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Open Roads Forum  >  Class A Motorhomes  >  Projects & Upgrades

 > Time for a Leveling System Upgrade?

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Bruce Brown

Northern NY

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Posted: 04/15/19 02:26pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

It might be time to update the jacks on our MH. We have the original Atwood Levelegs, and while they have given us good service for the most part, I'm starting to wonder how many more times are they going to work. After the first trip last year I had to repair one, after this weekends trip (first one of the season), sure enough, one acted up a little.

I'm pretty sure I am more than capable of doing the work, now comes to what jacks to choose. With one daughter getting married this year and the other one next year, obviously the budget is a concern. It's not they only concern but a consideration.

My thoughts on the following;

HWH - We had these on our last motorhome, obviously a great, well known brand. Unfortunately there is almost zero information available on their web site, and not much else anywhere I've been able to find.

Bigfoot - I know they advertise it as a positive, I'm not a fan of the 1 pump per jack system they use. Maybe I'm missing the benefit but to me it seems like 3 more chances for parts to fail. I'm more than open to hearing other opinions.

Lippert Level Up System - Seeing as it's only available to OEMs I guess they're out.

Equalizer - Seems pretty straight forward. Looks fairly simple in operation and installation, doesn't seemed unreasonably priced. Just based on what I've seen so far I'd say I might be leaning this way??? Am I missing something?

Used - Does it make sense to try to get a system out of a bone yard? I know sometimes you can save money, I also know sometimes the "savings" are way more expensive than just buying new. [emoticon]

Any thoughts and/or opinions on any or all of the above are welcomed. I'm just getting started on this and don't really have a schedule. I'd just rather fix it in my garage, on my schedule rather than trying to limp it back together in a campground some afternoon when we're trying to set up or come home.

Thank you in advance.


There are 24 hours in every day - it all depends on how you choose to use them.
Bruce & Jill Brown
2008 Kountry Star Pusher 3910


rgatijnet1

Florida

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Posted: 04/15/19 02:35pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

MAybe this will help. Click here
A leveler system is just like almost any other mechanical system. The individual items can usually be rebuilt or serviced and parts are probably available. Used parts MAY be available from one of the numerous RV salvage yards. Electrical wiring and switches can usually be replaced.
Basically unless something has completely blown apart, it might be a lot less expensive to just rebuild what you have. Maybe some small shop might want to tackle the project. The time to do it is while it is working, even if it is not 100%. That way a mechanic can see what he has to deal with and it gives him a place to start.

Bruce Brown

Northern NY

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Posted: 04/15/19 02:47pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Thanks for the link, however keeping mine going for now isn't the issue. I still have a handful of parts and a couple of parts jacks in stock. As long as the main controller doesn't give out I can bleed these along for a bit longer. What I'm looking to get away from is the never knowing whether this time they'll work, or not.

My interest is ONLY in upgrading to a hydraulic system.

Thanks.

imgoin4it

Alamogordo, NM USA

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Posted: 04/15/19 03:07pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

I have Atwood also. Work sometimes , sometimes not. I’ve checked with HWH. Had an appointment to have them installed at factory. Cost about $7,000. Canceled due to health. Got price from independent dealer. Quoted about $8000. Got price from a camping world. ( they had just finished same job on another coach. Was quoted about $8000. The kit retail price was $6300 plus 2 days labor. Talked to mechanic who just finished the HWH install and he said had to cut off (torch)existing brackets and weld new ones from the kit. I also have a very good independent mech. HWH refused to sell him the kit saying even their trained shops has problems and had to call in far to much. This is my experience. I would like HWH, but til mine totally quit I’ll stay with them.


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dougrainer

Carrolton, Texas

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Posted: 04/15/19 03:22pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

I don't understand when you state HWH has almost no info. They have one of the best websites for almost anything you would need to know. AS to upgrades. I would get ONLY HWH. I would also get with CW to buy and install. They have about the BEST price. If you could get to Iowa and HWH, they also install. I would make the trip to have them install. Doug

Bruce Brown

Northern NY

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Posted: 04/15/19 04:13pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Doug,
I just checked HWH again, seems to be a lot more info than the last time I looked. With that said, when I check the aftermarket part it only shows jacks for gassers. Thats what I found earlier too.

I just checked Mapquest, it's only 14 hours out. That part is doable.

garyemunson

Reno, Nevada

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Posted: 04/15/19 04:16pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

The problem I had with mine was quite simple to fix. Removed the motors and taking off the end cap found that residual lubrication, dust, dirt, and particles from the brushes made the brushes stick in their holders. Was simply a matter of cleaning the brushes and brush holders to remove the crud and get the brushes free. Our coach was over 10 years old at the time and the brushes did not seem noticably worn, they were just binding enough in the holder to lose contact with the commutator and then the motor would not run. Was very intermittant failure. Once I cleaned them, they never failed again. We finally traded the coach for a new Winnebago with Lippert hydraulics, had a 2+ year battle with noisy jacks, Lippert finally relented and sent us new jacks. Noise now gone.

purplekeenah

greensburg, pa

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Posted: 04/16/19 03:30pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Bruce, I went thru many failures with the Atwood system also, boards, motors, jack screws, etc. Last year after the system defaulted three times on an extended trip, I decided to replace the whole system. HWH master shop (Stewart's) in Elkhart did the work for me, less than any of the prices on here.
I pulled in on a Wednesday morning at 7:00, and drove away the next day at 9:00 am.


2007 Newmar Ventana 3936
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