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Old 01-12-2012, 03:36 AM   #1
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2011 23' International
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Red face New Airstream first RV

Brand new 23' international, the first weekend, we where clueless, wet walls, cold and frustrated. So we parked the trailer, winterized it, with heat and just slept in it the week of Christmas. Tons of fun, toasty warm, no condensation. Stocking our trailer with dishes etc, I found trim around the cupboard doors coming off, doors with missing trim, white quilt dirty, toilet plush warped, and after a week of sleeping in a very dry warm trailer, we noticed the underside of the mattress was wet. Is this normal for a brand new trailer off the lot?
When we bought our trailer the vinyl floor was dis-colored from the Airstream mat. We where told the mark would eventually go away. Is there a way to help it along or anything I should be doing?
We love our new trailer, but for the money, I am disappointed I need to take it in before we actually start using it in the spring, as it's a long way to go for repairs. Any advice!
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Old 01-12-2012, 04:12 AM   #2
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Could be problems - or not.

I see you have a 2011 - and you're in a wetter part of the Canada. It's sat on the dealer's lot for over a year.

Discolored vinyl - speaks of leaks. Go around the edge of the floor where it meets the walls. Sniff for mildew, wet wood, etc. Feel the floor with your hands - if it gives or feels bubbled you've got problems.

You can remove the bottom trim (it's screwed in). Try not to bend it too much, it doesn't go back to original form once bent. Peel back the vinyl and look for moist plywood. Poke it with an icepick. If it's punky (soft/squishy) take it back to the dealer ASAP and get them to take pictures and contact the factory to repair or replace. You can also get underneath and drop the belly pan to check the floor from below.

Airstreams are prone to leak around the rear bumper and around the wrap around windows. Check these carefully. Skylights are another sore point. Airstream will have to repair this stuff under warranty unless you bought it used, but some of the original warranty (2 years) should be left.

IF your Airstream appears to be free of all of these problems - there are a few common sense things to know about cold weather camping. We sweat. We bathe, we make coffee or tea, we do dishes. Any of the above can put gallons of water into the air.

The first thing to do is leave the bathroom vent OPEN even when it's cold. The fan doesn't have to run except when you're showering, but it's essential to have it then. If you cook inside always run the stove fan. Check the seal around your "garage door" - that can leak a lot of cold air into the underbed area creating a damp attracting area under your mattress. Some people add a mattress topper, others put a ventilating mat under the mattress. I think they use something roofers use to ventilate under cedar shingles. It's about an inch thick and looks like a coarser version of one of those green Scotchbrite scrubbers.

The trailer will reheat quickly, so don't be afraid to open the door and let fresh air in, or run the fantastic fan to vent stale or moist air.

Best of luck, Paula
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Old 01-12-2012, 04:25 AM   #3
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Sioux Falls , South Dakota
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Dri Dek

Welcome to the forum and congrats on your new AS!


The mattress is becoming wet due to moisture in the air. When warm meets cold condensation occurs. Placing a layer of Dri Dek on the mattress platform should allow air to circulate btw the platform and mattress and prevent the bottom of the mattress from becoming wet.

May still need a dehumidifier. We prefer the ones without a tank to empty such as Air-Dryr by Davis Instruments.

RE: Discolored area on the flooring

Rubber mats as well as rubber backed area rugs and the like will cause the vinyl flooring to discolor. I do not know if this will fade or can be removed. Might want to consider going to the Beauflor website for solutions.

The other issues such as missing trim etc should be taken care of by the dealer.

Hope you find this helpful.

'shaker
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Old 01-12-2012, 05:46 AM   #4
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Our vinyl floor discolored due to mold under the vinyl due to leaks.
If I was in your position, run, don't walk to Jackson Center and get the problems
fixed correctly.
We had numerous problems when we purchased ours...we feel your frustrations.After visisting Jackson Center for 4 days, all has been well and we have travelled all over the states. Once the problems are fixed, you'll be on your way to alot of fun!!
Andi
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Old 01-12-2012, 08:36 AM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Stubird View Post
When we bought our trailer the vinyl floor was dis-colored from the Airstream mat. We where told the mark would eventually go away. Is there a way to help it along or anything I should be doing?
sorry for the problems. our floor around the mat became discolored. a yellowed outline around the airstream mat appeared and does not go away. i suspect it was light damage from sun coming in the door window so we have the windo covered now and it has gotten no worse. stay strong.
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Old 01-12-2012, 09:12 AM   #6
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Thumbs up Welcome Aboard....

You might consider one of these under your mattress.

Sweet Streams

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Old 01-12-2012, 09:43 AM   #7
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Welcome! I am in the Fraser Valley.

I am assuming you bought your AS from the dealer in Langley.

My trailer had issues after purchase. I was discouraged somewhat too. The dealer (in Langley) has repaired them. They even fixed something that I didn't even know was wrong, so kudos to them for that.

It sounds like your problems are relatively mild. I would not take the trailer in right away to have them fixed. This may sound strange, but pray for more rain, leave the trailer outside w/o shelter, and really look for leaks. This is the most worrisome problem with any trailer.

