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DonnyB007
09-09-2013, 04:38 PM
My wife and I just completed a 12,000 Km trip this summer with our Trailer Runner. Here are my suggestions:
1. For the bunk area, make a light switch at the front of the bunks that could control the back lights. We solely use that area for storage and the light switch is really hard to get at placed at the rear of the bunk when you have lots of items on the bunks.

2. I switched all light bulbs to digital lit units and was really impressed with the extra light and the quality of the light. Maybe digital lighting should become a standard??

3. Under the couch is such a struggle to get into that it is pretty much useless space. Why not make a pull out drawer for under the couch?

4. The water pump had to be replaced just days into our trip and caused a fair bit of grief. Just install good quality water pumps to begin with. The technician that had to replace the pump, stated the pump could have been placed better for access too.

5. I also ended up replacing the cheap taps in both kitchen and washroom. Maybe start out with good quality taps.

6. Make sure the satellite wire is working from the outside outlet right through to the satellite outlet inside the trailer. I had to get a specialized technician in to fix that so my satellite would work

7. The plastic handle on the sewage pull lever kept coming off. I bought a spare handle in case it got lost permanently. Maybe work out a better handle for that pull lever to dump the black water.

8. Why even consider installing plastic kitchen sinks?? Only install stainless steel sinks in the kitchen - PLEASE! I stopped my wife and other people several times just before they were to put a hot pan in the sink from the stove. What a disaster if the pan melted through the sink!

9. Why not start off with gutter extensions to help avoid the black streaks down your trailer where the water flows down.

10. We thought the mattresses in the bunks, and cushions in the couch, and dining benches need extra cushioning. Not comfortable.

11. Make hydraulic hinges under the front queen bed to access the storage area under the bed. We installed hydraulic hinges ourselves and found out the 90 pound hinges were inadequate. Start off with a factory install if this item as mandatory with trailer. We were in and out of that storage area a lot.

12. Solution #1: Many owners talk about the unreliability of the black water sensors. Why not start off with an end I'd black tank wash-out accessory kit. We could never rely on the sensors for the black water tank ourselves.

Solution #2: I purchased an accessory spray wand with a rotating brass head on the end. It only works well when connected directly to its own dedicated hose source for water pressure. If I tried the bathroom sink, when the toilet hatch was opened, then the trailer's water would come on reducing the pressure available for the toilet cleaning wand. Maybe factory install a shut off valve for the toilet water. If you can shut off the water, then you can use the trailer water for adequate water pressure for the toilet wand.

Solution #1 is best though in my opinion!

13. Make a factory install mandatory for a propane outlet near the back of the trailer for BBQ attachment. We found out that ferry boats only allow 2 propane cylinders to come on board - not 3. Therefore, we had to give away our new 20 pound propane cylinder!! The rear propane attachment to the trailer main propane supply would have saved buying that extra 20 pound propane cylinder which adds extra weight to your trailer's GVWR.

I know the above seems like quite a list of belly aching, but all-in-all we really enjoyed our 3.5 months of travelling in our Trailer Runner this summer on vacation. We will spend the winter having professionals upgrade many items mentioned and next summer we are headed put to the Easy coast for a few months.

oldmannj
09-09-2013, 05:31 PM
it seems you forgot #14......Now charge me $15,000.00 more for the TT with all these upgrades. ED.

priorguy
09-09-2013, 06:58 PM
it seems you forgot #14......Now charge me $15,000.00 more for the TT with all these upgrades. ED.

Just add $5-10K and buy a North Trail instead of Trail Runner. I've noticed many of the complaints aren't an issue on mine. But adding 20-30% to the price isn't feasible for everyone. We looked at both and bought a one year used North Trail Caliber Edition ($10K extra for new was out of reach) instead of new Trail Runner (same price). Our dealer had almost everything Heartland on the lot to compare, as well as various used units. The Landmarks and Bighorns were nice to look at, but we still need a sticks and bricks house for a while. Banks are friendly, but not that friendly.

DonnyB007
09-09-2013, 07:37 PM
These are factory installed items, and they can put most if not all of them in for about 2000. Don't forget these are replacements mostly for a better quality and they are factory installs. Look at the pricing (Contractor bulk Rates) and think about labour costs - you should find it to be around 2k. Oh and one last thing is that they should put in a plywood floor and not pressboard for their prime floor. Hey, just suggestions for Heartland to consider from a consumer. A smart businessman will carefully think about those suggestions rather than dismiss them with a chuckle, that's how you go out of business.

Likely, 3/4" plywood good one side, they could get by bulk at about 50 bucks a sheet. That would be around 300 bucks EXTRA for my trailer with very little extra for labour

priorguy
09-10-2013, 06:35 PM
I don't represent Heartland, I'm just an owner. Heartland has 15 product brands, each unique in it's own way. Dealers need different avenues to make sales. They can either meet a price point "X," or match product desires "Y" but for price "Z." Same thing in every other industry. Everybody has their "Chevy" product, and their "Cadillac" product. You never get the "Cadillac" for the "Chevy" price. Enjoy your trailer the way it is, and upgrade to the things you like along the way. Read more posts on this forum and you will see people with $60K and even $90K+ 5ers that are upgrading and replacing things to suit their tastes. Half the fun of owning an RV is making it your own.

