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Old 06-10-2018, 09:05 AM   #1
Winnebago Camper
 
Join Date: Mar 2018
Location: Seattle, WA
Posts: 35
2017 - 2018 Minnie Plus Roof Leaks 26RBSS

Dear Colleagues,


I just wanted to make owners of the Minnie Plus towables (and possibly other models in the line up) of my issue with faulty sealant that resulted in a water leak.
I have a brand-new 26RBSS towable Minnie Plus (which I really like). It has an awesome floor plan and I really like the color and layout. I spent a lot of time researching and shopping for the towable that best fit my needs. I decided on the 26RBSS, Blue Exterior, with the rear bath. I bought it new last June and used it all summer with no issues (Note: it did not rain much at all last summer).


As winter set in and the rains started here in Washington state I discovered a major water leak from the seam in my bedroom ceiling. The water had run down the central seam, dripped onto the bedside tables, and some it had puddled into the closets on both sides. I also found standing water in the basement compartment.

Long story short......after taking it to two different Winnebago authorized dealers, and after several calls to the warranty department, they approved the repair work. It turns out there was no sealant at all on the internal joinery where the walls meet the roof. This would not be evident from inspecting the roof for sealant cracks since it is on the interior of the surface. (the service technician told me when he took the unit apart to repair it he discovered they had completely missed this step in the factory). This is probably an issue with a breakdown in the quality process at the factory. Hopefully they can determine the root cause and correct the process step.

Evidently, the issue is widepsread since both dealerships told me they had other similar towable units in for the same repair that resulted from the same leaking issue. I did read two other postings on this site from other owners of new units who had similar issues. One owner had a unit that was so badly damaged from water leaking that Winnebago ended up taking the unit back and giving them a new unit.

Long story short, the dealership did an outstanding job of repairing the unit. They had to order parts form Winnebago and completely strip the end cap off of the unit, replace the entire interior structure, apply the correct sealant, and then button it back up. My unit looks and smells brand-new again.

The downside is that it took three months to get it repaired (Winnebago shipped parts that arrived broken and had to be re-ordered) and there was a queue of trailers ahead of me with the same repair.

In a spirit of collaboration, I have written to Winnebago and have asked them to look into the quality assurance process on the factory floor in hopes of discovering what broke down in the quality process so they can fix this for future consumers.

The service technician at Awesome RV in Chehalis, Washington did an OUTSTANDING job and he assured me the unit was completely sealed with an approved sealant.


He told me which type of sealant to purchase in the future to check for cracks on the roof (we all need to do this every year). He replaced all of the panels in the bedroom, the bedside tables, the interior closets, the panels in the basement storage compartment, etc. The unit looks, feels, and smells brand-new again. The sealant he recommended was called DICOR that owners apply once a year to the roof seams and around any extrusions.

It is noteworthy to mention that I had inspected my roof prior to Fall and Winter and there were no cracks in any of my caulking on the roof (the unit was new). Additionally, this type of leak resulted from an internal sealant that is used to join the walls to the roof, not from a leak in the external caulking.


Update: We just had a major rain and I went in the RV to check it and it's dry as a bone inside. I hope we have many years of enjoyment ahead of us.

I hope this helps other people who may have this issue or who may be thinking of purchasing a Minnie, Minnie Plus, or similar Winnebago Towable. Please be aware that the factory has not yet issued a service bulletin on this but it is a known issue. Check with the dealership before you buy and get an assurance that your particular unit is checked for this problem.

Evidently it is the sealant that is not visible from the exterior roof, it's some type of sealant applied in the factory where the walls join the roof.

At any rate, I am back on the road after a three month delay but there are bigger problems in life to worry about! I try to focus on the good and I am visualizing many years of happy camping in my 26rbss (which I just really enjoy!)


