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New Caravan Problems - Advice Invited


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Good afternoon all,

 

Forgive me posting this here however am a little perplexed with a problem and would like opinion on how to proceed.

 

I took delivery of a Swift Kudos - Major 530 in April - brand new. We have since used the van through the year mainly for odd weekends and a week in the New Forest. Generally all ok with a few exceptions.

 

The sunroof up the front of the van has condensation in it and has done since delivery. The salesman assured me it would dissipate with use. It never has and is unsightly. ....

 

I spoke on this forum at the weekend as had and still have an issue with water inlet to the van and hunting in air and a very smelly Truma water heater. Replaced the O rings as suggested and smeared with best Olive Oil but only temporarily cured the issue.

 

2 knobs broke on the cooker first use. ..

 

I have spoken to the dealer who supplied the van today and here was the response.

 

The sunroof is not under warranty as it is subject to varying internal/external temperatures and therefore will form condensation. The unit is not manufactured with a vacuum seal and therefore it is anticipated to happen whatever. He duly forwarded by email to me a full pre written information sheet regarding the problem indicating how common it is.

 

The water heater does smell when used as when used in conjunction with the heating it over heats to about 70 degrees and gets hotter than usual 65 degrees when just water mode. Therefore the vile smell of very hot metal is normal and acceptable. We had to open the door to let the smell out and stopped using the hot water.

 

Air ingress in the system they will look at and the knobs I have to take a photos of and forward them to him to assess and send to Swift to see if they will replace them under warranty.

 

Now I will say the man was very nice and took on board my comments but I said I was not assured that this was correct for a new van to be like this and Swift would knowingly sell a caravan which to me is defective as a matter of course. There is nothing in the sales blurb to have these issues as part of the features and benefits. ....

 

So I seek advice on this from you more experienced folk. Am I unreasonable on this as if so will have to take this on the chin and expect to pay £18,000 for a faulty van in my estimation. . Or am I right to be unhappy with the explanation and seek further solutions to this. ..

 

Hopeful for any comments here. . And thanks. ...

Swift Kudos (Major SB)

Audi Q5 2. 0 4wd plus my wife. .......

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It is true that caravan windows (including sunroof) are not sealed units like windows at home, and they can condense slightly, but generally clear over time.

The main issue with a sunroof is that when the sun is shining, the blind should not be completely closed as this can cause overheating issues.

 

The most common issue causing air to enter the water system is when the pipe curls up in the aquaroll and the filter on the end comes up above the water level.

 

Cant comment on the Truma system as I have never had one.

 

The cooker knobs should be a straightforward replacement.

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I took the plugs out of the sunroof to get rid of the condensation and bought new ones. Our heating does smell but that is a common thing if you look on other forums . . . . The other things I couldn't comment on

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We are all in the gutter, but some of us are looking at the stars.

― Oscar Wilde, Lady Windermere's Fan

tags: inspirational, optimism, perception, pessimism

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The sunroof up the front of the van has condensation in it and has done since delivery. The salesman assured me it would dissipate with use. It never has and is unsightly. ....

 

 

Hi Moby Dick,

 

Sorry to hear about the problems that you have been having with your caravan. I have had quite a few unexpected problems with our caravan too, which left me very disappointed with the manufacturer, but the dealer I used to buy the caravan through appear to have been far better at resolving any issues.

 

I had condensation in my sunroof too, but was advised to carefully remove the two small rubber bungs with a pair of tweezers, which I did. Once the condensation had gone, I replaced the bungs. I was also told to leave the blind partially open to allow trapped heat to escape (not at night whilst the van is in use though). So far so good for us (a couple of years now).

 

If the sunroof has large pools of water inside, then the problem may be different. I had this to one of my front windows, which the dealer replaced under warranty a few months after purchase (new). I think the windows are only warranted for about a year? (I am sure someone will correct me if I am wrong).

 

Unfortunately we have a different heating system to yours, so can't really comment on that. I have been told that when the glycol goes off in Alde systems, it smells like rotten fish! Not sure if yours uses fluid, but wouldn't expect that problem so soon after purchase in any case?

 

We had lots of minor issues - handles falling off, laminate parting, bobbling upholstery, ceiling dropping next to the heki, external gas and electric plug splitting etc. etc. All was sorted out without fuss by our dealer, who I would buy another caravan from tomorrow.

 

Hope that assists and good luck!

