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Old 09-24-2016, 04:46 PM   #1
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Power Gear Failure

Got back from our four month summer trip yesterday, 9/23, which included a 25 day stay at the factory in Junction City where they addressed numerous issues. Since leaving the factory on 9/11, we started noticing the bedroom slide out occasionally “hiccup” when extending or retracting. Remember, 2016 has the invincible “Power Gear” and not the Schwintech. Today after I finished washing and waxing the coach, I put the slides in to return the coach RV/Boat Storage lot (I call it a prison for RVs since it I so dusty) and while retracting the bedroom slide it sounded like it missed or jumped a gear or a gear was broken. I then extended it and once the slide reached full extension, I heard a loud clunk almost like something was loose. I did this three times and all three times it did the same thing. I guesstimate I have about 90+ cycles on the slide since the coach was new. I guess I will be calling the dealer Monday.

In the last 13 years, I had two 5th wheels and two tow vehicles. The 5th wheels were from independent companies. Between the four vehicles, I maybe had about 20% to 25% of the number of warranty issues I am having now. While In Junction City, I couldn’t believe the horror stories I was hearing and some of these were on higher end diesel pushers. What is wrong with Winnebago?
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Old 09-24-2016, 05:25 PM   #2
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We're Winnebago wannabes and I asked a factory rep about this at the Hershey RV show. He said they were having many fewer issues with the new powergear system. Sorry to hear of your troubles. It is scary for someone like me geting ready to buy (Spirit 31G with full wall slide). Current rig is slide free.
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Old 09-24-2016, 07:49 PM   #3
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I have the "old" power gear slides on our National Seabreeze they have cylced hundreds of times with no issues very solid product. I wonder if the full wall slides are part of the problem. I have been waiting for Winnebago go lose the Schwintek gear and now watching to see how the new power gear systems hold up before we upgrade. I hope they work it out.
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Old 09-25-2016, 08:48 AM   #4
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Originally Posted by TJFogelberg View Post
We're Winnebago wannabes and I asked a factory rep about this at the Hershey RV show. He said they were having many fewer issues with the new powergear system. Sorry to hear of your troubles. It is scary for someone like me geting ready to buy (Spirit 31G with full wall slide). Current rig is slide free.
There are others on the forum that are having issues. The system is still new, and was I wonder is whether as time passes and the slides go though more cycles, failures will start to pick up. I hope not.
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Old 09-25-2016, 08:49 AM   #5
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I have the "old" power gear slides on our National Seabreeze they have cylced hundreds of times with no issues very solid product. I wonder if the full wall slides are part of the problem. I have been waiting for Winnebago go lose the Schwintek gear and now watching to see how the new power gear systems hold up before we upgrade. I hope they work it out.
The one that failed on our coach is the bed slide. Considerably smaller than the full wall slide.
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Old 09-25-2016, 11:04 AM   #6
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You gotta remember Schwintek bought out Power Gear. Now what do you suppose happened to all those hundreds/thousands of Schwintek parts laying around the factory?


I wonder if a fly on the wall heard this: Hey Joe, just stick a Power Gear label on those parts. Heck, nobody will ever know!


Sometime the truth is beautiful, sometimes very ugly. What say you Gordon De.
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Old 09-25-2016, 11:09 AM   #7
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It was Lippert who bought Power Gear.
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Old 09-25-2016, 11:27 AM   #8
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Clifftall: There you go...ruining a perfectly good conspiracy theory. Now what?
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Old 09-25-2016, 01:04 PM   #9
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Clifftall: There you go...ruining a perfectly good conspiracy theory. Now what?
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Old 09-25-2016, 03:04 PM   #10
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Lippert bought Schwintek and Power Gear.
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Old 09-25-2016, 03:10 PM   #11
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I guess that clears it up :(
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Old 09-25-2016, 04:35 PM   #12
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Ed,

As you already know my Power Gear bedroom slide failed while we were attening the Winnebago Grand National Rally (GNR) in Forest City, Iowa. Winnebago said that my rearmost motor came out of the motor housing. Winnebago fixed it and it has worked OK since.