John
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Old 06-10-2018, 01:03 PM   #2
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Thanks for sharing. I have heard that there are two types of RVs... those that leak and those that are going to leak. We have to remain vigilant!!
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Old 06-11-2018, 03:24 PM   #3
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Good to hear your trailer is fixed up. While there should be multiple layers of sealant if there wasn't an exterior leak of some type as well I don't understand how the water could have gotten in to allow the missing interior sealant. Was it getting under a vent or other roof mounted item?
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Old 08-19-2018, 08:59 AM   #4
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We just bought a "used" 2018 27BHSS off a Winnebago dealer lot in Toccoa, GA. Paid $300 to have it checked out before taking it home. said no problems. Got home and first hard rain 3 days later there was water all over the floor in the bedroom area and part of kitchen. wasn't dripping from ceiling, but filling up walls and seeping out at bottom of walls. Called Salesman to let him know. Husband did a thorough search of trailer exterior to see if he could see where coming in, including going on roof during hard rain at night.
Then, during next hard rain, water was dripping over side tables in bedroom, flooding floor, rugs and corner of kitchen again. We backed it into the barn to stop any further damage but the side tables paint came off when I wiped them and the trim is all swollen and cracked around the door. The storage area in the nose is stained and warping. Talked to the previous owner prior to buying and he denied any problems.
We haven't even taken it out on a trip yet. I don't want a trailer that leaks and has mold and mildew.
I'm asking to get my money back from the dealer and will see what happens.
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Old 08-19-2018, 09:38 AM   #5
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I am so sorry this happened to you. Here is what I learned from my experience with the leak. First of all, don't lose hope....it can all be fixed. I know EXACTLY what you're going through. Secondly, don't believe a WORD the salespeople tell you about ANY trailer. They are there to sell units...they are not going to disclose how much effort it takes to stop leaks in a trailer. Trailers are bouncing down roads, sitting in the sun, moving side to side when turns are made, etc. This causes all of the materials in the roof and sidewalls to flex (this is completely NORMAL and to be expected). The key is to keep the caulking and sealants on the roof fresh and applied every month. It's a lot of work but if you stay on top of it you will prevent these leaks. Winnebago knows this but they are not going to advertise this fact because nobody would ever buy an RV if they knew how much maintenance is required to keep them watertight. Our leak was caused by a breakdown of the sealant somewhere on the roof. I'm not sure anyone could ever pinpoint the exact location, except that it leaked in the bedroom. The good news is that it is fixed now and knowing what we know now we can prevent further leaks. I suspect what happened is that the previous owner didn't keep up with the monthly maintenance of the sealant. If these trailers sit out in the sun and heat and then they are towed down the road....(the sealant flexes and cracks as the trailer bumps and turns down the road). Don't worry! The tables can be replaced, the floor can be fixed, and the trailer CAN BE sealed properly with sealant. Even brand new trailers that have never been titled can leak. This is because once they leave the factory they can sit out in the sun and sit out in lots waiting to be shipped and the sealant that was new begins to shrink and crack. I suspect in the future someone will come out with a sealant that will really last a long time and be super flexible and waterproof. Until then, we have to focus on staying on top of the sealant. Hopefully the dealership will take the unit back and fix it for you and seal it properly. If you reach out to me one on one we can exchange phone numbers and we can talk on the phone if that helps. Don't panic. It's not the end of the line.....it can all be fixed and hopefully you'll have many years of enjoyment out of this unit. They are great trailers and we enjoy ours a lot!
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Old 08-19-2018, 10:51 AM   #6
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Thanks, John. Our trailer manufacture date was July 2017, purchased by first owner 10/2017 (2018 model ). We purchased 8/1/18 from the same dealer he bought from. He said he had it under carport cover from purchase date and used 4 times with no leaks.
it sat on dealer lot 1 month before we purchased and we didn't notice anything except some staining on the wall of the storage compartment, which we were told was from pressure washing.
We were buying this Winnebago based on name brand to go long distance camping now that we are retired (both 65 and we do not need to be climbing on the roof all the time to re-seal, nor do we want to.)
We are replacing a 16 year old Sundowner LQ horse trailer, which has been wonderful! NEVER leaked even pulling all over the SE US with 3k of horses and lots of gear. Just re sealed seams on top to help sell, but never leaked. only thing ever replaced was the fridge. Everything works, nothing rusted, pulled out, broken as I am seeing on these forums for travel trailers. Very disheartening, especially since the camper cost almost as much as our first home.
I would like to just get our money back. We have a trip planned in 3 weeks. We don't have time to wait 3 months for it to be repaired and have to unload everything and store it until we get it back and HOPE it is fixed.
What is wrong with just plain old clear silicone sealant? We use it for everything and it is flexible and water tight.
Thank you for your reply.
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Old 08-20-2018, 06:35 AM   #7
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Join Date: Mar 2018
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It's a small world, I used to have a horse trailer too. Typically horse trailers are made of much heavier material because weight isn't a primary design factor in building the horse trailer. Travel trailers, on the other hand, are designed to be light and easy to maneuver, hence........they are not as solidly built as a horse trailer would be. Why don't you contact me offline and I'll share my experience with you. Rest assured....WINNEBAGO knows about this problem with all of their travel trailers. You can always call them directly and ask for the warranty department if the Dealership doesn't help. I am not sure exactly what caused our leak...they never really told us....they just assured us it was fixed. You can reference my name and case details with Winnebago if it helps. If you send me your email address I'll reach out to you offline and we can connect if that helps.
Don't give up hope, it can be fixed. It's VERY difficult to get your money back once the deal is made. There is no Lemon Law for non-motorized vehicles. Hopefully the Dealer will fix it or give you a nice loaner to take for your trip while they fix your unit. I don't know about the clear silicon sealant. I used what they recommended, it's a sealant called DICOR, you can order it on line and read up on it. I am no expert by any means but I'll be glad to share what I know.
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Old 08-20-2018, 07:30 PM   #8
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Thanks for sharing your story. We are in the Seattle area too and might ask you more details if we have any problems.

