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Old 12-06-2020, 01:24 PM   #1
Winnebago Camper
 
Join Date: Dec 2020
Posts: 6
Recommendations on 2021/22 View and Modifications

Hello. We are downsizing from our Class A Newmar and have put a deposit on 2022 24D View to be built and then delivered in May/June 2022. We have a few days to lock down some details and I am reaching out to members here that have some real experience on these questions. Thanks in advance for your help.

Options yet to finalize:

1. Levelers... factor installed Equalizer vs HWH aftermarket?: Notice the Equalizer power unit is installed next to propane tank neatly, but some threads say the HWH sacrifice the vehicle jack area. Is this true on 2021/22? Also equalizer control installed at main door area vs HWH installed by Litchtsinn in cab area? Any pro and cons to each of these would be appreciated. Durability of Equalizer?

2. Standard sliding windows vs double pane full opening option: Some threads say the double pane (acrylic) windows scratch easily. Is this true? Pros and cons of each of these choices would be appreciated from people who have actual experience. Window screens and blinds pros/cons?

3. Getting the factory lithium batteries and dealer installed additional 170 watt panel (hard edge). Any recos/comments here?

Any input from members with experience would be appreciated. Thank you
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Old 12-06-2020, 02:07 PM   #2
Winnie-Wise
 
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I had the fully opening acrylic double pane windows made by Seitz in a previously owned T/T and they were very nice. The support arms were sometimes tricky to get to lock in place and often took 3-5 tries before they locked up.

As far as I recall they didn't scratch. The big benefit was they opened wide and protected he window opening from rain water.

You can always save money if you buy the components and install them yourself or by an independent RV electrician. Look at the overall picture with lithium batteries- upgrading the converter for faster charging and Li charging profile and some way to protect the chassis alternator from overloading while charging them. Your dealer won't know about these issues much less do anything about them.

David
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Old 12-06-2020, 04:13 PM   #3
Winnebago Master
 
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Location: Sanialabad, Peoples Republik of Canuckistan
Posts: 1,072
1) If you go aftermarket, consider Bigfoot.
2) A) I have dual pane windows in my 2018, and they aren't perfect, but how do you scratch them? Brushing against trees or other objects? I can't figure out how you would scratch them? FWIW, mine aren't scratched. The viewing area is larger, I believe than the slider version, more panoramic.
2) B) I did have one of the deployment rails pull free from the accordion blind underneath it when pulling it up for privacy. Probably poorly designed, inexpensive hardware, and probably made hastily in some foreign land. Easily fixed with 1" 3M VHB acrylic tape.
3) I didn't have the option for the batteries. I had a 3rd 100W Zamp panel installed shortly after taking delivery. After about a year, I replaced my factory installed and inadequate NAPA 8240 maint free batteries with 2 100Ah Relion batteries and haven't looked back. Since I live in the north and winter is real here, I got the ones that self heat and can charge down to -20C/4F.
Lithium is definitely the way to go, but the factory installs are pricey for what you get. If I bought another Navion, I'd go wth the (basic?) AGM option, and swap them for aftermarket lithiums when they start to fail.
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Old 12-06-2020, 09:45 PM   #4
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Winterbagoal. Thanks. I should have clarified the “scratches” I heard about are actually micro-scratches that lead to hazing. A dealer told me about this and said washing can only be done with the utmost of caution/microfiber and recommended the standard glass windows instead. This seemed perhaps an over-exaggeration and I wondered if it really was a problem observed by owners so that is what i am asking. I really like the way the optional double pane windows look and function, but don't want them if they are too sensitive to micro-scratching. Thanks for the feedback
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Old 12-07-2020, 08:09 AM   #5
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Originally Posted by vagabondrv View Post
Winterbagoal. Thanks. I should have clarified the “scratches” I heard about are actually micro-scratches that lead to hazing. A dealer told me about this and said washing can only be done with the utmost of caution/microfiber and recommended the standard glass windows instead. This seemed perhaps an over-exaggeration and I wondered if it really was a problem observed by owners so that is what i am asking. I really like the way the optional double pane windows look and function, but don't want them if they are too sensitive to micro-scratching. Thanks for the feedback
I see, OK, that makes more sense. I was warned about the seal between the dual panes failing, and allowing them to discolor with atmospheric intrusion, but never heard about the scratch issue. Unless you cook a lot of fried foods next to them, I don't think they need much cleaning, and I do like the wide, unobstructed by window hardware, view. The side slide windows have that divider between them. They also might allow a driving rain to get inside, where the flip up open dual panes provide some relief there.
My only issue has been the blind detaching from the guide rail on the driver's side forward window. I fixed it with some 1" width 3M VHB acrylic tape, not the foam backed stuff. I thought the foam would be too obvious between the 2 surfaces of contact. So far, so good, on that little repair.
"3M VHB tape, it's not just for screwless solar panel mounts any more"
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Old 12-13-2020, 05:43 PM   #6
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I’m curious about the timeline to get a coach built. Did you choose to receive it 18 months from now? Is this now the standard wait time?
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Old 12-13-2020, 06:49 PM   #7
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Hi. I think mine is 7 months. Cant imagine 18 months if this is from a high volume dealer.
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Old 12-14-2020, 10:32 AM   #8
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I placed my order in late October 2017, and took delivery in late March 2018. So, 5 months? I was told there were some production issues at the Germany end to get the Canadian compliant cab chassis. I never bothered to investigate, as we were in no rush to get it during winter back then.
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Old 12-16-2020, 02:57 PM   #9
Winnie-Wise
 
