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Old 07-17-2014, 09:33 AM   #1
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Join Date: Mar 2010
Posts: 3
Forza/Solei nothing but junk!

Run as fast as you can away from any Winnebago dealer! These are absolute pieces of junk. After less than a week of ownership and only 200 miles of travel in our brand new Itasca Solei 34T, let me describe some of the things that were wrong and some that have recently popped up. Upon delivery there was so much wrong it took six service techs working feverishly just trying to correct all the problems. The fresh water tank leaked and the valve was defective and cannot be fixed, a new one is on order. The washing machine still had the shipping bolts inside and nearly tore itself up on it's first running. This required the washer and dryer be removed, a major job that never should have occurred. The extendable couch would not close meaning the passenger side slide could not be retracted. It had a defective cable mechanism. We are now scared to use it fearing it will lock open and we'll be stuck not being able to bring the slide in. The passenger seat would swivel but would then not lock back in to place. Again a defective cable latch mechanism. This broke twice before we left the dealer. The stereo bar was not attached. The sirusxm radio will not accept a sirusxm signal. The leveling system would not level the unit even on flat ground and had to be re-calibrated. There was more but I'm so pissed right now I can't think of them.

On our first trip we tried to use the levelers and something ruptured under the Motorhome spewed all of the hydraulic fluid all over the driveway of my son's new house. Winnebago was of no assistance at all. As you wait for what seems like ages on a human being to talk to you'll be bombarded with a recording telling you of the great winnebago quality and wonderful service, DON't believe it. I'm in a city that has no winnebago dealer. The only assistance winnebago (and I mean the dealer I bought it from and winnebago's main service number) gave was to have road side assistance call me and offer to have one of their "tech" call me to advise me what might be wrong. As if the fluid flooding the driveway was not a clue.

Just 10 minutes ago I opened the front of the Motorhome to show my son the generator and guess what, one of the locking mechanisms just fell off on to the driveway. I was stunned to find that it had only been GLUED IN PLACE. To my shock I found the entire front of my brand new Itasca Solei 34t is GLUED ON

And let's not forget that it is an absolute death trap on the highway. The wind blows it so badly it is on the verge of being uncontrollable.

If you are considering a Forza or it's twin, the Solei, I can tell you after six frustrating days of ownership and a whole 200 miles driven you should RUN THE OTHER WAY AS FAST AS YOU CAN!

Let me add that this is our fourth Motorhome and third winnebago. I have been a huge winnebago fan telling anyone who listens what a great product they had but that's now a lie I told over and over. I know what a Motorhome should handle like and how it should be constructed and this Solei 34T is a piece of junk.

Winnebago you should be ashamed of yourself!
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Old 07-17-2014, 09:49 AM   #2
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so so sorry to hear this

I am thinking about purchsing "2014 Winnebago Travato Motor Home" this is the new camper conversion type build on the Fiat frame with the Dodge logo. So can anyone tell me about thei winnebago model????
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Old 07-21-2014, 10:59 PM   #3
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I have never, in my nearly 66 years of life, heard such a story about any product or service. Obviously, Winnebago owes you a new coach and an apology. I would settle for nothing less.
2004 Itasca Spirit -- The Darlin' Dot II
A big fan of Jimmy Buffett, The Boston Red Sox & The Open Road
"It's 106 miles to Chicago, we've got a full tank of gas, half a pack of cigarettes, it's dark ... and we're wearing sunglasses."
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Old 07-21-2014, 11:31 PM   #4
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Location: Ham Lake, MN
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Glad you're aboard. Sorry you are having such major problems with your new coach. Best of luck on getting the issues resolved. I hope you can return to enjoying your adventures and being safe.
Have a wonderful day!
Ken (RVM 87)
FT DP Wanna B The journey is the destination!
Retired & perfecting procrastination!
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Old 07-21-2014, 11:52 PM   #5
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Yea Winabagel is Junk....
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Old 08-02-2014, 09:13 PM   #6
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Forza/Solei nothing but junk!

Pfprice , a member since 2010 and this is his only 2014.

Something "doesn't add up" here...
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Old 08-03-2014, 11:18 AM   #7
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Originally Posted by alpha99 View Post
Pfprice , a member since 2010 and this is his only 2014.

