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Old 01-21-2011, 07:00 AM   #1
mel07green
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Hello. New Alpine here :)

Hi all

My husband and I picked up our 2011 Alpine 3500RE last Friday. So far, so good, apart from a few issues with quality control/workmanship. Oh, and we froze up yesterday

Been poking around several RV forums and it seems like Keystone owners have a disproportionate number of complaints and issues with their units. Would love to hear some happy tales, especially from Alpine owners!

Melinda
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Old 01-21-2011, 07:26 AM   #2
DocData757
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Welcome!

Some problems you have to expect but some (like freezing) are uncalled for and a better QA should prevent them. We had a mix of a few significant issues (hydraulic leak and wrong tank monitor) and several that I was able to handle myself (minor leaks due to loose fittings and such). All the significant problems were resolved under warranty at a repair facility.

All in all, we lover our Alpine. We are full timing in it and loving it!
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Old 01-21-2011, 08:29 AM   #3
mel07green
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Hi Dave, and thanks!

I'm happy overall too. Just a little nervous. We're in Kansas at the moment, and the temperature dropped to single digits in the early hours yesterday. Hence the freeze. My husband removed the wall in the basement and got a heater up in there. Doesn't appear to be any damage, but it did take about six hours to get the water back. No damage that we've detected, which is a huge relief.

Which model do you have?
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Old 01-21-2011, 09:51 AM   #4
DocData757
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2001 3500RE

What happened to you heat. Did the heater fail?
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Old 01-21-2011, 10:06 AM   #5
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No, the heat was/is fine. But all the water pipes and perhaps the tanks froze. We were assured over and over both by dealers and at the factory that the unit would be fine down to zero F. it's in all the Alpine literature too. Not so. And we had the heat running all night, at 65.
Needless to say, we're going to do some insulation work of our own this weekend.
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Old 01-21-2011, 11:46 AM   #6
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We've been down to the high teens wihtt he heat set at 57 and did not have a freeze up. However, when there is a hard freeze like that we do leave the water trickling.

I saw some recent posts about this. One person found some of the heater ductwork was disconnected. Another found that it was crushed, restricting the flow of air.

I have it on my list to remove the panel in the kitchen that faces the oven and see what there is to see.
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Old 01-21-2011, 12:45 PM   #7
mel07green
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Yep, my husband removed that panel in the kitchen and had a look. He's going to hinge it for easy access. Ditto that panel in the basement. Get the feeling they don't want us poking about in there

Thanks for the heads up, I'll have him check the ductwork tomorrow.

I think our freeze issue stemmed from a combination of factors:
- Us NOT leaving the water trickling
- Also, for the first time we had two electric heaters running plus the fireplace, which meant the furnace didn't need to kick in as much.
- And it was a crazy cold night that basically shut down the entire state down the next day.

Lesson learned.
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Old 01-22-2011, 03:07 PM   #8
mikell
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We're in a 3640rl full time in Michigan and last night it was -8 with the wind chill.

So

The I glued 1 1/2" foam to the basement side of the propane tank box

Insulated between the water works and the frame to keep out the wind

Calked what ever air leaks and such I could reach.

Making cutains to go on the inside of the basement doors to help insulate

More things on the way

4 tonight then the windchill
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Old 01-22-2011, 04:47 PM   #9
mel07green
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Thanks. You guys are full-timing, right? We've been surprised at how well it's been doing. Lovely to be in touch with owners of the same unit. Were you considering any others?
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Old 01-23-2011, 06:28 AM   #10
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Welcome to the forum and congrats on your new camper.

The other forums you were on they were Keystone specific and not other brands mixed in with their problems?

I don't feel that most members here are having problems with their RV.
Of course some are. Most do get their issues resolved.

We too are fulltimers, so far, and have been fortunate to have a wonderful Cougar fifth wheel.

Good luck in your camping experiences!

Jo
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Old 01-23-2011, 08:04 AM   #11
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Were full timers and last night it was -11 and alls well so far. I really wonder if any unit could survive without a little extra work. These things are rated for 0 but to try and do it for an entire winter is a bit much to ask.

I work in product testing and I really doubt that Keystone has a chamber to freeze their units to certify them. If Keystone wanted to build one I would be glad to help being I'm only an hour away. A -40 cold chamber could be built for probably 40k$. A pretty big investment for a very few of the units that they would sell
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Old 01-24-2011, 06:38 AM   #12
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We too are full timing but not facing the temps you are. We snowbird. NY mountains in the summer and FL in the winter. We're in NE FL so it still gets cold (this is one of the coldest winters I've seen in 30 years in FL) but no where near what you are facing.
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Old 03-14-2011, 06:39 PM   #13
woodrow38
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We bought our Alpine 3640 in August 2010 and sure like the floor plan. I joined the forum today, so I'm reviewing some of the members experiences.

