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Old 05-14-2015, 12:24 PM   #1
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Location: Seatac, Washington
Trailer: "The Trailer", 2nd Gen 21' & a 2017 Tundra CrewMax in Blazing Blue Pearl
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Anyone have construction problems?

I hope this is the right place to ask this question. As some of you have read from my previous posts, I'm trying to decide what to purchase. I recently had a month long rental in a 32' motor home and realized it was way too big, so I'm looking for something smaller.

Hubby is a very smart man (one reason I decided he was a keeper) in that he knows whatever I'm happy with, he's happy with, so he's letting me do all the research. We both agree we detest leather furniture and that's all most of the rigs I've looked at over the past 6 months have. Yuck.

Anyway, I've been reading forums for other companies, to get information and all that. And one constant seems to be the various problems owners have with their rigs, even new ones. Such as a bent wire connection, axles too light for the trailer, paint coming off steps, water leaking through a window that wasn't sealed, A/C not working, screws/nails not all the way in (did see that in the Jayco I rented), waste tanks not properly strapped so they sag and don't empty completely, bad blinds, etc, etc. Some folks have had theirs in for so much repair they've hardly used it in the months they've owned it.

After the complaints, others will chime in saying it's the nature of the beast and that you have to accept there will be problems that have to get fixed after you buy it.

I say "forget that". I pay tens of thousands of dollars and it should be ready for me to take out on the road once I get it.

However, on this forum I'm not seeing those types of complaints. It is because I've not explored the forum enough?

Or because they just don't exist and you get a quality product that's ready to take on a long road trip right away? Is it because ETI is a small company that cares about their product? And they're not a company that's cranking out hundreds upon hundreds of their product as quickly as possible to satisfy all their dealers?

After reading the other forums, I feel fortunate the rental didn't have any problems (other than the owner of the company not telling me how to do certain things or where they were, like the breakers, TV switch for cable, reset for generator - Yeah, won't go into all that - HA!) on the almost 2000 mile trip.

If I purchase an Escape, I want to be able to take it out right away and start using it. I don't want it to sit in a repair shop.

I did see one post about the frig beeping and how the owner needed to turn off the light, but it got replaced by the company owner at some rally. That's about the only complaint I've seen (so far).

Thanks much folks. I really appreciate all your feedback.


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Old 05-14-2015, 01:00 PM   #2
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Location: Southwick, Massachusetts
Trailer: 5.0 TA #6, 2012 F150 EB
Posts: 5,678
Anything can have issues, as far as trailers go, Escape has way less then most, but not zero. I've had a few issues, but way less then my Starcraft had. It's just my personal opinion, but if you by any rv, you should expect to be fixing some things, bouncing down the road takes a toll. It helps greatly to be handy with repairs. I would have given up rv'ing if I had had to bring the Starcraft in for all the issues it had.

Covered storage helps a lot.

Issues I've had on the Escape.
Screen door comes out of the track, you put it back in and learn how to close it correctly.
Surge Protector (EMS) chattering, replace the contactor/relay.
Rust on step, Rustolium.
2 door fridge cooling issue, awaiting ETI.
Drawer slide pulled loose, use longer screws.
Slow draining grey holding tank, just the way it is.
Bathroom window won't stay open, ETI sent parts.
Rust on window screws, ETI sent new parts.
Kitchen sink stoppers leak, replaced with better.
Handle/clamp for the awning fell off somewhere, I probably didn't tighten it, bought one off Amazon.

None of these would or did stop me from using the trailer, only the fridge will require a trip to a repair shop.

7000 miles on the trailer.

Just some of the major things I fixed on the Starcraft.
Converter died
Single axle suspension rebuild.
Brakes rusted solid
rear lights filled with water
Many water leak issues, roof seams, bunk doors, sky light, shower, walls.
Replace the plywood floor
3 sets of tires

About 20k miles

Happy Motoring
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Old 05-14-2015, 01:07 PM   #3
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Location: Jamestown, Colorado
Trailer: 2015 Escape 19
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An RV trailer is a large complex product with components that are made by 3rd parties. Some problems are inevitable.