 

Regards,

 

Dave O

Edited by Daveo69
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We normally fins that. as we do not use the caravan in January, February and March that when we go out early April there may be some condensation between the layers in parts of the front window. Normally it might take several days to clear with heat in the caravan. On the previous caravan I had, on occasion, removed the plastic bungs, put a little gauze over the holes to keep out insects and heated the van for a day or two. Removing the bungs I normally damaged them and replaced with new bungs.

 

How extensive is the misting up?

Alan

 

2005 Nissan X-trail 4WD diesel and Swift Charisma 540 2012 Lunar Clubman ES  2018 Lunar Clubman ES

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If the sunroof has large pools of water inside, then the problem may be different. I had this to one of my front windows, which the dealer replaced under warranty a few months after purchase (new). I think the windows are only warranted for about a year? (I am sure someone will correct me if I am wrong).

 

 

Regards,

 

Dave O

The warranty from the manufacturer is an irrelevance to the consumer. The consumer rights against the supplier and whether the dealer is reimbursed for replacing a window is not the customer's concern http://www. which. co. uk/consumer-rights/regulation/consumer-rights-act

 

I had an issue some 8 years ago with the seating in a caravan that was then just shy if 3 years old, Dealer said 'not covered by warranty' - I said 'not my problem; yours'

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Alan

 

2005 Nissan X-trail 4WD diesel and Swift Charisma 540 2012 Lunar Clubman ES  2018 Lunar Clubman ES

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I suppose you have a Cobi heating system? In our last caravan, Stirling Eccles 442, this also had a Combi and on the odd ocation it did give off the electrical burning type smell. it also used to go into overheat cooling, which sounds like a jet engine. Dealers and Truma, said nothing wrong. I no longer have that caravan, our current caravan has Alde. Have a look on swift talk, there are loads of post on it even my own!

As said on this thread take the bungs out of any windows having condensate in and leave them breath!

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Swift Elegance 480, towed by a Mitsubishi Outlander GX4 Automatic.

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We normally fins that. as we do not use the caravan in January, February and March that when we go out early April there may be some condensation between the layers in parts of the front window. Normally it might take several days to clear with heat in the caravan. On the previous caravan I had, on occasion, removed the plastic bungs, put a little gauze over the holes to keep out insects and heated the van for a day or two. Removing the bungs I normally damaged them and replaced with new bungs.

 

How extensive is the misting up?

 

Good evening and I really appreciate your replies. It seems that this issue is indeed a common one and acceptable. Suprised me! The misting is just that not pools of water so am sure removal of the bungs will give enough air flow to dry out the panes.

 

The heating system is hot air combi and when working as I think correctly is very very efficient however I am surprised such an unpleasant smell is acceptable and part and parcel of the unit. .. I looked in the water pipe coiling up in the aqua roll but even when full to the brim and straight to the bottom still did it. The olive oil trick cures it temporarily though. So a new pump hose maybe even though the O rings replaced?

 

If I had spent this much money on a car I know the dealer would of been less dismissive and less interested in providing excuses for which to me is a design and production fault. .

 

Cheers again. ... :Thankyou:

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Swift Kudos (Major SB)

Audi Q5 2. 0 4wd plus my wife. .......

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Usually the only smell that I would expect would be due to dust and I would expect it to clear in a minute or two on previous systems.

Alan

 

2005 Nissan X-trail 4WD diesel and Swift Charisma 540 2012 Lunar Clubman ES  2018 Lunar Clubman ES

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Good evening and I really appreciate your replies. It seems that this issue is indeed a common one and acceptable. Suprised me! The misting is just that not pools of water so am sure removal of the bungs will give enough air flow to dry out the panes.

 

The heating system is hot air combi and when working as I think correctly is very very efficient however I am surprised such an unpleasant smell is acceptable and part and parcel of the unit. .. I looked in the water pipe coiling up in the aqua roll but even when full to the brim and straight to the bottom still did it. The olive oil trick cures it temporarily though. So a new pump hose maybe even though the O rings replaced?

 

If I had spent this much money on a car I know the dealer would of been less dismissive and less interested in providing excuses for which to me is a design and production fault. .

 

Cheers again. ... :Thankyou:

I can understand your point of view but removing the bungs sorts it. The heating problem I had to look for on swift talk forum and others only because I was worried we might go up in flames! . Unfortunately caravan dealers/ manufacturers are definitely NOT up to any car dealer and I personally wouldn't let it get in the way of enjoying my van. I hope you resolve your other problems

We are all in the gutter, but some of us are looking at the stars.

― Oscar Wilde, Lady Windermere's Fan

tags: inspirational, optimism, perception, pessimism

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Usually the only smell that I would expect would be due to dust and I would expect it to clear in a minute or two on previous systems.

