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Old 04-30-2016, 12:34 PM   #1
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Keeping Clean a Vulnerable Slide-Out Dive Assembly

I have the below coach. It is also sold by Itasca as a Sunnova 33c. We are getting ready for our first real trip (four plus months) which starts in a couple of weeks. As part of this, I have been reading the manuals and studying up on the various aspects of the coach.

What I did not realize, is that the front passenger side living room slide has slide out assemblies (motor/gear/rack) are only protected from the elements and not enclosed “inside the storage compartment” as the manual states. I have examined the two motor and the gear assemblies that drive this slide and noticed that the front assembly does get a lot of dirt and water on it, while the rear assembly is more protected and does not get the much. Dirt and water to me translates into problems and premature wear. The last time I had this problem, was with a 1994 travel trailer. It too had an exposed slide out assembly and I was forever keeping it clean.

So, now that I see Winnebago dropped the ball and it is up to me to maximize function and get the most life out of this system, are there any suggestions on keeping it clean? My thoughts are to hose it down with a strong stream of water either periodically or as needed (possibly pretreating it with Simple Green), let it dry and treating it silicone or a dry lube spray. Looking at other Winnebago floor plans on-line, it appears that other models may have the same configuration for some of their slide outs not to mention prior year 33c’s.

I realize there is a price point for every RV and I accept some of the corner cutting on material and build quality to get this price point. Though we bought this motor home knowing this and accept what we believe are weaknesses (the floor plan sold us), the slide out issue may very well have been a deal breaker had I known about it.

ed
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Old 04-30-2016, 07:08 PM   #2
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I have had my 2015 33c since May 2014 and I haven't had an issue with the Front Passenger slide. The front Passenger Slide seems to always go in and out without incident. Sometimes I have to push the slide lock button a few times to hear the lock engage. The few times I was looking under the unit and slide on my I didn't notice much dirt but I wasn't focused on checking the slide mechanism. I haven't done any preventive maintenance in that area yet. Thanks for pointing it out I will take a look next time I am working on the unit.

However I had a failure of the Drivers side large slide which caused considerable damage and time in the shop. On the late 15 models and 16 models the way the slide is withdrawn has been changed to prevent what has happened to mine so you shouldn't have any issues with that or the bedroom slide which have the same mechanism.
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Old 05-01-2016, 06:49 AM   #3
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We have a Journey and had been some heavy iced and snow a couple of years ago, and when we returned, we noticed the same thing, the front Slide out mechanism was covered with road dirt, rocks and everything else.
After looking closely, discovered that there was a path for road grime to get from Front tire area back to the slide mechanism area.

It was about 2 inch gap that from the mechanism area, you can see the front right tire.

We added a rubber sheet to block the road debris from getting into that area. We also noticed on driver side that the propane tank was always covered with grime and found the same issue on driver side and made the same modification.

Has worked great since then.

Hope that helps
Paul & Debbie
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Old 05-01-2016, 01:40 PM   #4
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Thanks for your replies. I was hoping for a few more experiences and/ or suggestions. Maybe they will come.


This is my first motorhome. I have had two 5th wheels over the last 13 years. Between them, I have towed around 92K over all different types of road and road conditions. I have been in a number of situations over the years involving road constructions and dirt. I have found that dust will get everywhere under an RV when the construction site is dry and in the rain, mud will do the same thing.


There has been a number of times that the mud has really made a mess of the underside (and topside) of the truck and 5th wheel. With the 5th wheel it affected the rear electric jacks (they have been so muddy – the mud dried and the jacks would not go down). The mud has also affected a folding arm that carries the electrical wiring underneath the side outs. I also found it incredible how much mud can collect on top of a spare tire mount under the truck and 5th wheel.


Just as with you Paul, on the Sightseer, the slide motor and round gear that drives the rack gear is partially protected by a compartment. The compartment is the type that are attached to the S/O room. So when the S/O moves, so does the compartment


Also as with you Paul, I also see a path for water, dirt and debris that leads to motor/gear assembly. I have to study it closer, but I was looking to installing some sort of shield to minimize the water, grime and other debris from reaching the assembly. When I was under the MH yesterday, I came up with some ideas but will have to give it a fresh look and study it closer. The beauty of this situation is that with the S/O out, I can sit up under the MH and not have to lay on my back to work.


We are leaving for four plus months next week so I will do nothing for now. The fact that both of you have not had any real issues (except for Paul’s extreme situation) gives me some comfort so I will probably just keep an eye on it. I may hose the assembly off periodically and spray some sort of dry lube like I used to do with my 5th wheel.


A couple of questions for Paul:


First, did you clean up the slide assembly after driving in snow and ice, and if so, how did you clean it? Did you do any lubrication afterward?


Second, can you explain the rubber sheet shield to me including what kind of materials you used and how you fastened it? Do you have any pictures?
Thanks again to both of you.


Ed




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Old 05-02-2016, 05:49 AM   #5
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I uploaded letter that i sent to customer service to show the mess it made, i don't have any pictures of completed, but i was able to find the same aluminum bars and and rubber sheeting at local OSH store and covered up the area.

053014 - Letter to Owner Relation on Dirt in Slide Mechanism compartment.pdf
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Old 05-02-2016, 04:01 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by audvid1 View Post
I uploaded letter that i sent to customer service to show the mess it made, i don't have any pictures of completed, but i was able to find the same aluminum bars and and rubber sheeting at local OSH store and covered up the area.

Attachment 125785
Thanks for the picts and info.
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Old 05-06-2016, 02:51 PM   #7
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I was at the dealer today for an issue not related to this thread. I mentioned to the tech about the exposed motor/gear assembly. He had not seen it before and was rather surprised that WB is doing this. He did say that he is not aware of any issues. He did make a comment about dirt and dust getting into the gear assembly and its potential to cause problems. He told me not to use WD-40 or like product to lubricate it because it hold dirt. He offered no suggestions and I told him that I intend keep it clean by using a hose to clean it with water and lubricating it with either silicone or a ceramic based lubricant. While he did not his “blessing” to do this he seemed okay with it. There is a truss like assembly going across that side of the MH that I fastened a piece of aluminum flashing to further narrow path from the front tire. I would like to figure out a way to at least partially enclose the assembly.
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