View Poll Results: Should the leveling jacks be down during winter storage?
Yes 14 24.14%
No 25 43.10%
Doesn't matter 15 25.86%
No opinion 4 6.90%
Voters: 58. You may not vote on this poll

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Old 12-15-2004, 09:07 AM   #1
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**Leveling Jacks**

I'm just like a newbie when it comes to MH's. I want to know if the leveling jacks should be down during winter parking. Is it a good thing, bad, no opinion, don't matter. Just want to know what everyone else does.
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Old 12-15-2004, 01:24 PM   #2
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Leave them up. I was taught to leave cylinders retracted when not in use, no chance of rust which will tear seals up quickly. If you do leave them extended I would coat them with grease, Sheath, some type of rust preventative. Clean them well in the spring as they will probably be covered with crud.

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Old 12-15-2004, 03:55 PM   #3
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I agree. If it's just parked then leave them retracted. Very spendy to replace a jack.
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Old 12-15-2004, 04:13 PM   #4
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I don't have a motor home, but I do have two cents.

The suspension would benefit by having a load supported/removed. While I agree that leaving the jacks down would expose them to wear, supporting the suspension would be a good idea.

Some screw-type jack stands should fit the bill.

Tom
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Old 12-15-2004, 08:49 PM   #5
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Retract them..

Another vote to leave jacks retracted, to protect steel shafts from rust and corrosion and crud.. While offloading suspension and tires is noble cause, use screw jacks or jack stands under axles to accomplish same goal....

John McG
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Old 12-16-2004, 10:10 AM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Silvertwinky
.....(should) the leveling jacks should be down during winter parking. ....... Just want to know what everyone else does.
In my opinion.......it depends on how long the unit will be "parked".

This is what I do...If the MH will be parked for more than a month, I put at least 4 jack stands under it AND leave the jacks down (but take the weight off of the hydraulic jacks - all of the weight is on the jack stands.....IF I will be working under the unit, I put 6 jack stands under the frame, (two in front of and two behind the rear axels, in addition to the two just behind the front wheels). The older I get, the "safer" I tend to work. Realize that the MoHo is a "therapy" hobby for me, and I actually work under it MUCH more than the typical MoHo owner would. The jack stands are "shimmed" to fit with wood of various thicknesses (2 by's, 1 by's, and various thickness of plywood), so the jacks "digging into" the wood have a tendency to distribute the weight more or less evenly.

Also.....I don't know how much rear overhang you have, but....on the 345, IF any appreciable weight is on the rear jacks, either the jack stands or the hydraulics (which are a couple of feet in front of the rear main axel), I also put a bottle jack at the extreme rear of the MoHo (actually, under the trailer hitch), and raise the "static" height of the unit (after it is fully supported by either the jack stands, or the hydraulic jacks) by about 1" (measured from the ground to the bottom of the trailer hitch). The reason I do this is because, if only supported by the hydraulic jacks, my chassis has enough "flex" to it (since the main rear support has been moved so far forward) that it makes the door difficult to close and latch.

Having said that, be aware that if the rear hydraulic jacks (with no jack stands as a safety backup installed) would for any reason leak off there exists a possibility that the bottle jack at the rear would take too much weight, and cause a "reverse flex"....the chassis is not designed to be supported from such a rearward point.

As far as the "corrosion" aspect of exposing the piston to the elements – a lot would depend on just where and how the unit would be stored….in my case, under a roof on a concrete pad, very little “hard grit” (sand, concrete dust, or any type of really hard abrasive) is deposited on the polished piston….a MoHo stored in the open, exposed to a lot of wind, possibly stored on gravel or crushed rock, plus possibly having the piston water wetted would very likely have a higher corrosion rate than what I think I have (again, my opinion only).

For a storage solution of only a week or two, I generally leave the front jacks extended to bring the unit to level, (I have a 1 on 40 pitch on the pad to ensure water drainage) – this also takes a lot of weight off of the front end, but leaves the full normal weight on the rear axels.

A good guideline would be to go by some large contractors’ work yard and observe how they store their hydraulics (back hoes, caterpillars, ditch witches, front end loaders, etc.) in a similar storage environment that you have.
If the contractors go to length to protect their polished pistons at all times (even for nightly or weekend lay-ups), take the hint and store yours retracted…(West Texas, with polished surfaces exposed to blowing sand all year is a good example of a place where it would be a good to keep the jacks retracted).

I also have a friend in New Orleans (full garage storage) who uses his unit at least once a month and leaves his hydraulics down all of the time.

On Edit -

Silvertwinky: I don't know if your MoHo has a slide out or not, but I would think that any time a slide is extended it would be imperative that the hydraulics be extended.

John (74Argosy24MH) above, left some good advice should you decide to leave them down.
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Old 01-08-2005, 08:43 AM   #7
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My MO sit on an angle where I must park it. So I use the jacks to level it off then place blocks under the wheels and settle the coach back down onto the blocks. Now the coach sits level and the jacks are not extended. I agree that leaving them extended would accelerate wear.
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Old 07-10-2005, 10:45 PM   #8
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No jack down in the winter. This is a bad thing!
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Old 07-11-2005, 07:21 AM   #9
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Hello I had the same question in 2001 if I was a newbie.

