooms is not only in the real estate world it has also evolved into the travel world.
You probably want to carry the feeling of home away from home, that way everything will just seem normal and thus can take all the time you need for the trip without getting homesick.
The earlier models of RV didn’t have much space; they were congested and clumsy, until a company experimented with adding one slide out on one of its RV model.
Customers liked them leading to mass production.
Although slide outs have revolutionized camping and road trips, they do not come without a share of problems — because it is made of moving parts which are most probably heavy — they tend to fail when you need them the most.
You cannot travel with your slide out because it could not retract or camp comfortably with your slide in; in this case, most slides are equipped with mechanical or hydraulic sliding systems.
The first step before identifying where the problem is in your slide out is knowing which type of systems are installed in your RV.
1). Electric Slide-outs
These make use of a battery-powered motor that drives gears. These kinds of slide-outs are mostly found in smaller and lighter recreational vehicles.
They are less complex and thus easy to repair.
They are easy to operate but also carry their share of problems when they’re not properly maintained. Some of the problems associated with mechanical slide-out systems include:
- Bad gearbox or motor,
- Broken shear pin found on the main gear that makes the slide-out
- Obstruction by solid materials for example pieces of clothes, beer cans, umbrellas, shoes, and other items
- Rust on the parts. They mostly depend on friction if a slide remains in the store for as long time rust might form on the sliding parts.
2). Hydraulic RV slide-out systems
These systems are still run by the battery as the source of power which drives a motor that makes a hydraulic ram to slide in or out the slide-out.
These types of slides are a bit complex and have greater power thus are used in large RV and coaches they tend to be more hard to fix and dangerous too if faulty. Hydraulic systems fail because of the following problems.
- Reduced level of the hydraulic fluid
- Leakage in the hydraulic fluid system
- The valves that close and open to let the hydraulic fluid to pass at desired locations may be defective.
There is no need for immediate alarm if your slide won’t open using the normal procedure, do, taking utmost care as dealing with a faulty slide can be disastrous sometimes fatal.
Have a first aid box ready in case of a small injury or have someone at hand to contact the ambulance if something goes wrong.
How to fix RV problems (Fleetwood, Jayco, Forest River, etc)
Before calling to have your truck examined for faults, carry out this simple check mechanism to know what would likely be the cause of the slide-out problems:
- Ensure that your truck is level to the ground; this will ensure that the weight is distributed evenly across all supports and none is under stress.
- Perform some thorough checking around your vehicle for any stray substance that may have blocked the way of the slide.
- Ensure that the batteries are charged and that the terminals are connected, power is required for both the hydraulic and mechanical slides.
The process of removing the slide-out is nearly the same in both mechanical and hydraulic systems, it involves:
- Switching on the slide-out room control.
- Put the slide-out into position.
- Hold the switch until it turns on completely, if it does not open, check the slide for debris, clothes, shoes and any obstruction that may refuse the slide from opening.
- Release the on button.
- If the slides open to the maximum, the motor will sense and stop on its own.
- Remove the key.
If the slide doesn’t open, the manufacturer provides a means of manual override where you can disable the hydraulic or mechanical systems and, in turn, use physical power to push the slides open or close.
Always choke the tires to ensure that the RV doesn’t move while accessing the underside of the truck.
For electrical or mechanical systems:
- Ensure that the battery power is connected and the terminals are all working.
- Switch off the slide-out option.
- Find the slide motor, can be found either in front of the front rail or behind the back rail.
- Disconnect the two-point connectors on the slide-out motor leads.
- Release the brakes through unscrewing the screws that hold it into position in the motor.
- With the help of a ratchet apply a little pressure to slide out, your slide.
- After it is open screw back the brakes to ensure that the slide is held into position.
- Seek the help of a mechanic to reset your slides.
For hydraulic systems:
- Ensure that the battery is fully charged and connected through the terminals.
- Switch off the slide-out motor option.
- Detach the protective label
- Insert the standard handheld drill into the auxiliary drive device.
- Under the protective label, enter the bit into the coupler.
- Start the drill to run in a clockwise direction to slide out the slide-out.
- Seek the help of a qualified mechanic or your dealer to ensure the RV is repaired.
Why the slide-out doesn’t need any support using either jerk or any objects below the truck
You probably don’t need to add extra support on your RV slide out; they are designed by the manufacturer in a way that they can handle a little extra weight, adding some beams or support logs.
Below the truck may cause more harm than it would benefit, because of the following reasons:
- The deflation of tires may cause the level of the truck to change leading to unevenness causing the slide to rest on the supports; this may cause disjointing of the parts and thus have trouble retracting in the slides.
- Uneven surface, it is not a guarantee that the land you pack is flat, this may cause uneven placement of the slides.
- Movement in the RV truck, movement May lead to pressure being applied to different parts where there is the support.
It’s good to check your slide out before you leave for that trip, to ascertain that everything is in good working order. Better safe than sorry.
I hope this article has been helpful and you’re now well-prepared to tackle any problems associated with your Fleetwood slide-out or any other RV model slide-out for that matter.