I've only had my trailer for a few months; but so far, so good. The construction seems top notch, things are well thought out, and I was able to get things made my way. To my thinking, I paid a premium price and received a premium product. That said, the refrigerator, furnace, axle, and other components weren't made by ETI. ETI seems to use very good components and goes out of their way to help; but they aren't in the refrigerator business. There is only so much they can do (and it seems they've gone above and beyond what I'd expect).
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Old 05-14-2015, 01:13 PM   #4
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Location: Olympia wa, Washington
Trailer: 5.0TA 2017
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i own a used trailer 2012 17b everything works great. i sometimes need help learning how all the parts work but my trailer is very well built. I am a single woman often traveling alone and i am not handy So I really need a trailer without many repair issues. I also live in the Pacific NW so i picked this trailer because it is very water tight with far less risk of water damage issues.
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Old 05-14-2015, 01:14 PM   #5
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Location: Olympia, Washington
Trailer: 2008 Bigfoot 25B17.5G
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I have a ten year old Escape that we bought used two years ago, and we (knock on wood) haven't had any problems yet! I really do think they make a superior product... We may be lucky in that our third party stuff (fridge, A/C, hot water heater, etc) are still functioning; it does seem like those are the weak links.
Hillary & Jeff
Camping with the sighthound variety pack
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Old 05-14-2015, 01:41 PM   #6
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Location: Bellingham and Glacier, Washington
Trailer: 2013 Escape 15A
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My Escape is two years old and has over 100 nights on it. The only trouble I've had were third-party issues: the water pump and the sail switch on the furnace had to be replaced. Um...there were a few operator-error issues.
Karen Hulford
2013 Escape 15A, "Egbert"
Ford 150 XLT 5.8L
Bellingham, Washington
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Old 05-14-2015, 01:58 PM   #7
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Location: Auburn, Washington
Trailer: 2013 Escape 21 #3
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Laura, No one, and certainly no company, is perfect. It’s how they handle issues as they arise that differentiate the good from the bad. We came very close to purchasing another brand, until I read their forums and blogs. They not only had production quality issues, but they weren’t handling them to the satisfaction of their customers. They also didn’t seem to be making any changes to their quality control because those issues kept on showing up.

Then I, like you, read this forum and was impressed. Yes issues arise, but because of ETI’s quest for production quality, their openness to customer input, and their continual revision to quality control, we just don’t hear much in the complaint department. I see issues being taken care of and not showing up time and again. Which is really cool, because this forum can spend it’s time on more pleasant things like; what’s out your back window, trailer modifications, campground suggestions, tow vehicle discussions, and the all time favorite, Friday Pictures. AND, we can actually use our trailers for what we purchased them for.
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Old 05-14-2015, 02:04 PM   #8
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Location: Mesa, Arizona
Trailer: '15 Escape 5.0 TA
Posts: 188
In my opinion, you are on the right track by looking at FGRV's (Fiberglass RV). Our first camper was a 17 Casita and we really liked it. Very few issues, not of them related to construction. We decided we needed more room and spent a considerable amount of time at RV shows and dealers lots looking at SOB's. The construction issues are very apparent on many of them and very few brands would we even consider. Came very close to purchasing an Artic Fox.

I can't really explain it, but FGRV's just have a different feel. Living in Western WA and having to store our camper outside, the rubber roof really became a deal breaker for us. We are so much more confident with fiberglass construction. We just took delivery of our new 5.0 and couldn't be happier. The construction and quality to detail from ETI is top notch. We hope to keep our 5'r for about 10 years into retirement and I have no doubts that it will be in great shape at that time. And it will be stored outdoors the whole time.

You are on the right track and I'm sure all of your research will prove that. Best of luck. Bob
2013 GMC Sierra CC Max Tow
2011 Casita 17 SD-sold
2015 Escape 5.0TA-sold
"How can I be lost, if I have no place to go"
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Old 05-14-2015, 02:38 PM   #9
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Location: Vancouver Island, British Columbia
Trailer: 2014 Escape 21. Tow vehicle: 2012 Toyota Tundra Crewmax Platunum.
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We've now taken two 4-week trips in our Escape 21, and are the proverbial happy campers. That doesn't mean there have been no problems, but the way Escape dealt with the issues has kept us pleased with the company and the quality of its products.

For example, when using our inverter while off-grid, we could still only get power from one plug, despite having the transfer switch installed. I mentioned this to Dennis when we had our unit in for a brake adjust and wheel bearing check, and he immediately put one of the guys onto it. Turns out an ex-employee had mis-wired our unit to the extent that if we had ever run the water heater on electric it would have drained the dual 6-volt batteries.

ETI also replaced the rusting "stainless" screws supplied by the maker of our double-pane windows.

Our unit was built during the Great Dometic Fridge Crisis of 2014, and during its build Reace decided to install the Texas Fan at no charge. On our recent trip to southern Utah we had some 80 degree days, but the fridge and freezer worked like champs on setting 4 out of 5 when the fan kicked in.

We're particularly happy that it tows beautifully with the Andersen hitch, and that it should never leak, even here on the Wet Coast.
Brent and Cheryl.
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Old 05-14-2015, 02:59 PM   #10
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Location: Idaho Falls, Idaho
Trailer: 2013 19' Escape
Posts: 147
As advised by many on the forum, we spent our first night camped near ETI. There was way too much sunlight coming in around the main door in the morning. ETI replaced it the next day. When we got home, we had a lot of wet TP in the cabinet under the fridge. Water pump leaked badly...Reace promptly mailed us a new one and a very nice gift card for Olive Garden. The fridge is essentially worthless above 75-80 degrees...but I think the forum reflects Reace's efforts to make that good...even though we're not there yet. You cannot ask for better customer service than I have received from ETI.

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