I was bouncing the trailer down washboard roads last weekend and started wondering what might jostle loose. Didnít even think it might be a roof seal.

On a side note, everyone seems to be having quality problems right now. Iím hearing of them in my industry (aerospace) and the marine industry too. Not enough qualified workers to do the work. So you either overwork your team or hire dolts. Neither leads to quality
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Old 08-25-2018, 04:31 PM   #9
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Winnie Plus 27BHSS leaking

John, I would love to talk about your experience and how you got the repairs done. Can you personal message me and I'll give you my phone # or you can give to me.
Thanks!
Debbie
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Old 09-01-2018, 08:20 AM   #10
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I bought a used 2017 Minnie Plus 27BHSS from an authorized Winnebago RV dealer at the beginning of July. On the Minnie Plus Facebook group, I had read about leaking problems in the front cap area due to its design-and that they have since changed the design. Because of that, I had it written on the purchase agreement that the sealant on the front cap area be especially checked. During the walk-through, the mechanic who had done the PDI told me he filled the area that he knew was prone to leak with a lot of sealer. During a heavy rain last night, water came through the overhead storage unit where the 1x1 boards meet the curve of the cap. That sounds similar to what John experienced. I’m going to the dealer today to show them pictures I took. Does Winnebago - or the dealer - have any responsibility to get this fixed? How would we know if a service bulletin was issued? I’m in a it of a panic mode because more rain is forecasted....
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Old 09-01-2018, 08:43 AM   #11
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Hello, I would call Winnebago and ask to speak to the warranty department when you're at the Dealership. Hopefully they can contact them for you (on your behalf) and figure out from Winnebago what the fix is for the problem. They know there is an issue with these units. The good news is that they can be fixed! Don't give up hope! Just insist that they do it right. You can private message me for my phone number if you like and we can speak on the phone.

John
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Old 11-02-2018, 09:28 AM   #12
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Good luck. see my posts above under horspwr101. We had a 2018 less than a year old, but we were the second owner so WB didn't want to do anything. I had to really force the issue to get it repaired. It has been at the dealer for 2 1/2 months. WB would send some parts, wrong parts, wrong color parts, etc. every week or so. they say it is ready for pick up tomorrow. We are keeping our fingers crossed that we don't have any more problems. We keep ours in a barn so we won't know unless we leave it out in a hard rain.
You may have to just pay to have repairs done. This is a well-known issue but WB still is hard to deal with on it. The warranty on the roof is not for leaking, as I found out later.
Good luck!
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Old 03-01-2019, 10:31 AM   #13
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update on our 27BHSS 2018 Camper leak saga...We got it back after 3 months at the shop. was told it absolutely would not leak! While there, someone stole the tv and some personal things. The Dealer sent a tech to our house to replace the TV 3 days after we got it home. While he was there had a hard rain. Guess what! water pouring into the wall again and ruined the just-replaced trim. Got ok from WB to reseal everthing on camper. took it back for 2 more months. 5 months after purchase...still had never camped in it!
This time, I think they got it. We have left it out in the rain for last 6 weeks and no leaks.
We are really looking forward to the Spring Camping season now!
We love the camper and the layout.
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Old 05-18-2019, 03:22 PM   #14
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Join Date: May 2019
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Angry Leaking of Micro Minnie

Your sagas are distressing. I too have discovered leaks after buying a brand new Micro Minnie Winnie. After the first leakage, supposedly it was fixed. Went out today after more rain and discovered it leaked again - same place - along the front panel and sides. Got the mattresses wet again. They said previously it was due to the sealant on the outside of the trailer where the front panel and roof meet. There was lots more sealant (dichor?) on the roof now.

I am leaving for an extended trip in 3 weeks for Canada and Alaska. I don't have time as you all experienced to get this fixed. I will take your write-ups in to the service department this week and am thinking about contacting an attorney. I have previously paid for this upcoming trip and do not want to miss it due to faulty construction and poor service departments.

Any thoughts from you all?

Ann
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