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Taffyd

JDPower Survey for Touring Caravan Owners?

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Hi there,

Am new to this forum / site. Am relatively new to Touring Caravanning. I own a Swift. I love it and touring. However, am struck since purchasing new that it has a 3 year warranty by actually I've had / have so many niggles with its overall quality. The brakes squeal, the Dometic fridge alarm keeps me awake most nights as it randomly goes of. The rear window nearly fell off because the plastic retaining clips are less than secure, the sliding bedroom door handle spindle has snapped and leaves abrasive marks against the opposite facial as it closes, the shower has had its tap replaced as it leaks internally behind the shower facial causing internal damp, the splash guard has popped its retaining screws through general movement in transit as have the shower entry guards. The  bathroom shelf is on at an angle and the facia beneath the cooker has dropped off and is now stuck on with black duck tape. All this in a caravan bought in April 2018!

 

Need-less-to-say I am in the process of arguing with my dealer over getting these all rectified. This has been fraught with angst.

When I search for a body that represents the customer to help here I find none to specifically Talk with. More importantly I am struck by the fact that customers have no independent body to feedback, akin to the JDPower survey done on new car ownership. Isn't it time the caravanners of this country sought such a survey so that we can hold manufacturers and dealers to account and drive up standards - just as has happened with motor vehicles.

 

Discuss please????

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You're right, nothing like this exists.

 

The magazines are too small and don't have enough readership.

 

The two big clubs aren't interested.

 

The NCC supports the manufacturers, not the customers.  Nor even their small trade members.

 

A huge number of Bailey Unicorn series 3 (and some series 4) single axle caravans have had their axles collapse.  Bailey have replaced some under warranty, but refuse to help others.  There's a chap who refurbishes them - and he's doing a roaring trade.

 

 

Just to add.  We've decided that when our current caravan dies, we'll be giving up caravanning.  We had expected to switch to motorhomes instead but just can't be bothered with the industry any more.

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I got the brake noises on my 2018 Bailey so may be an Alko problem will be taking it up with dealer on first service.

Dometic fridge not working on 12 v when on the move, it struggles if outside temperature gets above 25 deg on 230 v , think there is a lot of this about so poor design of fridge or cheapest the caravan makers can buy.

Front blind is large and springs have trouble rolling it up again will take it up at first service, I think design not good enough for such large size as all other window blinds are ok.

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54 minutes ago, David 38 said:

Dometic fridge not working on 12 v when on the move,

 

What not at all?   Have you checked the car's wiring?   Maybe the supply cable isn't heavy enough.

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The then Caravan Club, now rebranded the CMC back in the early 2000s did and went on to publish a very very telling survey.

Sadly, that end customer focused exercise was very soon dropped.

The UK builders got the heaviest criticism, it really was dreadful reading how badly the industry came out.

"Strangely" ;););), our "Club", gave up that very valuable membership service!

 

Don't expect a caravan to be towed on most of our non motorway roads, they are not built for that level of outright abuse.

 

 

Edited by JTQ

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Then my new friends, 'What are we the Caravanning Public' going to do about it?' I'm writing to JDPower, the BBC and Topgear - why not? Keep on publishing on here too and the club sites. Twitter is good for getting it out there too. If we act and tell our stories who knows who's listening??? Hit them hard ' in the purse where it hurts' and they'll eventually respond. With Social media at our fingertips we have the tools to get something done. 

Who's up for it? Oh - and let's see what happens when the people who are the controllers of this site realise what we are doing. Surely, they too - who ever you are must have a stance. Let's hear from you too????

P.S am no left wing trotsky or right wing facist either. Have no  vested interests except my Caravan which ought to be so much better than it is. I have no political affiliations or associations. I am a recently retired Primary Head, son of a Coal Miner who spent a fair chunk of his retirement lump sum on what can only be described as a mediocre tourer. Surely the British Caravan Manufacturers can do better - they will too if we the purchasing public don't let them get away with it.

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Are you a member of Swift Talk, the forum for Swift owners run by the manufacturer?

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I've long since cast scorn on the statistical methodology used by JD Power so I wouldn't hold my breath that such a survey would achieve anything meaningful - what's it achieved for cars?

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17 minutes ago, Taffyd said:

and let's see what happens when the people who are the controllers of this site realise what we are doing. Surely, they too - who ever you are must have a stance.

 

Even though the policy of CT is not to name and shame, I really see no reason why the shouldn’t support what is being suggested.

 

John

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The manufacturers all seem to be as bad as each other.

 

I had high hopes for Bailey, when they broke away from traditional methods and invested serious money in alutech.  But they seem determined to undermine themselves - leaky front lockers, then leaky showers, then leaky roofs and collapsing axles. 

 

As a Chartered Engineer, I supported the move to have the battery and gas over the axle - but as I've found out to my cost, they've cut too many corners and Unicorn 3s (and some 4s) seem to have collapsed axles on a regular basis.  