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The two 100 Watt solar panels are barely enough to keep the fridge running for a couple days at most so adding the 170W panel will give you 170W for everything else you plan to operate (furnace, lights, cooktop, TV, water pump, propane solenoid). There are 190W panels that have the same dimensions as the old 170W panels. I bought a Grape 190W panel last week for $218 including free shipping from the Grape company in Oregon.

Also have the dealer add a Precision Circuits Lithium BIM for the lithium house batteries. I don't know what the dealer is charging but I bought two Lithionics 125AH batteries in November and paid less than $3000 in total. The battery compartment on my 2021 Navion is completely open to the elements which is not good and after driving the RV from the dealer to my house there was a good amount of road grime and grease and sand inside the battery compartment.

I would consider talking to custom solar installers and making an appointment now with one. Better to have them add a couple panels instead of the Winnebago dealer and at the same time they can upgrade the wiring and add a standard combiner / C-box to the roof. Winnebago did a terrible job on my 2021 Navion 24D with the placement of the two panels and they did not shorten the cables do they are twice as long as necesary with more current loss and the Zamp cables are not very UV resistant and Zamp uses non-standard SAE connectors with reverse polarity.

The Zamp 100W Obsidian panels sell for $450 but the better Renogy 100MB sells for $105 from Home Depot and provides more power output. There is a 510 Watt limit with the Zamp 3-port roof cap so keep that in mind. The Zamp PWM controller can be replaced by a Victron 100/50 that sells for $330 and will provide more charge going to the batteries.

On the plus side the new RV's ship with the 2000 Watt inverter and charger (100 amps) so more power for the microwave and faster house battery charging on shore power.

If you have the dealer's person install the Winegard be sure to specify where it is to be mounted. Winegard recommends having it 12 inches or more from the edge of the roof and the guy at Guaranty RV in Oregon mounted it right against the awining housing and behind the cab cowling. At the very least it should have been mounted on the driver side of the roof and Winegard provides 20 feet of cable so not problem with doing it right. I would also check as to where they put the On/Off switch for the Winegard as the fellow at Guaranty mounted it behind the paper towel holder which in turn is behind the TV which was the worst possible location for it.

I had the dealer install the front and rear heavy duty versions of the SumoSprings that are made for the Sprinter vans. No way the dealer could screw this up and it helped with the drive home when we experienced high winds most of the way. I also had the dealer's person install a Hellwig rear sway bar made for the Sprinter. I have read that this factory was putting on a heavier duty sway bar but decided be safe and go with the Hellwig one. It is something that can easily be added later in an hour so you may want to wait to do any upgrade. I had not seen the a Navion in person and so I had no idea what is was like underneath. I have noticed that there are variations under the coach depending on which Navion model one gets.
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Old 12-16-2020, 03:28 PM   #10
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Location: Sugar Land, TX
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Winnebago evidently uses a different battery box when they install the Lithionics batteries at the factory.

When Lichtsinn installed the lithium batteries in our 21VD, they had to wait until they could get the replacement battery box (which was on back order due to the spring COVID factory shutdowns).

When I looked into the battery box last week (after 10K miles), didn't notice any exterior debris getting into the battery compartment.

Instead of the BIM, Lichtsinn installed an AMP-L-START which will charge the engine battery from the coach.

On our recent road trip, our auto transfer switch started having problems with shore power, so we ended up running off the lithium batteries for two days. Even though we have 480W of solar panels on the roof and had fully sunny days, the lithium batteries didn't charge much during the day. Fortunately, the ATS would allow us to get power from the generator for a few hours each day to fully recharge the batteries to ensure we had enough power (including heat) overnight.