Oh....my trailer also sat in my driveway for eight months before taking it anywhere. Don't do that. Try to get it out as much as possible so any weaknesses/defects can be repaired while it's still under warranty. (Don't know if you bought the extended warranty, but the extended warranty doesn't cover leaks - ha! - so be vigilent).

Do not let this discourage you. Despite everything, I still love my trailer and have no reservations about purchase. My only regret is not buying one ten years ago. I really enjoyed my shakedown cruise, and everything on the trailer worked perfectly.

After owning an Airstream trailer for a year, talking to other RVers with all makes and models, I have realized all RVs are a PITA and demand constant maintenance, vigilence, and expense. However, the pros still outweight the cons. There's nothing like heading down the open highway, looking in the rear-view mirror, and the silver Airstream is bobbing along happily behind.

Enjoy it!

p.s. I have been sleeping in my trailer too. The mattress is not wet, but darn, does it get cold. Get one of those heated mattress pads. That will dry up any dampness (along with the other suggestions here).
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Old 01-12-2012, 03:12 PM   #8
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Smile New Airstream first RV

Thank you, for all the tips, I think the floor is just from the matt as it's a square darker area just in from the door. Either the black rubber oil made the vinyl darker, or the rest of the floor got lighter around the matt. I hope thats all it is. We will check around the floor etc.for leaks. At Christmas we just spent nights in the trailer to sleep, no water used, as it's parked in my brothers driveway. We will look at the back garage for leaks and see about a matt under the bed. As long as we do not have a leak, I am happy. We have only owned the trailer since Oct. so have lots of time under warranty and we thought as you suggested to take it out for a few weekend trips and see how it all works and if we have anymore issues before taking it back to dealer. We are so happy with our Airstream and look forward to taking some trips. We also wished we could have bought one sooner. So happy we bought new as we are such beginners, and a used might have been two hard to deal with problems. Look forward to meeting other Airstreams on the road this summer.
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Old 01-12-2012, 03:20 PM   #9
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....and as a new owner myself, I can only say that you have come to the right place to ask questions AND get pretty sage advice. I am ever so much more confident about what I'm doing and how I've equipped my new trailer from the hundreds of years of experience represented by those on this forum. Since we both have International's, I know you're enjoying looking at the beautiful aluminum interior and the way the natural (and LED!) light play across the trailer. Welcome to the family!
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Old 01-12-2012, 03:43 PM   #10
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It does seem like a family, first surprise was receiving the airstream life magazine for a year, and then a call from the BC chapter club which was very helpful, and exciting to hear about events that we can attend before we decide to join. We love the international with the dark cabinets and aluminum interior. I must confess, I did change out the upholstery as it was not dog friendly and I couldn't watch the dogs make the light grey covers dirty. So first thing I did was recover the upholstery in a grey tweed sunbrella fabric, and the red bolsters in red denim, including making a new bedspread in matching red denim. The darker grey looks stunning and it's easy to wipe clean. We are proud owners and as our dogs are just as important to us, our trailer is now dog friendly.
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Old 01-12-2012, 03:48 PM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Stubird View Post
It does seem like a family, first surprise was receiving the airstream life magazine for a year, and then a call from the BC chapter club which was very helpful, and exciting to hear about events that we can attend before we decide to join. We love the international with the dark cabinets and aluminum interior. I must confess, I did change out the upholstery as it was not dog friendly and I couldn't watch the dogs make the light grey covers dirty. So first thing I did was recover the upholstery in a grey tweed sunbrella fabric, and the red bolsters in red denim, including making a new bedspread in matching red denim. The darker grey looks stunning and it's easy to wipe clean. We are proud owners and as our dogs are just as important to us, our trailer is now dog friendly.
If you bought it in Langley, I have been through your trailer. It was raining that day and I did not see any leaks. I thought it was a very nice unit; something I would have seriously considered, but I was/am thinking of full-timing so went for the 27'.

I loved the dark cabinets too. The grey/red reupholstering sounds stunning. Please post pictures.
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Old 01-12-2012, 04:07 PM   #12
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Oh.....the area in front of my mat is lighter too. I think this is because my trailer was in the showroom and a lot of people went through it with RV lot salt and gravel on their shoes etc. The Airstreams sit on that dealer's lot for some time because they sell dozens of other makes. The customers are lookey-loos - want to go through the Airstreams, but end up buying the cheaper trailers.
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Old 01-12-2012, 06:55 PM   #13
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Ours is a 23'D International, bought in Seattle. Started out we wanted to see a selection of floor plans and sizes. It was the last 2011 23'D exactly what we wanted and on sale. How could we resist. The dealer was great. If we ordered one in Canada it would have been a 2012 and way over our budget. As is was we stretched our limit. Our floor is darker exactly the size of the matt. So I think oils from the matt darkened the floor. As for pictures I have no idea how to post them. It's not the easiest site to use.
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Old 01-12-2012, 07:11 PM   #14
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stu,

scroll down to attach files from the reply to thread screen
click "manage attachments"
choose a pic from your file...
click download
wait for the photo to load
click submit reply when done...

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