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Old 09-27-2022, 06:59 PM   #1
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Austin , TX
Join Date: Feb 2021
Posts: 5
Question 2021 International - lemon??

I will say upfront that I am a glass half full type of person. With every challenge comes an opportunity!
With that being said we have had our 21' International 27FtRB (Her name is Hazel) with rear hatch for approx 16 months. In that time we have taken it on 6 trips and approx 9,000 miles. (Home is in Texas and main trip was to Tetons/Yellowstone). During this last 16 months, we have had too many issues to list. From failing water heater to a door that won't close, kitchen faucets that fall off in transit and cabinetry cracked. The list goes on and on. The cumulative time the Airstream has spent in service dept has been over 17 weeks during this time.
Our most recent issues number over 15, 6 of them, are repeat issues we have documented on previous service visits. My breaking point came when after traveling down the highway - we got to a rest stop and I peaked into the trailer to check that everything was stable (as most times it is not...) and the entire cabinet holding my sink and stovetop had come away from the wall, about 4 inches!
I guess my question - is this normal for Airstream? We did not jump into a decision on and researched these for over 12 months, picking these for their reputation and history of customer satisfaction, durability, etc. I don't know what to do anymore - I feel like each great camping adventure is met with frustration and headaches. Could I have a lemon on my hands or is this normal for Airstream??
For those interested - these are the MAIN issues we have reported:

1.) Door which will not close correctly - strike plate misaligned with closing mechanism
2) Rear hatch would not lock - after 3 attempts, realized internal mechanism twas installed backwards
3) Trim work on door panel too long and kept popping off
4) Trim work inside trailer came detached multiple times
5) Kitchen faucet fell off on multiple occasions in transit (x5)
6) Water Heater E8 Failure code
7) Wires from dealer installed back up camera - causing short resulting in blown fuses in F250 Truck (resulting in no running lights)
8) Dometic Fridge panel kept falling off (brackets on bottom trim broken)
9) Bathroom mirror cracked due to it not staying shut in transit - would disconnect from single latch and hit ceiling
10) During repair visit - stabilizer bar bent by service dealer
11) Leak in front driver side upper windows resulting in water running in to the interior
12) Upper Cabinet - internal screws holding in place are stripped and cracked at wall
13) Kitchen main cabinets (with sink and stove) detached from wall approx 4-5 inches
14) Trim work within interior - all pulling away and caulking seals peeling.

Thanks to all of you - ya'lls post have gotten us through some issues!
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Old 09-27-2022, 08:08 PM   #2
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2017 25' International
West Lake Hills , Texas
Join Date: Dec 2020
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Hi neighbor,

I am truly sorry about your troubles.

I have not experienced the types of issues you have experienced but we are second owners of a 2017. Maybe the previous owner fixed most things before we bought it (but missed a couple that we discovered during our first 1500 miles). And I have read plenty of accounts similar to yours.

The Austin-area Airstream dealer, Camper Clinic II, does not have a very good reputation. So it seems the dealer has messed up more than once. Hopefully, you are using some other dealer for repairs. If it is CCII, seek help elsewhere.

You may need to learn to repair many of the minor issues yourself. You care more than the dealer...CCII for sure. For example, the door latch could be a loose hinge screw. Easy enough to fix yourself if so. I have performed many repairs and upgrades, and I consider myself to be only moderately handy. On your list of ten items, eight are within the skillsets of many people on this forum who have learned to take matters into their own hands.

