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Old 09-16-2021, 01:46 PM   #21
TJTx
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Check inverter

We have a 2017.5 Alpine 3401RS with 2 main batteries and 2 batteries for the residential refrigerator. On our unit, you have to turn on the inverter above the refrigerator batteries in the front storage bay for the refrigerator to run when disconnected from shore power.
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Old 09-16-2021, 03:17 PM   #22
sourdough
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Originally Posted by JRTJH View Post
My perspective, for what it's worth: If you compare Keystone and Grand Designs, you'll find that GD is much more "helpful when you call". GD staffs their customer service department differently than Keystone. They also "factor in a much greater percentage of MSRP to be allocated for warranty work than Keystone....

As an hypothetical example: Keystone markets a 26' mid grade ultralight travel trailer for $35000. They calculate warranty claims of 3%. That's $1050 they can spend on that trailer and still not cut their profit margin. Let's say that's "Keystone's business model"....

Now, GD builds essentially the same trailer, using the same equipment, the same labor force in the same type plant. Their "cost to build" is going to be the same as Keystone's cost. But, they market their trailer at $41000, about 15% more than Keystone. They "know" that it's going to cost around the same "warranty costs" to repair their trailer as it does to repair the Keystone trailer. BUT, they have an additional $5000 to invest in "superior customer service and eager warranty repairs".... To them, it's a "customer perception that's worth the investment in increased MSRP." That's a "different business model"....

To the customer who has problems with his GD trailer, the perception is that GD's warranty is better. In reality, he paid a big chunk of change to get that warranty.

If you have a "problem trailer, the faster, easier to deal with warranty may seem a good deal. To the person who buys either brand and doesn't ever return to the dealership for warranty and never writes the factory about problems, there's a certain "lure of saving money" that comes with the Keystone business model.

I'd suppose that for someone who does their own maintenance and repairs, Keystone is a much better "investment"... On the other hand, someone who "expects an automotive warranty experience", maybe paying more for a GD may keep their expectations in the positive arena...

Bottom line is that for nearly every trailer, the Keystone warranty is going to fix things that break. The reality is that it's likely to take longer, with more frustration and more "owner involvement" than with the GD business model, but, you pay $5000 less with those frustrations... The "value for what you get" is an individual consideration.... Some prefer the eager to help attitude and are willing to pay for it. Some prefer to save the money. For them, the frustration is worth the savings....

Problem is, most people never look at any "situational picture" wider than their broken trim molding and think, "Keystone doesn't care".....


The above is what I've said for a long time. GD and Keystone are basically the same trailers when you dig thru them. You always pay a premium for the GD as you said, not for "better quality" but for a different kind of treatment after the sale. They are different business models with different end goals. It apparently works well for both of them it's just up to a potential customer to decide if they think that extra 15%, 10k or whatever is worth a "smiling voice" on the other end.
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Old 09-16-2021, 03:31 PM   #23
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Speaking of Keystone customer service, didn't Keystone pick up phone service for one or more of the other camper brands under Thor or is my memory faulty?
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Old 09-16-2021, 04:08 PM   #24
JRTJH
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Originally Posted by wiredgeorge View Post
Speaking of Keystone customer service, didn't Keystone pick up phone service for one or more of the other camper brands under Thor or is my memory faulty?
Dutchman, Coleman, Crossroads and all the "Keystone brands".
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Old 09-23-2021, 07:55 AM   #25
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Sort of brings me back to things like having to pull the engine to change the #8 spark plug, having to pull the fuel tank to get to the fuel pump (inside the tank), and the lastest and greatest: Having to pull the entire truck cab to access the turbo.....

It's not "just Keystone" that engineers in some very questionable access to components......