We'll have Lichtsinn check the system during our spring service to ensure charging from the solar panels is working correctly.
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Old 12-16-2020, 05:06 PM   #11
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Thanks for all the info on solar. I can confirm I am having additional panels added by The dealer and the unit is equipped with the optional lithium batteries and insulated battery box. I thought I would drive the unit for a while to see if it needs suspension upgrades as it is unclear what improvements have been made to a 2020 chassis. Thanks for the advice. Much appreciated.
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Old 12-16-2020, 07:21 PM   #12
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If the factory installed panels are the Zamp flexible type, you might read some threads here about them causing roof damage. Probably best to remove them and replace with standard panels or insert some kind of insulating panel between the panel and roof.
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Old 12-16-2020, 07:46 PM   #13
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I have the double-paned windows and really do love them. WBGO's instruction manual/book of knowledge says not to use windex or other glass cleaners as they can make the windows cloudy - just soapy water. No issues with scratching or fading and we do like the panoramic view. they open from the bottom so you can have them open when it's raining without getting wet.

we have the lithium batteries. Like them a lot. no maintenance and they have a bluetooth app that lets you view status, error messages, etc. We don't do any boon docking to speak of, so it was probably overkill, but they have kept my fridge going in a driveway test for 2 days with filtered sunlight and a some capacity left at the end of my rather unscientific test.

I would like to have had the auto levelers, weren't available when I ordered the 2020, but WBGO has since made them an option, as well as a VCR and sound bar for the TV. We can live without the levelers, but they are sure convenient and quick when you pull in to camp. There's a small weight penalty, but it wouldn't have made much difference to us.

We have the propane generator. The diesel was a bit heavier and more expensive by a lot, so we didn't go for it. No issues with the propane genset. Would have been nice to have it tap into the gas tank rather than use the propane, but with the convection oven and the electric-powered cook top, don't really need to use a whole lot of propane unless we need to goose the heat or use the second stovetop burner.

We like the 24D. Recommend you use it a bit before jumping into too many upgrades. We really didn't need to add sumo springs or sway bars or more solar panels for how we're using it. It handles great for us, so much better than our class A. Enjoy it!

best,

Dave-Oh
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Old 12-17-2020, 02:23 AM   #14
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Dave-OH. Thanks so much for these specific answers. They are very helpful and reassuring of our choices. We cant wait to get our new coach.
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Old 12-17-2020, 08:15 AM   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by vagabondrv View Post
Dave-OH. Thanks so much for these specific answers. They are very helpful and reassuring of our choices. We cant wait to get our new coach.
You're welcome! Just be ready for Mercedes-level service charges! At 20K miles, the service charge is about $1200. I will have mine serviced once yearly by Mercedes and had the first yearly "schedule A" service @ $360. Oil/filter change, and various other checks and top-offs. My MB dealer treats me pretty well and I don't want any warranty issues to be contested for now. There have been 3 recalls on the MB chassis so far, all taken care of: 1. brake line check to be sure they were routed correctly. 2. under-seat wiring harness check to be sure they aren't binding when the seat is swiveled. 3. an electrical issue that escapes me right now, but involved checking a few connections an putting that special electrical grease on them to assure a good connection.

I also had a Xantrex LinkPro monitor installed so I could check the state of charge of the batteries and a disconnect switch for the solar. Probably unnecessary for our use again, but I read a bit too much and overthought things. On the other hand....It got bundled into the small loan we took so not a big deal and it's nice to know the SOC when I want a quick idea.

Word of caution on dealer installs: My battery monitor doesn't have ALL of the potential vampire draws routed through the shunt - the dealer wouldn't route the detectors across it for "safety reasons" which defeats some of the monitoring functions. I will get it corrected at some point, but have to go through other then my RV dealer as they are worried about liability, even though Xantrex recommends all electrical draws go across the shunt. They also wired the monitor wrong initially - the indicator was showing the coach batteries as the AUX batteries and the starter battery as "main". I moved the 2 wires myself and now all is good. I just don't want to mess with the main wiring in the battery compartment and do something stupid and have to pay to have it fixed....

Lastly: I will, after the MB warranty ends, probably have an amp-l-start or the Xantrex equivalent installed so the starter battery will charge from the coach batteries. MB recommends putting a battery minder on the starter battery if the coach is going to sit for more than 2 weeks. I had asked my dealer to install one, but they checked with MB and were told that it would void the warranty, so for now, I have a Battery Tender installed to keep the battery fresh between trips.