 

As said above, I'd intended to buy a motorhome on my retirement.  But I'm no longer prepared to put any more money into this cottage industry and its pathetic standards.

Edited by Tigger
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3 hours ago, Legal Eagle said:

Are you a member of Swift Talk, the forum for Swift owners run by the manufacturer?

Nope but will be visiting now. Thankyou for this.

 

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I think a JDPower type survey is a fine idea. But in a small, niche market (relatively) who’s likely to set it up, fund it, collate and publish the information? 

 

As above, it won’t be the manufacturers or NCC. It’d be a fine crusade for one of the clubs, but then the members would end up paying a hefty bill.

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Until users give British Caravan Manufacturers a wide body swerve and buy better  vans from abroad, the situation with poor build quality and poor customer support from UK manufacturers will never improve.  Hit them where it hurts.   

 

Edited by bessacarr425
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56 minutes ago, bessacarr425 said:

Until users give British Caravan Manufacturers a wide body swerve and buy better  vans from abroad, the situation with poor build quality and poor customer support from UK manufacturers will never improve.  Hit them where it hurts.   

 

 

Agree simply don't buy them ?

 

 

 

Dave

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13 hours ago, bessacarr425 said:

Until users give British Caravan Manufacturers a wide body swerve and buy better  vans from abroad, the situation with poor build quality and poor customer support from UK manufacturers will never improve.  Hit them where it hurts.   

 

I agree completely, but have you tried buying a caravan from abroad or a foreign manufactured one here?  They're impossible and expensive to service or repair.  Not to mention insurance and breakdown cover.

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7 hours ago, fkeates said:

I agree completely, but have you tried buying a caravan from abroad or a foreign manufactured one here?  They're impossible and expensive to service or repair.  Not to mention insurance and breakdown cover.

 

Yes, twice, and your claim on impossible service and repair has not at all mirrored my experience over the 17 years we have had our first and second Hymers.

 

The selling agent has never failed to service them, nor have local independents.

 

All the serviceable items and the equipment fitted, is just the same as UK built vans. Here we don't make our own chassis and appliances, we source exactly the same brands as do the continental makers. So the parts and the expertise needed by the technician is no different.

 

 

In  respect to the only product unique item I can recall ever needing, a front window, getting that shipped to me was expediently exemplary. UK van unique parts, are these readily available?

 

Now with the value of our GBP so sick continental van's are expensive relative to what they were in 2002 and 2008 when we purchased.

Plus, you are not comparing like with like in quality, thus purchase prices are going to reflect this.  In our two cases the adoption of a heavier duty chassis yielding circa 300 kg payload being one example, so with build costing more it is inevitable so will be the retail price.

 

What continental van have you purchased where getting it serviced and repaired here has proved "impossible" by the supplying dealer?

 

 

Edited by JTQ
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Why accept this situation. British Manufacturers are getting away with it and we allow them to. Just listening to tonight's ' Rogue Traters' or Watchdog - they have done a piece on Car Recalls where the same car bought abroad has been re called and fixed yet here nothing or slow 'laisez faire' attitude mean our citizens lives are put at risk.

 

I also believe that RIP of Britain did a piece this morning on the poor quality of their build. 

 

We all need to wake up and demand and Independent Survey to cover basic standards of build quality and service  akin to JDPower but with more bite as the recall issue seems to attest to.

 

Unless we all post and complain they'll never shift. Twitter, Instagram and Facebook are good for making these manufacturers sit up and take notice. I'm writing to Watchdog to ask for them to look at Tourers as well as Motorhomes. Why not do the same? 

 

Taffyd

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6 minutes ago, Taffyd said:

Why accept this situation. British Manufacturers are getting away with it and we allow them to. Just listening to tonight's ' Rogue Traters' or Watchdog - they have done a piece on Car Recalls where the same car bought abroad has been re called and fixed yet here nothing or slow 'laisez faire' attitude mean our citizens lives are put at risk.

 

I also believe that RIP of Britain did a piece this morning on the poor quality of their build. 

 

We all need to wake up and demand and Independent Survey to cover basic standards of build quality and service  akin to JDPower but with more bite as the recall issue seems to attest to.

 

Unless we all post and complain they'll never shift. Twitter, Instagram and Facebook are good for making these manufacturers sit up and take notice. I'm writing to Watchdog to ask for them to look at Tourers as well as Motorhomes. Why not do the same? 

 

Taffyd

 

"If it ain't broke, don't fix it" - we've had three caravans, all bought new - we had the first for 17 years, the second for 12 years and our present one for 6 years - in all three cases, the warranty period was a time to endure and getting all the faults fixed but then enjoying long trouble-free periods.

 

Some owners change every three years - I couldn't bear to do that, selling it just when all the faults are fixed.

 

The problem is squarely on buyers' shoulders - if they keep buying rubbish then the manufacturers will keep making rubbish.

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