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Old 03-19-2015, 01:10 AM   #1
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Slide Toppers (wow) Really?

For any of you with this installed option you may find this interesting. Every time it rains I need to crawl up the ladder and remove upwards of 5+ gallons per each awning. This is crazy. Just viewing the install you know what is wrong. The engineering wizards never allowed enough room to create the proper incline to let the water run off. Other manufacturers seem to have understood this geometric principle. I am currently visiting a Redwood dealer to have some other items taken care of. One of those items was to adjust and straighten out the slide toppers that have been stretched, crinkled and and now wrap up improperly. I was told by Redwood CS that they do not cover slide toppers as they are an aftermarket accessory. Excuse me! These were installed by Redwood and selected directly from the Redwood option list. I have a 2013 36RL. Now here is the kicker. I was told today that there is a fix. The fix is to bring in the slides when it is raining. We full-time. Are we to live in our Redwood with all of the slides in for 24 hours plus during a rainy period. Are you really serious Redwood? On top of all the parts availability issues and not being able to stay in one place long enough for Redwood to deliver parts to a dealer (they no longer ship parts to a customer) I am now suppose to vacate the unit when it rains. Seriously Redwood? SERIOUSLY?

To whom ever is running this organization get a clue. The customer service manager couldn't even find the time to call me back today after he returned from lunch. Here is my challenge to Redwood!

Get focused on your customer and what they have to go through using your products and systems. Fly your top staff (include, sales, ENGINEERING, CUSTOMER SERVICE and manufacturing) to a national sales meeting in San Diego. And provide them with accommodations in a Redwood at one of the very nicest RV parks in the area. Make sure you include their wives. At the end of the festivities tell them their return flights have been cancelled and they are to return home in their respective Redwood. Take the scenic route up the west coast, through the badlands and midwest before returning to Indiana. Along the way everyone is dependent on everyone else to take care of problems, fix broken items, find and source dealers and deal with the very crap that owners today are dealing with.

Once you all return home I suggest you sit down and discuss what was good, what was bad and what you are going to do to fix it. You see Redwood, you can't design it if you don't know how to use it or how it even gets used. And CS might experience a real epiphany having to deal with the waiting time when parts are needed here today because we have to leave tomorrow! I know ala Harley Davidson but it works guys. Trust me.

Yes I am truly frustrated but I share this with you because it will make you a better company. It will endear Redwood to a loyal customer base and it will result in gained market share. I did this with a little company called Cruisers Yachts. Your best marketing tool is the positive word of mouth shared by owners that are passionate about the product and the WAY THEY ARE TREATED. In the boating industry it's called dock talk. Not sure what it's called in the camping world but you want it to be good, to be positive. You've losing it. But you have time to fix it. FIX IT!

This past week I stopped in a Northern Alabama Park and a non Redwood owner asked me. How do you like that REDWOOD. Prior to this experience today I was able to talk highly and proudly about my Redwood realizing all RV's and boats have problems. This guy then went on and on to tell me about all the problems in the park with permanent Redwoods. I counted at least four. Success is going to be very fleeting at this rate guys. I was almost embarrassed to be a Redwood owner.

If anyone has a slide topper issue it appears we are on our own. I'd be interested in learning who you are. My last offer to Redwood is two fold. Remove them, fill the holes and repaint the coach to new condition. Or, reimburse me for the retail value of the toppers that I paid and reimburse me for an 8 ft lightweight ladder and hooks to secure the ladder to my Redwood ladder to support ongoing topper maintenance for as long as I own this unit.

Sorry for the length and pissy tone of this post. But the solution I received today has to be the most ridiculous thing I could ever imagine receiving from a legitimate company. Pull in the slides! Really Redwood.
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Old 03-19-2015, 02:58 AM   #2
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I installed our 5 slide toppers with enough slope that water does not pool and debris just falls off of them.
So far we have been happy with them