Easy T

NOT a dust smell, But an electrical burning type smell, in our case, that's why I had it checked out twice?

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Swift Elegance 480, towed by a Mitsubishi Outlander GX4 Automatic.

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Makes me wonder then if there is a bad connection somewhere or a component plug not pushed home.

Alan

 

2005 Nissan X-trail 4WD diesel and Swift Charisma 540 2012 Lunar Clubman ES  2018 Lunar Clubman ES

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Makes me wonder then if there is a bad connection somewhere or a component plug not pushed home.

 

Well it would need to be a lot of caravans then?. . . I would say it was the same smell as bushes burning out on a motor, probably not as strong as my OH can't smell it . . .
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We are all in the gutter, but some of us are looking at the stars.

― Oscar Wilde, Lady Windermere's Fan

tags: inspirational, optimism, perception, pessimism

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So it is common them.

Alan

 

2005 Nissan X-trail 4WD diesel and Swift Charisma 540 2012 Lunar Clubman ES  2018 Lunar Clubman ES

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We've also got a 2016 Kudos 530SB, it's our first caravan, and it sounds like we've been a bit luckier than you. Sorry you've had issues.

 

If it helps our Truma unit does smell, although not all the time and it seems to be normal. It's definitely a hot electrics type smell, and we took some reassuring that it was ok, both from the dealer, and an experienced friend who's had the same unit in the past.

 

The cooker knobs seem to be a common fault with that particular model, ours are ok, although advice from the same friend was to put a tiny bit of blue tack behind them. Seems a bit iffy on a brand new van, and if we had the problem I'd be asking for new ones. For us, as PCM are about 90 mins away, I'd use the blue tack bodge until it goes in for service and get it sorted then.

 

You've been given advice about the sunroof that makes sense, and about the water pump, I'm afraid I've no idea. Could you borrow an inlet pipe from a friend/site neighbour and see if changing it solves the problem?

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Different units but fwiw both my Truma panel and water heater used to really stink for the first year at least.

They don't anymore but OH used to comment on it.

 

If you found that the olive oil worked then the seal is the issue. I would get some silicone grease and use that, being a bit thicker it will seal better for longer.

Edited by Jiffy176
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So it is common them.

 

Yup. . . As you can see from the comments. .

We are all in the gutter, but some of us are looking at the stars.

― Oscar Wilde, Lady Windermere's Fan

tags: inspirational, optimism, perception, pessimism

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Hello, we have a Freestyle like Lozzy above which I think is the same as Kudos.

 

I've not noticed any condensation problems

 

We had the smell from the Truma but I think it's now nearly gone after approx. 25 nights use. We do still get a slight whiff from the oven sometimes - a 'new' smell.

 

THe cooker knobs are useless. We only have about two good ones left and we will be getting these sorted.

 

We sometimes get the pump continuing to run. It's always been on the first day of a trip. Usually we are sure we have primed the system but it turns out that there's somehow some air still in there. Once fixed it seems to go away.

 

We've had a few screws work loose elsewhere (cutlery drawer and oven surround).

 

We've had an odd fridge problem where it refuses to run on mains electric. This seems to be where the current supplied from the EHU is low. I'm surprised that the fridge flashes a fault for such a situation though as it's not in the manual and Iwould ave expected it to either not work or trip something.

 

I've added shelves to the high level cupboards and will do the same in the kitchen. Basic ply retained by discreet cable ties for easy removal. I don't have the time to craft something beautiful for somewhere out of sight (I wish I did). Without these, clothes storage for six people (well four actually) would be very haphazard!)

 

Mostly, we love the van, despite the niggles above. I'm very impressed with the heating compared to our old blown air system which had a proper space heater. It just gets on with things quickly and keeps a good temp.

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Evening. Read further replies with interest. I am amazed how common these issues are and that they are generally just accepted. .

 

Trauma are a Blue Chip company and surprised they produce a unit with this added er benefit.

 

Good point about the seal to the van, silicone is thicker so worth a try before a new pipe sourced.

 

Hot electric smell is unpleasant and just hope it dissipates with use.

 

I do like the van but feel our old Bailey was screwed together better. ..

Swift Kudos (Major SB)

Audi Q5 2. 0 4wd plus my wife. .......

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Well it would need to be a lot of caravans then?. . . I would say it was the same smell as bushes burning out on a motor, probably not as strong as my OH can't smell it . . .

+1

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Swift Elegance 480, towed by a Mitsubishi Outlander GX4 Automatic.

