Let me start this with some background info, my wife and I travel the country with 14 of the most talented dogs in the world, the Ultimutts! We do this in a 37 foot 2005 Keystone Raptor 5th Wheel ToyHauler. We bought this trailer because we wanted the best, we spent alot of time before we made our decision on trying to get the ULTIMUTT in an rv, one that would stand the test of time. We looked at what seemed like hundreds of trailers and decided on the Raptor.
I’m sad to say that buying this trailer has been one of the worse decisions we have ever made. Since we have bought this trailer we have gone through 10 tires, I have weighed the trailer loaded and unloaded and am not over any limits. I am real careful to spread the weight evenly and still have to replace a tire every 4,000 miles. I’m “guessing” that there is alignment issues and will have that checked soon.
One of the cables on the drop down garage door ramp broke causing the door to come crashing down on my wifes car breaking the front windshield and just about breaking my arm!
The most recent problem is the roof, I noticed recently that there was some wrinkles on the side of the rubber roof that folds over the side of the rv. I kept an eye on this for some time and it really did not get worse. About a month ago we made a trip to Arizona to perform, on the way we ran into the crazy winds you do passing through New Mexico. I have noticed that the screws come loose on one of my Air Max vents in windy weather and knew that sometime I would have to crawl up on the roof to tighten screws. On the way home from Arizona I did in fact do this and to my horror the rubber roof was basically separating from the wood underneath it in a number of places. Here is a picture of the front part of that roof.
This picture was taken when we got home, the tears near the vent were not present when I first noticed the wrinkles, the wrinkles were catching the wind causing it to start and tear near that vent area.
I did some research on-line and knew I had to take the RV to a Keystone authorized dealer and on the way home we stopped by one of these in Carthage MO. They were awesome and took some pictures of the damage and submitted them along with a write up to Keystone to see if they would cover the cost of repairs.
Now I knew darn well that the trailer was out of warranty but also knew that the roofs on rvs are typically warrantied by the roof manufacture themselves and those are usually between 5 to 15 years.
I have to add that there were no holes or damage in this roof whatsoever (like I said I go up on the roof all the time to tighten screws) with the exception of a small hole about the size of a pencil eraser near the very back of the trailer near the roof ladder that I patched a year ago and the rubber roof glue around that hole was holding, the same size hole was behind the ac unit which I also patched about the same time, the glue was also holding near and around this repair, there was zero evidence that these holes could/would have caused the roof to separate from the wood i.e. the holes allowing air to get between the rubber and the wood. It so happened that these areas were the few on the roof that was not separating!
After a couple days wait, I get the bad news from Keystone that they will not cover this issue because it was out of warranty. Of course I’m not happy about it but we are given a customer service number to call. We call this number and not only are they short with us but they flat out will not discuss this with us other than say they wont cover the cost of repair and that we cannot make a claim with the roof manufacture.
Now I can see and would accept it if I caused this damage or if there was anything I did to create this problem but I did not. So my question is this, on a 2005 Keystone trailer, 4 years into it are we to expect the roof to fall off?! Of course not, this was/is a manufacture flaw period and Keystone should take care of this.
Since I need this trailer for my business I was forced to get it repaired immediately. I had to make a claim with my insurance company, so after a $500. deductible and $250. depreciation I had the roof replaced, a $6500.00 replacement that thank god my insurance company covered. I picked up the trailer today and get this, the new roof is warrantied for 10 years!
What do I want out of this? Actually I want a new trailer! This one is horrible and has cost me since day one, when I get the chance I will have the axles all checked for alignment issues but what can I expect, its got 15 inch tires on a 37 foot Toyhauler! Those are the stock tires/axles on that model and they are “WAY” undersized and isnt it funny that all the new models which are lighter, now have 16 inch tires. In the very least I would like the money I spent getting this repaired refunded to me by Keystone RV Inc. Warrantied or not this is just the “right thing to do”.
In these days of economic uncertainty I wish I was in the position to junk the trailer and buy from another company but I am not and have to stick with this trailer through thick and thin. It breaks my heart because I thought before this happened that Keystone was a top notched company, I quickly found out they are not. I always wondered why my dogs prefer to “mark” the tires on that trailer, they prefer to mark things that stink up the joint!
Until Keystone RV Inc. steps up to the plate in this matter, trust me I will be telling everyone possible about this entire issue and since we stay at many many campgrounds all year long I’m sure they would love to hear about it.