Second option is to take it to the mothership in Jackson Center. They do great work.
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Old 09-27-2022, 08:50 PM   #3
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kamloops , british columbia
Join Date: Feb 2008
Posts: 101
ours is a 2008 and of course things change but we only had relatively minor issues: the door lined up poorly was the biggest bug a bear, we had that fixed at a machine shop and had something fabricated. although in hindsight my hubby regrets takin possession with it so cockeyed.
we also had a leak in the bathroom related to the faucet early on. that required two separate repairs.
our front window did have a leak (a common problem i was told and it was a straight forward fix in the shop).
yes some trim peeled but again not initially and somewhat expected at the 5+ year mark.
our faucet is loose a problem we've noticed the past 12 months.
i'm sorry to read such an extensive list.
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Old 09-28-2022, 07:08 AM   #4
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2021 25' International
Plymouth , Michigan
Join Date: May 2021
Posts: 67
Really surprised (disappointed for you) at reading the issues you have had with your '21 International.
We also have a '21 International, new from dealer build date April 2021, albeit a 25 footer FBQ [and I don't want to jinx myself here by writing this] but have had zero reportable warranty issues, this after 16 months and perhaps 9000 miles (~20 outings) up and down our crappy Michigan highways to up north. Particularly an AS built during the C-19 period. I visit of a few RV type forums and have read many posts about the disappointing quality of not just Airstreams but SOBs too.
I'm astounded to report that everything worked and still works as intended on my AS. I am fastidious about maintaining my AS, wash after every outing with inspection, inspected and adjust wheel bearings brakes after first season, tire rotation, check tire pressure before each outing (65psi), inspect for similar forum posted issues to see if it is pending on my AS (shock retaining nut, front end separation, door striker position) power awning stabilizer bar cleaning and motor lube, etc. I tow on the ball only, use an Air-Safe hitch to dampen TV / AS interaction, always store in climate controlled building. I cringe when I think if I had a warrantable issue, I'd for sure skip my selling dealer and head down the road to Jackson Center, but as yet, no need.
Perhaps you got a lemon. I worked for a car OEM and heard all to often Ford opting to buy back a customer's car for an issue(s) that even the Product Development Engineers could not resolve.
I hope you resolve your issues with your AS. I think they do stand above the SOBs wrt build quality.
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Old 09-28-2022, 07:34 AM   #5
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Mooresville , North Carolina
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You have really had your share of issues. I agree with the previous post to find a different dealer to address your issues. I know it’s a long way, but a trip to Jackson Center would be worth it to get all those items addressed. Maybe they can recommend a local repair company to address the wall separation before making that trip.

While you are still under warranty call Jackson Center, explain your situation and let them direct you how best to address the situation. I had quite a few issues my first 2 years. Most ended up being minor and one major one. I made the 7 hour drive to JC for all of them. They are pretty efficient at getting them fixed. Since that time I’ve really had nothing else to address.
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Old 09-28-2022, 08:01 AM   #6
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Houston , Texas
Join Date: Jan 2019
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We did not have that many issues in our 2019, but we did have several. I suspect it is true of most RV's that you use them, shake things up, repair what needs it, and then the problems are way fewer. I suggest you plan a trip to Jackson Center. Those guys know exactly what to do.
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Old 09-28-2022, 09:58 AM   #7
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Austin , TX
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Thanks
We are debating next course of action. Jackson Center is 19 hours from us so not an easy quick trip. We are also considering Dallas, but we are unsure if that will be much better.
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Old 09-28-2022, 10:23 AM   #8
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Hendersonville , North Carolina
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Fixing all items at once

Quote:
Originally Posted by Carrie0927 View Post
Thanks
We are debating next course of action. Jackson Center is 19 hours from us so not an easy quick trip. We are also considering Dallas, but we are unsure if that will be much better.
Make the trip to the Mothership. Get an appointment now for a time that is convenient to you. Keep in mind that JC is probably booking for 6 months out right now. Make a nice trip out of it. Go straight to JC and leave time for a slower drive back home. If you have to spend a couple of days at JC there are some nice places to visit. Air Force Museum in Dayton would be a great place to spend couple days. Free admission and parking. Fabulous place.