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Old 03-19-2015, 03:01 AM   #3
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Rob, those look great. But mine don't and the suggested fix from Redwood is simply ridiculous. They installed mine.
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Old 03-19-2015, 03:06 AM   #4
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I feel your pain, our last 5th Wheel, a Jayco Pinnacle had slide toppers installed at the factory and they pooled water all the time.
When we were RV shopping, I was looking for a unit without factory installed toppers because I wanted to do a better installation of them than the factory would do.
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Old 03-19-2015, 04:18 AM   #5
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Mine are like yours Rick, almost flat. After a couple of years of fulltiming they are severely saggy & floppy. I think if/when they tear up I won't replace them.
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Old 03-19-2015, 05:39 AM   #6
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On my old SOB, the water would pool on my long slide. After the rain stopped, I just pulled the slide in and then put it back out. Took about three minutes or less, and I got my slide window washed automatically in the process
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Old 03-19-2015, 05:44 AM   #7
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Thanks for the suggestion. Unfortunately that doesn't work on mine. By the time I get enough sag to actually let the water run out it is comes into the interior. It's a bad deal and Redwoods suggestion is simply insulting.
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Old 03-19-2015, 02:56 PM   #8
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Rick
Can they be remounted higher on the coach or lower on the slide for more slope. i know some have the main awning mounted to high to do this. You also may have another problem with water getting in while pulling in the slide. If water is getting in it would also with no topper.
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Old 03-19-2015, 04:22 PM   #9
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for us that are not full time,
one way to mitigate water coming in WITHOUT slide toppers is to raise the front of the rv drastically and let it run off the back before pulling in the slides...
We have to raise it anyway to hook up, soooo
(BUT, with proper design, this shouldn't be necessary. )

The one VERY important thing is to tell my wife I am raising it - preferably before I do !!!!
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Old 03-19-2015, 04:46 PM   #10
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Originally Posted by johnboytoo View Post
for us that are not full time,
one way to mitigate water coming in WITHOUT slide toppers is to raise the front of the rv drastically and let it run off the back before pulling in the slides...
We have to raise it anyway to hook up, soooo
(BUT, with proper design, this shouldn't be necessary. )

The one VERY important thing is to tell my wife I am raising it - preferably before I do !!!!

johnboytoo.........I agree with your technique 100%.

We happen to have the slide toppers on our 36RL and would not do without them. We have owned our coach for nearly 4 years and have not found it to be an overly negative issue. Yes, I completely understand that the design and installation of the toppers certainly could have been done much better. As designed, 2 of 3 of our toppers could have had the wall mounting higher by 2 inches which would have been much better. The third topper mounting (bedroom slide) is mounted as high as possible. The only way to improve that topper drainage would have been to lower the height of the slide. But, I have found that after it rains, I just raise the front end of the coach for a couple of minutes and let the toppers drain off the back side. Then, I re-level the coach...issue done. I just make sure I tell my wife to take our dog for a walk. They rode out the leveling sequence once and neither liked that very much.
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Old 03-19-2015, 08:34 PM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Rick View Post
For any of you with this installed option you may find this interesting. Every time it rains I need to crawl up the ladder and remove upwards of 5+ gallons per each awning. This is crazy. Just viewing the install you know what is wrong. The engineering wizards never allowed enough room to create the proper incline to let the water run off. Other manufacturers seem to have understood this geometric principle. I am currently visiting a Redwood dealer to have some other items taken care of. One of those items was to adjust and straighten out the slide toppers that have been stretched, crinkled and and now wrap up improperly. I was told by Redwood CS that they do not cover slide toppers as they are an aftermarket accessory. Excuse me! These were installed by Redwood and selected directly from the Redwood option list. I have a 2013 36RL. Now here is the kicker. I was told today that there is a fix. The fix is to bring in the slides when it is raining. We full-time. Are we to live in our Redwood with all of the slides in for 24 hours plus during a rainy period. Are you really serious Redwood? On top of all the parts availability issues and not being able to stay in one place long enough for Redwood to deliver parts to a dealer (they no longer ship parts to a customer) I am now suppose to vacate the unit when it rains. Seriously Redwood? SERIOUSLY?

To whom ever is running this organization get a clue. The customer service manager couldn't even find the time to call me back today after he returned from lunch. Here is my challenge to Redwood!

Get focused on your customer and what they have to go through using your products and systems. Fly your top staff (include, sales, ENGINEERING, CUSTOMER SERVICE and manufacturing) to a national sales meeting in San Diego. And provide them with accommodations in a Redwood at one of the very nicest RV parks in the area. Make sure you include their wives. At the end of the festivities tell them their return flights have been cancelled and they are to return home in their respective Redwood. Take the scenic route up the west coast, through the badlands and midwest before returning to Indiana. Along the way everyone is dependent on everyone else to take care of problems, fix broken items, find and source dealers and deal with the very crap that owners today are dealing with.

Once you all return home I suggest you sit down and discuss what was good, what was bad and what you are going to do to fix it. You see Redwood, you can't design it if you don't know how to use it or how it even gets used. And CS might experience a real epiphany having to deal with the waiting time when parts are needed here today because we have to leave tomorrow! I know ala Harley Davidson but it works guys. Trust me.