Love the coach. Will be cautious while it's still under warranty but will get the little things noted above resolved after that point.

best

Dave-Oh
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Old 12-17-2020, 09:48 AM   #16
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Thanks Dave-OH

Very helpful. Fortunately, I am my own mechanic and understand I must save receipts and provide proof of service for warranty claims. Have done this with Daimler on my Freightliner chassis/Newmar diesel pusher. I know the Benz Sprinter is pretty good quality and fairly good track record, nonetheless, if I would have had the option to get the new Ford Transit chassis on the View/Navion, I would have done it. Usually diesels have it all over gas chassis for power/durability, but the new Ford v8 along with all the new Transit chassis, would have edged out Mercedes in my personal preferrence. I have owned several German trucks/autos and the parts and dealer servicing costs are a downside compared to Ford. Anyway, totally understand the Mercedes cons, yet understand the benefits too. Thank you for your insights.
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Old 12-17-2020, 01:37 PM   #17
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Thanks Dave-OH

Very helpful. Fortunately, I am my own mechanic and understand I must save receipts and provide proof of service for warranty claims. Have done this with Daimler on my Freightliner chassis/Newmar diesel pusher. I know the Benz Sprinter is pretty good quality and fairly good track record, nonetheless, if I would have had the option to get the new Ford Transit chassis on the View/Navion, I would have done it. Usually diesels have it all over gas chassis for power/durability, but the new Ford v8 along with all the new Transit chassis, would have edged out Mercedes in my personal preferrence. I have owned several German trucks/autos and the parts and dealer servicing costs are a downside compared to Ford. Anyway, totally understand the Mercedes cons, yet understand the benefits too. Thank you for your insights.
Agreed, except for towing capacity. As much as I'd love the ecoboost 300hp V6 on the ford chassis, it does not have the towing capacity of the sprinter chassis so I stayed with a Sprinter-based motorhome and am loving it so far!

best,
Dave

PS: I understand changing the fuel filter on the Sprinter is a real B*tch and should probably be done at least every 2 years regardless of mileage. I'll just let the dealership handle that..... :-)
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Old 12-19-2020, 04:57 PM   #18
Winnie-Wise
 
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For dry camping the new Navion is not a good choice with the draw from its DC only fridge and having only one propane stove burner and the other being an induction burner. The two 100 Watt panels will not even keep the fridge running with the doors kept closed. Fortunately the Onan diesel generator is relatively fuel efficient even if its is exceedingly dirty and polluting, even for a diesel engine.

Fuel filters should be changed based on how much fuel they have filtered and engine hours are the best indicator of when this should be done. Someone who spends a lot of time on back roads is going to burn a lot more fuel per mile driven than someone who drives on freeways for the most part. The difference can be 50% or more in fuel burned per mile driven. Something that is not obvious to the layman is that a fuel filter as with an air filter is least effective when it is new and before any loading of the filter media has taken place. Easiest and best for the engine to go by the vehicle DIC and change the fuel filter when it recommends doing so.
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Old 12-19-2020, 05:28 PM   #19
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Dave-Oh View Post
Agreed, except for towing capacity. As much as I'd love the ecoboost 300hp V6 on the ford chassis, it does not have the towing capacity of the sprinter chassis so I stayed with a Sprinter-based motorhome and am loving it so far!

best,
Dave

PS: I understand changing the fuel filter on the Sprinter is a real B*tch and should probably be done at least every 2 years regardless of mileage. I'll just let the dealership handle that..... :-)
Agreed on the towing capacity. Not sure why, but Ford hasn't addressed that issue, and it's been that way from the Transit's debut.
I'd also be surprised to see "Godzilla" powered Transits any time soon. Did a quick search but can't find anything that indicates Ford will be dropping the 7.3L V8 into a Transit. Maybe I missed it?
The fuel filter change might require some specialized tools, and there's a clip on or attached to them that some have broken during replacement. I haven't tried it yet, as I'm not a DIYer, but another issue is not getting air into the fuel lines. They can be bled during replacement, which avoids this, but it all sounds a bit more than I'm likely to try, until my drive train warranty is expired.
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2018 (2017 Sprinter Cab Chassis) Navion24V + 2016 JKU (sold @ ????)
2016 Sunstar 26HE, V10, 3V, 6 Speed (sold @ 4600 miles)
2002 Roadtrek C190P (sold @ 315,000kms)
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Old 12-31-2020, 01:40 PM   #20
Winnie-Wise
 
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The cooktop was changed in 2020 and again in 2021. The 2021 cooktop has one induction burner and one propane burner. With our previous RV the cooktop had 2 propane burners and without shorepower we had no issues with cooking our meals. We used the microwave only when we had shore power. The RV did not have a generator and we never missed it.

With the Navion 24D and shore power we will be using the microwave and the induction burner for the most part. Dry camping we will need to decide whether to run the generator so we have power for the induction burner and the microwave or try to manage with a single propane burner. I expect with then 2021 Navion that we will be running the generator a great deal of the time. At least the Onan diesel generator is exceedingly fuel efficient and draws from the cab chassis fuel tank.
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