And: I'd never consider emailing Ford/Dearborn to complain that my truck won't start or the radio won't turn on.... That's a "trip to the service department, not an email to the factory".....
well, there are those that say "if its a ford, it always starts" ;-)
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Old 09-23-2021, 11:28 AM   #26
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Speaking of Keystone customer service
I'd like to throw in my two cents worth here about Keystone Customer service. We purchased our Cougar on our way home from vacation September 4th,last year, at a CW about 600 miles form home. We've had very few warranty issues I'd like to get addressed, but there is no way I'm dragging this trailer 600 miles back to Utah for warranty service from the selling dealership. So, I've been working with a local CW in Reno, NV, still 90 miles from home, but they have been very understanding and accommodating. They documented all my concerns when I took it in for the OTG recall and got Keystones repair authorization for each of them.I had an appointment to take the trailer in when we returned from our vacation this year at the end of July. Still within the 1 year warranty. We cut our vacation short due to our home being under evacuation warning from the Dixie fire. We kept the trailer packed and ready to roll at a moments notice if we got the order to go. I called CW in Reno and explained the situation to them and the agreed to move the service appointment out till early September, but still within the warranty period. Early September, Dixie fire was still not close to being contained, and at its closest uncontained fire line, within 5 miles of our home. I again contacted CW in Reno and they again agreed to move the service appointment to early October. Outside the warranty period. They suggested I contact Keystone, notify them what the situation is, why the trailer was not able to be repaired within the regular warranty period and confirm they will cover the warranty repairs. I contacted Keystone and the representative was very understanding, got my VIN and noted in their files what was going on. The fire is now completely contained in our county, all evacuation warning and orders for our county have been lifted, the trailer is mostly unpacked from being ready to evacuate and I think we'll be ready to take it in on the 4th of October. Hopefully I'll get in back within 3 weeks. I'd like to get out with it at least 1 or 2 more times before I have to winterize it.

I've heard so much negative about CW and some about Keystone customer service, but so far, my experience with the CW in Kaysville UT and Reno NV as well as directly with Keystone has been outstanding.
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Old 09-23-2021, 12:56 PM   #27
sourdough
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I'd like to throw in my two cents worth here about Keystone Customer service. We purchased our Cougar on our way home from vacation September 4th,last year, at a CW about 600 miles form home. We've had very few warranty issues I'd like to get addressed, but there is no way I'm dragging this trailer 600 miles back to Utah for warranty service from the selling dealership. So, I've been working with a local CW in Reno, NV, still 90 miles from home, but they have been very understanding and accommodating. They documented all my concerns when I took it in for the OTG recall and got Keystones repair authorization for each of them.I had an appointment to take the trailer in when we returned from our vacation this year at the end of July. Still within the 1 year warranty. We cut our vacation short due to our home being under evacuation warning from the Dixie fire. We kept the trailer packed and ready to roll at a moments notice if we got the order to go. I called CW in Reno and explained the situation to them and the agreed to move the service appointment out till early September, but still within the warranty period. Early September, Dixie fire was still not close to being contained, and at its closest uncontained fire line, within 5 miles of our home. I again contacted CW in Reno and they again agreed to move the service appointment to early October. Outside the warranty period. They suggested I contact Keystone, notify them what the situation is, why the trailer was not able to be repaired within the regular warranty period and confirm they will cover the warranty repairs. I contacted Keystone and the representative was very understanding, got my VIN and noted in their files what was going on. The fire is now completely contained in our county, all evacuation warning and orders for our county have been lifted, the trailer is mostly unpacked from being ready to evacuate and I think we'll be ready to take it in on the 4th of October. Hopefully I'll get in back within 3 weeks. I'd like to get out with it at least 1 or 2 more times before I have to winterize it.

I've heard so much negative about CW and some about Keystone customer service, but so far, my experience with the CW in Kaysville UT and Reno NV as well as directly with Keystone has been outstanding.

My experiences mirror yours. On this trailer I had several issues arise right before a lengthy departure and did not have time for CW to get the parts and get it fixed prior to warranty expiration. No worries. CW logged everything I had and told me to contact Keystone which I did. I even added a couple of items while gone before the warranty expired. 4 months after warranty expired they got the trailer fixed, everything covered and when I talked to a mgr. at Keystone Customer Service they asked if there was anything else I found or needed fixed under warranty while it was in!! I have no complaints about CW or Keystone during or after the sale. Now quality coming out of the factory....that's a different matter.
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