Our 98 Coachmen Catalina 34 foot Motor Home Model # ITCA04166W1400036 My wife and I live in Nashville, TN and have over the past twelve years we have owned two fifth wheel RV’s .We have finally decided to move up to a Motor Home. We were not sure that we would like a motor home as opposed to a fifth wheel RV; therefore, we decided to purchase a used unit first. We went to a flea market for used RV’s at one of the local RV Dealers in April of 2005. We looked at all the motor homes offered by individuals, and we did not find one that we liked, we did decide to buy a unit from the Dealer. It was a 98 Coachmen Catalina with low mileage (23,500) and the generator had 347 hours of use. This convinced me that the unit had not been used very much, even though it was 7 years old. Of course the unit looked immaculate as the dealer had spiffed it up to sell. We have owned the unit for a little more than one year, and it now has 27,000 miles and the generator has 539 hours of use. We were on our way to meet some friends in S. Carolina for the Memorial weekend (May 26th, 2006) and I decided to stop and have the unit washed at a truck wash. The truck washers used soft brushes and the usual soap and water. I observed the plastic rear wheel flaring fall off the side wall from the flow of water. After the wash I tried to replace the wheel flaring and could not get it attached (with screws) because the wood within the lower exterior (wheel well) side wall was water logged and is rotten. This is because there are no gaskets or sealant of any kind between the flaring and the raw wood. When we returned to our home I inspected the other three wheel wells. I found more rotten, water logged wood between the lamination. I had already noticed that the panels for the storage compartments are wavy and buckling. I took one apart and found that the piece of luan (thin wood paneling) that they place between the laminate and the Styrofoam sucks up water (like a wick) from the metal trim on the very bottom, which is not sealed either. On June 26, 2006 I made contact (via email) with Coachmen, and a phone call was made to me by Mr. Al Nuzzi (Vice President of Parts and Service). During our conversation I ask why this had happened, as I see this as a design and manufacturing flaw, I refuse to believe that I am the only one with this problem. Mr. Nuzzi ask me how long I’ve had the unit, and once he finds that I am the second owner, he ask if I have the owners manual? My answer was yes I had just ordered one from Coachmen a few months before this occurrence. Mr. Nuzzi informs me that the owner’s manual recommends taking the unit to the dealer once a year for an inspection for leaks and that the previous owner probably did not follow the recommendations. Since then, I have called two Coachmen Dealers (Easy Living of Nashville and Thoroughbred RV Sales in Ky.) and ask if they remove the wheel flares to inspect the lower side wall panels and the answer is no. The service managers stated that their leak inspection consist of the roof and seams around vents and A.C. units, windows and doors only. Neither dealer has in their possession a check list for inspections. They do however use the pre-delivery check list as a guide line for their inspections. Regardless, Mr. Nuzzi told me that it is not Coachmen’s responsibility, and that Coachmen will assume no liability. I ask if they had replacement panels. The answer was No. Since my first contact with Coachmen Recreation Vehicles concerning the problem I have found (on the inter-net) their annual report to the Securities and Exchange Commission (Form 10-K) for the fiscal year ending Dec. 31, 2005. Within the report I found that they mention the phrase We provide customers of our products with a warranty covering defects in material or workmanship for periods generally ranging from one to two years in length, and up to ten years on certain structural components. (pg. 10) They also mention the (Coachmen’s) expenses of a recall on a camper trailer lift system and the repair of laminated side walls of certain recreational vehicles. In regards to this issue they mention that future earnings may be affected by future class actions. All of this is mentioned on pages 10, 31, 44, 45, 67, and 71. This information can be found at; library.corporateir.net/library/98/980/98089/items/190697/200510K.pdf Something that needs to be acknowledged is the amount of mold that is developing within the walls of the Motor Home mentioned. My questions are as follows; 1.tWhat Structural Components are covered with ten years of warranty? 2.tWhich Recreational Vehicles are the ones mentioned as being referred to as repair of laminated side walls of certain recreational vehicles? 3.tHas a recall been made for certain recreational vehicles? 4.tWhat future class actions are expected? Clarence nashville, TennesseeU.S.A.
This review (Coachmen Recreational Vehicles) was originally published at Holy Smoke !.
To read the full review, go to –