Something "doesn't add up" here...
You're right it doesn't add up. After such great luck with my previous two Winnebago motorhomes I am totally stunned that this brand new Solei is built with such a total lack of quality. Winnebago must be using this line as training for wanna be Motorhome builders. Oh by the way, the Solei is sitting with less than 500 miles driven at the dealer's where it's been for weeks waiting on parts that they say will take weeks more to arrive from Winnebago. But hey alpha99 feel free to jump on down and snatch one up and I hope you have the same luck I have had with mine.
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Old 08-04-2014, 08:33 AM   #8
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Join Date: May 2010
Location: Big Pine Key, FL
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Solei 34T

I too have a 34T Solei and would say it was the worst buying experience that I have ever had with a motorhome. This is my 6th motorhome, but my first Winnebago. My previous coach was a Safari Sahara. I chose the Solei because of its 12 foot height and I could get it into my carport. My frustration were more with the dealer, Camping World of Fort Myers, than Winnebago. I ordered the coach, because I did not want all the options that their stock ones came with, magic bed, fireplace, satellite radio, etc. My frustration started with multiple delivery dates, first, saying it was coming in two months early and then being delayed days at a time for the next three weeks. We had to travel 6 hours to the dealer and we were trading in our old motorhome. It cumulated upon arrival when it took two more days for them to take my money after having a firm closing date and time. It seemed like the left hand had no idea what the right hand was doing. During that time we were given a walk thru and "orientation" of our new coach by someone that was not only clueless as to the features of the coach, but was giving out totally incorrect information. Some of the more memorable ones was the generator did not need any service for 300 hours, the slides outs need to go out before putting down the jacks and several other gems. I did not missunderstand the guy, because I questioned him about it and he stuck to his stories. He evidently had never read a manual. The orientation finished when he pulled the hood down without releasing the latch and broke it off. Yes it is a horrible design. At that point I was as upset and frustrated as pfprice.

That was in February and we did not use the coach again until the end of May when we drove it 2000 miles from the Florida Keys to northern Michigan. Here is what we have found.

First our experience with Winnebago's service department has been very good. Yes, you might be on hold for a while, but when the do answer, the are courteous, very knowledgeable and helpful. We have schedule an appointment at the factory at the end of September to have a number of issues dealt with, so we will know better after that how efficient and effective they are.

Our coach drives, rides and handles like a dream. No problems with wandering or being pushed around. I read that someone else had a problem with handling and took it to a Freightliner dealer and they re-aligned the coach and it work well afterwards.

Our biggest problem is that the roof A/C unit will not cool the front of the coach when it is hot outside. No one else seems to be having this problem, so we think that it is more of an installation issue than an engineering one. Hopefully the factory will take care of that. The A/C units, Coleman, are also very noisy.

We have not had any leaking problems with our jacks, but they are mounted too high and at full extension give very little lift to the coach. As pfprice stated, they will level only if you are on level ground to start with. Hopefully they can be adjusted.

One complaint that we have is with the household refrigerator that is in the coach. First we are not real happy about AC only, but the real kicker is there is no latch except the extra long bolt designed to hold the doors shut while shipping. Someone should have designed a quick latch for it rather than having to screw in an extra long bolt every time. And you do have to have it latched or the door will swing open and ding on the bathroom door handle.

We are also having issues with the inLounge sofa retracting. That is found on many of the Winnebago coaches, not just the Solei and Forza. We have a lot of other minor issues with fit and finish, but not any more than we have had with other new coaches that we have bought.

I would hesitate to say that the Solei and Forza coaches are junk. They are an entry level diesel pusher and from what we have seen a little better than others in that class. If you are stuck with a 12' height limit, there are not a lot of other coaches to choose from.

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Old 08-04-2014, 09:17 AM   #9
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We have had our Forza 38R a little over two weeks now. At the time of delivery, we only had a few minor issues, and had to deal with the challenges of the dealership getting things done in a timely and accurate fashion. The day after our delivery before wee drove off the lot, the jack system failed as well as the rear AC. The dealer also failed to wire up the sat dish correctly that we had them transfer from our old coach. We spent a few more days on the lot getting these big items addressed. A few more issues have popped up since we drove off the lot including the poorly designed fridge travel latch (which I have modified) and the full wall slide top wiper seal fails to remove all of the rain water from the top of slide when you retract it.

