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31  Main Forum / General Discussion / Re: vibration in driveline on: July 16, 2014, 04:45:19 pm
Before you take it into Ford, note the speed where you first feel it and accelerate until it goes away (if it ever stops).   Next, see if you get the vibration when the engine and driveline aren't under load, either coasting or going downhill.  Then downshift and make sure the vibration is not engine speed dependent. Next, while you tool down a straight smooth road, have someone walk through the cruiser and listen for the noise from the vibration.  These tests help determine if it's a transmission, engine, or driveline problem.  If the vibration is always present, you probably have a driveline problem.

I think PC outsources the extension work.  Whoever does it adds a 4' section of driveline (on the 2552) to the driveline.  This add on is what caused the problem in my PC.  However, the problem was not the new 4' tube, but the whole driveline.  As delivered, the Ford 2 piece driveline is probably just fine, but when you start messing with it by changing the angles and lengthening it, any out of balance situation can go from unnoticeable to terrible.  Ford is very likely not at fault and the outfit doing the extension really isn't at fault since they probably never drive the extended unit and their 4' section comes balanced, but when everything is combined along with several thousand pounds of payload, it doesn't work right.  At least not on my vehicle.

Unfortunately, if the original owner doesn't complain during the warranty period, you are out of luck.  The good news is once you have identified the problem, it's not too expensive to fix and the fix can be done in a couple of hours if you have the right equipment.

There are 2 fixes:  The best fix is to replace the 3 piece driveline with a 2 piece driveline.  This requires a larger diameter driveline shaft and rebalancing the entire driveline.  This is the most expensive fix because you have to buy a long, large diameter, piece of heavy duty driveline.  It is the best solution because you end up with a straighter shot from the transmission to the rear end, a stronger driveline (beefier part), less parts (one less u joint), and it will provide smoother power due to less flexing (a 4" driveline that long allows for a lot of 'jumping' due to twisting under acceleration).  My thought is PC doesn't do this as standard procedure because it adds cost to the unit and it generally isn't necessary.

The second fix is to pull your entire shaft and put the whole driveline on a balancer using the same angles as found under your PC.  My guy initially put shaft 1 and 2 on the balancer and balanced that part.  Then he put shaft 2 and 3 on and balanced that part.  He did this because he didn't have the spacers required to put the entire 3 part shaft on his balancer.  It's long and most shops don't deal with drivelines this long.  He put the driveline back on the vehicle and drove it and it was far worse than when he started!  He called the company that makes the balancer and they told him he would have to put the entire driveline on the balancer and balance all the shafts as one unit.  He ordered the required extension for his machine and called me when it was ready to go.  Once he got the entire shaft on his machine, he twirled it at the rpms where I like to drive which is 62 mph.   He was able to balance it in a jiffy.  He put the driveline back in my vehicle and we tweaked the vertical distance spacer between the 2nd and 3rd driveshaft and now it 99% better.

If you do have a driveline balancing problem and your Ford dealer is willing to help, they will likely send your driveline out to a specialty shop that just works on drivelines because they don't have a balancer on premises.  They don't see this often enough to justify it or keep personnel trained to use it.  Make sure this specialty shop can balance the entire driveline.  My Ford dealer was going to send it to Mobile.  I called the Mobile shop there and they told me they would balance shaft 1 and 2 and then 2 and 3.  This wouldn't have worked as noted above and would have been a waste of time and money.  Consider asking Ford for spacer plates.  My dealer gave me 4 when they attempted to fix it and we ended up using 3.

My previous post probably has the repair cost and I think it was less than $300???  Not too bad considering I was going to sell the RV if I couldn't get this fixed to my satisfaction.  It was really bothersome to me although the Ford tech who test drove it said he fixed it when he balanced the tires.  If you are planning a trip to the panhandle, I'll fix you up with the guy who did mine.  He was extremely helpful.

Good luck getting it fixed.  Mark

32  Main Forum / General Discussion / Re: HWH Levelers on: July 14, 2014, 03:36:32 pm
We have had our 2552 for almost a year and always deploy the levelers if nothing else to stabilize the vehicle.  Even the so called level lots where we park aren't usually level and I like to lift the right side a tiny bit more than the left so the a/c and rain drain to the side we don't spend much time.

Ours aren't auto level and it takes some practice to figure out which buttons to push and how long.  In fact, I'm still practicing!  We have bubble levels in the kitchen and my wife tells me when we are level.  I find the indicator lights on the unit that tell you when you are level can be off quite a bit.  And like someone else said, the up arrow means move the vehicle up, not lift the leveler up.  I need to cut some wood pieces to put under the pads when we park on loose gravel or dirt because we sink in a little over a weekend.

The levelers will completely lift the front end off the ground which should help in the event I ever have a front flat.  I understand if the levelers won't respond after being deployed, you can drive off of them.  I've never tried it and I wouldn't want to.   I think they are a very worthwhile accessory.  Mark
33  Main Forum / General Discussion / Re: Rear Bumper on: June 05, 2014, 08:54:28 am
Beautiful.  Nice work.
34  Main Forum / General Discussion / Re: Awning leak revisited on: June 05, 2014, 08:52:59 am
I used a clear adhesive sealant.  I think it is made by liquid nails.
35  Main Forum / General Discussion / Awning leak revisited on: June 04, 2014, 10:28:59 pm
I sealed the hole for the awning wiring and the 3 lower screw holes that hold in the wedge and thought I was good to go.  We traveled to Biloxi last weekend and camped in a major rain.  The next morning there was a puddle to the left of the door (when exiting).  Once home, I resealed the awning power wiring hole and tested.  A puddle formed again with water coming out from under the vertical carpet panel and from under the cabinet. 