Yes I am truly frustrated but I share this with you because it will make you a better company. It will endear Redwood to a loyal customer base and it will result in gained market share. I did this with a little company called Cruisers Yachts. Your best marketing tool is the positive word of mouth shared by owners that are passionate about the product and the WAY THEY ARE TREATED. In the boating industry it's called dock talk. Not sure what it's called in the camping world but you want it to be good, to be positive. You've losing it. But you have time to fix it. FIX IT!

This past week I stopped in a Northern Alabama Park and a non Redwood owner asked me. How do you like that REDWOOD. Prior to this experience today I was able to talk highly and proudly about my Redwood realizing all RV's and boats have problems. This guy then went on and on to tell me about all the problems in the park with permanent Redwoods. I counted at least four. Success is going to be very fleeting at this rate guys. I was almost embarrassed to be a Redwood owner.

If anyone has a slide topper issue it appears we are on our own. I'd be interested in learning who you are. My last offer to Redwood is two fold. Remove them, fill the holes and repaint the coach to new condition. Or, reimburse me for the retail value of the toppers that I paid and reimburse me for an 8 ft lightweight ladder and hooks to secure the ladder to my Redwood ladder to support ongoing topper maintenance for as long as I own this unit.

Sorry for the length and pissy tone of this post. But the solution I received today has to be the most ridiculous thing I could ever imagine receiving from a legitimate company. Pull in the slides! Really Redwood.

I'm sorry to hear that Redwood responded the way that they did.......I believe it's a big mistake.
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Old 03-20-2015, 06:10 AM   #12
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Ours are factory installed too and I was complaining about these last summer. We are currently in Orlando FL area and full timing although we do still have a home in Indiana. John gets on top the roof and brushes the water off with a broom because we found that we had water inside our RW if we put the slides in without taking the water off first. Where does the water go if you don't have covers? It seems it would collect on top the slide? Curious and I agree these things figure into our decision if and when we buy a new RV. I would love to have the BR model, but others make a similar floor plan if Redwood doesn't stand behind something they installed at the factory!


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Old 03-20-2015, 06:04 PM   #13
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Thanks for the idea on using the jacks. It's raining today so I'll give it a try. I'm still trying to process Redwoods suggestion to pull in the slides. Unbelievable. I'm also goin to look into making a support mechanism out of pvc pipe that can be assembled and inserted quickly.
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Old 03-20-2015, 06:39 PM   #14
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Rick I had aTiffin class A with side toppers. The same problems with water and no real solution. We used to pull in the sides to push the water off after the rain stopped It was a very common problem. I would still order toppers as we are normally in parks under trees.... Ian
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Old 03-20-2015, 07:19 PM   #15
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The slides got taller over the years for headroom. So why the manufacturers are pounding their chest about the new slides, they didn't count on the slide toppers not working very well now.

My recommendation is to download the Carefree manual for installation of the slide toppers and verify the install against the manual. If Redwood did not install them to tolerance, it should be Redwood's problem. If they installed them correctly, then it may actually be Carefree's problem.
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Old 03-21-2015, 08:46 PM   #16
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For those of you that have had units with and without slide toppers, do the advantages out-weigh the disadvantages?
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Old 03-21-2015, 09:18 PM   #17
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Purely personal choice...
some won't have them and others won't have an rv without them

but I will say two of our regular camping buddies have them on a Winny Tour and 40 foot Phaeton...
The last time we went out, the slide toppers kept them (and US in the next site) awake most of the night
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Old 03-21-2015, 09:27 PM   #18
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I think a lot depends on what part of the country you are using your RV in.
For example, in the Southeast we have lots of trees, along with all the trees you get not so much wind and the slide toppers are great.
If you are in the Midwest then not so many trees but sure a lot more wind which makes having slide toppers a headache.
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Old 03-24-2015, 12:49 AM   #19
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Rick View Post
Thanks for the idea on using the jacks. It's raining today so I'll give it a try. I'm still trying to process Redwoods suggestion to pull in the slides. Unbelievable. I'm also goin to look into making a support mechanism out of pvc pipe that can be assembled and inserted quickly.
Rick
There was a thread and pictures of someone who had built a pic lift to go under the toppers so water runs off.
I can not remember whether on this forum or ROG old age
Someone on here may have a better memory than I
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Old 03-24-2015, 05:18 AM   #20
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For those of you that have had units with and without slide toppers, do the advantages out-weigh the disadvantages?

I don't have the slide toppers but.....but I'm agile enough to get up on the roof to sweep off the leaves. I like not having them because I always use the time on the roof to look for problems.

However, I'm VERY seriously looking at a diesel pusher that comes with the slide toppers so I guess I'll have to learn to adapt. On those late windy nights, I'll just pour a few extra fingers of "Jack" and turn up the TV.
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