Overall, we love the floor-plan and all the storage. Most of our issues so far have been with non-Winnebago components or systems. The fit and finish isn't the greatest on some for the trim and cabinetry, but the coach does represent a lot of value for the price point. Certainly, there will be more bugs to fix which tend to be typical on a new coach. Hopefully, they are just minor ones.
2014 Winnebago Forza 38R
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Old 08-17-2014, 05:34 AM   #10
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Yea, I agree. This doesn't make sense!
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Old 08-17-2014, 05:11 PM   #11
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Posts: 104
We looked at the Forza with every intent to purchase and need up buying the Sightseer 35 G. We liked the greater space and are comfortable driving gas powered. This is our 4th Winnebago and I can say with the little things it has been worse than others. Radio still shorts out after three dealer attempts and the Swintek slide requires regular luring. I am requesting a slide tightener to keep it from moving. The cable on our in lounge failed on one end and a new will be installed next week. It is horrible design secured by staples into a sleeve in the upholstery. For those who are worried it can be operated manually. Find the cable and tug from the switch area as it is probably un hooked and you will get the end. Find the little barrel at the end of the cable. Pull it and it will release the latch. If you can't get it the latch is secured by two screws. Remove it and you will find the end to pull. As some others have done we removed the table. We don't have the same coach but we do have some of the same features and issue with quality control.
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Old 08-18-2014, 08:52 AM   #12
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So sorry to hear of the problems with your Forza. Hope they will be resolved quickly and efficiently for you! Just a note...even our 2004 Adventurer, that we owned for 10 years, had a glued in front and lights. Not sure about other Winnebago models, but thought this was normal for least the 2 models that we have had. Sorry about your other issues!
Michelle and Joe E.
Coach:2014 Forza 34T DP Toad:2009 Jeep Wrangler 2-dr Sahara Braking:Air Force One
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Old 09-16-2014, 12:46 PM   #13
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Need more proof

Well if you need more proof that this Solei is nothing but junk here it is. I'm sitting at the Freightliner service facility in Evansville Indiana broke down with engine trouble. Well to be more accurate it's giving check engine faults and it's actually something to do with the exhaust/DEF system. The parts have to be shipped in so here I sit waiting on parts to arrive then for them to get a mechanic on duty who can work on a Cummins engine (yesterday I sat all day waiting till one came on duty at 4pm). This Solei has 3,000 miles on it and has rarely gone a day while being used that something hasn't gone wrong. Well they were kind enough to just let me know the parts won't be here today but they are hopeful they'll be in tomorrow. Thanks again Winnebago for slapping together this absolute piece of junk. For you doubters out there I wish it was yours. For anyone thinking of buying one as I said run the other way.
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Old 09-16-2014, 01:55 PM   #14
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pfprice - I agree that you have had a ridiculous number of problems with your Solei, however your latest rant really doesn't have much to do with Winnebago. They buy the entire engine, tranny, chassis complete from Freightliner, which is a pretty good company.
We have been motorhoming since 1985, and have had the normal kind of "new coach" problems. They are frustrating, since most of them could have been prevented with more careful assembly and/or inspection. However, after the first year or so these tend to get fixed and thereby go away. Actually, our best experience was with a one year old 2005 Monaco Dynasty we bought. We got the first year service records, and, boy, were we glad we missed all that! We had it for four years, with minimal problems.
If I were you, I would put together a calm detailed list of Winnebago problems, and make an appointment with factory service in Iowa. They have an excellent reputation, and obviously do not have to wait for parts!
I wish you better luck and safe travels from now on.
Duncan, 2012 Itasca Ellipse 42QD
2014 Honda CRV, wife and cat
Florida and South Carolina
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Old 09-16-2014, 03:14 PM   #15
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Classifying the Forza/Solei as junk is very much to the extreme. It is an unfortunate statement of the RV industry that many rigs have numerous issue pop up in the first year and the dealer/service network that exists is rarely equipped to meet the expectations of the owner.

We love our rig, but have had a number of issues we could have done without -

- Rear AC control board failure during delivery
- Jack pump failure during delivery
- Mis-labeled black and gray tank valves
- Passenger power seat issue
- Rain intrusion on FWS retract after heavy rain
- Satellite wiring mystery took forever for dealer to resolve
- Leak in shower skylight fixed DIY
- Loose tiles ate rear bath threshold
- Generator hood prop rod clip broken at delivery
- Fridge travel latch is useless - DIY mod to fix that issue
- Rusted screws in wet bay replaced with SS screws by dealer
- Rusted screws on baggage door gas strut brackets replaced by dealer
- Loose wood trim repaired DIY as needed
- Front baggage compartment leak repaired by dealer
- Windshield washer failure
- Jacks down light not working
- Rear toilet discharge leak due to lack of proper clamp tightening - DIY fix

PfPrice - I wish you luck on getting your issues addressed. Dealing with new coach bugs can be very frustrating.