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I have a Truma combi, no problems at all, good heating and hot water, no smells, just a noisy flojet pump,

Ray

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Moby, sorry to hear of your problems, but while agreeing with 99% of comments above all I can really say is 'Welcome to the disappointed club'

 

I share your frustration, but somehow, I don't know if it's better or worse to know you're not alone. ...I'm still pretty peed off and assume you are too.

 

Good luck sorting the snags

Edited by Coriolis
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Further to this I have emailed Truma directly and see what they say about the smell etc. Sunroof have to take on the chin. ... Mm. ..

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Swift Kudos (Major SB)

Audi Q5 2. 0 4wd plus my wife. .......

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I had the pump taking on air problem for a year from new, despite the dealer being unable to cure it, or even see the fault, very annoying.

 

Still the maker whale sent me FOC a few sets of O rings which cured the problem!

 

Can only assume the original were out of tolerance, but I also noticed the plug in connector was a looser fit than my previous caravan, the fault was on my Unicorn but Whale parts are used across the makers ranges.

 

The oven knob issue sounds the same as my caravan again, an updated knob was made available, but I just used some PTFE tape as I never use the cooker (hob or oven).

 

Smell could be residue burning off when new, which I would expect to disappear with use, especially on gas, but I'm guessing here. I do know that Alde can smell when new from posts on this forum.

 

As someone has said the windows can mist up, ours usually at the start of the season, although ours clears once the caravan has some heat in it, I assumed the bungs were not an air tight fit, but removing them could clear the issue quicker, it is recommended that window blind are never fully closed to protect the windows in extreme heat.

 

I know we expect a fault free caravan, we just about do with a car, but your fault list is considered minor compared to some, my list over the first couple of years was about 40 items long, some major.

Edited by xtrailman
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I had the pump taking on air problem for a year from new, despite the dealer being unable to cure it, or even see the fault, very annoying.

 

Still the maker whale sent me FOC a few sets of O rings which cured the problem!

 

Can only assume the original were out of tolerance, but I also noticed the plug in connector was a looser fit than my previous caravan, the fault was on my Unicorn but Whale parts are used across the makers ranges.

 

The oven knob issue sounds the same as my caravan again, an updated knob was made available, but I just used some PTFE tape as I never use the cooker (hob or oven).

 

Smell could be residue burning off when new, which I would expect to disappear with use, especially on gas, but I'm guessing here. I do know that Alde can smell when new from posts on this forum.

 

As someone has said the windows can mist up, ours usually at the start of the season, although ours clears once the caravan has some heat in it, I assumed the bungs were not an air tight fit, but removing them could clear the issue quicker, it is recommended that window blind are never fully closed to protect the windows in extreme heat.

 

I know we expect a fault free caravan, we just about do with a car, but your fault list is considered minor compared to some, my list over the first couple of years was about 40 items long, some major.

Blimey Xtrailman. I feel much better now at the expense of others misery. .. Yes the peed off club has a new reluctant member. I accept issue happen but feel that as the dealer had an answer for all my concerns indicates they were used to them and had a stock reply, including the fact sheet. I think paying the price we do for a new van gives us some right not to have these issues!

 

I shall post however the response from Truma. I look forward to reading your comments regarding this reply:

 

--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

 

Hi Phil

 

Thank you for your email and sorry to hear you are experiencing problems with your Truma Combi boiler. It is not unusual under certain conditions for the Combi Boiler to emit hot odours from the duct outlets.

 

There are several reasons why this may occur;

 

When used on ''Summer'' setting (water heating only) very high temperatures are created within the boiler, natural convection can take place which causes cool air to be brought in via the low level ducts causing high temperature air to convect through the high level ducts at a very slow speed raising the ducting temperature. Any dust or debris that may be in the duct and plastic materials in close proximity to the duct become hot and can cause an odour.

 

When used on ''Winter'' setting (blown air heating) the temperatures are much lower within the boiler and ducting therefore it is less likely to experience the hot odour issue.

 

Although these odours are normal, if you feel they are excessive, we would be happy to carry out a full performance check here at Truma UK to put your mind at ease. If you wish to book into our workshop, please call Truma Customer Service on 01283 586020.

 

I hope this is satisfactory and look forward to hearing back from you.

 

Kind regards

 

Rachel Roberts

Customer Service Advisor

 

--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

 

Personally I think it is a fair reply though as the unit is of new use then dust and debris in the system unlikely. Hot plastics would have a different smell from the acrid smell of metal.

 

Their offer of help is more than the dealer has done. ..! :unsure:

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Swift Kudos (Major SB)

Audi Q5 2. 0 4wd plus my wife. .......

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