I noticed that the rubber seal on the large Kitchen Power Gear slide is comming unbonded. I asked my dealer to fix the rubber seal. My dealer informed me thet the motor housings on both ends of the full wall kitchen are cracked. My one year warranty expired on August 6th but Winnebago is fixing the slide under "good will".

I delivered our RV to my dealer yesterday for repairs. My dealer said that the rubber seal (they called it a wiper) is not in but they will do the slide fix. We need our coach the following week for an outing with a WIT club. Then back to the dealer to fix the rubber.

Safe travels. JD
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Old 09-25-2016, 07:11 PM   #13
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Ed,

As you already know my Power Gear bedroom slide failed while we were attening the Winnebago Grand National Rally (GNR) in Forest City, Iowa. Winnebago said that my rearmost motor came out of the motor housing. Winnebago fixed it and it has worked OK since.

I noticed that the rubber seal on the large Kitchen Power Gear slide is comming unbonded. I asked my dealer to fix the rubber seal. My dealer informed me thet the motor housings on both ends of the full wall kitchen are cracked. My one year warranty expired on August 6th but Winnebago is fixing the slide under "good will".

I delivered our RV to my dealer yesterday for repairs. My dealer said that the rubber seal (they called it a wiper) is not in but they will do the slide fix. We need our coach the following week for an outing with a WIT club. Then back to the dealer to fix the rubber.

Safe travels. JD
JD

The way ours slide jumps made me think of yours. I kind of feel that what happened to yours is what is happening to mine. One thing I noticed early on, is when the slide is fully retracted, that same side of the bed is jammed against the drawers/closet, while the other side doesn't touch anything. My thinking is that the rear most side has more pressure riding against the motor and rack gear. Maybe this causing the motor jump out of the housing.

Ed
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Old 09-26-2016, 08:34 AM   #14
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I have found paperwork in our used 2016 35P that says the bedroom slide "fell out". They found the mounting screws for the motors all lose. Working now, and we bought an extended warranty for peace of mind. Interesting, the floor ended up with deep scrapes from the bed, but the owners didn't demand that it be fixed. Maybe they had decided to trade it in by then.

I noticed that on each slide, when out, at least one rail is always bowed and touching the slide wall. There is clear tape there to protect the paint, so I guess it is designed to give a preload on slide?


Gonna work on La Mesa to replace floor tiles since they said the scrapes were just something that happens, LOL.
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Old 09-26-2016, 11:32 AM   #15
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I have found paperwork in our used 2016 35P that says the bedroom slide "fell out". They found the mounting screws for the motors all lose. Working now, and we bought an extended warranty for peace of mind. Interesting, the floor ended up with deep scrapes from the bed, but the owners didn't demand that it be fixed. Maybe they had decided to trade it in by then.

I noticed that on each slide, when out, at least one rail is always bowed and touching the slide wall. There is clear tape there to protect the paint, so I guess it is designed to give a preload on slide?

Gonna work on La Mesa to replace floor tiles since they said the scrapes were just something that happens, LOL.
Thanks for the info. I have an appointment this afternoon to drop the coach off for the bedroom slide.

About the floor. This is something I worry about. I don't know exactly what your bed rides on, but on mine there are two wooden legs that are beveled and covered with carpet. These carpeted beveled legs are what the foot of the bed rides on. I noticed this shortly after we got the coach as I was curious about a number things and how they worked. When I saw how the bed was riding, I knew this was a receipt for disaster. We have about 90+ cycles on the slides (one cycle is both out and in) and no damage yet. I too have an extended warranty also and not sure that it will cover floor damage but should cover slide issues. My plan is to get some hard or flexible plastic and place in on the floor for the legs to ride on.
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Old 09-26-2016, 11:34 AM   #16
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Interesting, the floor ended up with deep scrapes from the bed, but the owners didn't demand that it be fixed. Maybe they had decided to trade it in by then.