Seems like a lot of issues for a coach that retails for over $220K and yes I wish it were less, but again I think it is the nature of the beast and the state of the industry. I would like to see more attention to detail and QC by Winnebago and the selling dealers really need to be the front line on these issues and should be more pro-active. To do that, the manufactures need to give more leeway on warranty repairs in that first few months.
2014 Winnebago Forza 38R
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Old 09-18-2014, 03:39 AM   #16
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This is why they say buying a early production run of a new model is being on the "Bleeding Edge". A new Lightweight Freight-liner diesel chassis is bound to have some teething pains however Freight-liner should stand behind their product and work to resolve their design issues.

The dealer should have checked the washer and released the shipping bolts before handing over the keys and its right in the owners manual how you need to get the coach to an alignment shop once you move your stuff in to have it aligned to match how you have it loaded.

Of course you need to weigh the coach to tune the tire inflation to match how you have everything distributed and to see where you have to redistribute the load to be better balanced before you take it for the alignment. On a light weight chassis this should be a more critical item to take care of before heading out on the interstate.

Glue prep does sometime fail however though the years my 2001 is still glued together so it generally works out well. The dealer should have checked that too as part of their Pre-Delivery Inspection.

The hydraulic lines are usually cut to length and the ends pressed on by the slide mechanisms maker so that would not be a Winnebago issue but a quality issue from that supplier. All the hydraulic lines on the bedroom slide of my 2001 had to be replaced by HWH due to a manufacturing defect however that was not Winnebago's fault.

A water valve failed however it was a new valve from a quality maker and not a used one so that is just luck of the draw.

Sounds like the dealer is not that great at inspecting coaches like they are supposed to. They did not check and adjust things like they should have before handing over the keys and then made the customer wait while they hastily rushed 6 techs to finish up the PDI tasks.

While at Freight-liner I would mention the handling issue and they may need to review the sway bars and air bag setup on the chassis. They may need to adjust or replace a faulty Freight-liner provided component.
Neil V
2001 Winnebago Adventurer WFG35U
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Old 09-18-2014, 06:24 AM   #17
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Location: Chester, VA
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FWIW, my BIL just left his 2014 Fleetwood Bounder at the factory and drove home in his car. They have been working on it for the last week and were having issues with parts from suppliers not showing up, etc.
at one point they told him they would need to remove the rear slide, bed and rip out the shower because the heater duct is kinked and the airflow beyond the bathroom was nonexistent. He told them no, and they were to cut a new duct under his refer to add more warm air to the coach from the front furnace. The rear AC could not cool the unit so they have ordered a larger unit to add to the roof and he's paying the difference.
Talk about not happy. This coach doesn't even have 5000 miles on it yet.
Tom and Gloria 2017 Newmar Ventana 4369, TOAD: 2015 GMC Canyon, Blue Ox Towbar, Baseplate and M&G Braking System
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Old 09-23-2014, 02:45 PM   #18
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We purchased a Forza 34T in February, trading in our 2005 Alfa Gold. We too have had a number of issues. The air conditioners are so loud that we cannot sleep in the coach with them on. We found the rear AC had been improperly installed with no cushion between it and the roof of the coach. Fixing that quieted it some, but it is still not really sleepable without ear plugs may be an issue with the way Coleman constructead them as well as installation. The Front windshield leaks when it rains, the windshield washers have never worked, the front windows do not lock and the thing drove like a wild squirrel until we had freightliiner allign it and installed stabilizers. We are waiting to take the coach into a
Camping World to get current issues fixed because we had such a bad experience with Lazy Days when we bought it just getting enough issues fixed to take it off the lot. We do love the floor plan and are so disappointed that we have had so many issues with the overall quality of its construction - too numerous to itemize here. Ya its an entry level coach, but that doesn't mean that quality should go out the window if Winnebago wants to maintain a reputation that its owners support.
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Old 09-23-2014, 03:02 PM   #19
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Our air conditioner won't cool the front of the coach either so you are not alone in the problem. And we agree they are very noisy. Have had two dealers work on them and one of them found the rear AC was installed without any cushioning between it and the roof of the coach. That may be why it vibrated the bed when it was running.
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Old 10-12-2014, 03:56 PM   #20
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Join Date: Jul 2013
Location: Pearl River, La.
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It could be worse, you could have a Thor Palazzo!! Read the threads on the Palazzo for a "thankfully that isn't my coach" moment!! But the group of other Thor Owners are a really good group of people so at least we have nice people to talk to while we wait in the service department area!
Rick and Karen
2016 Berkshire 38A
2011 Honda CRV
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