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Old 11-30-2018, 11:42 AM   #1
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2016 Interstate Grand Tour Ext
Lenoir City , Tennessee
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AI generator "the other guy did it"

In October my husband and I took our 2016 AI to Jackson Center for several maintenance/repair issues. One concern was our Onan generator - it seemed to be slowly dying. By the end of the service day the generator was completely "dead" and the following statement was made by Airstream:

"Gen-set not running as it should and eventually no-start. Tested everything Airstream and it all checks out. LP pressure good all the way until regulator in gen-set."

We were advised to return home to Tennessee and take the AI to Cummins of Knoxville (which we were happy to do since we have used them for years for a house generator maintenance program), and that is what we did. This is the exact language from the Cummins invoice:

"Found tail pipe gasket installed across exhaust opening and repaired. Unit started but runs rough. Back pressure took out the LP regulator. Needs a LP reg. Spark plug fouled.

Cummins replaced the regulator and spark plug, and along with the repair of the position of the gasket got us back up and running. "Gen started right up and picked up load. Fires up quickly."

Folks, this was a $941.93 repair. Airstream says "not our problem" and Cummins says "we ship out those generators, Airstream installs them - incorrectly." You'll have to lift the AI high enough to see the installation but those of you who are curious about this issue may want to do so.
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Old 11-30-2018, 06:03 PM   #2
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Understand how too much backpressure will make the generator not run correctly. And maybe this rough running would foul the spark plug. But don't see how the backpressure and rough running would have any impact on the pressure regulator. I think you are being taken advantage of by one or both companies - most likely Airstream.
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Old 11-30-2018, 06:20 PM   #3
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Is you unit under warranty? If so contact Jhumphries COO of Airstream and see what he has to say about it.
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Old 11-30-2018, 06:55 PM   #4
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Send a message via Skype™ to Camerons
email airstream and point them towards this forum :)

It puzzles me why airstream doesn't seem to monitor these forums and try to address problems that they cause. I had the impression that when I bought an airstream I was getting a quality solution, unfortunately time has proven that airstream quality control is severely lacking. I do think that the competition is increasing in this market and someone at airstream must care. suggest you point them towards this forum.. after all this is where prospective buyers look (or should look)
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Old 11-30-2018, 07:08 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Camerons View Post
It puzzles me why airstream doesn't seem to monitor these forums and try to address problems that they cause. I had the impression that when I bought an airstream I was getting a quality solution, unfortunately time has proven that airstream quality control is severely lacking. I do think that the competition is increasing in this market and someone at airstream must care. suggest you point them towards this forum.. after all this is where prospective buyers look (or should look)
They monitor or at least have a company that monitors for them. BUT Justin Humphreys COO of Airstream does read the forum and is a member Jhumphreys.
He has been very responsive when I have passed info along or contacted him.
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Old 11-30-2018, 07:47 PM   #6
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escondido , California
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The initial build quality control checks do not seem to be effective. I had my backflush valve installed backwards. AS did pay for this repair at one of their dealers outside of warranty. Contact them and make you case in a polite way. Did the Onan dealer take pictures? Perhaps AS will help with the cost. As for the factory QC issues, they need to put a system in place where the design can not be released to production until the QC checks have been proven. This was SOP in all the new products that I have release to production for the automotive industry. Simple concepts but it takes management commitment.
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Old 12-01-2018, 01:39 PM   #7
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The quality control is known.

Thor Industries

Virtually every single RV company they own has major quality issues as well as trying to get warranty coverage for issues they "never heard of before".
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Old 12-01-2018, 05:01 PM   #8
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Not only does Airstream not do QC checks, but the also do not do much (any?) long term testing of their product design in typical customer usage. If they did they would not have released woefully-inadequate battery and solar panel systems. I suspect than many Interstate owners could have and would have paid for the higher-price Advanced RV were it not for the excruciating long wait time.
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Old 12-01-2018, 10:16 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Titus View Post
... I suspect than many Interstate owners could have and would have paid for the higher-price Advanced RV were it not for the excruciating long wait time.

TITUS - you described my decision process. In late 2012 I was planning to end full time work and start traveling in early 2013. I looked close at Advanced RV in 2012 when they were just getting started. I didn't want to wait for them to build me a van and bought an Interstate instead. Now with my Interstate rebuilt with more solar, batteries and bigger inverter, plus lots of personalization mods I can wait for an Advanced RV build if I choose to get another van.
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Old 12-02-2018, 10:49 AM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Titus View Post
I suspect than many Interstate owners could have and would have paid for the higher-price Advanced RV were it not for the excruciating long wait time.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Boxster1971 View Post
Lots of personalization mods I can wait for an Advanced RV build if I choose to get another van.
TITUS - I agree with this/your statement. Had I been a lot smarter, I should've jumped straight to an ARV and skip the AI. I like being able to "a la carte" the build, to only things I want and need.

MIKE - while your AI rebuild & extensive mods are way more advanced than mine, I too have at least reached a very good state of my van's usability tailored to our needs, so I have time to ponder how I would design my next van. At least I have gotten much needed experience with experimenting on my AI. If I eventually get an ARV, I hope to be more smarter with all that is put in it.

PS. The one thing that I do like very much with the AI (even compared to the best ARV) is how the interior looks. Putting aside quality/workmanship issues, we all bought our AI's because the interior (as designed) is impressive. If I had ARV build me an ARV EXT, it's cabinetry would almost be identical to AI on the outside surface. It would just be built on a more robust substrate (80/20 and modular).
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Old 12-02-2018, 04:29 PM   #11
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ALEX - I agree the look and feel of interior design in the Interstate is the best. It is what sold my wife over the Winnebago when we were buying in 2012. I love the aluminum ceiling and the aluminum trim under the upper cabinets. The bath door aluminum trim is cool. But overall I prefer the bath design in the Roadtreks.
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Old 12-02-2018, 06:07 PM   #12
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Agree on design... Wife saw the TB and said Ok to the idea of us buying a class B. She was hesitant when we looked at the Ettek, Gallaria, etc.
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Old 12-02-2018, 08:52 PM   #13
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They say you have to build your third house before you get it right. Does that mean we have to buy two ARV's after we tire of the AI? I too really like the look of the AI interior - but looks are only skin deep.
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Old 12-13-2018, 03:58 PM   #14
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At the risk of hijacking this thread, while we're talking about generator installation can we also talk about generator noise? I've installed the resonator on my 2015 AI Ext. and the noise is better but still too loud.



Several others in this forum have added soundproofing panels around the generator enclosure and added better shock absorbent washers for the mounting bolts but the noise is still a significant issue.



I'm wishing for a noise reducing enclosure to install around the unit.
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Old 12-13-2018, 05:20 PM   #15
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I would be careful about adding too much of an enclosure around an air-cooled engine. You definitely do not want to block any of the holes in the generator enclosure. Putting rubber sheeting on the solid surfaces of the enclosure would be less of an issue - though anything that reduces noise transfer would also reduce heat dissipation. Several have reported good noise reduction by putting rubber isolators between the generator and the Sprinter frame.
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Old 12-13-2018, 06:13 PM   #16
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I love my AS trailer so far, but if I was shopping for a class B, I'd have to look elsewhere. At the price point of a Interstate, you're sure paying a premium for the Airstream logo, and the return doesn't seem to be there.
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