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Monday, October 19, 2009

Lumpy Linoleum

We purchased a brand new RV from a local dealer. We've had many issues, but the biggest one started with a slideout malfunctioning and ripping a hole in the linoleum floor. Obviously, the floors in these units are all one piece, so it meant leaving the unit with the dealer to have the warranty work done. At the time he mentioned it would probably be going back to the manufacturer since it was "too big of a job" for them to do at the dealership. When we called back after a month to check on the status, we were told that they were going to be doing the work themselves. After two-plus months at the dealer we were told it’s done and we can pick it up. We walked into the coach to discover a floor that was significantly bubbled up in many places. The dealer stated it was completely normal; that the new floor needs to "settle" and the bubbles will work out. I am beginning to doubt that it is truly fixed correctly. I've never seen a brand new coach with a bubbled floor. Any insight you could give me would be much appreciated.
Jackie, (Milford, NH)

I’m so sorry to hear about your troubles with a brand new unit Jackie. Obviously dealers are poised to service many repair items on the units they deliver, but then again, some tasks require very specialized equipment and material handling capabilities that are usually better met at the manufacturer. Sidewall replacements, full roof replacement and slideout replacements come to mind. Flooring replacement, to my knowledge however, is usually performed at the dealership. Though difficult and time consuming, it is still doable at the dealer level in most cases. Of course, the dealer is beholden to the manufacturer with issues of warranty repair. It’s quite possible the manufacturer directed the dealer to perform the repair and that his staff was ill-equipped to do it.

It’s my opinion that a new linoleum floor should not show bubbles when prepped and installed correctly. Logic alone rebuffs the “completely normal” mindset. The unknown factor here is the effects of weather during the preparation and installation. It’s not unfathomable that the bubbling will subside during warmer months, but my first reaction is that they should not be there if the floor was properly prepped, cemented and rolled out evenly. If indeed the bubbles disappear I would still have the dealer note that the bubbles were present soon after the repair and that the warranty coverage should be extended the same number of days that the coach was in for repair. Those days you cannot use the RV as an RV because it was in the shop should be added to the end of the warranty period.


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