I took off the carpeted section between the passenger chair and door and dried out everything.  Once dry, I put my wife in the rv with a flashlight and I started spraying water at the base of the awning channel and worked my way up.  On the third set of screws, I hit pay dirt.  Copious amounts of water came in the rv.  This set of screws, the ones above the wedge, were the only ones I hadn't previously sealed.  I resealed all the screws and noted that at the top of the rv where the rain gutter is supposed to guide the water off the rv, it actually channels the water through the awning channel so almost all the water coming off the roof flowed down the awning channel.  This causes about a hundred times more water to flow over the leaky screws.  With a little sealant, I was able to re-channel the water away from the channel and off the side of the rv.

None of the awning screws had been sealed so I pulled the screws from other side of the awning.  None of the screws were sealed on this side either.  If one side was leaking, I'm sure the other side was leaking too so I sealed those screws.  I worked my way around the rv and sealed the awning over the side out on the other side (no sealant here either) and also the ladder on the back of the rv (no sealant here). 

I recommend everyone examine their rv and put sealant on any screws that haven't been sealed.  I've owned boats in the past and we always sealed any screws that were subject to water spray, I am surprised the rv industry doesn't do the same.  The water comes in and eventually finds the floor and over time the wet floor rots.  Mark
36  Main Forum / General Discussion / Re: Storage on: June 04, 2014, 09:26:26 pm
I did the same thing as Racephoto, but went with a bigger platform (24x60 [pro series]) with the big bag (24x60x24 [etrailer]).  This worked great for chairs, an x pen for the dogs, dog crates, a grooming table, outdoor rug, firewood, etc.  It worked good until it rained and the rain found a way in through the folds which defeated the whole purpose of the bag.  So I build a 55"x 24"x 20" plywood box cut low (16")against the rv so I can access the rv storage.  The bag fits around the box, is rigid, and life is good.  I estimate the storage weighs about 60-70# empty.  Mark
37  Main Forum / Tips and Tricks / Re: Awning Leak on: May 29, 2014, 11:17:07 am
There was no sealant on the awning wiring penetration on our 2552 either and I found some damp underlayment by the passenger seat.  I don't know if the awning mounting gear is the cause, but it seems to be the most likely suspect.  I dabbed sealant around the exposed wire penetration as it looks like any water falling down the awning mount channel would ride the wire into the coach.  Your fix looks much more professional. 

Based on the comments of another owner, I also dropped the bottom wedge out and found the 3 sheet metal screws holding it in place are not weather sealed either.  I put sealant on these screws too.  You can reach the bottom screws as the wedge is hollow.  I dabbed some sealant on the stern side wedge of the awning too figuring if water is getting in the bow side, it's probably getting in the stern side as well.  Mark
38  Main Forum / General Discussion / Re: Entry Door Weather Stripping on: May 27, 2014, 07:55:37 am
On our 2013 2552, we have 4 strips.  On the opening side, the corners are mitered and cut square on the hinge side.
39  Main Forum / General Discussion / Re: Roof air not working on: May 27, 2014, 07:53:52 am
After you try that experiment, hook up to 30 amp shore power and repeat.  And it's going to take several hours to bring dead coach batteries back unless you have a very high capacity charger.
40  Main Forum / Photos / Re: Maiden Voyage on: May 16, 2014, 08:35:26 pm
Great pictures!
41  Main Forum / Tips and Tricks / Re: Keeping those flying pest out on: May 16, 2014, 07:42:26 pm
What about the water heater and refrigerator vents?  Did you cover them too?
42  Main Forum / General Discussion / Re: Ultra Breeze vent cover installation on: April 14, 2014, 08:39:18 am

Does one mounted center on a PC roof sit taller than the Dometic a/c unit?  If it does, it wouldn't work for me because our garage door is just tall enough for the a/c unit to clear by an inch when our rig is empty and low on fuel.

Our 2552 came with a vent cover on the back fan.  I don't know if it is the brand mentioned.  I think it came as part of the fantastic fan unit.  It sits several inches higher than the a/c unit.  I had to remove it (e z, 4 push pins hold it on) to fit through our 10' door opening.  Mark
43  Main Forum / Tips and Tricks / Re: leak at awning on: January 01, 2014, 07:48:50 pm
Hmmm.  The guy who owned my 2552 before me reported a one time occurrence of water pooling in the same place.  I haven't noticed it yet but we haven't been out in a lot of rain yet.  I'm interested to see what you find out.  I did find wet under flooring in front of the passenger seat when I insulated the floor and I'm not sure where the water came from.
44  Main Forum / General Discussion / Starting the genset on: December 26, 2013, 09:14:17 am
Every time I start the generator, it takes at least 3 to 5 attempts of 10 second cranks before it starts.  My procedure is to prime until the light goes out, hit the starter for 10 seconds, wait, prime until the light goes out and repeat.  Is it normal to need this much cranking?  Once it starts, everything is fine.
45  Main Forum / General Discussion / Re: Removing door panels on: December 26, 2013, 09:10:16 am
This works on a 2013 model:  Pop off the cover at the front of the door (very carefully) with a pry bar of some sorts.  I used a screwdriver.  Pry from the top as there is a clip near the top.  The cover is held on by 2 tabs in slots at the top of the panel and the clip above them.  Remove the now visible screw holding the door panel on. Next, remove the small plastic cover in the door handle and remove the screw that holds the larger plastic cover for the door handle.  There is a screw just above the door handle.  You may need a flashlight to see it.  Remove it. Finally, pry out the round tab at the bottom of the door on the aft side and remove the screw under it.  Now the door panel will lift straight up unimpeded.  You may want to pop the window/door lock panel up before removing the door panel otherwise you will need to rest the panel somehow while you disconnect the wiring.  Don't pull out, just pull up.  If it doesn't come freely, you missed a screw.  Mark
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