We have our unit on our daughters property in very cold country of NE Nevada. Therefore, we are not using it much during the winter so we have it winterized. When we go up sometimes we have to haul water until the temperatures start warming up so we can connect to the water system.

Many things we discovered:
Had some warranty work done on trailer in Oct 10 and was a challenge to find a dealer that would do the warranty work as the trailer is 350 miles from our dealer. Lot of the dealers are not interested in the warranty work if you did not buy from them as they explained they do not get anything out of warranty work from the factory and end up loosing money.
1. One of the main warranty items corrected was the front area of the under belly and was bowing down considerably and was working away from the screws. This could have been a serious hazard traveling on the highway if it had broke loose. Warranty dealer got the Okay from factory to install 3 steel cross members across the front area of the under belly.
2. I also had the furnace ducting checked as the living room floor vents were not getting enough heat force. The hallway and bedrooms are getting enough heat force through floor vents. Anyway, dealer could not find anything wrong with a camera they use for checking enclosed areas. Lately I found out from one other member that his Alpine had cripping in the ducting and he corrected it. Although, he recommended to take to a dealer to have corrected as the area to correct is very tight and is way in back of basement panel wall.
Before I new this, the factory told me the heat ducting is Okay because I'm not getting more than 7 degree temp difference in temp in the living room and kitchen. Therefore, the factory would not do any more on this venting. From want I'm finding out from others, I going to pursue the factory about this problem with the heat venting.
3. The labeling of grey, black levers were labeled wrong which cause some very confusing situations when trying to empty the tanks and etc.
4. There were other misc items that were fixed.


Things noticed after warranty work:
1. After I got the unit back from warranty work, I discovered areas in back of the removable wall in the basement storage area. There is one long narrow opening out from the water connection area. This opening is between the under belling material and the out metal frame and next to the water connections, so I stuck some insulation in the area from inside. Hope that keeps the freezing temp out as there were water pipes exposed to this area.
2. Also, located a large round opening in the area of the under belly material that I filled with urathane type spray. This opening was located around where the plumbing extends out. Also, there were small openings around the edges of the front part of the under belly where the screws did not totally secure it tight, that filled with urathane spray.
3. When trying to winterize the unit in November, I discovered the winterizing levers were also mismarked.
4. In the basement storage area, noticed the heat venting in the ceiling did not have a vent opening to heat the area.
5. also, noticed in back of the panel wall of the basement storage by water connection area, there was the heat venting pipe that was cripped cause by other material wrapped around it.

My wife and I have owned different types of RV's the last 25 years. We have had top quality Rv's and every time there are problems on each one including the one we have now. This Alpine has had more problems then our others.

Hope you are having better luck with yours.
Let us know how you doing with your Alpine since January. Mainly interested if you got the freezing of pipes corrected and if you discovered any more areas causing the freezing.

Woody & Joyce
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Old 03-15-2011, 06:40 AM   #14
mel07green
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The freezing pipe issues self-corrected after the temperature rose to well about 32. After having a look what's going on in the water works, I have no hesitation is saying the polar package (or whatever its called) is a JOKE. We are planning our own modifications, including moving water pipes away from the external walls as well as insulating the sub-floor and heating the tanks.

Apart from that, most of our other problems are essentially shoddy workmanship.
- Misaligned cabinetry doors in the kitchen that need to tied shut when we move.
- Significantly bowed wood on the kitchen pantry door so it won't close flush
- Unfinished wood in the bathroom
- The sliding door on the closet is skewed and remains about an inch open at the bottom when the top is closed because the the screw was shredded on the clasp and forced into place.
- Battery not wired up to allow cover to be put in place to keep out water.
- Graphics peeling off kitchen slide.
- Enormous, uneven and unnecessary holes cut around plumbing in kitchen and bathroom, allowing cold air in.
- Satellite wiring all wrong.
I could go on, but you get the idea ...

And a BIG one - we were without a refrigerator for five weeks because someone "forgot" to cut away the wall behind it to allow it to vent, frying the cooling unit. How is that even possible?!

Like I said, mostly cosmetic, but I am seriously doubting my decision, and could not recommend the Alpine at this point. There is simply NO quality control or pride in workmanship.
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