Hope it all works out for you. We are on our second AS, 2019 FC 25 RBT purchased new. Zero issues after 20k miles. We spend 120 per year in it in Florida so it gets a workout. Again, Call JC and get in line.
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Old 09-28-2022, 10:28 AM   #9
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Austin , Texas
Join Date: Aug 2021
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We have a moderately long list of problems on our 22 Flying Cloud and have an appointment with Camper Clinic 2 next month. So far, I've been incredibly unimpressed with their service department. They don't listen, are impatient, don't return calls, and often don't follow through with stated obligations. We're going to give them one chance to do us right. If they don't, we're just going to plan a trip to the mothership. Word has it that the reconstruction of their dealership - including a separate Airstream service area - will be done by the time we arrive. We'll see.
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Old 09-28-2022, 10:48 AM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Carrie0927 View Post
I will say upfront that I am a glass half full type of person. With every challenge comes an opportunity!
With that being said we have had our 21' International 27FtRB (Her name is Hazel) with rear hatch for approx 16 months. In that time we have taken it on 6 trips and approx 9,000 miles. (Home is in Texas and main trip was to Tetons/Yellowstone). During this last 16 months, we have had too many issues to list. From failing water heater to a door that won't close, kitchen faucets that fall off in transit and cabinetry cracked. The list goes on and on. The cumulative time the Airstream has spent in service dept has been over 17 weeks during this time.
Our most recent issues number over 15, 6 of them, are repeat issues we have documented on previous service visits. My breaking point came when after traveling down the highway - we got to a rest stop and I peaked into the trailer to check that everything was stable (as most times it is not...) and the entire cabinet holding my sink and stovetop had come away from the wall, about 4 inches!
I guess my question - is this normal for Airstream? We did not jump into a decision on and researched these for over 12 months, picking these for their reputation and history of customer satisfaction, durability, etc. I don't know what to do anymore - I feel like each great camping adventure is met with frustration and headaches. Could I have a lemon on my hands or is this normal for Airstream??
For those interested - these are the MAIN issues we have reported:

1.) Door which will not close correctly - strike plate misaligned with closing mechanism
2) Rear hatch would not lock - after 3 attempts, realized internal mechanism twas installed backwards
3) Trim work on door panel too long and kept popping off
4) Trim work inside trailer came detached multiple times
5) Kitchen faucet fell off on multiple occasions in transit (x5)
6) Water Heater E8 Failure code
7) Wires from dealer installed back up camera - causing short resulting in blown fuses in F250 Truck (resulting in no running lights)
8) Dometic Fridge panel kept falling off (brackets on bottom trim broken)
9) Bathroom mirror cracked due to it not staying shut in transit - would disconnect from single latch and hit ceiling
10) During repair visit - stabilizer bar bent by service dealer
11) Leak in front driver side upper windows resulting in water running in to the interior
12) Upper Cabinet - internal screws holding in place are stripped and cracked at wall
13) Kitchen main cabinets (with sink and stove) detached from wall approx 4-5 inches
14) Trim work within interior - all pulling away and caulking seals peeling.

Thanks to all of you - ya'lls post have gotten us through some issues!
All this sounds like there is some sort of alignment problem with the frame or body mount(s) to the frame twisting the shell enough to cause a large number of small misalignments. If you can cheaply get access toe the tech info and plans and a frame machine at a body shop you could easily check to see if the frame is properly dimensioned and the shell attached correctly.
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Old 09-28-2022, 11:19 AM   #11
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2021 27' International
City , California
Join Date: Jul 2020
Posts: 27
Quote:
Originally Posted by Carrie0927 View Post
I will say upfront that I am a glass half full type of person. With every challenge comes an opportunity!
With that being said we have had our 21' International 27FtRB (Her name is Hazel) with rear hatch for approx 16 months. In that time we have taken it on 6 trips and approx 9,000 miles. (Home is in Texas and main trip was to Tetons/Yellowstone). During this last 16 months, we have had too many issues to list. From failing water heater to a door that won't close, kitchen faucets that fall off in transit and cabinetry cracked. The list goes on and on. The cumulative time the Airstream has spent in service dept has been over 17 weeks during this time.
Our most recent issues number over 15, 6 of them, are repeat issues we have documented on previous service visits. My breaking point came when after traveling down the highway - we got to a rest stop and I peaked into the trailer to check that everything was stable (as most times it is not...) and the entire cabinet holding my sink and stovetop had come away from the wall, about 4 inches!
I guess my question - is this normal for Airstream? We did not jump into a decision on and researched these for over 12 months, picking these for their reputation and history of customer satisfaction, durability, etc. I don't know what to do anymore - I feel like each great camping adventure is met with frustration and headaches. Could I have a lemon on my hands or is this normal for Airstream??
For those interested - these are the MAIN issues we have reported:

1.) Door which will not close correctly - strike plate misaligned with closing mechanism
2) Rear hatch would not lock - after 3 attempts, realized internal mechanism twas installed backwards
3) Trim work on door panel too long and kept popping off
4) Trim work inside trailer came detached multiple times
5) Kitchen faucet fell off on multiple occasions in transit (x5)
6) Water Heater E8 Failure code
7) Wires from dealer installed back up camera - causing short resulting in blown fuses in F250 Truck (resulting in no running lights)
8) Dometic Fridge panel kept falling off (brackets on bottom trim broken)
9) Bathroom mirror cracked due to it not staying shut in transit - would disconnect from single latch and hit ceiling
10) During repair visit - stabilizer bar bent by service dealer
11) Leak in front driver side upper windows resulting in water running in to the interior
12) Upper Cabinet - internal screws holding in place are stripped and cracked at wall
13) Kitchen main cabinets (with sink and stove) detached from wall approx 4-5 inches
14) Trim work within interior - all pulling away and caulking seals peeling.

Thanks to all of you - ya'lls post have gotten us through some issues!
Sorry you’re having all these issues! If you look at my post history you’ll see that I have had many of the same problems including several botched storage locker repairs by my local dealer. Our locker has been reattached after completely falling off the wall…but this past trip I have noticed significant cracking on the inside of the above dinette storage locker. We also sprung a leak along the seam of the lining above the stove…probably from the botched fixes of the kitchen storage locker. I’m thinking they were just throwing these things together due to the increased demand. I’m bringing it to our service center next month for the leak…I’ll let you know what they say about the cracking…from what I’m finding it’s not that uncommon
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Old 09-28-2022, 11:58 AM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Carrie0927 View Post
I will say upfront that I am a glass half full type of person. With every challenge comes an opportunity!
With that being said we have had our 21' International 27FtRB (Her name is Hazel) with rear hatch for approx 16 months. In that time we have taken it on 6 trips and approx 9,000 miles. (Home is in Texas and main trip was to Tetons/Yellowstone). During this last 16 months, we have had too many issues to list. From failing water heater to a door that won't close, kitchen faucets that fall off in transit and cabinetry cracked. The list goes on and on. The cumulative time the Airstream has spent in service dept has been over 17 weeks during this time.
Our most recent issues number over 15, 6 of them, are repeat issues we have documented on previous service visits. My breaking point came when after traveling down the highway - we got to a rest stop and I peaked into the trailer to check that everything was stable (as most times it is not...) and the entire cabinet holding my sink and stovetop had come away from the wall, about 4 inches!
I guess my question - is this normal for Airstream? We did not jump into a decision on and researched these for over 12 months, picking these for their reputation and history of customer satisfaction, durability, etc. I don't know what to do anymore - I feel like each great camping adventure is met with frustration and headaches. Could I have a lemon on my hands or is this normal for Airstream??
For those interested - these are the MAIN issues we have reported:

1.) Door which will not close correctly - strike plate misaligned with closing mechanism
2) Rear hatch would not lock - after 3 attempts, realized internal mechanism twas installed backwards
3) Trim work on door panel too long and kept popping off
4) Trim work inside trailer came detached multiple times
5) Kitchen faucet fell off on multiple occasions in transit (x5)
6) Water Heater E8 Failure code
7) Wires from dealer installed back up camera - causing short resulting in blown fuses in F250 Truck (resulting in no running lights)
8) Dometic Fridge panel kept falling off (brackets on bottom trim broken)
9) Bathroom mirror cracked due to it not staying shut in transit - would disconnect from single latch and hit ceiling
10) During repair visit - stabilizer bar bent by service dealer
11) Leak in front driver side upper windows resulting in water running in to the interior
12) Upper Cabinet - internal screws holding in place are stripped and cracked at wall
13) Kitchen main cabinets (with sink and stove) detached from wall approx 4-5 inches
14) Trim work within interior - all pulling away and caulking seals peeling.

Thanks to all of you - ya'lls post have gotten us through some issues!
Ditto on CCII..I thought they were going thru a management/ownership change earlier this year? But, maybe not? I have never had good luck with them for repairs over the years with my earlier 25's..they are not Airstream exclusive either, so not sure how they value AS vs SOB repairs. I was surprised to see "brand new" units on their lot with pealing trim inside, cabinets loose from bulkhead, even a panel on the floor on a new GT model! Made me think they don't go thru them very well prior to putting on the lot for sale. My friend got a new 28' FCT last year in Gillroy CA and they also had laminate coming off on the cabinets, and some other issues, but local dealer fixed everything.

Couple comments: 1) I agree with making an apt. in JC if you can spare the time. Also, call the warranty dept and explain the issues. They will likely want to have you send your list. They are pretty helpful in replacing items that fail at NC, from my experience, shipping directly to you. The bigger stuff like the panels and cabinets coming loose, aligning doors, you likely need their help. 2) we had the cabinet issues also, along with doors/drawers, latches, popped rivets, etc...we were running Max PSI back in the day...when we lowered to 58-60PSI cold, as was suggested here on the Forum years back, no more issues! This doesn't help you with the state of your issues now, nor the pealing laminate, but something to think about going forward.

If it were me knowing what I know, i would try JC first, but also call Dallas/FT Worth AS dealer..they have pretty good reputation for fixing things. I would call JC first to get their warranty folks involved even asking if they can assist with DFW AS dealer...never know till you ask! Keep us informed on what you end up doing. I have found once everything is fixed and your out on the road enjoying yourself, we tend to forget the bad stuff.
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Old 09-28-2022, 12:03 PM   #13
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Sorry to hear, to me definitely not the norm. Good luck with the fixes.
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Old 09-28-2022, 03:43 PM   #14
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Sun City , Arizona
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Sorry to hear about your issues. I know it is very frustrating to finally purchase this iconic camper with generations of experience behind the building of it only to find out that apparently management, labor, dealer networks don’t share the same enthusiasm. We had, and continue to have, similar issues with our 2020 27’ GT. the trip to JC isn’t the panacea that most think it is. Every issue we had on our punch list for our April 2022 appointment has had to be fixed again by either myself or another dealer. Our front end separation was “fixed” but the lower corner of the storage compartment street side is already showing deformation again. They installed a 3”lift for me and I specifically asked about wheel alignment. I was told it wouldn’t need aligned as “they put the bolts back in the exact same holes.” By the time I drove the 1,900 miles back home to Arizona, the inside tread of the curbside front tire was bald. I had the alignment checked and as it turns out, all four were out of alignment, which I had fixed along with the installation of four new tires. The 3” lift also necessitates an adjustment of the hitch, which was “part of the service.” They had two guys working on it, older and younger, the older guy saying he couldn’t wait to retire (must have said that a dozen times) , so I asked him if he was going to buy an airstream and travel, he responded with an expletive filled “no way.” The young guy made fun of him for being old and the older guy making fun of the young guy for being stupid and lacking skills. They generally spent the 30 minutes they worked on it taking shots at each other’s knowledge, skill set, worth to the company, worth to their wives, etc etc. Ultimately, they were unable to figure it, and as it was 4 o’clock quitting time they just walked into the garage and never came back out. I asked around, but the garage was empty and the admin staff told me “oh, yea the service bays close at 4, is there something else I can help you with?” No, no, you’ve helped enough. My wife and I set up the hitch (pro pride) ourselves in the parking lot of the locked up service center. But that’s not all. We drove 140 miles to Hocking Hills State Park and while setting up, I noticed two dents in the street side rear corner. I’m hesitant to blame airstream, but those dents, small as they are, are not mine and were not on the trailer when we arrived at JC. This is not my first airstream, but I can guarantee it is my last.
You can schedule your service at JC,, just be aware that their proximity to the manufacturing facility only guarantees parts availability, not any increased quality control or professionalism.
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Old 09-28-2022, 05:49 PM   #15
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Airstream of New Mexico (aka Holiday Travel Trailers) has a superb service department and is a lot closer than Jackson Center.