I'm planning an East Coast trip next year too, I'm told that Bay of Fundy Provincial Park in New Brunswick is a great place to set up and travel from. Just think, no other Trail Runner will be the same as yours. Post your mods so others can see your ideas and maybe try them themselves.

DonnyB007
09-10-2013, 06:47 PM
Bay of Fundy, here we come :-)

JohnD
10-20-2013, 04:06 AM
We have experienced a couple of the issues that you have had with our 2013 Trail Runner . . .


Getting under that couch and the under-bed storage is a PITA . . . but workable.

I've considered getting the hydraulic lifts that you mentioned for the bed.


And the dinette cushions . . . not only are they uncomfortable and squishy, but they also tend to slide apart and often one or two of them slips off on the floor when someone is sleeping on them and rolling over in the middle of the night.

I'm also thinking about cutting a piece of 3/4 plywood to use for the bed there instead of dropping the dinning table and putting it there.

This is a bad design and the wood around the seating area is getting all tore up by that table being placed there while traveling.


The black tank handle fell off somewhere in between our house and the campground (pictured in my sig line) on our way to our first full fledged campout with our brand new trailer.

Heartland wouldn't replace it under warranty, even though I had never once touched that handle as this was, after all, our very first campout with this trailer where we used the plumbing!


Also, the bumper caps that came with the trailer kept falling out and I eventually lost both . . . they wouldn't cover those, either.

I found some cool ones at Camping World (under $10) that are hinged and are attached with two screws to the rear bumper!


As for the gutter extensions . . . I bought two sets of four (needed one for each corner and two for the slideout) at Walmart for $16 and installed them myself . . . they work great!

However, I had to super glue one of them on as one of the gutter ends was cut and installed funny as it must have been in the way of the awning installation at the factory.


We bought a mattress pad at Camping World ($175) that is very comfortable, but doesn't quite fit the mattress and hangs over the end and makes getting around the bed in the bedroom very tight!

It was the pad that was recommended for the size of our mattress, however.


Speaking of the bathroom, the toilet seat is junk!

One of the hinge pins is always falling out . . . one of these days it will probably fall into the toilet and get flushed without our knowledge . . . until it is too late!


We also plan on replacing both the bathroom and kitchen faucets.

As for the kitchen sink . . . not really a good idea to put a hot pan in a stainless steel sink until they have cooled off, so this is not really an issue as far as I'm concerned.


I haven't had a chance to try the satellite hookup as we only have Direct TV at home, but I have had a lot of trouble with the bat wing antenna wiring.

Even though the dealership has worked on it twice, I ended up borrowing a ladder from the campground we were at up in Custer, South Dakota and rewired it myself (glad I had bought that crimping tool before we left on that trip).

Seems to work fine now, however I am going to either get that UHF booster attachment for the bat wing . . . or possibly replace the bat wing with the Jack antenna.


The only other major issue that I will look at (as soon as I get the trailer back from the dealership for ongoing warranty repairs) are the tires!

I've been reading horror stories here about the Towmax tires . . . and I believe these are the ones on ours, and from what I understand, we are on our own to get them replaced with good ones!

I've got probably 1500 miles on our trailer since we bought it, but I don't feel safe with these tires.


All that being said, it seems that the many issues that we have had with our Trail Runner have been mostly minor ones compared to some of the problems I've read that others have had with their trailers!

And so far we love our trailer and don't regret making the purchase.

And can't wait until next spring to start our second season with our new trailer!

TheWinklers
10-21-2013, 03:32 PM
13. Make a factory install mandatory for a propane outlet near the back of the trailer for BBQ attachment. We found out that ferry boats only allow 2 propane cylinders to come on board - not 3. Therefore, we had to give away our new 20 pound propane cylinder!! The rear propane attachment to the trailer main propane supply would have saved buying that extra 20 pound propane cylinder which adds extra weight to your trailer's GVWR.

We are actually in the process of adding this ourselves.. HOWEVER keep in mind that depending on the bbq unit you are using you may need to modify. We have a Coleman Roadtrip Classic when hooked up with the adapter that comes with the grill it does NOT work the trailer is regulated at the tanks, the grill hookup is regulated hence double regulated. We had to call Coleman and order another assembly so we could cut away the regulator and weld a fitting to make the connection.

I know the above seems like quite a list of belly aching, but all-in-all we really enjoyed our 3.5 months of travelling in our Trailer Runner this summer on vacation. We will spend the winter having professionals upgrade many items mentioned and next summer we are headed put to the Easy coast for a few months.