I noticed that on each slide, when out, at least one rail is always bowed and touching the slide wall. There is clear tape there to protect the paint, so I guess it is designed to give a preload on slide?


Gonna work on La Mesa to replace floor tiles since they said the scrapes were just something that happens, LOL.
Scrapes can happen over time but IMHO should not be visible on a 2016 as yet.

In my 2016 I have a kitchen sink and cabinet that juts out of the, nearly, full wall kitchen slide. While traveling the sink cabinet area leaves a black mark on the floor caused by the rubber wiper. While we were at the GNR in July I add the black mark on my fix list and Winnebago added rolers under the cabinet to carry the weight. Problem is now solved. I have read where rollers were added to other peoples slides to solve slide scraping.

My slide rails bow a little when fully extended or retracted but not enough to touch the sides of the slide. I don't know what the acceptable limits are.

I had a problem on my previous coach with Power Gear jacks and I emailed Power Gear and they were very helpfull. You might try calling or emailing Power Gear and ask about slide your slides. Power Gear has been purchased by Lippert and I don't know if that has impacted customer service.

Safe travels. JD
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Old 09-26-2016, 12:00 PM   #17
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I don't know exactly what your bed rides on, but on mine there are two wooden legs that are beveled and covered with carpet. These carpeted beveled legs are what the foot of the bed rides on. I noticed this shortly after we got the coach as I was curious about a number things and how they worked. When I saw how the bed was riding, I knew this was a receipt for disaster. We have about 90+ cycles on the slides (one cycle is both out and in) and no damage yet.

My plan is to get some hard or flexible plastic and place in on the floor for the legs to ride on.
Our previous coach had a similar bedroom setup. It also had a Power Gear slide but that slide was more like our livingroom passenger side slide. Never had a slide problem in the ten years that we owned the rig.

I never had cause to look at how the bed was supported as it moves in or out. I'm unsure of the access to the carpeted wooden legs under the bed.

Is your suggested fix to add flexable plastic over the carpet to provide a track for the carpeted wooden legs to ride on? If so will the plastic be visible when the slide is out?

Would it be possible to replace the wooden legs with nylon sliders (runners).

Safe travels. JD
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Old 09-26-2016, 02:44 PM   #18
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I have the original PowerGear slide mechanism on my 2011 Winnebago and it has worked flawlessly for the past 5 years. The rails are underneath so the slide sits on top of them, not on the side. This is the proper design, IMO.
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Old 09-26-2016, 02:56 PM   #19
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Our previous coach had a similar bedroom setup. It also had a Power Gear slide but that slide was more like our livingroom passenger side slide. Never had a slide problem in the ten years that we owned the rig.

I never had cause to look at how the bed was supported as it moves in or out. I'm unsure of the access to the carpeted wooden legs under the bed.

Is your suggested fix to add flexable plastic over the carpet to provide a track for the carpeted wooden legs to ride on? If so will the plastic be visible when the slide is out?

Would it be possible to replace the wooden legs with nylon sliders (runners).

Safe travels. JD
We do not have carpet in our bedroom but the same vinyl flooring that is in the living/bath area. My plan is to lay plastic runners over the floor when retracting the slide. When the slide is out, I would store the runners. I had plastic runners in s 5th wheel were the slide (I felt) over multiple cycles would prematurely wear the carpet. After six years when I traded it in, it still looked almost new.
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Old 09-26-2016, 03:05 PM   #20
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We do not have carpet in our bedroom but the same vinyl flooring that is in the living/bath area. My plan is to lay plastic runners over the floor when retracting the slide. When the slide is out, I would store the runners. I had plastic runners in s 5th wheel were the slide (I felt) over multiple cycles would prematurely wear the carpet. After six years when I traded it in, it still looked almost new.


I dropped off the coach this afternoon and the dealer wasn't even aware that this situation existed and boosted about how robust the Power Gear system is. I told them that issue is starting to show up on the forums and that as these systems age and get a little more use, they will start showing up at the dealers.
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