Family owned and operated for decades.

Just a thought.
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Old 09-28-2022, 06:23 PM   #16
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Tulsa , Oklahoma
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2022 classics FBT

I feel your pain. This is my 4th AS and I can tell the quality control and workmanship has deteriorated. Having said that, where you buy your AS makes a world of difference. I live in OKlahoma and bought this one from Colonial AS in NJ. The dealership experience has been much better and after 21 warranty issues and constant communication with Colonial they are making fixes that are better than the original mfg. I am disappointed with the quality declines at the factory and assume like so many others they are suffering from a depleted and newly trained workforce. I am just so thankful for the folks at Colonial who really care about customer satisfaction. Two other dealerships I bought from in the past were terrible experiences, one in Oklahoma and one in Texas. Don’t give up AS’s are still built to live long lives just hang in there and work the bugs out.
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Old 09-28-2022, 10:50 PM   #17
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Covid built trailer. 2021 we own one it’s the gift that keeps on breaking. But Jc is very good at rebuilding it
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Old 09-29-2022, 12:39 PM   #18
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DALLAS , TX
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Thought our new 2022 GT 27 FBT managed to avoid most of the usual new-construction gremlins until yesterday.

A&P Vintage Trailer Works went on the roof to replace the factory skylights with the much higher quality Maxim triple glazed skylights.

Well, the factory skylights were barely attached. A&P was able to just flick the old skylights off with literally one finger.

Glad we decided to upgrade the skylights. Otherwise if my normal luck was in play, we would have towed the trailer 800 miles on a rainy day "after" the factory skylights popped off and were left behind without being noticed by us.
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Old 09-29-2022, 01:00 PM   #19
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Raleigh , North Carolina
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Fellow 2021 International 27FB owner here. We had none of the issues you experienced but had a handful which were easily addressed either by me or the dealer. No real complaints.

To be honest, #1-10 sound like things the dealer should/could have dealt with before you even took delivery. They don't arrive from the factory ready to go - the dealer has a fair amount of final prep and inspecting to do. Some do a good job. Others don't.

That last handful of issues sound like things I wouldn't trust your dealer to repair. I don't know if it's worth it for you to drive all the way to JC. Maybe find a dealer with a better reputation that's closer to you than you are to Ohio.
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Old 09-29-2022, 03:15 PM   #20
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West Lake Hills , Texas
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So we've established that CCII is not your friend.

Before towing it too far I'd try to take care of #12 and #13. Those two issues could worsen on the road.

When you say that the kitchen faucet fell off on multiple occasions did the entire faucet (handles and all) fall off or did the sprayer come loose from the holder. If the latter, we travel with the sprayer laying in the sink; it will end up there anyway.

In an attempt to maybe mitigate some of the issues and prevent further issues:
  1. What PSI are your trailer tires running at?
  2. How is your trailer hitch set up? Is it a weight distribution hitch? Brand? How is it adjusted (how much weight returned to the tow vehicles front axle or links/inches)?
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