Here is the answer from the builder HWH

GOOD MORNING

AS FAR AS LEAVING THE JACKS EXTENDED FOR THE PERIOD YOU WANT THERE SHOULD

NOT BE A PROBLEM. BUT I AM GOING TO RECOMMEND THAT YOU DO NOT DO THAT. WHAT

I AM RECOMMENDING IS THAT IF YOU WANT TO STORE THE COACH WITH THE JACKS

EXTENDED THAT IS FINE BUT WHAT YOU NEED TO DO IS CYCLE THE JACKS AT LEAST

ONCE A MONTH. THIS KEEPS THE JACKS IN GOOD WORKING ORDER. IT SEEMS LIKE THE

PEOPLE THAT RUN THE JACKS THE MOST SEEM TO HAVE THE FEWEST PROBLEMS. I

WOULD BE TELLING YOU THE SAME THING EVEN IF YOU DID NOT WANT TO PUT THE

COACH ON THE JACKS. WHAT I GENERALLY SAY IS IF YOU START THE COACH ONCE A

MONTH CYCLE THE JACKS AT THE SAME TIME.

IF YOU HAVE ANY OTHER QUESTIONS OR PROBLEMS FEEL FREE TO CONTACT ME.

THANK YOU

JOE PORTELLI

joe@hwhcorp.com

Regards Klaus Keitel

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Old 05-11-2008, 08:16 AM   #10
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Question HVH Leveling Questions for 94 Classic MOHO.

Need Advice in Georgia. 94 Classic MOHO with HWH Leveling system. How often do the "jacks" need service (ie, not the once month up/down, but fluid changed etc.)? How to judge proper fluid level and measure it? What to do if one jack doesn't extend? Doesn't retract? What does it mean if the pump doesn't shut off after the leveling process has "completed." Do you "chock" your wheels if leveling process lifts the wheels off the ground?
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Old 05-12-2008, 12:44 AM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BudClem
Need Advice in Georgia. 94 Classic MOHO with HWH Leveling system. How often do the "jacks" need service (ie, not the once month up/down, but fluid changed etc.)? How to judge proper fluid level and measure it? What to do if one jack doesn't extend? Doesn't retract? What does it mean if the pump doesn't shut off after the leveling process has "completed." Do you "chock" your wheels if leveling process lifts the wheels off the ground?
HWH customer support is great. Give them a call. They will answer all your questions and will talk you through diagnosis of any problem you are having.

Welcome to HWH Corporation
(800) 321-3494 or (563) 724-3396
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Old 05-12-2008, 07:39 AM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BudClem
Need Advice in Georgia. 94 Classic MOHO with HWH Leveling system. How often do the "jacks" need service (ie, not the once month up/down, but fluid changed etc.)? How to judge proper fluid level and measure it? What to do if one jack doesn't extend? Doesn't retract? What does it mean if the pump doesn't shut off after the leveling process has "completed." Do you "chock" your wheels if leveling process lifts the wheels off the ground?
BudClem,

First, you should NOT raise your wheels off the ground with your HWH jacks to level the coach. If this is required, you are in a situation called 'excess slope' and is outside the design parameters of the system. Find another campsite!

The only 'service' that the jacks need is to be 'cycled' at least once a month...the more the better! The fluid does not need changing.

HWH jacks are 'single acting' jacks that retract via the 2 springs located on either side of the jack. When you activate the 'retract' function, you are basically opening the solenoids of the jacks and allowing the fluid to re-enter the reservior.....being pushed out of the jacks as the springs bring them up.

If a single jack doesn't extend, it could be a variety of causes from a bad solenoid, loose ground, bent jack cylinder...etc.

PS: If you haven't figured it out by now, I'm a factory certified HWH service center.
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Old 05-12-2008, 02:33 PM   #13
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All,
I know someone who uses blocks under the leveling jacks to decrease the amount of the cylinder exposed (about 12 inches high)
He is in FLA and was worried about the sand pitting the steel.
So what is your opinion of this ?
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Old 05-12-2008, 02:41 PM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by myfirstrv
All,
I know someone who uses blocks under the leveling jacks to decrease the amount of the cylinder exposed (about 12 inches high)
He is in FLA and was worried about the sand pitting the steel.
So what is your opinion of this ?
If you have a quality made product (HWH is all MADE IN IOWA), then you should not have to worry about pitting, especially if you exercise them on a regular basis to keep them coated. I would not use blocks.

When I full-timed in a MoHo for 5 years, I would use a pad on ocassion to help spread the ground force, but never blocks. If you're really worried about corrosion on the jack cylinder, I would have a canvas or neoprene boot made for each cyinder with a zipper in it, but I really think this is overkill!!
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